Maharashtrian desserts have a unique flavour profile if you have tried them. 

If you have not and are fascinated by flavours, you have to try the sweets of Maharashtra. These sweets are not just about flavours; they're about the history, stories, memories, and the warmth of togetherness associated with them.

We bring you 12 famous sweets of Maharashtra to try when visiting.

Maharashtrian Sweet Dishes: 

  • Puran Poli
  • Modak
  • Shrikhand
  • Basundi
  • Aamras
  • Karanji
  • Anarsa
  • Chiroti
  • Tilgul
  • Pathavniche Ghavne (Ghavan)
  • Guravali
  • Bhonge Laddu 

 

  • Puran Poli:

Puran Poli is not just a sweet flatbread; it's a cultural treasure of Maharashtra, steeped in tradition and history. Originating from ancient culinary practices, it symbolises the fusion of art and culture. The preparation involves kneading the dough, preparing the sweet jaggery and gram flour filling, and carefully cooking it on a grill. 

The result is a soft, sweet flatbread that evokes a sense of nostalgia and warmth. Served with a generous dollop of ghee, Puran Poli is a festive staple, especially during Ganesh Chaturthi and Gudi Padwa, representing the joy and sweetness of these celebrations. It's a quintessential part of the sweets of Maharashtra. 

  • Modak:

Modak is sacred in the state’s culture and is not just one of the Maharashtrian desserts. It is revered as the favourite offering to Lord Ganesha. The unique shape, resembling a lotus, symbolises the unfolding of spiritual wisdom. 

Crafting Modaks is a cherished tradition during Ganesh Chaturthi, involving the preparation of a sweet coconut and jaggery filling encased in a delicate rice flour shell. This sweet dumpling is not just a religious offering but a symbol of familial bonding and joy as families come together to prepare and savour this divine treat, celebrating devotion and togetherness. Modak is one of the most famous sweets of Maharashtra and an integral part of the state. 

  • Shrikhand: 

Shrikhand is one of the most luxurious, famous sweets in Maharashtra. It showcases the culinary prowess of Maharashtra. Its origins trace back to ancient times, evolving into a symbol of festivity and indulgence. 

Made from strained yoghurt, sweetened with sugar, and infused with the exotic flavours of cardamom and saffron, Shrikhand's velvety texture and aromatic taste make it a favourite at celebrations. Often paired with puri, it's a versatile dessert that can be savoured on its own or as part of a feast. Shrikhand is a beloved dessert in Maharashtra that highlights the elegance and richness of the region's sweet culinary traditions. 

  • Basundi:

Basundi is a celebration of patience and simplicity, a dessert that epitomises the essence of Maharashtrian hospitality. The slow simmering of milk, infused with the warmth of cardamom, nutmeg, and saffron, transforms it into a rich, creamy delight. Garnished with nuts, Basundi is a testament to the joy of sharing and togetherness. It's a versatile dessert, served chilled or warm, adding a touch of sweetness to festive occasions and gatherings, reminding us of the simple pleasures in life. 

  • Aamras:

Made from the pulp of Alphonso mangoes, it's an eagerly awaited seasonal delicacy. Adding cardamom or saffron elevates its flavour, making it a refreshing end to any meal. Aamras is a tribute to the mango orchards of Maharashtra, capturing the essence of summer in every spoonful. Having this Maharashtrian sweet dish is like a celebration for families. People save up and buy mangoes just to make this dessert and relish it with hot puris. 

  • Karanji:

Karanji is a symbol of festivity and abundance in Maharashtrian culture. It is a sweet pastry that encapsulates the spirit of Diwali. With its crescent shape and sweet coconut filling, the art of making Karanji is a communal activity that brings families together. It's a labour of love, with each Karanji meticulously crafted to add sweetness to the festival of lights. The crispy outer layer and flavourful filling make it a delightful treat enjoyed by all ages, symbolising the joy and celebration of the festive season. Karanji is a staple and a beloved sweet of Maharashtra. 

  • Anarsa:

Anarsa is a cherished sweet snack in Maharashtra, with a history that spans centuries. Made from fermented rice dough and coated with poppy seeds, it's a testament to Maharashtrian sweets' unique flavours and textures. Making Anarsa involves soaking rice, grinding it into a fine powder, and deep-frying it to perfection. Its crispy exterior and chewy interior make it a delightful contrast in textures, enjoyed during festive occasions. 

  • Chirote:

Chirote is a testament to the artistry and skill of Maharashtrian cuisine. It's a treat that adds a touch of elegance to the festive spread, enjoyed for its texture and flavour as a quintessential Maharashtrian sweet dish.

The delicate layers of dough, fried to perfection, create an irresistible flaky and light texture. Often made during Diwali, Chirote is a symbol of celebration and craftsmanship. Making Chirote involves careful folding and rolling to create the layers, resulting in a delightful pastry that is both beautiful and delicious. 

  • Tilgul: 

Tilgul embodies the spirit of Makar Sankranti, a festival that marks the beginning of the harvest season. It is a famous sweet of Maharashtra, common during this auspicious festival.

Made from sesame seeds and jaggery, it symbolises warmth and sweetness, encouraging people to speak sweetly and spread joy. The tradition of exchanging Tilgul with the greeting "Tilgul ghya, god god bola" fosters goodwill and community spirit. 

It's more than just a sweet; it symbolises unity and positivity, reminding us of the importance of kindness and togetherness in our lives.  

  • Pathavniche Ghavne:

Also known as Ghavan, it is a traditional Maharashtrian pancake that is light, lacy, and slightly crispy. It is made from a batter of rice flour and water, sometimes with a pinch of salt for taste. The batter is spread thinly over a hot grill or tawa, resulting in a delicate, net-like texture. 

Ghavne is a versatile dish that can be served as a breakfast or snack, often accompanied by chutney, pickle, or curry. It is particularly popular in the coastal regions of Maharashtra. It is a simple yet delicious part of the local cuisine. While not as sweet as other items on this list, Ghavne is an important part of the culinary landscape of Maharashtra. 

  • Guravali:

Guravali is a traditional sweet from Maharashtra, made especially during festivals like Diwali. It consists of a semolina and all-purpose flour cover stuffed with a mixture of dry coconut, poppy seeds, powdered sugar, and cardamom powder. 

The unique aspect of this sweet is the insertion of jasmine flower buds into the fried dough, giving it a delightful aroma and flavour. This sweet is a delightful treat that combines the flavours of cardamom and jasmine, offering a unique taste experience and adding to the rich tapestry of Maharashtrian sweet dishes. 

  • Bhonge Laddu:

It is a distinctive sweet from Maharashtra's Buldhana district and offers a unique taste experience. These laddus are crafted from wheat bran and deep-fried to achieve a crunchy texture. They are then soaked in sugar syrup to add sweetness. The final touch is a coating of sesame seeds, which adds a nutty flavour and an extra layer of crunch. 

The combination of sweet and salty flavours makes Bhonge Laddu a memorable treat for those seeking a different sweetness. It's a testament to the diversity of sweets of Maharashtra, showcasing the region's innovative approach to traditional confections.

Some Maharashtrian desserts might not be easily available in any shop. You might have to look for traditional sweet makers or restaurants. Take this as an opportunity to explore the state and enjoy every bit of it.

At least you know which famous sweets of Maharashtra you need to look for.

  • Food
  • Maharashtra

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