Instant Pot Kalakand (Milk Cake)


A rich, creamy dessert that’ll melt in your mouth! This cardamom-spiced milk cake is the perfect treat for this festive time of year.

Instant Pot Kalakand (Indian Milk Cake)

What is Kalakand (milk cake)?

Kalakand, also known as milk cake, is a popular Indian dessert. It’s a sweet that I think most people prefer to buy in stores, because of how long it takes to make.

Well, I’ve come up with a shortcut kalakand recipe that doesn’t sacrifice flavor. This recipe tastes just like store-bought mithai!

Instant Pot Kalakand (Indian Milk Cake)

Milk Cake Recipe Expert

You should know that I’m somewhat of a kalakand expert. Okay, no one has officially bestowed that title on me, but it’s true. What makes me an expert? Well, I have decades of experience eating kalakand lol. I’ve been eating it (according to my mother, more like demanding it) since the approximate age of 3. Back then, I called it “milk mithai.” I still think that’s a nice name for this dessert.

As a teenager, I dreamt of opening my own mithai shop (I also had several other unlikely career aspirations, like being a comedian, which is hilarious because I am not funny, though I try lol). I had plans to call my mithai shop Ashley’s mithai shop (not very creative, I know).

Now, I’m a grown-up (more or less), and even though I don’t have my own mithai shop, I’m pretty sure that if I did, this kalakand would be a best-seller. Right ahead of or alongside my kaju katli, moong dal halwa, and besan burfi.

What does Kalakand taste like?

If you’ve never tried kalakand, it tastes kind of like a mix between a cake and soft fudge. It’s sort of like Indian tres leches. Think a soft, and moist yet still firm cake that’s slightly crumbly and melts in your mouth. I think it might be impossible for me to describe this dessert in a way that does it justice.

Kalakand is said to have originated in Alwar, a city in Rajasthan. The story is that a dessert maker left Pakistan after the Partition in 1947 and settled in Alwar, where he brought this dessert and made it popular. Different varieties of milk cakes were already popular in Punjab; it could be that kalakand was an adaptation of those other variations.

Kalakand vs Burfi

There are many types of milk-based Indian desserts. Kalakand is like a soft and creamy cake whereas burfi is more like a firm fudge. The main difference is in texture. Again, kalakand is much softer than burfi. If you’re looking for a burfi recipe, then give my milk burfi a try.

Instant Pot Kalakand (Indian Milk Cake)

There are different varieties of milk cake. This dessert can vary in color; some are white, some are brown, and some are ombré. It all depends on the cooking method and the type of ingredients used. Some recipes use whole milk, some call for paneer, and some use condensed milk. My shortcut version calls for ricotta cheese.

Traditionally though, this dessert is made by reducing milk and sugar until it forms a crumbly, soft burfi (fudge). It normally takes forever to make. You’re supposed to watch a pot of milk boil until it reduces to basically nothing.

We are skipping that step entirely. My method requires minimal effort and little hands-on time.

Instant Pot Kalakand (Indian Milk Cake)

How to make Kalakand in an Instant Pot:

Add ricotta cheese, sugar, and water to a pot and mix well. Pressure cook.

Open the lid, add ghee, dry milk powder, and freshly ground cardamom.

Pour it into a pan, garnish with pistachios, and chill for 3 hours.

Slice and serve!

Instant Pot Kalakand (Indian Milk Cake)
Instant Pot Kalakand (Indian Milk Cake)
Instant Pot Kalakand (Indian Milk Cake)

Is Kalakand good for your health?

Whenever I see this question, I laugh. No, kalakand is not good for your health lol. This is wishful thinking. Now, that said, I do feel better about making desserts myself because I know exactly what ingredients I’m using to make them. I always use high-quality, organic ingredients when cooking. I believe that anything homemade is likely going to be healthier than store-bought.

Should I keep Kalakand in the Fridge?

Yes, I keep kalakand in the fridge. You can store this mithai in an air-tight container in the fridge for about a week. 

As someone who has eaten more than her fair share of kalakand over the years, I’m confident in declaring that this is the best kalakand I’ve ever had. Or at least, equally as good as the best I’ve ever had. I can’t wait to hear what you think!

Instant Pot Kalakand (Indian Milk Cake)

Instant Pot Kalakand (Milk Cake)

Instant Pot Kalakand (Indian Milk Cake)

Instant Pot Kalakand (Milk Cake)

4.97 from 88 reviews
Pin Recipe Print Recipe
Servings 25 pieces
Cuisine Indian


  • 15 ounces whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup sugar approx. 200 grams
  • cup water approx. 2.8 oz
  • ½ cup ghee 4 oz, room temp
  • 2 ½ cups dry milk powder approx. 235-250 grams
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground cardamom*
  • 1 tablespoon chopped pistachios


  • Add the ricotta cheese, sugar, and water to the pot and mix well.
  • Secure the lid, close the pressure valve, and cook for 11 minutes at high pressure. (This is a good time to grind cardamom if you don’t have some on hand).
  • Quick-release pressure.
  • Add ghee, milk powder, and cardamom to the pot and stir until well combined (you may want to wear a glove to hold onto the hot pot as you stir). 
  • Pour the mixture into a parchment-lined 8×8 pan, sprinkle chopped pistachios over top, and then gently shake the pan to help level the fudge and also to help the pistachios stick. 
  • Let the milk cake cool down (takes about an hour), then put it in the fridge for 3 hours to set. 
  • Once chilled, lift from the pan using parchment then cut into 1.5-inch x 1.5-inch squares. 
  • You can store this mithai in an air-tight container in the fridge for about a week. 



  • You can use non-fat or full-fat dry milk powder in this recipe. I have used this brand as well as this brand. I’ve also used the brand Village Farms from Wegmans. You can also find dry milk powder at Indian grocery stores as well as most grocery stores.
  • If for some reason the mixture looks runny, feel free to add more milk powder or hit sauté at the end.
  • Freshly ground cardamom powder is much more aromatic and flavorful than store-bought. I highly suggest grinding your own for this recipe (and for any Indian dessert recipe). Grind your own by removing the green shell and grinding the black seeds inside. I have and love this electric spice grinder if you’re looking for a recommendation.
  • I prefer using raw pistachios because they’re brighter green than roasted.
  • You can also decorate with rose petals if you’d like.
  • Important! All of the recipes on my blog are tested using a 6-quart instant pot – I have not tested this recipe in a different-sized pot. I don’t know if this recipe will work in a 3 quart or 8 quart as the surface area is different and will affect the temperature of the sugar syrup. I suggest only using a 6 quart for this recipe.
  • Do Not Double Recipe: Please do not double/triple this recipe or any other Instant Pot dessert recipe on my blog. A dessert or anything made with sugar syrup can be finicky in an Instant Pot. I have only tested this recipe as written.
Did you make this recipe?Tag @myheartbeets on Instagram and hashtag it #myheartbeets!

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Instant Pot Kalakand (Indian Milk Cake)

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Find out more about my cookbooks Indian Food Under Pressure and South Asian Persuasion.

About Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley. Thanks for being here! I truly believe that food brings us closer together. Gather around a table with good food and good people, and you’ll have the ingredients you need to create some happy memories. My hope is that you find recipes here that you can’t wait to share with family and friends.


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Recipe Rating


  1. Lea says

    5 stars
    I made this this afternoon (meant to make it last night as had for dinner tonight) anyhow, it didn’t have a runny consistency once I added all ingredients, so I added a splash of milk to loosen it off and then followed all the instructions except…. we ate it within 5 hours, still delicious, I managed to save a few squares so I can try it tomorrow and see how it should really be. Banging recipe I’ll definitely try this or one of the other variations again. Thank you 🙂

  2. Hiral says

    It worked like a treat couple of years ago for many times I made it but lately this year I keep getting food burn ☹️☹️
    So sad

  3. Liz says

    Hi Ashley,
    I am allergic to all dairy so am wondering if I can use coconut condensed milk and coconut flour (1/2 cup) to make this dessert or any other of your milk desserts?

  4. Sandra says

    5 stars
    Hi. I just made this for my son and for my daughter-in-law, (who is from Southern India). Lunch included this milk cake, your green bean thoran (big hit) and also your lazy tikki (also a big hit). They left just now, back to Toronto, but I forgot to include this milk cake in their care package–they are both extremely career oriented so don’t cook much….well “Hello Fresh” a few times a week, a lot of take out otherwise.
    Megha’s parents are visiting from India in September, I’m planning planning a big banquet one Saturday afternoon in honour.
    Question–do you think this milk cake would freeze okay? They both loved it.

  5. Vaishali says

    Thank you Ashley, kids loved kalakand, it was delicious and easy to make.
    If possible, please share bengali sweets recipe ( Rasgulla , Cham Cham)

  6. Vicky says

    4 stars
    I’ve made this twice now, first time didn’t set but I knew I’d used too much ricotta,. Next time I measured carefully and it’s set a lot better but still not enough to set. I’ve read your other comments and will try sautéing. I’m in Aus so my ricotta brand is different, will keep trying to get it to set, but it still gets eaten lol!

  7. Desi says

    5 stars
    Thank you so much for the recipe . I really appreciate your generosity in sharing this. Made it this diwali (my first time making a diwali sweet dish) and it was a hit! Will definitely become a part of our future family Diwali tradition!

  8. Reshma Shroff says

    Hi Ashley,

    My Kalakand came out sticky. While cutting it, the knife was not coming out clean & also it was stuck to the parchment paper at the bottom. Any idea as to what could have happened? I used the Trader Joe’s whole milk ricotta, regular sugar, Bob Red Mills non fat milk powder and ghee. Thanks

    • Ashley - My Heart Beets says

      Hi Reshma, I think sometimes the amount of liquid in ricotta can vary – so I would just saute or mix it longer to dry up any extra liquid – IF it looks too liquidy next time. For now though, can you let it set a bit longer and see if that helps? You can also try cleaning the knife in between cuts – that should also help. Le time know!

      • Reshma Shroff says

        Thanks for your prompt response! I did put it on sauté for a few minutes but it started getting brown from the bottom. I also left it in the refrigerator for a while day. I think next time I will sauté it separately or try another brand of ricotta cheese.

  9. Yamini says

    5 stars
    Hi Ashley, I have tried this recipe 3 times with the exact measurements in a 6 quart IP. Everytime I open the IP I see the ricotta cheese with sugar has turned brown. Though it tastes amazing, I am wondering why I can’t get it white. Any reason why this happens?

    • Ashley - My Heart Beets says

      Hi Yamini, I’m not sure why it’s turning brown – are you mixing it well before you pressure cook? Is the silicone ring on properly? Maybe the brand of ricotta you’re using has less water? I would try adding 2 tablespoons more water and see if that helps. If it’s liquidy at the end, you can always saute it for a minute to dry up any extra liquid.

  10. Ashmita says

    5 stars
    I know the mistake I did – I used powdered sugar instead of regular sugar! I think that might be the reason. It must have just dried up faster. Ugghhh!

    • Ashley - My Heart Beets says

      Hi Rhea, hmm were you cooking anything before making this? I’m wondering if the pot was already hot? Did you mix everything together well? Hopefully one of these can help troubleshoot… otherwise, did you try just ignoring the burn sign and seeing if it continued to cook? That can happen – if you ignore it, it should start up on its own.

      • Ashmita says

        Same thing happened to me. My IP first goes to ON and then heats up for sometime before it starts the 11 min timer. While following this recipe, it went to burn after sometime in ON. I released the pressure and opened it, the bottom had started turning brown. So I followed the rest of the recipe. maybe the ricotta cheese we are using is on the dryer side? I used a 16 oz box – 1 oz more than what is in the recipe. Do you think that caused the burn?

        • Ashley - My Heart Beets says

          I don’t think an extra ounce would make that much of a difference but it’s hard to say as I haven’t tried it that way. Are you using a 6 quart IP? Did the brown color affect the flavor/color of the overall dish?

      • Ashmita says

        To add to the above – mine came out drier in the IP to the point that I could not pour it, had to scoop it out. I have just put it for setting. Hoping the texture still turns out fine

        • Ashley - My Heart Beets says

          I saw your other comment about using powdered sugar instead of regular sugar. So, powdered sugar usually has something added to it to prevent clumping, like cornstarch – so that’s the reason it’s not turning out right. Let me know how it goes if you try it with regular sugar! I’m sure it’ll work this time 🙂

  11. Vasanth Srinivasa says

    5 stars
    Love this recipe!
    Can you double of tripe this recipe to make a bigger batch? If so, does the pressure cook time change?

  12. Mariam says

    5 stars
    Kalakand is my favorite and this was easy to follow and tasted so good. I have extra ricotta cheese that I don’t have use for but will expire soon. I was wondering if I could make these and freeze them ahead for unexpected house visitors?

    • Ashley - My Heart Beets says

      Hi Mariam, I normally freeze burfi/Indian desserts and it’s fine – I can’t remember if I’ve frozen this kalakand because it goes so quickly but I want to say that I have. It should be fine, hopefully another reader can chime in as well.

  13. Monica says

    My mixture was very grainy. When I opened the IP, the ricotta had separated and was very grainy. I followed the recipe but it’s not smooth or creamy. It’s grainy. Hope it tastes good.

  14. Tim says

    5 stars
    Thanks Ashley..!! I have made this so many times and it always comes out amazing.. Today I tweaked your recipe a little bit; I divided the mixture in half before pouring (to set) and added cocoa powder to one half..!!

  15. Megha Rohith says

    5 stars
    Loved the simple yet delicious recipe… thank you so much. I just wanted to share an update, I followed the recipe but I got food burn indication within few minutes after step 2. I opened it in between and tried to deglaze and reduced the time and repeated the step 2 again. I got the food burn indication again. But there was nothing burnt. I have IP Duo plus. Just wanted to share my experience. Will definitely make again and update. Thank you.

  16. Soujanya says

    5 stars
    Definitely the best kalakand I’ve had in the USA. I also reduced the sugar by half but all other ingredients as per recipe and it was perfect.

  17. Reddy says

    I have tried this recipe s per directions. Mine turned out very soft. I don’t find the milk crumbles. It’s very hard to even hold.

  18. Kavitha says

    Hi Ashley. Love this recipe. Curious if I could try a mango Kalakand with mango syrup. Should I use syrup instead of water or add syrup to the recipe & use extra milk powder.

  19. Anita says

    5 stars
    Hi Ashley great recipe. It comes out really well. I am just wondering if we can use condensed milk instead of sugar in the recipe?

  20. Anita says

    5 stars
    Hi Ashleys great recipe. It comes out really well. I am just wondering if we can use condensed milk instead of sugar in the recipe?

  21. Shwetha says

    5 stars
    Hi Ashley,

    Thank you so much for this and all other wonderful recipes, measurements are perfect to the dot, I made kalakand with monk fruit sweetener and it turned out delicious.

  22. Julie says

    I have an excess of yogurt and am trying to use it before it goes bad. Do you think I could use it in place of the ricotta if I drain the whey out of it?

  23. Abby says

    I’ve made it twice so far and it has turned out wet and sticky. I added more fry milk the 2nd time but it still stuck onto the parchment paper. The taste was good but I’m not able to make pretty solid squares. Not sure what’s going wrong.

    • Ashley - My Heart Beets says

      Hi Abby, I’m surprised it still stuck with additional dry milk – I’m not sure why it’s turning out wet for you… the only thing I can think of is to keep adding more dry milk? If you want to share photos in my facebook group (Instant Pot for Indian Food), I or other blog readers may be able to provide better feedback.

  24. Jatinder says

    Made kalakand in a 3 at instant pot as per your recipe. It turned out a wonderful dessert to be enjoyed. So far I have not messed up any dessert that I have made using your instructions. Thanks a lot and keep up the good work.

  25. Ranjana Bhattacharya says

    Ashley, it works out fine in a 3 quart, even after doubling the recipe. I did it just to try! I freeze it as well to take out a piece or two or four…when the sweet tooth strikes! Thaws within minutes and tastes just as good. Thanks for your recipe.

  26. Priya says

    Ashley you have the best recipe for kalakand, i use to miss palkova badly but not anymore
    Thanks alot for your recipe

    Much Love and Regards,

  27. Anoop says

    5 stars

    Made this yesterday. Was really amazing!! Came out perfect (like from the store). Shared it with our friends who loved it too. Definitely will do it again.



  28. Zenia says

    Hi Ashley I love the ingredients in your recipe, but do not have an instant pot, can I make
    Same on stove. Please advise me the alternate method. Thanks

  29. Rizwana says

    5 stars
    Kalakand- love this one. Made it a few months ago. Game changer…I froze some pieces… and use it as needed. Still have about 4 pieces left. Hmmmm…time to takeout one…tonight for dinner. Thanks Ashley for this easy dessert recipe.

  30. Savia says

    5 stars
    This was amazing 😊. The specifics about ghee being at room temperature was so helpful. Will not be buying this from the store anymore ☺️

  31. Suvidha says

    Hi Ashley,

    Lovely recipe. I plan to make it for guests this weekend. Do you know if it’s okay to substitute water with mango pulp? I’m thinking of making a mango flavored Kalakand.

    Any suggestions are most welcome.

  32. Anita says

    Hi Ashley, tried the kalakand recipe. tasted really good, but the mixture was sticky, and did not set well. I tried placing in the freezer. that turned out a bit more firm ( but still a gooey). I followed the recipe as was written. What do you think could have gone wrong? I really would like to perfect this recipe, as it tastes really good. Thanks!

    • Ashley - My Heart Beets says

      Hi Anita, if it seems sticky next time I would suggest adding more milk powder. I think some containers of ricotta cheese can have a bit more water and so adding a bit more milk powder to help dry it out should help!

  33. Shashi says

    5 stars
    Surprised my wife with this sweet treat and flowers this valentine and I could see her sweet smile. Thanks Ashley for making our day with this lovely recipe.

  34. Aval M says

    5 stars
    I loveeee this recipe & have made it 4 times already 😃. I make it with only 1/2 the sugar mentioned in the recipe and add pistachios and golden raisins on top as garnishing. So easy and so flavorful. Thank you so much Ashley!

  35. Tarla says

    5 stars
    Hello! I tried this recipe and turn out great. I used pot in pot to pressure cook ricotta with Monk sugar (try to be healthy) along with almond flour and non fat milk powder (as I am not to fond of its taste if a lot is there). Thank you so much for taking time and figuring out these for us to perfect it in heart beets 😍😍.

  36. Sonali says

    5 stars
    I love this recipe, Thank you so much Ashley for such a easy recipe, I would never imagined that I will make Kalakand at home. Can I add chocolate powder and make like chocolate milk fudge? My daughter saw this and asked me if I can make same with chocolate so would like to make one for her. Thanks

  37. Kamala says

    5 stars
    Made this during holiday time and poured them into Christmas cup cake molds for the festive look. Tasted and looked awesome. Thanks for the easy recipe Ashley!

  38. Jennifer says

    I made this twice within the first week of your publishing this recipe because it was THAT good. Time to make another batch, or should I try the milk burfi?

    • Ashley - My Heart Beets says

      Jennifer, that’s awesome! I’m so glad you like the kalakand so much. 🙂 That’s a tough question – the milk burfi is great, more fudge-like so if you want something similar to kalakand but a bit different in texture, then give it a try! Let me know what you think if you do!

  39. Gouri Ghosh says

    Ashly thank you so much! I followed your Kalakand recipe and surprisingly it came out as you mentioned. We all liked Kalakand,unbelievable,how I make it so good.

  40. Sumita says

    5 stars
    Surprised with how good this came out! So easy and delicious. I made this for my family for Diwali and it was a hit!
    Thanks again for a great recipe!

  41. Sima says

    5 stars
    Delicious! Depending on the type of ricotta you use, the consistency may require more milk powder (mine did). Someone recommended that I add enough milk powder so that a wooden spoon could stand up in the mixture, and that was perfect!

  42. Sonali says

    5 stars
    As I do not consider myself as an expert in Indian cooking.. I never imagined making Kalakand at home. Thank you Ashley. .for this fullproof so easy instapot receipee. You made this so much easier..

  43. Sandhya Verma says

    5 stars
    Such an easy recipe! I have made it twice and my husband, who is very picky when it comes to indian sweets made at home, loved it both times 🙂
    The only change I had to do was saute the ingredients after I opened the instant pot to dry them a little bit before I poured it to set.
    Thanks Ashley!

  44. Jolly Patel says

    5 stars
    Absolutely great recipe. It was the easiest dessert I have ever made and I have sweet tooth and we make LOTS of desserts…:-)

  45. Umang says

    Amazing recipe! Easy to make and delicious ! Everyone who tried it raved about it non stop in my group! Thank you for sharing Ashley!

  46. Preetha says

    5 stars
    You’ve already received so much positive feedback here and on FB! So, mine is clearly redundant! For the last several years, I’ve avoided making Indian desserts because I thought they were too hard. Hands down, this was one of the easiest recipes to follow! My seven year old daughter specifically asked me to tell you that it was awesome. And she asked me to inform you that she is very picky!! 🙂

    Next time, I’m going to add a bit more milk powder because it was a tad crumbly at the end (even after refrigeration). It might be because I used nonfat milk powder (because that was the only type avaiable at my store). It was still excellent, though. Thanks for a great recipe!

  47. Jenita says

    5 stars
    I made this just now (at 7 am), sorta for New Year’s eve dessert. I am still waiting for it to cool and set, we tasted it coz me and my daughter couldn’t wait for it to set and it is so delicious. It also made my home smell so fantastic in the morning , the smell of freshly brewed coffee + the Kalakhand….. delicious!!!

  48. Cleto Dos Remedios says

    This is the first time I have tried this recipe and it turned out to be just as you describe in your comments. But my final product turned out to be softer than I was expecting. Was there something that I may missed? The taste was excellent. Please let me know.
    Thank you

    • My Heart Beets says

      I’m glad you liked the taste! As for the texture, this dessert is meant to be soft, but if you feel it was too soft, then next time you can either add more milk powder or sauté it at the end. Hope that helps!

  49. H says

    Oh my, what a revelation! This is absolutely delicious. If I want to reduce the sugar next time, say to 3/4 cup, would it affect the texture?

  50. Laxmi says

    Hi Ashley,

    Just a few minutes into it, the pot came with a “burn” message. Have you had this experience ? I did use the same proportions as directed in the recipe!

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Laxmi, sorry to hear that happened! Are you using a 6 quart to make this? Was the seal on properly and was the valve closed? If the answer to all of those is yes then I suggest waiting a few minutes to see if the burn sign goes away on its own – if it does, it should still be fine to use.

  51. Champa says

    5 stars
    Hi Ashley,
    Thank you for all your work. You bring so much joy for so many with your recipes! I have made the kalakand twice, both times in my pressure cooker, with an insert. I reduced the sugar to 1/2 cup, no water, 11 minutes on high and natural release. The moisture in the ricotta seems to have dissolved the sugar fine. I added only a bit of ghee and just added enough milk powder to make get a good consistency. Love your idea of lining with parchment, comes out neat.

  52. Nithya says

    5 stars
    This was so good! I halved the recipe, used my 3qt instead and also used homemade paneer made with 2% milk. I added a little bit extra milk powder , so many 1.5 cups of milk powder for half the recipe. Thanks for sharing 👍

  53. Navi says

    5 stars
    Hi Ashley it tastes great! but mine didnt set properly it is still gooey but not a complete liquid. any tips for now or next time? i even let it sit in the fridge for longer.

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Navi, I’m sorry it didn’t set for you – did you make any adjustments to the recipe by chance? All of my recipes are tested using a 6qt IP. You can try sautéing at the end if it looks too runny or try adding more milk powder next time. Hope that helps!

  54. SJ says

    Mmm. Lifelong qalaqand fan here!! Will definitely try this. Thanks for the recipe. You know what else you need to share with this recipe: your fitness regimen lol. How did you manage to stay slim and trim while being a kalakand/qalaqand fan?

    • My Heart Beets says

      Let me know what you think when you try this! And lol! I wish I had an actual regimen as I know it’d be good for my health – hopefully in the near future. But for now, whenever I make sweets, I always share with friends or neighbors or have my husband take food to work so he can share with co-workers. I make so many batches of sweets during recipe testing that I have to give most of it away.

  55. Kiran Manro says

    5 stars
    Hi! I know someone asked about different sizes…..I used an 8 quart IP , reduced the sugar down to 2/3 cup and water to 1/4 cup (based on the feed back from others). After 11 minutes of pressure and letting it depressurize, I added 3 cups of skim milk powder and it had a great slightly crumbly /smooth texture and no excess liquid after setting in the fridge. This is so good ! Thanks for the recipe!

  56. Anuradha says

    5 stars
    The recipe is worth its weight in gold!!! It’s extremely easy to make and is divinely delicious!! Ashley I’d like to thank you for taking the time and effort to put up such a sensational recipe! Me and my family loved it and we have decided to make this recipe a regular Diwali tradition! Loads of love!

  57. Uzzii says

    5 stars
    My gosh Ashley! I have never made a single mithai, but decided to try homemade this year … and I made this During lunch hour one working day!!! So fast simple and DELICIOUS! It turned out so perfect the very first time I made .. the taste texture everything … you are a genius!
    Now my whole family thinks I have been lying all this time and somehow secretly attending mithai making classes or something!

  58. Jen says

    Made this today with a few modifications, instead of 1/2 cup of sugar added 1/4th of a cup. Instead of 2.5 cups of milk powder added 1 cup milk powder and 1.5 cups of almond flour since milk powder at times has a smell that turns me off. Even with these modifications the end product was very good. Thank you Ashley and Happy Diwali to you!

  59. Simi says

    Hey Ashley thanks for this yummy recipe. Iam amazed at your innovation. Also Maybe you should Patent these things, I do see ppl posting exact recipes on their youtube channels 🙂

  60. Dee says

    4 stars
    Followed all the steps but came out sticky and way too soft. Approximately how long do you stir after adding the milk powder/ghee?I took it off right after it all mixed and appeared smooth, probably like 2-3 minutes, wonder if I should have done it for a longer time?

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Dee, it just needs to be mixed well so it sounds like you stirred it enough. I’d be happy to help troubleshoot – just to confirm, did you use a 6 qt to make this? My recipes have only been tested with a 6 quart which is why I ask. Did you make any changes to the recipe? Any details you can share will be helpful in troubleshooting.

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Gagan, I haven’t tried this with coconut milk powder but my guess is that it should work – if you experiment please let me know how it goes! I plan to order some and try – when I eventually do, I’ll be sure to update the post as well.

  61. Rama says

    Hi Ashely,
    Thank you so much for the easy recipe. I tried it and tasted very good. Only change I did was to use evaporated milk instead of water and reduced the sugar to 3/4 cup and rest all followed the recipe to the T.

  62. Sonal says

    5 stars
    I tried this recipe yesterday and Kalakands are so delicious and the best part it is so easy to make.. Was longing to eat good fresh kalakand!! Thanks a ton! God bless you!

  63. Asha says

    5 stars
    I tried it too! But I used half regular sugar and half date sugar, and used one cup almond flour and 1.5 cup milk powder instead of 2.5 cup milk powder. I had also mistakenly gotten part skim ricotta cheese. So yes recipe was altered due to Multiple circumstances. It still came out great and looks like chocolate kalakand due to the date sugar. Thank you Ashley.

  64. Raj says

    5 stars
    Made this tonight. It’s a hit! I’m not a big Kalakhand fan but husband goes nuts over it every time at a sweet shop. This one apparently hit the right spot with him. I had to try very hard and protect until it at least cools down… In the meantime, he scraped down whatever was left off in the instant pot. Haha.
    Thank you, for another recipe that I always thought is best left for Mithaiwala’s but glad I can make it at home! Much love!! And Happy Diwali!

  65. Ravi says

    Hi Ashley – after it sets in the fridge for 3 hours, if you remove and leave it at room temp, will the texture change back to the way it was before refrigeration? Thx.

  66. SH says

    Helllo– thought I would share I was able to scale this down to 1 c dry milk powder (all I had in my house). I did the math but eyeballed most other ingredients in measuring cups. I had to add a little bit of water with the ghee/dry milk/cardamom powder but the IP came to pressure for the smaller amount of ricotta/water/sugar mixture in a 6 qt IP. Thank you, this recipe was lovely!

  67. Sweta says

    5 stars
    I followed this recipe to the tee but it did not set correctly. Anything I can do to salvage this now? It’s a little on the runny side and in the fridge for ~3 hours. Will leaving it longer in the fridge set it?

  68. Reena Gupta says

    Hey Ashley. I found unsweetened milk powder in the end and made this. It turned out quite well, just a bit sticky when cut but the taste is quite nice. I could taste the ghee quite a lot which is different from kalakand taste but I still like it. Thanks for the recipe 🙂 not sure if I can add a picture here

  69. Nital says

    5 stars
    Hi Ashley, I finally joined the kalakand trend going on right now and it turned out perfect, delicious and beautiful.
    Thanks a lot for your easy IP recipes… I love them!!

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Jen, I’ve tried this using different brands and different container sizes, but always a total of 15 ounces. The easiest thing is to buy a 15-ounce container, but I know sometimes it’s only possible to find smaller or larger containers of ricotta, in which case, you’ll want to measure out 15 ounces.

      • Reena Gupta says

        This is nestle everyday. The ingredients say it has sugar. Will try adjusting the sugar and let u know how it turns out. So excited to be making this. Thanks for the recipe.

  70. Alpana says

    I left a comment earlier but you didn’t respond…posting again

    I followed the recipe but my kalakand was bit runny and was sticking to the hands. Can you tell how to adjust for it?
    However the taste is perfect!

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Alpana, I’m sorry I missed it! Happy to help troubleshoot. Did you switch out any ingredients by any chance? If not, it could just be that the ricotta you used had a bit more water in it. Next time, you can try sautéing at the end if you feel it looks too runny. Hope that helps!

  71. J.G. says

    I only see salted and roasted pistachios in the store. Do we need those or unsalted? Where do you buy unsalted ones?

    So far I have checked Costco, Safeway, FredMeyer.

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi JG, salted is fine – I only suggest raw because of their bright green color, but flavor-wise, a bit of salt is always nice complement to a dessert. I get unsalted raw pistachios from Whole Foods, Giant Eagle (local to me), or the Indian grocery store. I believe Trader Joe’s carries them too.

  72. Chitra says

    5 stars
    Fantastically easy recipe Ashley.. thank you! I made mine with home made paneer that was not firm enough to make a curry with! I made it PIP as had a small quantity of paneer and finished it on the stove top.. was still very easy!

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Vijay, any 8×8 pan will work – I actually own 3 8×8 pans (metal, pyrex, and stoneware) and have used all 3 at some point while making this kalakand lol. Hope you and wifey love this – let me know how it goes!

  73. Maadhavi says

    4 stars
    Hi Ashley, tried this recipe in my 6qt pot and got a ‘burn’ warning right after pressure buildup . I immediately released the pressure and finished the recipe in sauté mode. The milk cake tasted great though. Thanks for the recipe!

  74. Trish says

    5 stars
    Tried the Kalakand exactly as you had it in the IP and it came out excellent – will post a picture on your FB group. Thanks Ashley!
    Couple of questions though:
    1. I refrigerated it overnight and cut it slowly with a sharp non serrated knife – however the cuts weren’t as clean as your photo shows – any tips on how to cut it (it was not crumbly and fairly well put together IMO :))
    2. How long will the Kalakand last if refrigerated?
    thanks again!

    • My Heart Beets says

      Thanks, Trish! I’m so glad you liked it 🙂 It could just be that it needs more time to sit (especially if in a smaller pan?) or perhaps the ricotta had extra water in it (I’m learning that all brands can vary a tiny bit) so it’s just a bit moister. It should last in the fridge for about a week. Hope that helps!

  75. Alpana says

    5 stars
    I tried the recipe yesterday. I followed the recipe but my kalakand was bit runny and was sticking to the hands. What went wrong?
    However the taste is perfect!

  76. Sam says

    Trying out this recipe, but have had 2 burn notices (scrubbed the pot in between). Any idea what may be wrong? I plan to know cook on the stove.

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Sam, I’m not sure why you’re getting a burn notice… are you using an 8 quart? My recipes are tested in a 6 quart and so it could be the extra surface area – but I believe I’ve heard from other readers that they’ve been able to successfully use a larger pot so I’m not sure. If that’s not the case, is the pot sealing properly?

      • Sam says

        Thanks for responding! I have a 6 qt. As far as I could tell everything was fine in terms of sealing. I ended up cooking on the stove top to dry some of the water, then added ghee etc and continued from there. Turned out great! I plan to try again though using IP when we finish this batch.

        Thanks so much for all your recipes and taking the time to respond.

  77. Nisreen Anis says

    A big fan of you recipes. Kalakand has always been my favorite since childhood. Thanks for making it so easy. Is there anything that I can substitute for dry milk powder? That’s the only thing missing in my pantry and I so want to make Kalakand right now. Thank you.

  78. Rekha says

    Hi Ashley, can I substitute sugar with artificial sweetener? I want to make it sugar free? If yes, should I add sugar at the end and how much sugar to add.

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Rekha, I haven’t tried it this way but I know some of my facebook group members (Instant Pot for Indian Food) were able to do this. I’m not sure how it compares though.

  79. Jyoti says

    Hi Ashley, I want to make it for Diwali. Can I use Khoya like Nanak brand Khoya instead of Ricotta Cheese ? Rest all same.

  80. Jyothi says

    5 stars
    Hi Ashley. Im excited to try the recipe but unable to find ricotta/cottage cheese in India near my place. Any substitute ? Can Paneer be used?
    Thanks in advance

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Jyothi, some members of my facebook group (Instant Pot for Indian Food) have been able to use grated paneer but I’ve only tested the recipe as written so I’m not sure how that compares. You can try asking there 🙂

  81. Jason says

    5 stars
    Is crystal sugar same as granulated sugar? What texture is this once it’s cooled to eat , is it soft or hard ? And also how long does this stay good for ,and how to store it ? Thanks

  82. Vaishnavi says

    Hi Ashley,

    I tried this today. The taste is good but consistency is sticky. Even when i poured it on parchment paper, it was like thick batter and after refrigerating it, it fint harden up. Its sticky nd liquidy. Can you please help?

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Akshaya, I’m not sure – I want to say someone in my facebook group (instant pot for Indian food) made it with fat-free and said it turned out fine, but I’m not positive as I haven’t tested it myself. If you try, please let us know how it goes!

  83. Vishal K Dalal says

    Made a batch, tried it warm and I love the taste and the texture (like the texture more) i will be trying with a different Milk powder brand as I could taste the typical milk powder taste


    It looks so simple. I would like to tey it tomorrow but was a little confused about pressure cooking for 11 min.🤔 hope you get to read this msg

  85. Kamala Raghunath says

    Hello Ashley! This sounds and looks like an awesome recipe. Is there a substitute for Ricotta cheese. I almost bought it today but the ingredients didn’t appeal to me. Can I curdle milk at home (like Chenna) and use that? Thanks for any tips!

  86. Deep says

    Hey Ashley, I started this receipe with Step1 and after 5 mins I got burn signal on my IP. Not sure why. I just followed your recipe. Any idea?

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Deep, happy to help troubleshoot. Just to be sure, are you using a 6 qt (that’s what I’ve used to test this and all recipes on my site)? Also, did you mix well in step 1?

      • Me says

        Mine also got burn. I am using 8qt ultra. I guess in small, it builds up pressures fast and in big it take time hence it might be burning

  87. Mona says

    I just love your recipes. Thank You for all your hard work and making it easier for us.
    I wonder if we can add coco powder in it to bring that brown color and little chcolate flavor along with that? let me know your opinion.

  88. Bhargavi Sivakumar says

    Thank you!!! Made it & loved it!!!!
    You are indeed THE KALAKAND EXPERT!!! I am nobody, but can whole heartedly give you the title.!!!!!


    5 stars
    Hi Ashley! This recipe is amazing. It is super easy and was delicious. I made it for few guests on Dushhera and it was instant hit. I used 4% ricotta so it was runny and i had to add more milk powder to set it. It tasted more like fresh malai peda we get in India than Kalakand. I think next time i will use whole milk ricotta and less milk powder.

  90. My Heart Beets says

    Hi Rita, I’m so glad you liked the recipe. I’m sorry to hear it was a bit sticky though. I quick-released (so manually turned the knob to release pressure). It may just need more time to set? Or you can always try adding a bit more milk powder next time to help make it a bit drier. I hope that helps!

  91. Catherine Voci says

    I love Milk Cake but haven’t been able to have it since being diagnosed with Diabetes. Do you think I could use Swerve instead of sugar in this recipe?

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Catherine, I haven’t tested it with anything other than sugar but hopefully if another reader tries they’ll respond. I am working on some healthier treats, stay tuned 🙂

  92. Gauri Agrahar says

    5 stars
    Love it! Had just the right level of sweetness. I added a pinch of saffron for color and flavor and reduced the cardamom powder :)!

  93. JS says

    Hi, just wondering what happens if you add milk powder, ghee in Step 1 and boil it all together? Will it curdle? Is that why it’s not a dump and go recipe?

  94. Nitu says

    I opened the instant pot immediately after 11 minutes, but the ricotta stuck to the bottom a little so I had some brown chunks. Do I need to reduce the time or increase the water?

      • Sana says

        Hi Ashley, I had the same issue and used an 8 qt. Also the mixture was quite runny despite me setting it in the fridge overnight. Still tasty but hoping you can help me troubleshoot for next time!

  95. Avi says

    Thus looks awesome!! Super easy! Can i use home made paneer from ricotta cheese? Ricotta cheese is very similar to paneer.

    • My Heart Beets says

      Thank you! I haven’t tried this with homemade paneer, but it could work – if you try, please let us know how it goes! Or if another reader tries, hopefully they’ll share.

  96. Rita Sehgal says

    5 stars
    Hi Ashley. Amazing recipe. Flavor was delightful. Mine came out a bit too soft and sticky. As soon as the pressure cook was complete on the instant pot (after 11 minutes) I manually released the pressure. Is that what you did or did you wait and let pressure release on its own ( if yes how long). Thank you.-Rita

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Rita, I’m so glad you liked the recipe. I’m sorry to hear it was a bit sticky though. I quick-released (so manually turned the knob to release pressure). It may just need more time to set? Or you can always try adding a bit more milk powder next time to help make it a bit drier. I hope that helps!

  97. Bsant says

    Thanks for the recipe. I just bought instant pot, so need help. Which buttons to press to achieve ‘cook for 11 minutes at high pressure’ as mentioned in recipe.

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Kanira, I haven’t tried to double this recipe so I’m not sure. My guess would be no — desserts tend to be tricky, especially when there’s sugar involved. If you try, let me know how it goes!

  98. Bala Cherla says

    Hi Ashley! I was wanting to make this recipe today, however noticed the dry milk powder comes in a large qty only, I have not used dry milk in any recipes and hate to buy it only for this recipe (sorry 🙁 Can you suggest if using whole milk as a replacement would bring out the same texture and taste? If so how much of the milk can be added? Much appreciate any feedback, as I would love to make this recipe based on everyone’s lovely feedback, and especially the ease of making it! Thank you so much!

  99. Sri says

    Lovely ! Thank you Ashley I love alll your recipes . Would you be able to share recipe of Ajmeri Kalakand as well !! That’s my favourite .. love kalakand as well 🙂 looking at the kalakand reminds me of my childhood

  100. Roshini James says

    Can I add rose water instead of some of the regular water to get rose flavoring? If so, how much rose water do you think I should add/substitute for the regular water?

  101. Sneha says

    Hi Ashley I have been following your blog it’s delicious & easy to make recipes. In this kalakand reciie can I substitute dry milk powder with mawa (Khoya) instead.

  102. Sujata says

    5 stars
    I recently started following your recipes. Fantastic. Thanks.
    Question: where do we get milk powder? Can we put almonds?

  103. Furhana Afrid says

    Hi Ashley,
    I would like to follow a low carb, low sugar and low fat diet. I pretty much avoid all mithais but would like to try this one. Is it possible to reduce the ghee?

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Furhana, I haven’t tried this with less ghee but I think in addition to helping with flavor, it also helps hold the mithai together and so I’m just not sure how it’ll turn out if you use less. If you do try, please let us know how it goes! I am working on some healthier Indian desserts – but those are a bit harder to develop. Have you tried my naturally sweet ladoos?

  104. Soiee says

    Love this.
    Trying to make a less sweeter version for my toddler. How much can I cut the sugar down without losing taste?
    On a scale of lightly sweetened to off the charts, which way does this lean? Trying to anchor so I can modify accordingly. Thank you for making these accessible to us!!!!

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Soiee, it’s sweet but not excessively sweet (not like jalebi or gulab jamun). I haven’t tested this using less sugar so I’m not sure how it’ll go – if you experiment, please let us know 🙂

  105. Ravleen says

    Hi Ashley,

    Can we use home made paneer instead of ricotta cheese in this recipe. Also, is it possible to have that brownish texture via this recipe by any chance?

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Ravleen, I haven’t tried this with homemade paneer but if you experiment please let us know how it goes! As for the brownish color, that comes from boiling it for a long time so I don’t think you’ll be able to get that here. If it’s just the color you’re looking for, you can always add a bit of jaggery at the end to darken it.

      • Ravleen says

        Thank you Ashley. Will give it a try. Any idea how much quantity of paneer should I use to replace the 32 ounces?
        I know you haven’t tried it with paneer but even an idea would really help

        • My Heart Beets says

          I’m really not sure but if I were to guess, I’d probably use the same amount of (homemade) paneer as ricotta (15 oz) and I may add a bit more water – but again, haven’t tested this! Let us know if you experiment 🙂

          • Ravleen says

            Hello Ashley,

            I experimented with paneer but I think the pressure cooking made it very soft so the kalakand kind of texture didn’t come out. The taste turned out well though.
            The next time will try the exact recipe.
            But thank you for helping me out with it

          • Archana says

            5 stars
            Hi! I was excited to try this recipe over the weekend and realized too deep in that I only had brown turbinado sugar at home. Figured I would give it a try. The whole dish came out a bit runny (but I didn’t see the note about adding more milk powder if needed). In terms of taste it was amazing and the color was also very light brown. We put it in a glass container and have been eating spoon fulls haha! Such a great recipe! We’re looking forward to getting the texture right next time!

  106. Sid says

    Hi Ashley,
    Milk powder qty is 2.5 cups (approx. 500 gms); however the recipe says “approx 235-250 gms”. Can you please clarify?
    Btw, a big fan and love love your recipes 🙂

    • Sapna Chilka says

      5 stars
      Hi Ashley,
      I have tried several recipes of yours and they all have been so easy and turned out fabulous. On a whim decided to make this today and it was such a breeze. Tastes just like from my favorite mithai store ! So impressed! Thank you for another wonderful recipe .

  107. Deepa Bhalla says

    Hi Ashley ! Thanks for the recipe ! I love love kalakand and I grew up in Delhi so loved it there one of my fav 🙂
    I wanted to ask you if in any way in this recipe we can use condensed milk ? If yes, can this be substituted for any ingredient ? Also which brand milk powder do you recommend using ? Sugar is the white sugar right ?!

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Deepa, I can’t wait to hear what you think of this! I haven’t tried this with condensed milk – sorry! As for milk powder, any brand of dry milk powder should work, and yes, white sugar 🙂

  108. Pavithra Sivamani says

    Lovely! A couple of amateurish questions – 4oz of ghee is solid or melted? And would you mind sharing which milk powder you used? Thanks!

    • My Heart Beets says

      Hi Pavithra, as long as the ghee is room temperature and not chilled it won’t matter whether you use 4oz of solid or liquid 🙂 I’ve made this using semi-solid ghee as well as more solid ghee. Any dry milk powder should work – I’ve used a few different brands (village farms, nestle, now foods organic) 🙂

      • Pavithra Sivamani says

        Ashley, I am so glad you don’t have a mithai store – I’d be there at the top of the line everyday and I’d also buy all the sweets!!!

        The kalakand was amazing! Really easy to make. Couldn’t stop eating it! It was 11 pm so I used store bought cardamom powder but will use fresh the next time. The only thing is that my top was not as smooth as yours, was a bit crumbly but held its shape well. How do I ensure a smooth top next time?

        Will take pics the next time. Thanks a bunch again! Much love!

        • My Heart Beets says

          lol! Thanks, Pavithra! I’m so glad you liked it! Yes, definitely try fresh cardamom next time if you can – it makes a world of difference in flavor. As far as texture, I think it may be due to slight differences in ricotta? I’ve had some batches come out slightly smoother or slightly more crumbly even while using all of the same brands but the flavor is always the same – so I’m not sure. Hopefully, it still looked good? Crushed nuts on top help with making it look prettier 🙂

    • My Heart Beets says

      Thanks, Jyothi! I’ve only tested this recipe with dry milk powder – not sure if coffee creamer will work. I believe the ingredients are different so I’d stick to dry milk powder if you can. Let me know what you think of this if you make it!

  109. Deeps says

    5 stars
    Oh my gosh, oh my gosh! This looks oh so terrific. I can’t take my eyes off it. This just came in time for Diwali. May I ask, what brand ricotta cheese you used?

    • My Heart Beets says

      Thanks, Deeps! 🙂 During recipe testing I made this with several different brands of ricotta cheese (brands from whole foods, wegmans) – as long as you use whole milk ricotta cheese, it’ll turn out well. Let me know what you think!

    • Aditi says

      Hi Ashley,

      I bought instapot in India after hearing about your recipes from friends and family in the US 🙂 Since then I have clung to your website. Excited to try this recipe.

      Wanted to check if I can use (1) milk instead of milk powder (2) paneer instead of ricotta cheese, as these are commonly available here. What would you suggest?

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