Cultural Recipes: Indian Coconut Ladoo


By Jenny Pham

We’re steering away from the traditional American sweets and seeing what India has to offer! It’s amazing how universal sugar is and what different countries have created to satisfy people’s sweet tooths. Cue, the Indian Coconut Ladoo. We can see how this simple sweet treat balances out all of the spices that are incorporated into typical Indian cuisine. With just a few ingredients, we were able to recreate this heavenly dessert.

coconut laddu

So what are they? These sphere-like sweets offer us a taste of sweet condensed milk and coconut, making for a light dessert. All you need to do is simply cook shredded coconut with condensed milk and cardamom until it solidifies, roll them into balls, and voila! No need to preheat the oven or plan hours to wait for things to set. That’s right, in just 10 short minutes, you will be able to whip these up to satisfy your sweet cravings.

Yields: 26 servings


  • 10 oz. bag of unsweetened coconut flakes
  • ½ tsp of cardamom
  • ½ tsp of cinnamon
  • 1 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 (14 oz.) can of sweetened condensed milk


  1. Set 1 ½ cup of coconut flakes aside and pour the remaining amount into a pan
  2. Add cardamom, cinnamon, and vanilla into the pan and cook over medium heat until the coconut flakes are well coated (about 1 minute)
  3. Add condensed milk and cook, stirring until the coconut begins to stick together (about 12-15 minutes)
  4. Remove from heat and let the mixture cool down. In the meantime, transfer the 1 ½ cup of coconut flakes to a plate
  5. Once cool enough, roll the mixture into 1 inch balls and roll into the remaining coconut  flakes to coat
  6. Serve on a plate and enjoy!



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