Mum's Gulab Jamun: A Decadent Dessert to Make at Home

Indian Gulab Jamun

By Bhamini S.

Gulab jamun is one of India's most popular sweets. These deep-fried balls are like doughnuts made of dried milk powder and flour and are dipped in rose and cardamom-flavoured sugar syrup. They make for a delicious treat with your favourite Malgudi Days filter coffee on the side.



To make sugar syrup:

  • 3/4 cup white sugar (250 ml)
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 3 cardamom powdered
  • ½ tbsp rose essence/water
  • A few saffron strands


To make gulab jamun:

  • 1 cup milk powder
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose plain flour
  • 1 tbsp semolina
  • Pinch baking soda
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1-2 tbsp ghee or clarified butter
  • 4-5 tbsp warm milk
  • A cup or two ghee (for frying) 
how to make authentic gulab jamun




Sugar syrup recipe:  

  1. In a wide pan, add ¾ cup sugar and ¾ cup water. Allow it to boil.
  2. Simmer for 4-5 minutes, and you will notice the syrup will turn slightly thick and sticky.
  3. Add the powdered cardamom powder, essence (optional) and the saffron strands.
  4. Remove from the stove, cover and keep it aside.


Gulab jamun recipe:

  1. In a large bowl, add the milk powder, all-purpose flour, and semolina.
  2. Add a pinch of baking soda.
  3. Add ghee slowly and crumble the mixture well.
  4. Slowly add milk to form a dough.
  5. Knead the mixture to a soft dough. Rest the dough for approx 10 minutes.
  6. Make the dough into small balls by greasing a little bit of ghee onto your hands. Make sure there are no cracks in the balls, or the gulab jamun will break when you fry.
  7. Heat ghee for frying on a slow flame- do not allow this to become smokey.
  8. Fry the balls, stirring in-between on a slow flame.
  9. Once the jamun turn golden brown, take them off and place them into the prepared sugar syrup.
  10. Cover the lid and allow them to soak in the syrup for 1-2 hours.
easy gulab jamun recipe


  • Traditionally, ghee is used for frying, but you can use oil. Do not overheat the oil.
  • The sugar syrup needs to be hot, not boiling while adding the fried jamun. If the syrup is not too hot, the jamun will not soak well. If it is boiling, they will break.
  • The dough needs to be smooth and moist, not hard or cracky. Sprinkle some milk if it is too hard and knead the dough till it becomes smooth.
  • Leave the mixed dough for 10-15 minutes to rest.


If you follow this recipe, do let us know how it turned out. You can even share snaps of the dessert on social media and tag us!

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