Phirni Recipe (How to make Rice Phirni)

  • on 27 August 2020

The best rice phirni recipe! This super delicious, sweet firni is North Indian dessert. It is made during festivals like Diwali, Raksha Bandhan, Karwa Chauth or made on special occasions or pooja.

phirni in individual serving bowl garnish with sliced nuts and saffron.

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What Is Phirni?

Phirni is nothing but the ground rice pudding. Phirni is made from coarsely ground rice, milk and sugar. It is cooked on a slow flame which results in creamy, rich and thick texture.

It is flavored with cardamom powder and saffron. Though there are many different flavor varieties are made e.g. mango phirni, rose phirni, apple phirni.

Once ready, it is poured into individual small shallow earthen bowls. Garnished with sliced nuts (almonds, pistachios) and saffron. Sometimes it is garnished with rose petals too. Or sometimes it is garnished with silver leaf (varak).


Here are the ingredients used in making delicious phirni. All the ingredients are basic and easily available. 

Milk: I highly recommend using full-fat whole milk to get a perfectly creamy texture. 

ingredients used in phirni includes milk, rice, sugar, cardamom, saffron, rose water, almonds, pistachios

👩‍🍳Step By Step Photo Instructions 


1) To blanch almonds and pistachios, soak them in boiling hot water for 20-30 minutes.

2) After that peel the skin and slice them using a knife.

Collage of 2 images showing almonds, pistachios in hot water and peel, sliced nuts in a plate

3) Take rice in a bowl.

4) Rinse the rice 2-3 times or until water is clear and no more cloudy. Soak in enough water for 15-20 minutes.

5) After that discard the soaking water, take rice into the grinder jar. Add fresh ¼ cup of water 

6) Grind into a coarse paste. Make sure not to make a fine paste.

Collage of 4 steps showing rice in a bowl, soaked rice in a bowl, soaked rice with water in a grinder, coarse paste

Making Phirni:

1) Heat the milk on medium heat in a heavy bottom pan. And let it come to a boil.

2) Once it starts boiling reduce the heat to medium-low, add prepared ground rice paste.

3) Mix and continue cooking. Do stir in between and also scrap the sides and bottom of the pan to make sure that milk is not sticking to the pan. Cook till ground rice grains are soft and also the milk has thickened. It will take around 15-18 mins.

4) Now add sugar, cardamom powder and saffron, mix. Continue cooking for 5 minutes with stirring occasionally.

5) Now add rose water, mix and turn off the stove.

6) Transfer it to individual serving bowls. Garnish with sliced almonds and pistachios. Crush the few strands of saffron between your finger and thumb, then sprinkle over the phirni. Cover it with plastic wrap or small plate/lid. Chill in the fridge for a few hours. It tastes best when served chilled.

Collage of 6 steps showing simmering milk, adding ground rice, thickened milk, adding sugar, cardamom, adding rose water and serving


What is the difference between phirni and kheer?

– The taste and ingredients used for making phirni and kheer are almost the same. But the difference is in texture, cooking method and serving method.
– Phirni is made from soaked, coarsely ground rice paste while kheer is made from whole basmati rice.
– Phirni has a thicker and creamier texture because of ground rice vs kheer which has soft, succulent rice grains.
– Phirni always served chilled while kheer can be served warm or chilled as per your preference and liking.

Can I use other types of rice?

Generally, basmati rice is used in making phirni. But yes, you can use any other fragrant rice variety of your choice.

phirni served in 3 individual bowls and a spoonful of taken from one bowl, ready to eat

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Step by Step Photos AboveWant to make it perfect first time? Don’t forget to check out Step-by-Step photo instructions and helpful Tips & Tricks !!

Phirni Recipe

Tried this recipe? Leave a comment and/or give ★ ratings

This rice phirni is the traditional Indian dessert and is nothing but ground rice sweet pudding garnished with almonds, pistachios and saffron.

Course: Dessert

Cuisine: Indian

Calories: 232kcal

Prep Time 15 minutes

Cook Time 25 minutes

Chilling Time 3 hours

Total Time 40 minutes

US measuring cups are used (1 cup = 240 ml) See details


  • Blanch the almonds and pistachios by soaking in boiling hot water for 20-30 minutes. After that peel the skin and slice them.

  • Also, wash the rice and soak for 20 minutes.

  • After that discard the soaking water and grind into coarse paste using fresh ¼ cup of water.

  • Take milk into heavy bottom pan and bring it to a boil on medium heat.

  • Once starts boiling add coarsely ground rice and cook for 15-28 minutes or till the rice is cooked and milk is thickened. Do stir in between and scrap the pan, so milk does not stick and burn.

  • Then add sugar, cardamom powder and saffron. Mix well and cook for 5 minutes.

  • Now add rose water and turn off the stove.

  • Pour into individual serving bowls, garnish with sliced almonds, pistachios and crushed saffron strands.

  • Cover it and chill in refrigerator for few hours and then serve.


Calories: 232kcal | Carbohydrates: 36.3g | Protein: 9.2g | Fat: 6.4g | Saturated Fat: 3.1g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 123mg | Potassium: 174mg | Fiber: 0.4g | Sugar: 27.8g | Calcium: 230mg | Iron: 0.2mg

*Nutrition information is a rough estimate for 1 serving

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