Best Gujiya Recipe | Step by Step Gujiya – Baked, Fried & Air Fryer

Best Gujiya Recipe: step by step recipe on how to make gujiya filled with mawa, coconut, dry fruits, and cardamom powder. Baked, Fried & Air Fryer . + Instant mawa/khoya recipe using ricotta cheese & milk powder details – Sweet Indian Empanadas

best gujiya recipe

The festival of Holi is incomplete without my Best Gujiya Recipe that’s been passed on from generation to generation and my version talks about making them Fried, Baked or Air Fryer version (as per your choice).


Gujia or Karanji is Indian dessert empanadas that are filled with sweet stuffing made of mawa (cottage cheese mix)/suji, coconut, dry fruit, and cardamom powder.

It’s one of those traditional Indian dessert recipes that made with lots of love and patience – Yes, patience is the key factor.

We have been making the fried version of this recipe ever since I could remember anything about cooking or making food.

But as time changes and so does our health need or other circumstances hence I came up with these baked and now air fryer gujiya versions which to my surprise my parents love and enjoy the most.

The baked/fryer version definitely gets done quickly and you can, of course, have more than 2-3 …. seriously you thought I would say 1-2 😉

Best Gujiya Recipe | Step by Step Gujiya - Baked, Fried & Air Fryer

Best Gujiya Recipe | Step by Step Gujiya – Baked, Fried & Air Fryer


I still remember when my grandmom used to visit us, we used to have tons of relatives/family friends come to our place and learn traditional Indian dish or two from her.

And, if it was Holi (the Festival of Color) then I would see her and mom prepare tons of these fried gujiya atleast a week before the festival….they literally made 100’s of them.

Then they were wrapped in cute little jute baskets with colorful clothing and sent over to people’s house for Holi or were given to visitors at our place.

I did use to try my best to help them by either filling the stuffing or pinching the ends of the gujiya with a fork to make that cute design.

Gujiya or Karanji on a metal plate with cardamoms

Now, as I mentioned above, this post is all about making that perfectly shaped gujiya or Indian Sweet Empanadas and I would elaborate the process step by step with pictures.

Although the recipe is very simple or basic to making any pie crust dough, it still has these few nitty-gritty points.

Which when missed results in sometimes undercooked/overcooked, blotchy or weird looking ones.

A perfectly made gujiya would be ‘ Smooth, Shiny and Almost flakey to touch’ and the filling needs to be slightly coarse in texture, properly filled, so that the gujiya doesn’t burst while frying.Picture of Ingredients needed to make Gujiya

I’m diving the Gujiya Process into 4 Parts:

Make the Dough

Prepare the Filling 

Shaping the Gujiya

Stuff and Fry/Bake / Air Fry the Gujiya


This is the MOST Important step in the whole process cause if your dough is not stiff enough or not kneaded well, you’ll end up with blotchy/moist crust. To make a stiff dough, here’s what we do:

1. Add enough oil to the flour mix, so that if you try making a ball in your hand, it binds well. (pic above).

2. Add the chilled water.

3. Make the dough in a food processor or dough machine as it kneads it to perfection.

4. Cover the dough with a slightly moist cloth/kitchen towel to keep it from becoming too stiff.

Making the Gujiya Dough using flour



The traditional gujiya or Indian Empanadas are filled using khoya / mawa (thick milk mixture), sugar, dry fruits, green cardamom, and coconut. 

How to Make Khoya - Mawa using milk powder and ricotta cheese


1 Cup Ricotta Cheese
5 Tbsp Ghee

For this particular recipe, I’ve made khoya from ricotta cheese and it is really easy to make in the microwave 

  • Mix ricotta and ghee in a bowl and microwave covered for 1:45 minutes.
  • Remove and stir the mix.
  • Place in the microwave again for 2 minutes.
  • Remove and stir the mix.
  • Place in microwave for 1:20 minutes.
  • Remove and stir (the mix will be golden-medium brown in color and coarse)
  • Cool the khoya.
  • In a small blender, add almonds, green cardamom, and coconut.
  • Blend to form a coarse mixture.
  • Add the cooled khoya and blend to form a thick mix.


how to make mawa at home using ricotta. step by step picture



1 Cup Milk Powder

1/4 Cup Milk + 2 Tbsp

2 Tbsp Ghee

  • Heat ghee in a pan.
  • Once the ghee is melted add milk and bring the mixture to a boil.
  • Add milk powder and whisk to mix everything into a smooth thick paste (no lumps)
  • Let this cool for 5-6 minutes (it will solidify after a few minutes).
  • Khoya is ready to use.


Remember these 2 Things and they both are as per taste:

1. You can either use a slightly sauteed khoya for the filling.

2. You can roast the khoya with some ghee to brown it slightly more.



picture of gujiya stuffing made using ricotta cheese

Once your khoya/mawa is ready, you just pulse dry fruits (almonds), sugar, green cardamom, coconut powder and khoya in a blender to crumble everything together.

This mixture can be prepared and kept in the fridge for 2-3 days.



This is the easiest step in the whole process. All you need is a round cutter or use a medium-size bowl with slightly sharp ends.

  • Just roll the dough on a slab (slightly thick), then place the bowl upside down (shown in the pic above) and make circular shapes.
  • Remove the shapes and mix the extra cuttings back into the main dough. Similarly, make all the circular shape and place them on a moist towel.
  • If you want to further shorten this process, you can buy any of those gujiya shaped tools.




You need to make a mix of flour+water to seal the ends of gujiya before you start stuffing them.

Then take the disc to fill the stuffing and close the ends properly, seal the edges and crimp the edges using a fork.

This step is very very important so that the gujiya don’t open/burst while frying

step by step picture of How to Shape the Guijya including cutting, filling and folding

Step by Step Gujiya Recipe with Pictures



This is the last step and fairly easy, all you have to remember are these few points:

  • Always fry the gujiya in low to medium flame for an evenly fried version.
  • Don’t overcrowd the frying pan, I usually use a big pan and add only 3-4 gujiya at a time.
  • Don’t press the gujiya while frying or they’ll break and the filling will mix in the oil resulting in a splattered mess.
  • Always keep the fried gujiya on a kitchen towel for few seconds to soak up any excess oil and let the gujiya firm up in the air.


  • For this step, you just need to line the baking sheet with some parchment paper.
  • Brush the gujiya with a oil+flour mixture.
  • Bake for 15 minutes.

baked gujiya recipe



  • Preheat the Air Fryer for 3 minutes at 180 C
  • Place the uncooked gujiya in the fryer basket and brush with some oil/butter.
  • Close the basket and Ait Fry for 10 minutes.
  • Once air fryed, remove from the basket and serve immediately.


So, here are all the steps to make the Best Gujiya Recipe (Fried and Baked) for your loved ones.

Enjoy the Festival of Colors with your friends/family and wish you lots of love.



 TAG : #easycookingwithmolly +  @easycookingwithmolly on Instagram

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Best Gujiya Recipe (Indian Sweet Empanadas - Fried and Baked) : #gujiya #empanadas #indian #holi @easycookin2012

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Yield: 12

Best Gujiya Recipe | Step by Step Gujiya - Baked, Fried & Air Fryer

best gujiya recipe

Step by step how to make gujiya filled with mawa, coconut, dry fruits, and cardamom powder. Baked, Fried & Air Fryer. + Instant Mawa/Khoya recipe using Ricotta Cheese & Milk Powder. #gujiya

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes



  • 2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil - for making the dough.
  • 1 Cup Water - 2-3 tbsp more


  • 1 Cup Ricotta Cheese
  • 5 Tbsp Ghee
  • 1/2 Cup Fine Sugar
  • 5 Tbsp Raw Almonds
  • 5 Tbsp Coconut Powder
  • 2 Tbsp Green Cardamom
  • 1 Tbsp Flour
  • 4 Tbsp Water
  • 2 Cups Oil - for frying Gujiya


Making the Dough:

  1. Place flour and oil in a food processor and blend for 30 seconds.
  2. Remove one tbsp of the mix in hand and squeeze tightly to form a ball. If the ball is formed, the oil is enough (if not, add 2tbsp more oil and blend).
  3. Now, add water and slowly blend and form a stiff dough.
  4. Remove the dough and place it on the slab.
  5. Knead the dough for a minute and cover with a moist kitchen towel.

Prepare the Filling (Khoya/Mawa):

  1. Mix ricotta and ghee in a bowl and microwave covered for 1:45 minutes.
  2. Remove and stir the mix.
  3. Place in the microwave again for 2 minutes.
  4. Remove and stir the mix.
  5. Place in microwave for 1:20 minutes.
  6. Remove and stir (the mix will be golden-medium brown in color and coarse)
  7. Cool the khoya.
  8. In a small blender, add almonds, sugar, green cardamom and coconut.
  9. Blend to form a coarse mixture.
  10. Add the cooled khoya and blend to form a thick mix.

Shaping the Gujiya:

  1. Take a large dough ball and roll it on a slab. (should be slightly thick).
  2. Now, take a bowl and press it facedown to form a circular shape on rolled dough.
  3. Similarly, make 3-4 circles as much the rolled dough permit.
  4. Remove any excess dough and keep the circular disc on a plate.
  5. Similarly, roll and form disc using the entire dough.

Filling the Gujiya:

  1. Now. take one circular disc in your hand and place 2tsp filling in the center.
  2. Apply the water+flour mix to the semi-circle edges of one side of the disc.
  3. Press both sides into each other and seal the edges.
  4. Place the gujiya on the slab and press the edges using a fork (sealing the edges).
  5. Similarly, fill and seal all the gujiya.


  1. Heat 2 cups of oil in a large deep pot.
  2. When the oil is hot (2 minutes), reduce the flames to low.
  3. Now, add 3-4 gujiya in the hot oil and fry over low-medium flames on both sides.
  4. Make sure each side is golden brown.
  5. Remove the fried gujiya on a paper towel to soak up excess oil.
  6. Similarly, fry all the gujiya


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200C
  2. Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  3. Place 7-8 gujiya on a large tray and brush with water+flour mix.
  4. Place the tray in the oven to bake for 10-12 minutes.
  5. Remove the gujiya once golden brown and similarly bake all the gujiya.
  6. Once the gujiya is made, you can serve immediately.
  7. These stores well in an air-tight jar in the fridge for a week.
  8. Simply reheat in the microwave.


  1. Preheat the Air Fryer for 3 minutes at 180 C
  2. Place the uncooked gujiya in the fryer basket and brush with some oil/butter.
  3. Close the basket and Ait Fry for 10 minutes.
  4. Once air fried, remove from the basket and serve immediately.


Vegetable Oil - you can use any light oil like canola, olive, sunflower, etc

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 300Total Fat: 56gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 43gCholesterol: 20mgSodium: 107mgCarbohydrates: 30gFiber: 2gSugar: 1gProtein: 6g

How to Make Khoya - Mawa using milk powder and ricotta cheese

27 Replies to "Best Gujiya Recipe | Step by Step Gujiya - Baked, Fried & Air Fryer"

  • Sandhya Ramakrishnan March 11, 2017 (3:32 pm)

    Molly, the gujiyas are perfect and I love the mawa filling in it. Ricotta cheese is a blessing when it comes to making mawa. It is so simple to make at home and they are so much fresher than the store bought ones. Thanks for the detailed recipe.

  • Hanady @ Recipe Nomad March 11, 2017 (3:11 am)

    These look absolutely delicious! I had an Indian neighbor who made the best Indian desserts! Now that she’s moved away I’ll have to make these and send her a pic! She’ll be so proud of me!

  • Heather March 11, 2017 (2:15 am)

    What a gorgeous dish!! I didn’t know these were so easy to make.. you’re detailed pics are awesome, by the way!! The combination of almond and coconut is guaranteed to be amazing!

  • Agness of Run Agness Run March 10, 2017 (7:07 pm)

    The empanadas always bring me memories of Spain, Molly! Great recipe, worth giving it a try!

  • Kylee from Kylee Cooks March 9, 2017 (6:19 pm)

    Dishes like this make me wish I celebrated Holi!

  • Olivia @ Olivia's Cuisine March 9, 2017 (1:46 am)

    I absolutely adore empanadas, but I’ve never tried the Indian version. I’ve tried samosas, but they were nothing like this. I need to make these soon, because I’m definitely intrigued! 🙂

  • Amanda March 8, 2017 (8:46 pm)

    I’ve not had much Indian food. I do understand empanadas, though. These sound absolutely delicious. I love the tutorial. It makes it seem so less overwhelming than just reading it. Cardamom is one of my favorite spices to use in desserts. 🙂

  • Adriana Lopez Martn March 8, 2017 (3:49 am)

    I am an Indian cuisine lover. I enjoy everything so I am sure this fried empanadas are right up my alley. Wish I had some now.

    • Molly Kumar March 8, 2017 (6:02 am)

      Thanks Adriana and hope you try them soon 🙂

      • Neha March 23, 2021 (3:20 pm)

        Hi Molly,
        Just wondering do we add sugar to khoya filling?

        • Molly Kumar April 1, 2021 (7:41 pm)

          Hello Neha, yes – the sugar is added to the gujiya filling mixture. Thanks, Molly

  • Jennifer A Stewart March 8, 2017 (12:26 am)

    Amazing! What a gorgeous holiday celebration! I would love to spend a year in India and experience all of these festivals and holidays. So many beautiful colors, lights, the amazing things to wear, and all these treats!! What a great tutorial Molly!

    • Molly Kumar March 8, 2017 (6:49 am)

      Thanks Jennifer! Yeh, you should visit India during celebrations or festival time, its just so bright, colorful and filled with the finest of food n clothes 🙂

  • Christine - Jar Of Lemons March 8, 2017 (12:24 am)

    Oh wow, these sound amazing! I love empanadas, so I can only imagine how delicious these would be!

  • Noel Lizotte March 8, 2017 (12:06 am)

    Something that looks this great and yet is so simple to make … who would have thought! I always saw these little treats and was afraid to try making them because I thought they would be complicated. Thanks for sharing your recipe!

  • Stephanie@ApplesforCJ March 7, 2017 (7:14 pm)

    These sound so good and I’m glad you have the baking option. The step by step pictures help out a lot as while. When I read the ricotta filling in these I was sold..I bet these are so Yummy 🙂

  • Julie | Bunsen Burner Bakery March 7, 2017 (6:13 pm)

    These sound so good, and I love that you took a typically fried food and baked them instead. Even better that your parents prefer your version!

  • Marisa Franca @ All Our Way March 7, 2017 (4:13 pm)

    I’d like to have several of those right now with my tea. YUM! I’ve had empanadas but more with the Mexican flavor. I’d love to make these. I’m sure my kids and grandkids would gobble them up in a second. Thank you for your recipe.

  • Sharon Chen March 7, 2017 (1:18 pm)

    These look perfectly shaped and yummy! I want to make them on my own 🙂

  • Veena Azmanov March 7, 2017 (5:15 am)

    I have not eaten Gujiya in ages or made Khoya in forever. This brings back memories of fine Indian food for me. I love that you can fry or bake them. Your recipe sounds so delicious Molly. On my list of ‘must try’

  • Kathy McDaniel March 7, 2017 (1:52 am)

    I never had this sweet empanadas. They sound delicious and I love the detailed instructions and tips! Definitely a recipe I would love to try soon.

  • Pam March 6, 2017 (10:33 pm)

    This sounds so good! I love that there is a baked version for people who need to eat healthier. Yum.

  • Byron Thomas March 6, 2017 (4:08 pm)

    Every time I see a new post on your blog, I’m reminded that there’s so many foods in the world that I haven’t tried. Sadly, most of them are right in my back yard. I’ve got to get on the wagon and get out there more. 🙂 Can’t wait to try these, Molly!

  • Tina Dawson | Love is in my Tummy March 6, 2017 (2:15 pm)

    The last time I ate this, was probably a decade ago! Brings back so many memories… I must make this at home… love the pictures!

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