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Indian Spiced Cookies (Nankhatai) Recipe

Indian Spiced Cookies (Nankhatai) Recipe

In a bowl, whisk together the butter and sugar. Beat until light and pale yellow in color and set aside.

In a separate bowl, sift together the flours, semolina, salt, pepper, and baking powder. Add the flour mixture into the sugar-butter mixture, a little at a time until everything is mixed well together to form soft dough.

Knead the dough for 2-3 minutes to form a smooth big ball. (If it’s a little sticky, wrap it in a plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 30 minutes. After about 30 minutes, take the dough out of the refrigerator and knead again for 2-3 minutes. The warmth of your hands will soften the butter in the dough slightly.)

Now divide the dough into equal parts; make about 30-35 smooth balls. (Because of the butter, the cookies flatten and crack when baked so make sure your dough balls are smooth with no cracks in order to make pretty cookies.)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and place the dough balls on the sheet and bake until the bottom of cookies are golden in color, about 20-22 minutes. Remove from the oven and top ½ of the cookies with the almonds and the other ½ with jam. Enjoy warm cookies with chai or store them in airtight containers for several weeks.

Indian Spicy Masala Cookie Recipe (Khara Biscuit)

Give this Masala Cookies/Khara Biscuit a try. It is a simple and easy to make cookie that is flavored with chilies, ginger with the addition of yogurt and makes it perfect to serve as a tea time snack.

Masala Cookies/Khara Biscuit is a simple and easy to make cookie that is flavored with chilies, ginger with the addition of yogurt. This is a cookie/ biscuit that I make very often for my family as we love to savor it with our coffee or tea.

If you like baking cookies, then you must try some of our favorite recipes

How to make Nankhatai recipe (Step by Step Photos):

1) Preheat the oven to 350 degree F or 180 degree C for at least 10 minutes.

2) Prepare the baking sheet. Line a sheet using the parchment paper. If you don’t have parchment paper then skip it. No need to grease the sheet.

3) In a bowl, take all purpose flour, ground almonds, salt and cardamom powder.

4) Mix it well till everything is incorporated well.

5) Take softened butter in another bowl.

6) Add powdered sugar in it.

7) Now using the wire whisk, start beating the mixture. In beginning it clumps together, but no worries, keep scraping and beating.

8) beat it till you get smooth consistency. Also all the sugar is incorporated well.

9) Add flour mixture and switch to the spatula.

10) Mix it using spoon or spatula. Everything will come together like a crumbly dough.

11) Now using hand knead it and make like a dough.

12) Now shape the nankhatai. Take a tablespoon size of the dough. Make smooth ball and flatten it out slightly. Make sure there are no cracks. Arrange them on a cookie sheet about few inches apart.

13) bake into pre heated oven for about 18-20 minutes. Let it cool for 5 minutes in the sheet itself.

14) Then using the spatula, transfer them on the cooling rack.

15) Let them cool completely.

16) The color of it won't’ change much from the top. But the bottom will be slightly golden brown.

Storing: Once they cools down, store in airtight container. At room temperature, they stay good for 2 weeks. You can freeze the unbaked cookie balls. Arrange them on the sheet, freeze in the freezer. Once frozen, store them in container or ziplock bag in the freeze. Whenever you are ready to bake, preheat the oven and bake. The baking time will be few minutes longer than mentioned above.

Serving suggestion:You can serve this a dessert. But usually people prefers to have it as a snack with cup of tea or coffee. Kids just like to munch on as such. these are also served to the guests on the occasion of Diwali or New year’s day.


  • It is important to have butter at room temperature. Keep it on counter top for 30-45 minutes for soft butter. If you are in hurry, microwave stick of butter for 3-4 seconds then turn it and again microwave it for 3-4 seconds then again turn it and so on. Do this process for 4-5 times and you have soft room temperature butter. Microwave time is depends on your type of microwave so set time accordingly.
  • The sugar is powdered sugar. This is NOT regular sugar and ground to powder form. it is known as Confectioner’s sugar or Powdered Sugar. In Indian, it known as Boora which we use while making laddu or other sweets.
  • The original recipe is from a cookbook 5 Spices, 50 Dishes: Simple Indian Recipes Using Five Common Spices by Ruta Kahate. It uses 2 tablespoons of rice flour. Instead of that I have used all purpose flour here in the recipe.
  • I have tried with rice flour as well. It makes them little hard and crispy. I like the softer texture, so I have used all purpose flour, Many readers have tried with rice flour and they like the texture. You can use if you want.

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


In a bowl sieve together flour, besan, sooji and cardamom powder. Add salt and mix till well combined.

Using your stand or hand mixer, mix/cream together ghee with powdered sugar and crushed saffron strands till fluffy.

Add the flour mix (the dry ingredients) and mix.

Mix until it forms a soft and smooth dough. If the dough is not coming together, you may add a tablespoon of milk at this point.

Cling wrap the dough and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

After 30 minutes take the dough out and pinch equal size balls from the dough. Flatten each balls slightly with your hands and if you want make a criss-cross design on top with a knife. Press some chopped nuts in the center. Place the baking tray lined with the cookies back in the refrigerator again for 20 minutes. Meanwhile pre-heat the oven to 375 F degrees.

After 20 minutes, take out the baking tray and bake at 375 F degrees for 16-18 minutes or till the bottom of the cookies starts turning light brown in color.

Remove nankhatai from oven and let cool completely. Store in an airtight container and enjoy!

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Nan Khatai

If you are looking for more eggless cookies recipes then do check this ragi jam cookies, bajra almond cookies, wheat cashew butter cookies and jowar chocolate cookies.

Eggless Indian Cookies Recipe:

All Purpose Flour / Maida : 1 cup
Powdered Sugar : ¾ cup
Ghee : ½ cup, softened but not melted
Cardamom Powder : 1 tsp
Chopped Almonds for garnishing

1. Preheat
the oven to 180 degree C.

2. Combine the flour, powdered sugar, ghee and
cardamom powder in a mixing bowl.

3. Knead it for 5 minutes to make a smooth

4. Divide the dough into equal size balls and place on a baking

5. Press each ball lightly and garnish with almonds.

6. Bake the
prepared cookies for 15 to 18 minutes at 180 degree C.

7. Then remove from
the oven and let them cool down for 2-3 minutes before taking them of
the baking sheet.

8. Allow them to cool on a wire rack and store in a
airtight container.

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Step by Step of making khasta Nankhatai Recipe &ndash

  1. Add room temperature Ghee to a mixing bowl.
  2. Put in the Icing Sugar/ Confectioners Sugar ( not granulated).
  3. Cream ghee and sugar well with a spoon.
  4. Add in the mentioned flours.

5. Start Mixing the dough till it comes together.

6.Knead it until it forms a smooth dough. Rest the dough covered for at least 15-20 minutes.

7. Divide the dough into equal balls.Make crisscross lines on each cookie and put some chopped nuts in the center if desired.

8. Bake in a pre heated oven for 17-19 minutes for large and 10-12 minutes for smaller cookies.

9. Let the cookies cool down in the tray for 10 minutes. Then slowly take them out with help of a spatula.

Two-Step Process

Unlike other cookies, this one requires no addition of milk or water.

Make Cookie Dough: Combine all the ingredients and form a smooth dough similar to a shortcrust pastry.

No need to knead the dough. As soon it comes together, set it aside for 3 – 5 minutes or store in the fridge until you are ready to make cookies.

Shape Cookies: Grease a flat baking tray and place the cookies balls on it, leaving enough space between each ball to allow for expansion. Make a cross on top of each cookie using a sharp knife.


Add shaved almonds, pistachios, cashews, strands of saffron, sunflower seeds, or any other nuts on the cookie to decorate it.

Bake cookies in a preheated oven at 180 degrees Celsius for 25 minutes. Do keep a check on the cookies while baking to ensure they don’t get burnt. Smaller sized cookies might cook faster.

Now, once the cookies are baked, cool them on a wiring rack for 15 mins or till they reach room temperature.

Nankhatai Recipe | Melt in Mouth Crispy Indian Cookie

Nankhatai is crispy shortbreadbiscuit which is prepared using desi ghee(Homemade ghee), all purpose flour(maida), chickpea flour(Besan), Sooji(Rawa) and sugar.

Nankhatai is believed to have originated in Surat in the 16th century, the time when Dutch and Indians were the important spice traders. A Dutch couple set up a bakery in Surat to meet the needs of local Dutch residents. When the Dutch left India, they handed over the bakery to an Iranian.The bakery biscuits were disliked by the locals.To save his business he started selling dried bread at low prices. It became so popular that he started drying the bread before selling it. With time, his experimentation with bread ultimately gave birth to nankhatai. The main ingredients in Nankhatai are Refined flour, Chickpea flour and semolina. (Source: wikipedia)

In many places in India ,Nankhatais are prepared during Diwali season as a snack.

While making nankhatai always make sure to cream sugar and ghee well so that it gives nice crispiness to the biscuits .

Preparation Time: 10 Minutes

Baking Time: 25-30 Minutes

Yields : 20-24 Nankhatai

Ingredients :

200 Grams All purpose flour / Maida

50 Grams Chickpea Flour/Besan

200 Grams Clarified Butter/Desi Ghee

1/2 Teaspoon Cardamom Powder/ Velchi Powder

1/4 Teaspoon Nutmeg Powder/ Jaifal Powder


Take Powder sugar and ghee in a big bowl.

With beater, beat it together for a minute or 2 till smooth cream is formed.

Sieve together all purpose flour, chickpea flour and baking soda into the above sugar cream.

Add Nutmeg and Cardamom powder into the above mixture.

Mix everything well using hand.

Dont knead , just make it a soft dough.

Take small quantity of this dough , and start making balls.

Flatten these balls and arrange on baking tray lined with parchment paper.

Make some cross design on each using a knife.(Optional.You may also press any nut on top like pista or almond). Keep sufficient space between each as they expand during baking.

Bake at 180 degree celcius for 25-30 minutes.(Time will vary depending upon the quantity and oven)

Once baked, remove them out on cooling rack after 5 minutes of keeping the tray outside.

When Nankhatais cool down completely, store them in airtight container.

Pooja Nadkarni

Nankhatai, Nan Khatai Biscuit

nankhatai biscuits recipe | nan khatai biscuits | eggless Indian cookies | with 20 amazing images.

nankhatai biscuits are very popular Indian eggless tea time biscuits . Our vegetarian recipe of nan khatai biscuits is made with simple ingredients like plain flour, Vanaspati, powdered sugar, rava, cardamom powder, almond powder, baking powder and baking soda.

A melt-in-the-mouth biscuit, with the rich aroma of ghee tinged with spicy notes of cardamom, the nankhatai is a perfect example of Indian ingenuity in making eggless Indian cookies .

Almond and pistachio powders not only improves the flavour but also makes the nankhatai biscuits more porous, making every bite just melt in your mouth and coat your taste buds.

Notes and tips on making the perfect nan khatai biscuits . 1. For making the Nankhatai Biscuit , in a deep bowl, place a fine sieve or strainer. Add the plain flour. Many people even add besan to the nankhatai recipe . You can freely change and mix match to make the nankhatai with only besan, sooji or maida but, maintain the measurements to get crunchy nan khatais . 2. Add the baking soda. While the soda neutralizes the acid in the recipe, but it is not sufficient enough to make biscuit nankhatai so we add baking powder too. 3. In another deep bowl, take the ghee. The ghee should not me melted it should have a semi-solid consistency with grainy texture. 4. Combine the ghee and powdered sugar. Whisk well for 10 to 12 minutes or till white in colour, smooth and fluffy. This method is called as creaming instead of a whisk you can make use of an electric beater. If using an electric beater it will only take 5 to 6 minutes. 4. Mix well to form soft dough. If you feel the dough is dry and you are unable to bring together all the ingredients then add 1 to 2 tsp of milk. Do not knead it, just mix all the ingredients. Also, if the dough is very soft then cover and keep it in the refrigerator for around 10-15 minutes before making the cookies. 5. Place the Nankhatai Biscuits on a baking tray at equal distance. They expand on baking so it is important to maintain some distance while placing them.

Indeed, every crunchy bite of this intensely flavoured nankhatai biscuits is an opportunity to retreat from mundane worries and experience real delight!

These traditional Indian cookies ( nan khatai biscuits ) can be served as Evening Tea Snacks, School Time Snacks, at High Tea Party and can also served to the guests on the occasion of Diwali or New year's day.

Enjoy how to make nankhatai biscuits recipe | nan khatai biscuits | eggless Indian cookies | with detailed step by step photos.

Christmas Nankhatai Cookies Nankhatai are traditional Indian shortbread cookies made with flour, sugar and butter and are completely eggless. They are spiced with cardamom and nutmeg and are a popular tea time treat. Although more often made during Diwali, why not share the goodness by bringing these to your Christmas cookie platter? I’ve turned my nankhatai into an Indian Christmas cookie by taking red, green and plain dough rolled together to make a fun pinwheel cookie. Sprinkle them with some gold sugar and you have yourself a gorgeous Christmas cookie!

Tips for making pinwheel cookies

Roll cookie dough colors separately between two sheets of parchment. This keeps the dough from sticking to your rolling pin! Then, remove the top parchment off of one color and flip it on top of the other one.

Repeat with third dough. Peel away the top parchment and trim one of the long edges to create a straight edge.

Start rolling the dough as tight as you can from the straight edge. Go slowly and use your parchment paper to help you push it nice and tight! Trim it again to create a straight seam.

Wrap it tightly and chill it for at least an hour. This is important to getting nice round cookies when you slice it.

Slice your log with a large sharp chef’s knife. If it’s not holding shape, you need to chill it longer. If it’s just a little misshapen, you can adjust it on your baking sheet with your hands.

Make these Christmas nankhatai cookies extra festive by adding sugar sprinkles before you bake. All you have to do is brush the area you want the sprinkles to stick to with some corn syrup and dip your sugar cookie in the sprinkles.

Bake them off as instructed below and enjoy your beautiful Christmas nankhatai cookies! For another twist on traditional nankhatai cookies, you may also want to check out my chocolate nankhatai cookies.

Not ready to make these Christmas nankhatai cookies just yet? PIN it now and SAVE it for later!

More Winter Holiday Cookies

This recipe was originally published for The Hindustan Times 12/22/2011 Delhi city supplement. You can read more about it in my post here.