Shrikhand- The Iconic Yogurt Based Dessert From Maharashtra
Image Credit: Shrikhand by Ayandrali Dutta

Have you tasted the creamy, soft, mildly sweet flavoured yogurt dish from Maharashtra? Yes we are talking about Shrikhand. This thousand years old recipe gets its name from Sanskrit word “Shikhrini”.

This popular yoghurt-based dessert that is common in the states Western India, primarily Maharashtrian and Gujarati. There are many versions of how this dessert has originated and one of them being that this dish comes from the Mahabharata Kal where the Bhim had cooked this dish and named after the God Shri Krishna. Deeper down you can get reference of this during Peshwa Bajirao’s time who was supposal very fond of this dessert.

This traditional hung curd dessert that’s flavored with saffron, cardamom also sees reference in that K. T. Achaya’s ‘Indian Food: A Historical Companion’ in which he mentions that shrikhand in its present form appeared in food writings in Kannada as early as 1025 AD. It was known as shikarini at that time. Even in ancient Gujarati-Jain literature from 7th to 14th century A.D mentions food items like dukkia (dhokla first mentioned in A.D 1066), veshtika (vedhami) along with Shikharini (shrikhand). The recipe is pretty simple.

This festive dish is mostly made in during Janmashtami in Maharashtra and Gujarat. The trick of getting a good Shirkhand lies in getting a good quality hung curd which decides the texture of the dessert. Once all the water is drained out the creamy mixture of hung curd that you get is called ‘chakka’. The way you fold the yoghurt to the mango pulp and kesar milk needs to be very delicately done.

Not many know this desert even has some health benefits like it’s rich in calcium, good for your skin, and is full of is full of probiotics which aid your body to absorb nutrients.


  • 2 cups yogurt plain whole milk, approximately 1 lb
  • 5 tablespoon powdered sugar adjust to taste
  • ½ teaspoon Cardamom powder
  • pinch generous pinch of saffron (kesar)
  • Mango pulp one cup
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 10 pistachios sliced or chopped for garnishing
  • pinch of salt


To make hung curd

  • In a clean muslin cloth put some yogurt and hang it by tying ends together. It will help to drain as much as water as possible.
  • By adding some weight you can drain off the excess whey.
  • Let it stay under weight for 4-5 hours or even overnight in the refrigerator.
  • Open the cloth and you will get the thickened yogurt (hung curd) as required for the dish

To make saffron infused milk

  • Warm the milk for few seconds in the microwave and add kesar. Mix the kesar strands and let it settle for 10 -15 mins. Once you mix well you will see the milk turning yellow.

To make Kesar Pista Mango Shrikhand

Transfer the hung curd (chakka) to a bowl and add the cardamom powder, powdered sugar, salt and saffron milk to it. Mix until well combined.

Transfer to the serving bowl and garnish with pistachios and sprinkle some more saffron on top (optional).

Serve immediately or store in refrigerator until ready to use.