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Best Kesar Pista Ice Cream

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This classic Kesar Pista Ice Cream or Saffron Pistachio Ice Cream is super creamy, rich, and flavorful! Flavored with Indian ice cream flavors, this ice cream has a very delicate floral aroma and nutty crunch.

Made with a few simple ingredients and flavored with Indian dessert flavors, this saffron and pistachio-flavored Indian ice cream is super easy and quick to make! Plus, this is a no-churn ice cream recipe — no ice cream machine is required here. 

overhead shot of kesar pista ice cream container with one ice cream scoop on top

The addition of saffron makes it aromatic and the roasted pistachios add a nice nutty contrast to the overall creamy texture of this ice cream, thereby making it a very popular flavor.

Kesar is a favorite Indian flavor in many desserts such as Kesar Rasgulla, Kesar Elaichi Shrikhand, Kesar Mawa Peda, and Saffron Rice Kheer, and Badam Ladoo.

On this page, you will get a step-by-step picture and video recipe. I have also included all the important tips and tricks to make this recipe fail-proof. 

About Kesar Pista Ice Cream

Kesar pista ice cream is one of the most popular Indian ice cream flavors. It has a creamy soft and rich texture with a nutty crunch and delicate flavors, which makes it a wonderful dessert to beat the summer heat. This beautiful yellow tinted kesar pista ice cream is an ultimate summer dessert

Usually ice creams give relief from the scorching heat during summer, but this kesar pista ice cream satisfies both your ice cream and Indian dessert cravings at the same time. Another great thing about this ice cream is that it is made with 5 basic ingredients and only needs 15 minutes of your time. 

This no-churn and no-cook kesar pista ice cream is eggless and has an amazingly creamy and rich texture. It is exquisitely scoopable and has no ice crystals.

The ingredients you will need to make this ice cream are saffron, milk, sweetened condensed milk, chopped pistachios, and whipped cream. 

Making this kesar pista ice cream at home might seem daunting, but it is very simple and easy. Gather ingredients, whisk them to make the ice cream base, freeze the ice cream mixture, scoop, and the ice cream is ready to enjoy! 

You can have this ice cream anytime you crave for a frozen dessert, or serve it at parties or get-togethers. Have it as an after-meal dessert or a sweet snack, this would always lighten up your mood!

a hand sprinkling pistachio with a spoon over two kesar pista ice cream scoops in a small bowl

This Kesar Pista Ice Cream

✓ needs minimal ingredients

✓ is vegetarian, eggless, and gluten free

✓ makes an ideal dessert for any time of the year

✓ is creamy, delicious, and aromatic

✓ is made without an ice cream maker

✓ makes a lovely dessert for parties or get togethers

✓ needs only 15 minutes of effective time

✓ flavors can be customized

✓ is made from scratch

✓ is perfectly scoopable and creamy

What is Kesar Pista Ice Cream?

Kesar Pista Ice Cream is one of the most popular and cherished Indian ice cream flavors that is sold in ice cream parlors, cafes, restaurants, and groceries. Kesar pista ice cream is not just ice cream, it is a sentiment. People just don’t leave any chance to relish it. This ice cream is fancy enough to serve as a dessert at weddings, parties, and other celebrations. 

This homemade kesar pista ice cream version is no-churn, no-cook, and eggless. Here, saffron-infused milk is mixed with whipped cream, sweetened condensed milk, and pistachios. Then this ice cream base goes to the freezer to get set. It tastes way better than the ones we get from the stores. 

two kesar pista ice cream scoops in a metal bowl with a ice cream container cloth in the background

Kesar Pista Ice Cream Ingredients

You will only need some basic ingredients to make saffron pistachio ice cream at home! These ingredients are:

  • Whipping Cream – You will need some heavy whipping cream for making this ice cream. I used 30% fat whipping cream here. Also, make sure that whipping cream is chilled before you start whisking.

  • Milk – I used hot milk for soaking saffron strands and chilled milk for adding to the ice cream mixture. I used full cream milk here, but you can also use semi-skimmed milk.

  • Saffron strands – It is the star ingredient of this recipe, so make sure that you use good quality saffron to get the most flavors out of it.

  • Pistachios – I have used roasted unsalted crushed pistachios for making this ice cream because they give a nice nutty and crunchy texture just like the one you get in the store-bought ice creams. However, you can also use raw pistachios here. 

  • Sweetened Condensed milk – For making this ice cream I have added 1 cup of homemade sweetened condensed milk. You can increase the amount if you prefer sweeter ice cream. Also, you can swap homemade sweetened condensed milk with store-bought condensed milk. That would work just fine here! 

  • Food color (optional) – I have added a few drops of yellow food color to the kesar pista ice cream base. But adding food color is entirely optional here. It is just used for presentation purposes, so it won’t make any difference in taste.

two kesar pista ice cream scoops in a small black bowl with a fresh flowers and pistachios on the side

How to Make Kesar Pista Ice Cream at home

Making saffron pistachio ice cream at home is a piece of cake. All you need to do is whisk and mix. That’s it. This is how you can make Kesar Pista Ice Cream in 5 simple steps:

  • Step 1 - Make saffron-infused milk by stirring saffron strands with ¾ cup of hot milk. Keep it aside for 20 minutes.

  • Step 2 - Using a hand blender or a stand mixer, whisk whipping cream until stiff peaks.

  • Step 3 - Add chilled milk to saffron-infused milk and mix. Add saffron milk to the whipped cream along with sweetened condensed milk, and pistachios, and whisk until everything is combined. Add a few drops of yellow color (if using) and whisk gently.

  • Step 4 -  Pour the chilled ice cream mixture into a container and sprinkle it with more pistachios and saffron. Cover with a plastic wrap and refrigerate it for 6-8 hours or overnight.

  • Step 5 -  Once frozen, scoop and enjoy! 

You can get the detailed step-by-step photo instructions and a video recipe to make the best tasting Kesar Pista Ice Cream in the recipe box on this page.

Other homemade ice creams you may also like to check out are: Fruit and Nut ice cream, Coconut Blueberry ice-cream, Rose ice cream, Chocolate Hazelnut ice cream, and Peach Blueberry ice cream.

Serving Suggestion

Just like any other ice cream, you can scoop it into bowls or waffle cones and top with more pistachios and saffron for added crunch and flavor. Other than eating it as ice cream, you can also pair this with your favorite desserts such as chocolate banana bread, badam halwa, or gajar halwa

overhead shot of two kesar pista ice cream scoops in a small black bowl with an ice cream bowl on the side

Tips & tricks to make the best Kesar Pista Ice Cream at home:

  1. Use chilled ingredients – Always use chilled ingredients for making this saffron pistachio ice cream. To make sure that ingredients are cold, only take them out when you are ready to use them. 

  2. You can also use a chilled bowl to speed up the whisking process. You can place the bowl in the freezer for 30 minutes before use. This step is essential if you are making ice cream in hot weather.

  3. Don’t over whip – Remember to beat the cream until it forms stiff peaks. Do not over-whip the whipping cream, otherwise, it will turn into butter. 

  4. After adding milk, and condensed milk, whisk until everything is just mixed. You can also fold everything using a spatula.

  5. Condensed milk – I have added only 1 cup of sweetened condensed milk here. If you like sweeter ice cream, then you can add an additional ¼ cup of condensed milk.

  6. Almonds – You can swap pistachios with almonds to make kesar badam ice cream. 

  7. You can use any whisk to whip up heavy cream. However, I recommend either using an electric whisk or a mixer with a whisk attachment.

  8. Toppings – I have topped the ice cream with crushed pistachios and saffron strands. However, adding topping is completely optional here. 

  9. Cardamom – I didn’t add any cardamom powder here because I didn’t want to dial down the floral saffron flavor. If you like cardamom, then feel free to add it to the ice cream mixture. 

  10. Saffron essence – To get the more intense saffron flavor, you can also add a few drops of saffron essence to this ice cream recipe.

  11. Always thaw the saffron pistachio ice cream at room temperature for about 5-10 minutes. This step makes the scooping easy.

  12. For making this No churn kesar pista ice cream recipe, always use heavy whipping cream which has a fat content of 30% or more. I used 30% fat. 

two kesar pista ice cream scoops in a small black bowl with a female holing an ice cream scoop in the background

FAQ

How to make vegan Kesar Pista Ice Cream?

To make a vegan version of saffron pistachio ice cream, replace whipping cream with dairy-free whipping cream (coconut or soy), dairy milk with vegan milk (almond or coconut), and condensed milk with vegan condensed milk (soy condensed milk or coconut condensed milk). 

How to store the Kesar Pista Ice Cream?

You can store kesar pista ice cream for up to 3 months. To store, make sure you use a freezer-safe container that has a tight lid. 

Can I use saffron essence instead of saffron strands?

Yes, you can use saffron essence instead of saffron strands. But to me, the strands give a more delicious saffron flavor and a gorgeous color to this ice cream. You can also use a combination of saffron strands and essence. 


Best Kesar Pista Ice Cream (Step-by-step photo instructions)

How to make Kesar Pista Ice Cream

  1. Add 3/4 cup hot milk to a bowl. Crush saffron strands between palms, and add them to the bowl. Stir well to combine. Put it aside for at least 20 minutes to infuse. The resting time is very important to add the most flavor and color of saffron into the milk.
  2. Image of the cooking step-1-1 for Best Kesar Pista Ice Cream
  3. Add chilled heavy whipping cream (I used 30 % fat) to a large mixing bowl. Whip until stiff peaks form. This would take about 3-4 minutes at the highest speed. Do not over-beat the cream otherwise, the texture of the cream will become a little bit grainy.
  4. Image of the cooking step-1-2 for Best Kesar Pista Ice Cream
  5. Add 1 cup sweetened condensed milk. Feel free to add more condensed milk if you prefer sweeter ice cream. Now, add 1/4 cup chilled milk to saffron-infused milk and stir. Add this to the bowl with whipped cream. Also, add 4 tablespoons of crushed pistachios. I used unsalted roasted pistachios here.
  6. Image of the cooking step-1-3 for Best Kesar Pista Ice Cream
  7. Whip it again gently until just mixed. Add a few drops of yellow/orange food color and whip until everything is mixed. Don’t overmix it at this point.
  8. Image of the cooking step-1-4 for Best Kesar Pista Ice Cream
  9. Pour the ice cream mixture into a freezer-safe container/dish. Top it with crushed pistachios and crushed saffron strands. Cover the container with a cling film and freeze for at-least 6-8 hours.
  10. Image of the cooking step-1-5 for Best Kesar Pista Ice Cream
  11. Once frozen, thaw the ice cream for 10 minutes at room temperature and scoop ice cream into cups or cones. Garnish with pistachios and enjoy chilled.
  12. Image of the cooking step-1-6 for Best Kesar Pista Ice Cream


Best Kesar Pista Ice Cream [Recipe]

Recipe Image
This classic Kesar Pista Ice Cream or Saffron Pistachio Ice Cream is creamy, rich, and flavorful. It has a delicate aroma and nutty crunch.
★★★★✰
(Rating: 4.9 from 4 reviews)

Prep time 🕐 Cook time 🕐 Total time 🕐
15 mins
Category ☶ Cuisine ♨ Serves ☺
Dessert International 8
Nutrition Info ⊛ Serving size ⊚
297 calories 1

INGREDIENTS

For Kesar Pista Ice Cream
  • 400 ml heavy whipping cream, chilled
  • 1 cup sweetened condensed milk, chilled
  • 3/4 cup hot milk, full fat
  • 1/4 cup chilled milk, full fat
  • 1 teaspoon saffron strands (kesar)
  • 4 tablespoons pistachios, crushed or coarsely ground
  • Few drops of yellow food color, optional
For topping & serving
  • 2 tablespoons pistachios, crushed chopped
  • Pinch of crushed saffron strands

INSTRUCTIONS:

How to make Kesar Pista Ice Cream
  1. Add 3/4 cup hot milk to a bowl. Crush saffron strands between palms, and add them to the bowl. Stir well to combine. Put it aside for at least 20 minutes to infuse. The resting time is very important to add the most flavor and color of saffron into the milk.
  2. Add chilled heavy whipping cream (I used 30 % fat) to a large mixing bowl. Whip until stiff peaks form. This would take about 3-4 minutes at the highest speed. Do not over-beat the cream otherwise, the texture of the cream will become a little bit grainy.
  3. Add 1 cup sweetened condensed milk. Feel free to add more condensed milk if you prefer sweeter ice cream. Now, add 1/4 cup chilled milk to saffron-infused milk and stir. Add this to the bowl with whipped cream. Also, add 4 tablespoons of crushed pistachios. I used unsalted roasted pistachios here.
  4. Whip it again gently until just mixed. Add a few drops of yellow/orange food color and whip until everything is mixed. Don’t overmix it at this point.
  5. Pour the ice cream mixture into a freezer-safe container/dish. Top it with crushed pistachios and crushed saffron strands. Cover the container with a cling film and freeze for at-least 6-8 hours.
  6. Once frozen, thaw the ice cream for 10 minutes at room temperature and scoop ice cream into cups or cones. Garnish with pistachios and enjoy chilled.

WATCH RECIPE VIDEO: Click the play button and video will load ...


NOTES:

  1. e chilled ingredients – Always use chilled ingredients for making this saffron pistachio ice cream. To make sure that ingredients are cold, only take them out when you are ready to use them.
  2. You can also use a chilled bowl to speed up the whisking process. You can place the bowl in the freezer for 30 minutes before use. This step is essential if you are making ice cream in hot weather.
  3. Don’t over whip – Remember to beat the cream until it forms stiff peaks. Do not over-whip the whipping cream, otherwise, it will turn into butter.

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