Gujiya, or Milk Fudge Turnovers, are a popular Indian dessert commonly made in the northern part of India around the festivals of Holi and Diwali. Traditionally, gujiya are deep fried sweet dumplings, but in this recipe, I show you how to make baked gujiya that you will less guilty about.
Baking instead of frying to make Gujiya Healthier
During the festival season, my husband and I end up “over-indulging”, if that’s a word. I’m sure many can relate to that. So, I keep tweaking recipes to make them a bit healthier without losing any of the “to-die-for” flavors. The other thing is, that I rarely have the time required to make this elaborate dessert. So, I experimented and after a few hits and misses, this recipe for Baked Gujiya was born. The baked version automatically makes it way healthier than the classic.
30-Minute Weeknight Indian Sweet for Diwali or Holi Festivals
Living in the US, Indian festivals often fall on weeknights. So, I have been experimenting with making more Indian sweets recipes easier to make.
So, to make this gujiya recipe simpler, I started using store-bought pie dough. The pie dough may sound unconventional, but gives a similar flaky, crisp texture that is key to a good Gujiya.
So, here is my quicker and healthier, baked version of this favorite that is ready in 30 minutes!
Khoya: Key Gujiya Stuffing Ingredient
Gujiya is a sweet dumpling that is made by stuffing pastry dough with sweetened milk fudge (khoya), chopped nuts and coconut flakes and is finished by glazing with a thick sugar syrup.
Traditionally, the process of making Gujiya requires making a dough with all-purpose flour, ghee (clarified butter) and water. You combine all ingredients and make a soft dough, set it to rest while you prepare the filling.
The filling is made with Khoya as a base. Khoya, also known as Mawa, is dried milk solids. It is available in the freezer aisle of your local Indian food store, right next to the Paneer.
I personally like the brand Nanak for khoya. It comes in a 12 oz pack. This quantity of Khoya makes stuffing good for making 40 Gujiya. You can either divide the Khoya in half and freeze it, or, make the entire stuffing and freeze that for a later use. I always prefer to make the stuffing and freeze half for later use, for making Gujiya, or add it to my Gajar Halwa (Carrot Halwa) instead of Khoya!
Stuffing for the Baked Gujiya
This is my mother-in-law’s ‘family-famous’ Gujiya recipe. The Gujiya mix is made by crumbling khoya in a mildly warm skillet. I do this step in the microwave now; it saves so much time and effort. You then add chopped nuts like cashews, almonds and pistachios and also, add the desiccated coconut and freshly ground cardamom powder. You can also add finely chopped dry fruits like raisins and dates.
When this mixture is cool, add the sugar to the mix. Now your Gujiya is ready to assemble.
Making the Baked Gujiya Dumpling
A small dough ball is rolled into a circular shaped disc, about 3-inch in diameter. About 2 teaspoons -1/2 tablespoon of khoya mixture goes in the center and then the dough is folded in a crescent shape and edges are sealed. That’s your Gujiya dumpling.
In this baked gujiya version, instead of deep frying the dumplings, you bake them at this step. After baking, cool for a few minutes, and then put them in a sugar syrup, toss a few times and then set on a platter to crisp up. Garnish with chopped pistachios and get ready to enjoy a bite of heaven!
I also have the recipe for Traditional Deep-Fried Gujiya.
More Indian Desserts to Enjoy
Here are some other Indian desserts that I love to make and my family really enjoys.
Sooji Sheera (Semolina Pudding)
Kesar Badam Halwa
10-Minute Coconut Laddoo
Easiest Besan Laddoo
Gajar Burfi (Carrot Fudge)
Gajar ka Halwa
Kheer, Rice Pudding
Deep Fried Gujiya
Nankhatai (Almond Spice Cookies)
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Baked Gujiya in 30 minutes | Milk Fudge Turnovers
Khoya Stuffing (this stuffing is good for 40 Gujiya, I freeze half of this stuffing for later use)
Glazing Ingredients:(enough glaze for 20-22 Gujias)
Dough for Gujiyas
- 1 sheet Pie dough (store bought). I get the Trader Joe's brand
Make the Stuffing
- Microwave Khoya for 2-3 minutes, in 30 seconds increments to make khoya easy to crumble. Heat non stick skillet/pan on medium heat. Crumble khoya in to the pan. Using a wooden spoon or spatula, press down and break it in smaller pieces. Keep pressing till khoya becomes soft, consistency of a soft dough. (it should be pliable). Turn off the heat. Alternatively, you can do this whole process in the microwave by heating khoya for 3-5 minutes in 1-minute increments, stirring in between, till the khoya becomes soft.
- Add chopped nuts, coconut powder and cardamom powder. Mix well and allow to cool off for a few minutes (4-5). Add sugar and mix well. Taste to adjust sugar to your taste preference. The stuffing is ready.
Assemble Gujiya and Bake
- Place thawed pie crust between plastic wrap and roll outwards to thin out the dough. (See video for clarity). Using a 2 inch round cookie cutter, cut out pie circles for filling. Fill each pie circle with roughly 2 teaspoons (or heaping 1/2 tablespoon) filling, and seal by pressing the edges together. (Just like you would for a turnover).
Make Sugar Syrup
- While Gujiya is baking, heat a sauce pan on medium heat. Add sugar and water. Bring to a boil and simmer on medium heat till it thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 5-6 minutes.
Glaze and garnish
- Dip baked Gujiyas in the cooled sugar syrup, coating well on all sides. Sprinkle some crushed pistachios on top. Place on a wire-rack for setting.