Pineapple Rava Kesari (Semolina Pudding)

Rava Kesari is a popular sweet made from semolina, sugar and ghee. It is actually one of the first sweets that I had the confidence to master, due to its simplicity. There are so many different versions of this easy sweet dish but my favourite is the pineapple kesari, made with either fresh pineapple or canned pineapple chunks. Kesari is always one of the sweets that I prepare for Tamil New Year and Diwali because it is generally enjoyed by all and so simple to prepare. I hope you love this recipe as much as we do!

Rava Kesari RECIPE


  • 1 cup fine rava (semolina)
  • 1/2-3/4 cup pineapple tidbits
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • a pinch of yellow food colouring/kesari powder
  • 3 Tbsp good quality cow ghee
  • 2 Tbsp cashews, broken
  • 2 Tbsp raisins
  1. Heat 2 teaspoons of ghee on medium heat. Fry the cashews and raisins until golden remove and set aside.
  2. In the same pan add the rava and roast it until aromatic. Stir constantly taking care not to brown the rava.
  3. In a pot, bring water to a boil on medium heat. Add a pinch of yellow food colouring.
  4. Add the roasted rava very slowly to the boiling water while stirring constantly. If lumps form, break them down with the wooden spoon.
  5. Keep stirring until all the water is absorbed and the rava is soft and fully cooked.
  6. Add the sugar slowly while stirring. When sugar is added, the mixture will initially turn to a liquid. Keep stirring and break lumps if they form.
  7. Add the pineapple, ghee, raisins, and cashews. Stir the kesari until it becomes a thick and fairly solid mass.
  8. Transfer mixture to a greased plate and let cool slightly.


  • The key to making kesari without lumps is to add the rava and sugar very slowly as you stir consistently.
  • If using canned pineapple, make sure to squeeze out excess water before adding to the kesari mixture.
  • If you are not a fan of pineapple, simply do not add it. If making kesari without pineapple, add a pinch of powdered cardamom at Step 7.
  • I prefer to eat kesari slightly warm, if you prefer it at room temperature let it cool completely before serving.
  • If you prefer a thicker kesari, add a little bit less water.
  • A couple strands of saffron can be used in place of the food colouring, if desired.

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