White pumpkin may be used to make ‘petha,’ a more popular sweet from the city of Agra in Uttar Pradesh. The veggie itself is called so in Hindi. But in this post of mine, I have shared a White Pumpkin Halwa a.k.a Ash Gourd Halwa, which is a unique halwa preparation with a jam-like consistency. This is a famous sweet dish from South India. This delicious halwa is also known as Kashi Halwa, Dumroot Halwa, Dumrote Halwa, Kasi Halwa or Kushmanda Halwa.  You’ve got to try this for sure!

kashi halwa garnished with fried cashews served in a white bowl on a white plate with text layovers.

About Kashi Halwa

Ash gourd or white pumpkin also has other names by which it is referred to locally in different regions of South India. For instance, it is known as ‘kumbalanga’ in Malayalam and ‘poosanikai’ in Tamil languages.

The other English names for this squash are Winter Gourd, White Melon, Ash Pumpkin, Wax Gourd, Winter Melon, Tallow Gourd, Winter Gourd.

The name of the halwa is unique considering it has South Indian origins. Not only it is popular in the Udupi and Mangalore regions, it is also often served in the Tambrahm (Tamil Brahmin) weddings. In Tamil, this halwa is called Kasi Halwa.

It could be that white pumpkin is also called ‘Kashiphal” in Hindi and hence the name of Kashi Halwa.

Since the time I had shared other recipes related to the pumpkin family, I have been getting a lot of requests for the recipe of Ash Gourd Halwa as well.

So, I finally made this White Pumpkin Halwa during the festival of Navratri, one of the years and shared it here on my blog for my readers.

This is a super simple and easy to make halwa recipe and you really won’t believe that the dish is actually made with ash gourd.

For my version of this halwa, I referred to Venkatesh Bhat’s Kashi Halwa recipe on the popular Indian OTT platform Hotstar. I have loosely adapted this recipe from there. Some definite changes that I have made in the recipe are:

  • I have reduced the quantity of sugar in my version.
  • I have also not strained the grated white pumpkin.

Since the quantity of ghee and sugar added in the Ash Gourd Halwa already makes it quite rich and heavy. It is better to indulge in just a few spoons of the halwa and not too much.

But if you reduce the sugar and ghee too much, then you can actually consume the halwa a bit more and relish its taste and texture as well.

You can serve this Dumroot Halwa as an after-meal dessert. You can also prepare this Kashi Halwa as a naivedyam and offer it to deities.

The same methodology can be referred to make a red pumpkin halwa as well. I have also posted a variation of yellow Pumpkin Halwa which uses less ghee and sugar.

Step-by-Step Guide

How to make Kashi Halwa

Grate White Pumpkin and More Prep

1. Firstly, rinse and peel 315 grams ash gourd or white pumpkin. Remove the seeds and the white pith. Then, chop it in large pieces, so that you can easily grate.

peeled and chopped ash gourd for making white pumpkin halwa.

2. Grate the ash gourd. Keep aside. You will need 1 cup grated ash gourd.

grated ash gourd for making white pumpkin halwa.

3. Heat 1 tablespoon ghee in a thick bottomed pan. Add 12 to 15 cashews. You can even add less cashews.

cashews added in hot ghee in a heavy pan for making white pumpkin halwa.

4. Sauté till the cashews turn light golden.

sautéing cashews till light golden for making white pumpkin halwa.

5. Then, add ½ tablespoons raisins. You can add less raisins or skip them.

raisins added to cashews for making white pumpkin halwa.

6. Stirring often, sauté the raisins till they swell and puff up. Remove both the cashews and raisins with a slotted spoon. Keep aside.

sautéing raisins till they puff up for making white pumpkin halwa.

Cook Ash Gourd

7. Lower the heat and in the same pan, add the grated ash gourd.

grated ash gourd added in hot ghee for making white pumpkin halwa.

8. Mix very well.

grated ash gourd mixed well in the ghee for making ash gourd halwa.

9. Cover the pan with its lid and on low heat, cook the grated ash gourd till its raw aroma goes away.

cooking ash gourd in a covered pan for making ash gourd halwa.

10. Check after every 4 to 5 minutes. Usually ash gourd has enough water to cook in its own juices.

But if the ash gourd starts sticking to the pan or getting lightly browned and the mixture looks dry, then add water. This will depend on the water content in the ash gourd.

cooking ash gourd for making ash gourd halwa.

11. I did add water as the mixture had become dry. I added ¼ cup water and cooked the ash gourd with the lid on the pan.

water added to ash gourd while cooking ash gourd halwa.

12. You have to cook the ash gourd till the raw aroma goes away. It took me around 15 minutes on low heat.

Time will vary depending on the pan thickness, size, dimensions and the flame intensity. So, keep around 10 to 15 minutes time for cooking ash gourd.

cooking ash gourd for making ash gourd halwa.

Make Kashi Halwa

13. Next, add ½ cup (225 grams) sugar.

sugar added to the ash gourd for making ash gourd halwa.

14. Mix the sugar very well with the ash gourd.

sugar mixed well with the ash gourd for making ash gourd halwa.

15. Then, add a generous pinch of saffron strands. Saffron strands are used to give a nice orange-yellow color to the halwa and also for the aroma.

If you do not have saffron strands, skip it or use a natural orange color extract.

saffron strands added to the ash gourd for making ash gourd halwa.

16. Mix saffron with the mixture.

saffron mixed with the ash gourd for making ash gourd halwa.

17. Keep on stirring and sautéing the halwa mixture on low heat.

sautéing halwa mixture.

18. Once the mixture starts thickening, you will feel a bit heavy while stirring the mixture. The lightness that was there before, won’t be there.

cooking halwa mixture.

19. The halwa mixture has to be stirred often and sautéed on low heat, till it thickens and starts to leave the sides of the pan.

After adding sugar, it took 10 minutes for the halwa to come to the consistency as shown in the picture below.

So, it may take between 6 to 10 minutes, depending on the type of pan, metal thickness, etc.

cooking kashi halwa mixture.

20. Once the halwa mixture thickens and starts separating from the pan, add 1 to 2 tablespoons ghee.

ghee added to kashi halwa mixture.

21. Mix the ghee very well.

ghee mixed well in the halwa mixture.

22. After adding ghee, continue to sauté on low heat till the halwa starts separating from the pan. This will take 2 to 4 minutes.

cooking halwa mixture.

23. Then, switch off the heat and add ¼ teaspoon green cardamom powder.

cardamom powder added to cooked kashi halwa.

24. Also, add the fried cashews and raisins.

fried cashews and raisins added to the cooked kashi halwa.

25. Mix very well.

dry fruits mixed well in the halwa.

26. Let the Kashi Halwa cool down a bit and then serve. Avoid serving hot as it is very hot due to the sugar syrup consistency. You can even serve Dumroot Halwa warm or at room temperature.

kashi halwa garnished with fried cashews served in a white bowl on a white plate with a spoon kept on the left side and text layover.

Expert Tips

  1. You can less cashews and raisins in this recipe, if you wish to. You can even skip the raisins.
  2. Do not overcook the halwa. This will cause it to become stringy and chewy or hard. If the halwa gets these kinds of textures, then sprinkle some hot water on it. Mix and sauté for a few minutes until the texture improves.
  3. Usually, ash gourd has a lot of water content in its own juices. However, if you feel that the mixture is sticking to the pan or getting lightly browned and dry, then add some water and then cook it.  
  4. The cooking time of the halwa mixture will depend on the thickness, size and dimensions of the pan as well as the intensity of the heat.
  5. The saffron is generally added in this recipe to impart a lovely orange-yellow color and a typical aroma to it. If you do not have it, skip using it. Or you can even add some natural orange color extract for the desired color in the halwa.
  6. The best way to serve this halwa is to let it cool down a bit after preparing, as it has a sugar syrupy consistency when hot. Serve it warm or at room temperature.
  7. You can easily double the recipe to make a larger quantity of halwa.

More Halwa Recipes To Try!

Please be sure to rate the recipe in the recipe card or leave a comment below if you have made it. For more veetarian inspirations, Sign Up for my emails or follow me on Instagram, Youtube, Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter.

ash gourd halwa recipe, kashi halwa recipe, white pumpkin halwa recipe

Kashi Halwa | Dumroot Halwa | Ash Gourd Halwa

Kashi Halwa also called Dumroot Halwa is a unique, tasty and rich halwa made from ash gourd or white pumpkin, sugar, nuts, ghee, raisins and flavored with saffron.

Prep Time 10 mins

Cook Time 30 mins

Total Time 40 mins

Prevent your screen from going dark while making the recipe

Grating white pumpkin and more prep

  • Firstly rinse and then peel 315 grams ash gourd or white pumpkin. Remove the seeds and the white pith. Then chop it in large pieces, so that you can easily grate.

  • Grate the ash gourd using a round steel grater or a box grater. Set aside. You will need 1 cup grated ash gourd.

  • Heat 1 tablespoons ghee in a thick bottomed pan. Add 12 to 15 cashews. You can even add less cashews.

  • Saute till the cashews turn light golden.

  • Then add raisins. You can add less raisins or skip them.

  • Stirring often, saute the raisins till they swell and puff up.

  • Remove both the cashews and raisins with a slotted spoon. Set aside.

Making kashi halwa

  • Lower the heat and in the same pan, add the grated ash gourd. Mix very well.

  • Cover the pan with its lid and cook the grated ash gourd till its raw aroma goes away.

  • Do check after every 4 to 5 minutes. Usually ash gourd has enough water to cook in its own juices. But if the ash gourd starting sticking to the pan or getting lightly browned and the mixture looks dry, then add some water.
  • I did add water as all of the mixture had become dry. I added ¼ cup water and cooked the ash gourd with the lid on the pan.

  • You have to cook the ash gourd till all its raw aroma goes away. It took me around 15 minutes on a low flame. Time will vary depending on the pan thickness, size, dimensions and the flame intensity. So keep around 10 to 15 minutes time for cooking ash gourd.
  • Now add sugar and mix it very well.

  • Then add 18 to 20 saffron strands. Saffron strands are used to give a nice orange-yellow color to the halwa and also for aroma. If you do not have saffron strands, then skip it or use an orange natural coloring extract.
  • Mix saffron with the mixture.

  • Keep on stirring and sautéing the halwa mixture on a low heat.

  • Once the mixture starts thickening, you will feel a bit heavy while stirring the mixture. The lightness that was there before won’t be there.

  • The halwa mixture has to be stirred often and sautéed on a low heat till it thickens and starts to leave the sides of the pan.

  • Once the halwa mixture thickens and starts separating from the pan, then add 1 to 2 tablespoons ghee.

  • Mix the ghee very well.

  • After adding ghee continue to sauté on a low heat till the halwa starts separating from the pan. This will take 2 to 4 minutes.

  • Then switch off the heat and add the green cardamom powder.

  • Also add the cashews and raisins.

  • Mix very well.

  • Let the kashi halwa cool down a bit and then serve. Avoid serving hot as its very hot due to the sugar syrup consistency. You can even serve white pumpkin halwa warm or at room temperature.
  • You can add less cashews and raisins if you want.
  • Remember not to overcook the halwa mixture as it will become stringy and chewy. If in case this happens, then sprinkle some hot water on the halwa and sauté it for a few minutes stirring often until the texture improves. 
  • The recipe can be doubled too.

Nutrition Facts

Kashi Halwa | Dumroot Halwa | Ash Gourd Halwa

Amount Per Serving

Calories 440 Calories from Fat 117

% Daily Value*

Fat 13g20%

Saturated Fat 7g44%

Polyunsaturated Fat 1g

Monounsaturated Fat 4g

Cholesterol 26mg9%

Sodium 5mg0%

Potassium 87mg2%

Carbohydrates 81g27%

Fiber 0.4g2%

Sugar 76g84%

Protein 2g4%

Vitamin A 2IU0%

Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) 0.1mg7%

Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 0.01mg1%

Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 1mg5%

Vitamin B6 0.04mg2%

Vitamin C 1mg1%

Vitamin E 0.1mg1%

Vitamin K 2µg2%

Calcium 46mg5%

Vitamin B9 (Folate) 2µg1%

Iron 2mg11%

Magnesium 21mg5%

Phosphorus 61mg6%

Zinc 0.4mg3%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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This Kashi Halwa recipe from the archives, originally published in October 2016 has been updated and republished on January 2023.



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