Khoya or Mava & Malai Paneer make this delicious soft and juicy Gulab Jamuns. Gulab Jamuns are a popular Indian dessert made from khoya (mawa) or milk solids, which are kneaded into a dough with a small amount of flour and then shaped into small balls. These balls are deep-fried until they are golden brown and then soaked in a sugar syrup flavored with rose water, cardamom, and saffron. The result is a sweet, moist, and decadent dessert that is often served at festivals, celebrations, and special occasions. Gulab Jamuns can be served warm or at room temperature and are often garnished with chopped nuts.

Many recipes call for using powdered Milk, these yield good results as well and I’ve tried them before, but you can’t compare the texture to using Khoya or Mava.

Khoya is nothing but milk solids that is used to make Indian sweets. Khoya, also known as Mawa, is a dairy product widely used in Indian cuisine. It is made by slowly simmering milk in a large iron or non-stick pan until most of the moisture evaporates, leaving behind a solid mass of milk solids. Khoya has a rich, creamy texture and a slightly caramelized flavor, making it a popular ingredient in sweets and desserts.

Malai paneer is made by curdling full-fat milk with an acidic substance like lemon juice or vinegar. The milk is allowed to curdle, and then the curds are strained and pressed to form a solid block. Malai paneer is creamier and softer in texture compared to regular paneer because it contains some of the cream (malai) from the milk. This is different from regular Paneer that is normally made with low fat or skim Milk.

I live in Toronto, Canada and while I am lucky to find Khoya, it’s sold either refrigerated or frozen. The texture is definitely a bit harder and drier that if you bought it fresh in India for example, so I’ve included some steps that I take in my video to make it easier and more pliable to knead. Please follow the cardinal rules to getting soft juicy Gulab Jamuns.

  1. Knead Knead Knead – get that dough nice and soft
  2. Resist the temptation to cook the dough balls fast, slow and steady will result in airier Jamuns that will soak up the juice
  3. Soak the Jamuns in a warm syrup and keep them there till they almost double in size.

Gulab Jamuns

4 from 1 vote



  • Fresh Khoya 250 gms
  • Malai paneer 65 gms
  • 2 – 4 tbsps All Purpose Flour
  • Baking powder 1 tsp
  • 1 – 2 tsps Milk – optional
  • Oil for frying

Sugar syrup

  • Sugar) 5 cups
  • Water 3 3/4 cups
  • Rose Water 2 tbsps
  • Green Cardamom 6 pods
  • Few strands of Saffron

Garnish (optional)

  • Rose Petals
  • Silver leaf


  • Grate the Khoya/Mava & Malai Paneer and knead it for 10 -15 mins
  • Add the Baking powder & the Flour as needed
  • Add a few tsps of Milk to knead if the dough is dry
  • Allow the dough to rest for 15 mins
  • To make the syrup allow the Sugar to dissolve in the Water
  • Add the Cardamon, the Rose syrup and the Saffron strands
  • Bring the syrup to the boil and then allow it to cool
  • Divide and roll the dough into balls that weigh 10 gms each and keep covered
  • Add these to oil that is heated to a moderate temperature and allow them to brown slowly
  • Add these to the warm sugar syrup
  • Allow the Jamuns to soak in the syrup for 2 – 4 hours
  • Serve warm or cold
  • Garnish with edible Rose petals and/or Silver leaf (optional)