No Holiday Needed to Try This Chocolate and Milk Ball Recipe

Treat yourself with this traditional Indian dessert made with cocoa powder and nuts.

Laddoos are a traditional Indian sweet, often made with flour, milk, nuts, and fruit, and spices such as saffron and cardamom. They are eaten on festive days, such as Diwali, the Hindu festival of light. Many people outside of India are not aware that chocolate forms a part of Indian dessert-making. I like using dark cocoa powder for this recipe as it gives a more intense color and taste, but you can use any cocoa powder that is chocolaty in taste.

See also Q+A: How Can I Include Chocolate in My Diet, the Healthy Way?

Excerpted from Indian in 7: Delicious Indian Recipes in 7 Ingredients or Fewer by Monisha Bharadwaj, Kyle Books 2019. Reprinted with permission.

20 min


  • 2 tablespoons salted butter, plus extra for greasing
  • 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup cocoa powder
  • 5 tablespoons chopped cashews or almonds
  • 2 tablespoons dried shredded coconut


Put the butter and condensed milk into a heavy-based saucepan. Cook on low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and begins to leave the sides of the pan.

Mix in the cocoa powder, stirring to remove any lumps, and make a smooth paste, then stir in half of the cashews or almonds.

Grease a baking dish with a little extra butter, then pour in the thick cocoa mixture and smooth the surface with a spatula. Let cool and set at room temperature.

Break off small pieces of the set mixture and roll each piece into a cherry-size ball. Dip some of the chocolate balls in the remaining chopped cashews or almonds and some in the shredded coconut until coated, leaving some plain, too, so that you have a mix of textured laddoos.

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.