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Pineapple Kesari – Sweet, Tangy and Fit For a Feast

Kesari is  an Indian  desert  made with sooji/rava (cream of  wheat).  It is  quite  easy to  make  and  is a perfect treat to serve unexpected guests or  for impromptu  celebrations.  This  humble  desert is  known  by different  names , sheera , halva , kesari  are  the  ones  I know  of.  Plain  kesaris  are   delicious, but  when  made with fruits, fresh or  dried,  the  layers of  added  flavors  make it  absolutely irresistible .  No wonder  these are reserved for  special occasions.  Of all  these Pineapple Kesari  stands  apart with its   slightly tangy , sweet  and  fruity  flavors.

Pineapple Kesari - Dessert made with semolina and pineapple

I have made  this  kesari   with  canned  pineapples , but the fresh  fruit version is  definitely the  best .  With  fresh fruit  there is  no need  for  essence  or  added  food  color. If  using  canned  follow  the   recipe  and  add the  syrup to  the  water  to  make  up the  required  amount  of  water.  Reduce  the  sugar by about 1/4 C per  can if the   syrup is  sweetened.


Slice  the  pineapple into small pieces . Take  about 1 and 1/2 C of  sliced pineapple  and  puree in a  blender or  food  processor. This  should  yield  just a  little  over 1 C puree. Heat 1C of  water  to boiling point . Bring  it  to a  rolling  boil  and  add  1 C of  the pineapple  puree.  Keep  the  heat on medium .

Making Pineapple Kesari

In a  thick bottomed pan (or kadai or  wok) heat  2 Tbsp of  ghee/oil. Once  it  is  hot  add  the   cashew nuts   and  fry till  it  begins  to turn brown. Add  the   raisins  and  continue  frying   till  the  cashew nuts  are  evenly browned  and  the raisins  plumped up.  Remove   from the  oil  and  set  aside .  Add  2 more tablespoons of  oil/ghee  to the  pan.  When it  is  warm  add  the sooji  and  roast  on low  heat. Stir continuously  to  roast  evenly without browning.

Just before  the  sooji begins  to  turn  color  add  the  heated  pineapple  liquid to  it .  Stir  to mix   and  cover  and  let  cook  over  medium  heat  for  3  to 4  minutes. By this  time all the  moisture   would  have  been  absorbed by the  sooji .  Remove  the  lid  and  give a  stir   and  add  the   sugar  on top .

The  sugar  begins  to melt immediately.  Keep  stirring  over  medium heat  to  mix  the   sugar  and   the  cooked  mix  well . The   mixture   thickens  fast  and  the  kesari is  ready  as  it  begins  to pull  away from the  sides  . Turn off  the  heat.  Reserve a  few  raisins  and  cashew nuts  for  garnish  and  add the  remaining  to the  kesari . Mix  well , transfer  to  serving  molds .

Pineapple Kesari

Kesari  tastes good hot, warm or  cold.  You can  also be  spread the  warm  kesari  in  a  flat pan , even out  the   tops cover  and refrigerate  for  a  few  hours  till  well chilled . Slice  into  desired  shapes  and   serve.

The one  in the  picture is  topped  with  fried cashew nuts  and  pineapple  pieces.

Pineapple Kesari - Dessert made with semolina and pineapple

Pineapple Kesari

By Syama
Kesari is a  popular Indian  sweet  made  with  semolina.   This  version of  Kesari has  pineapple   for  added  flavor  and  has  unique  sweet  and  sour flavors. 
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Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Indian


  • 1 1/2 C Fresh Pineapple Pieces
  • 1 C Sooji(Upma Rava or Semolina)
  • 1 C Sugar
  • 1 C Water
  • 1 Pinch Salt
  • 1/4 C Cashew nuts (About 12 Whole)
  • 1/4 C Raisins
  • 2 Tbsp Ghee
  • 2 Tbsp Oil
  • 2 Green Cardamom optional


  • Chop the Pineapple into small pieces and puree . Heat 1 cup of water and bring it to rolling boil . Measure 1C of the puree and add to the water and reduce the heat to low.
  • Heat 2 tbsp of oil or ghee in a thick bottomed vessel and fry the cashew nuts. When it begins to brown add the raisins. Remove from the oil as soon as the raisins plump up .
  • Add the remaining oil or ghee to the pan followed by the sooji . Roast it over medium heat while stirring constantly. Once it is very hot , but before the sooji has turned color add the hot liquid to it . Stir well to avoid clumps and cover with a lid . Cook for 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Remove the lid and make sure that all the moisture has been absorbed by the sooji . Pour the sugar on top . Stir to combine. The sugar melts and a molten mix is formed . Keep stirring until the mixture pulls away from the side. Sprinkle the powdered cardamom seeds on top. Reserve a few raisins and nuts for garnish and sprinkle the rest on top . Mix well and turn off the heat .
  • Transfer to the serving bowls and garnish with the reserved raisins and cashew nuts. Serve hot or cold .

Important: Nutrition Values are estimates. Actuals vary based on ingredients and serving size.

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Pineapple Kesari

Like Indian Sweets ? you might want to try this Diwali favorite : Badusha

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