Healthy Holi Recipes @ Reward Me

Holi Hai Low Cal: Guilt-free indulgences

Holi cues in calories with its mithai, thandai and tons of parties. But you can still give in to the pleasures of food and experiences without feeling guilty about festive binging.

Low Calorie Holi Delicacies:

Thandai (makes 8 servings)

This traditional drink is a must-have during Holi.


  • 1 cup low-fat milk
  • 1 ½ litres of water
  • 1 ½ cups of artificial sweetener
  • 1 tbsp. almonds (badam)
  • 1 tbsp. melon seeds (kalonji)
  • 2 tsp. poppy seeds (khus-khus)
  • 1 tsp. whole peppercorns (sabut kali-mirch)
  • 2 tsp. aniseed (saunf)
  • 1/2 tsp. cardamom powder (elaichi)
  • 1 tbsp gulkand (optional)


Wash and clean all dry ingredients except the sweetener and cardamom.

Soak sweetener in ½ a litre of water.

Soak the remaining ingredients in two cups of water. Set aside for at least 2 hours.

Grind all soaked ingredients except sugar to a fine paste in a stone grinder (if available). Add the remaining water to the paste.

Strain the mixture through a muslin cloth or a very fine strainer.

Now add milk, sugar-water and rosewater to the extracted liquid.

If using cardamom powder mix it in with the milk.

Mix well and serve chilled.

Channa Masala

Channa or garbanzo beans are high in fibre and protein.  It can be hard to digest if the beans are not cooked well.  Since fat is added to balance out the protein and fibre, substitute rice bran oil instead of the traditional ghee to make this dish. This little change cuts down on the calories.


  • 1 litre water
  • 400 gms. dry channa
  • 3 tsp. tea leaves
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 5 black cardamoms
  • 1 ½ tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. cumin powder
  • 2 tsp. fennel powder 
  • 5 tsp. anardana powder (pomegranate)
  • 2 tsp. amchoor powder
  • 3 tsp. dhaniya powder (coriander powder)
  • 1 ½ tsp. red chili powder
  • 1 tsp. garam masala
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp. hing (asafoetida)
  • 5 tbsp. ginger, julienned
  • 3 tsp. finely chopped green chillies
  • 2 tsp. kasoori methi 
  • 5 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. meetha soda
  • 12 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 4 whole green chilies, for garnish
  • Coriander leaves for garnish
  • Lemon wedges for garnish



Soak 400 grams of channa in a vessel and mix 1 tsp of meetha soda for 4 – 5 hours.

Make a sachet of tea leaves, add 3 bay leaves, 5 large black cardamoms.

Put the channa in a covered dish and boil with salt and spice sachet for an hour.

Discard the spices and set the dish aside.

Mix all the dry spice ingredients together – cumin, fennel, anardana, amchoor, dhaniya, kasoori methi, chilli powder, garam masala, salt and a pinch of the hing.  Stir in some warm water and ensure there are no lumps.  Mix this into the cooked channa.

Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds, ginger and chopped garlic.  Stir till they are cooked.

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Add this to the channa and cook over low heat for a while so that the spices blend well.

Let it sit for a while. Spoon into a fresh serving dish and garnish with whole green chillies, chopped coriander leaves and lemon wedges. Serve with hot pooris or rotis.

Masala Aloo


  • 2 tbsp. oil
  • 2 tsp. chilli powder
  • ½ tsp. turmeric powder
  • 4 cooked potatoes, quartered
  • 50 gms ginger, julienned
  • 3 tomatoes, quartered
  • 5 green chillies slit into halves
  • Salt to taste


In a shallow pan, heat oil and add turmeric powder, chilli powder and julienned ginger.

Then toss the tomatoes, potatoes and the green chillies.

Serve on the side with channa and pooris.

Baked Kachori

This otherwise deep fried goodie can be made in this healthy version.


  • 50 gms urad daal powder
  • 3 tsp. red chilli powder
  • 6 tsp. dhaniya powder
  • 4 tsp. fennel powder
  • ¼ tsp. hing (asafoetida)
  • 1 tsp. yeast
  • 250 gms wheat flour
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • Water
  • Salt to taste
  • 1-2 tsp oil


Making the filling:

Mix the urad daal powder in a bowl with water till it is firm.

Leave it to stand for 30 minutes. It should swell and dry.

Add red chilli powder, fennel powder, salt, dhaniya powder, hing, and knead into a soft ball using warm water.

Mix the wheat flour, sugar, water and yeast in another bowl and knead well. Set aside for an hour.

Making the Kachoris:

Add little oil to the wheat dough and start making patties with a filling of urad daal. Roll these out gently with a rolling pin to a size of 6-7 inches diameter.

Oil a baking tray and bake patties in a preheated oven at 160 degrees till they are crisp and light golden brown.

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