Festival season is the most challenging when you are on a restrictive diet! The Indian Festival season just started with ‘Ganesh Chathurthi’ which celebrates the birth of Lord Ganesha. The next couple months will bring more festivals including Onam (Kerala’s harvest festival) and Diwali, the Hindu New Year. What all of these festivals have in common are sweets! In the good old days, all such sweets would be made at home using lots of homemade ghee, nuts and unrefined cane sugar (called jaggery).
Ladoos (sweetened balls) are a very common indian sweet and there are umpteen varieties of ladoos – rice ladoos, wheat ladoos, semolina ladoos, besan (gram flour) ladoos….and coconut ladoos! I used to love ladoos a lot and I would have even named both my children ‘ladoos’ if I could:) This week for some reason, I kept thinking about the delicious coconut ladoos that my mom used to make when we were young. And then I immediately felt frustrated since the traditional coconut ladoos had dairy, refined sugar (to keep them snow white!) and also gluten and nuts! So the traditional recipe just wouldn’t work for me!
But then when you have a craving as strong as that, nothing can stop you and you tell yourself ‘hmm…let me see if I can make a Paleo/AIP version of this!’ Luckily for me, I didn’t even need to try too hard! I went to the kitchen mentally formulating a recipe in my mind. I just went about following that recipe and guess what? Best coconut ladoos ever! Ha ha! They turned out so delicious that I ate 4 in a row! oh my Goodness! But nothing to be guilty about since these have only all the good things – coconut flour, shredded coconut, coconut milk, maple syrup and gelatin. Gelatin is the important ingredient here since it really fortifies the ladoos (both literally and figuratively!) – The gelatin adds to not only the nutrient value but also helps to bring the ladoos together (helps to hold their structure!). I added vanilla for flavor but you could also use rose (traditional) or not use any since maple syrup will lend its unique flavor as well.
I have made a video of the recipe too. Please watch and let me know how you like these adorable ladoos!
- ¼ cup water
- 1 tbsp grass fed gelatin
- 2 tbsp coconut milk
- 2 tbsp maple syrup or honey (use xylitol or stevia for Keto)
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- ½ cup coconut flour
- ½ cup shredded coconut
- ¼ tsp alcohol free vanilla extract or rose extract or crushed dried rose petals
- extra shredded coconut for rolling
- In a small bowl, add the water and then sprinkle the gelatin on top of the water slowly until all the gelatin is wet. Use a fork to further mix and wet the gelatin. Keep aside.
- In a small sauce pan, add the coconut milk and maple syrup and heat on very low flame. Then add the bloomed gelatin mixture to this and stir continuously while on low heat until all the gelatin gets completely dissolved in the mixture. Now add the salt and turn heat off.
- To the above mixture, add the coconut flour, shredded coconut and vanilla. Mix using a spoon and then using your hands, form small balls (8-10).
- Roll each ball in shredded coconut and place on a plate. Place the balls in the refrigerator for about 1 hour to set.
That was easy and quick one! I was on my first week on AIP and I was desperate for something sweet… Thanks you for sharing and amazing videos !)) My husband loves ladoo, and this one tasted nice for him. Definitely will make more. And looking forward to try your other recipes.
P.S.: I would love to add a picture what I made, but don’t see option for that.
thanks so much for the feedback! I am so glad you and your husband loved it! Yeah unfortunately there is no provision here to share a pic. But I would love for you to share it on instagram and tag me! My instagram handle is @cook2nourish
Can i use dessicated coconut instead od shredded?
Yes you can use desiccated coconut.
These look delicious. In step 2, you mention using the maple syrup twice. When do you recommend adding it?
Sorry about that – good catch. You can add it either before or after you add gelatin. It doesn’t matter since maple syrup is liquid but it is better to add before. I have edited it now. you can also watch the video to see the consistency of the mixture. Hope that helps.And thanks 🙂
I’ve now made this delicious recipe twice. The second time I was waiting until I had reintroduced both cardamom (1/2 tsp powder) and ghee (1 tbl melted), ingredients in ladoo I remember fondly from when I lived in a village in India a while back. Both versions came out great!!! Thank you for making the accompanying video.
Something magical happens when forming the ladoo in one hand as you do in the video. Your way was the only way that worked where the ladoo held together.
Thanks for sharing this delicious recipe!!
Wow I am so happy to hear that! Now that must have tasted lovely with the cardamom and the ghee! Yum! And so glad the video helped! Thanks for sharing!
Question: the video shows 2 tablespoons of maple syrup, and the recipe says only 1. Which is correct? I’m guessing it was 2, because my mixture was a little dry with only the 1 tablespoon, and definitely not as sweet as I might have liked sweets to be. Loved the consistency though, and how easy it was. Would definitely make them again
Yes it is 2 tablespoons and not 1. I made an error typing the recipe. I have fixed it now. thanks so much for letting me know!