Thandai custard fruit cups

thandai custard fruit cups.

Thandai custard fruit cups are a delicious fusion of fruit custard and thandai masala. The smooth creamy custard-coated seasonal fruits are a perfect match for the colourful Holi festival.

Gosh! Holi is fast approaching and we have already reached the bottom of our bottle of thandai masala
That instant thandai mix we made last week has been going pretty well. A couple of rainy days were well treated with Thandai milk and now we are near the end of the batch. Just a couple of spoons left not enough to make a batch of thandai milk.
Since we were chopping up fruit to make fruit custard, why not make thandai custard fruit cups? Anyway, we have a version that will instantly flavour than having to make it from scratch and then turn it into a custard. So here we are making thandai custard fruit cups, just the way the classic fruit custard is made but just flavoured better.

What is fruit custard?

Fruit custard is a sweet child dessert served at Indian gatherings. Made with runny instant custard, the recipe evolved during the British colonisation of India. Therefore this fusion dessert is a unique twist to the classic pouring custard. With added seasonal fruits and made with flavoured cornflour instead of egg, this custard recipe has become the comfort of many of our childhood summers. In classic Indian recipes, you will see yellowish vanilla-flavoured or rose-flavoured mixes.

Ingredients to make thandai custard fruit cups

Thandai custard fruit cups follow all the steps to make a classic fruit custard and then flavour it using thandai spice mix, thus making the result so much more flavourful than the classic.

Instant custard powder: the vanilla-flavoured powder is best suited for this recipe. It is a store-bought mix I have used. The key point to remember is to ensure that you mix the powder in cold milk in water before it is mixed in with the boiling milk to prevent lumps and then to ensure mixing. The swaps if you don’t have this mix are mentioned below.

Milk: the creamy smooth custard is best made with full cream milk. However, it will be ok to use half and half or skim milk. It is totally OK to use plant milk as the custard tastes delicious with it.

Sugar: now this is to bring out the dessert quality of this dish. I add just a little bit of sugar as the fruits and dried fruits do lend their own sweetness to the dessert. However, if you have a strong sweet tooth, you will need to taste and adjust the sugar levels. It is fine to use stevia, sugar-free options or dates to flavour this fruit custard

Fruits: this is where you get to play with a lot of variations. Apples, bananas, grapes, pears, mangoes, plums, custard apples, sapota and apricots all taste great in this recipe. I avoid adding melons, pineapple and citrus as they don’t keep well and split the custard. You can however drain a fruit cocktail mix and add it to the custard as it does taste amazing. YOu can add in chopped dates, raisins, glazed cherries, cranberries, black currants, dried figs etc to the mix as it adds sugar. If adding dry fruits, you can avoid adding sugar. 

Thandai spice powder: this is the instant mix we made earlier. This is a blend of sweet spices, nuts and black pepper that can be added to milk as a drink or to flavour dishes. This is not an ingredient you can swap as this is the main flavour.

Let’s make this fruit custard.

The recipe involves being completed in a few steps and then cooling and combining them to form one cohesive mix.

Making the custard: the custard is a straightforward idea of cooking the mix in milk with added sugar. To achieve a smooth custard, mix the custard powder in cold milk to make a lump-free slurry.
Set this aside. Boil the milk and as it comes to a full boil reduce the heat to a simmer and add the sugar. Give it a minute for the sugar thandai mix and mix well with stirring. Now, stream in the slurry and slowly bring it to a boil. Keep mixing. If the custard is too thick it starts spluttering (be careful), and add another half cup of milk and mix well. Once the custard appears glossy it is ready. Remove from heat and let it cool. As it cools keep stirring occasionally to prevent the formation of the film on top.

Fruit mix:  choose the fruits that are in season. Wash, peel and chop them. Usually, the pieces are a bit smaller than a dice but not as small as a mince. Grapes are deseeded and cut into pieces or left as a whole.
Adding the thandai mix: the thandai mix is added in two stages. One is the custard itself while it is cooking to flavour the custard. Then again the fruit and custard mix while mixing the fruit custard. This adds a great flavour that tells you it is Holi.

Mixing and chilling: once the custard is cooled mix the custard with the fruits. Sprinkle thandai masala, add more custard and bring it to a scoopable consistency. Scoop the mix into the cups to serve and chill till serving time.

thandai fruit custard

What if there is no custard powder?

The instant custard powder is practically cornflour mixed with some colour and vanilla fragrance or rose fragrance. So, if you do not have custard powder, use the same quality of cornflour and fresh vanilla. The fragrance will be milder as fresh vanilla is not as strong as the essence. Here is an alternate if you are looking for a gluten-free version, arrowroot powder.  we have made a recipe similar to this earlier with arrowroot as the custard, 

Can thandai custard be made vegan?

The thandai custard itself can be made vegan easily make the custard using soy, oat or coconut milk. However, the instant thandai mix we made earlier did have milk powder, ensure that you choose the thandai mix that has none of it. The mix will taste the same, we added milk powder for ease of mixing.

Thandai custard fruit cups

Thandai custard fruit cups are a delicious fusion of fruit custard and thandai masala. The smooth creamy custard-coated seasonal fruits are a perfect match for the colourful Holi festival.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Fusion, gluten free, Indian
Servings 4 people


  • saucepan
  • mixing bowls and spoons.


for the custard

  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 tbsp sugar ( avoid if sweetness from fruits is enough for you)
  • 2 tbsp custard powder
  • 1 tbsp insant thandai masala mix

for the fruits

  • 2 cups mixed fruit chopped, use seasonal

for the flavouring

  • 1 tbsp instant thandai masala mix


  • Add two or 3 tbsp of milk into a small bowl.
  • Add the custard powder to it and mix well to a lump free mix.
  • Set it aside till needed.
  • Bring the rest of the mix to a boil.
  • Add the sugar and stream in the custard slurry.
  • Stir constantly, and let the custard cook and thicken.
  • Stir in the instant thandai masala at this stage
  • Once cooked remove from heat and set it aside to cool.
  • Mix occasionally to avoid the film like layer forming on top.
  • Clean, peel and chop the fruit.
  • Add them to the mixing bowl.
  • Add the dry fruits if using any.
  • Ladle in the cooled custard and give it a good mix.
  • Sprinkle the instant thandai masala and mix again.
  • Ladle in the rest of the custard and mix till they are a scoopable mix.
  • Ladle into cups and chill
  • Serve after an hour or two of chilling.
Keyword Indian vegetarian dinner, summer recipes
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Recipes for the Holi Season

Every celebration or festival is associated with people coming together and enjoying the time. this always involves food! Here are a few recipes that might come in handy for Holi.

Puri thali: if generating for lunch, try our puri thali and serve it with aamras.

Doodh barfi: One of the easiest, makeahead sweets to share during this festival is Doodh peda made with milk powder. 

Gajar ka halwa tart: take your dessert game to elegance by upgrading the humble carrot halwa into a sliceable tart complete with elaichi flavoured cream. 

Stay connected

I hope you like this quick and easy version to entertain with this Holi season. We have made a batch for this week and hope you like making it too. Please share with us how you like this recipe or if you have twists and turns that you like adding. Here, we popped in a quick video of how we mixed and layered the thandai custard. I hope you like it too.
Stay subscribed and see you in the next post. 

Pin this for later from here

thandai custard

0 0 votes

Subscribe & Follow

You Might Also Like

Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x