Loading Now
Sweet Pongal | Sakkarai Pongal
Sweet Pongal | Sakkarai Pongal

Sweet Pongal | Sakkarai Pongal

Sweet Pongal is a delicious, yummy dish made by cooking rice & moong dal in jaggery syrup, milk, water and then flavored with ghee and cashews. Sweet Pongal is also called Sakkarai Pongal commonly made during Pongal Festival. How to make Sweet Pongal is explained in this post with step by step pictures and video.

sweet pongal recipe

Sakkarai Pongal is traditionally prepared during the Pongal festival, along with Paal Pongal or Ven Pongal and a special 5 Vegetable Kuzhambu. This sweet dish is enjoyed by families and shared with loved ones on the day of the festival.

About Sweet Pongal

In Tamil culture, Pongal refers to the process of boiling and bubbling up, while Sakkarai or Chakkara represent jaggery or country sugar. A traditional dish called Sakkarai Pongal is made by boiling water and milk, then adding raw rice, jaggery, dal, dry fruits, and ghee.

Sakkarai Pongal is a traditional dish typically prepared during the Pongal festival or Makar Sankaranti, using the first harvested rice of the year. The dish is cooked facing east towards the sun, representing gratitude and offering the first meal of the harvest to the Sun God for a prosperous yield.

The reason for using uncooked rice instead of cooked rice in the preparation of Pongal is to honor and offer the first harvest to the Sun God.

sweet pongal served in banana leaf with ghee drizzled


Sweet Pongal in cooker

Pot-cooked Sweet Pongal – Conventional Technique

Sakkarai Pongal Ingredients

  • Use uncooked rice to prepare Pongal. It can be found at stores labeled as Pongal Raw Rice or Pongal Pacharisi.

  • To prepare, mix half the amount of moong dal with rice.

  • If possible, obtain paaguvellam or achuvellam jaggery, which is slightly darker. If not, mold jaggery can be used as a substitute.

  • The traditional sweet pongal recipe does not include milk, but we add it for a more luxurious flavor. If available, use full-fat milk, otherwise regular low-fat milk can be used.

  • Ingredients: For Pongal, add generous amounts of cashews, raisins, cardamom powder and ghee for added flavor.

a display of ingredients needed to make sweet pongal

Sweet Pongal – 2 methods

Typically, Pongal is prepared by slow cooking in pots over firewood. However, as times have changed, we now commonly use pressure cookers. In this post, I have demonstrated how to make Sweet Pongal using both of these methods.

Making sweet pongal using a pressure cooker is a simple, efficient, and quick method.

2. Traditional Method for Making Sakkarai Pongal in a Pot: In the traditional method, Sakkarai Pongal is prepared in a bronze pot as demonstrated in the shared recipe.

Additional options for Pongal dishes

  • Reworded:

    Delicious Pongal | Sugary Pongal

  • “Recipes for Makar Sankranti and Pongal Festival”

  • Paal Pongal | Milk Pongal
  • Pongal Kuzhambu | Pongal Puli Curry

Step by step instructions for making Sweet Pongal

in a pan

Toasting rice and moong dal in a skillet.

Grind together cardamom and edible camphor, then set aside. Toast 1/4 cup of moong dal until a pleasant aroma is achieved.

dry roast moong dal

Preparing jaggery syrup

Combine 1/3 cup of water with 3/4 cup of jaggery and heat for several minutes until the jaggery is fully melted.

melt jaggery in water

Cook rice and dal

First, rinse 1/2 cup of rice and dal thoroughly. Then, place the mixture into a pressure cooker.

rinse rice and dal, add it

Add 3 cups of water to measure 3.

measure and add water to it

Cook for 5 whistles on low-medium heat in a pressure cooker. Allow the pressure to release naturally.

sweet pongal recipe pressure cook for 5 whistles

After the pressure has been released, open the container and thoroughly mash the contents. Then, strain the mixture and mix in jaggery syrup.

mash it well

, and vegetables

Mix rice, dal, and vegetables with jaggery syrup.

Mix in jaggery syrup to the strained mixture.

strain and add jaggery syrup

The syrup should have a slightly thick consistency without needing to be checked.

syrup should be slightly thick

Stir the mixture thoroughly and allow it to simmer until it thickens. If adding milk, pour in 1/2 cup at this point.

mix it well

Add flavoring

Add 2 tablespoons of ghee and mix thoroughly. Cook on low heat.

add ghee

Combine 2 cardamom pods and a small amount of crushed edible camphor to create cardamom powder.

add cardamom powder and crushed edible camphor

Cooking nuts and raisins in hot oil.

11.Heat 2 teaspoon ghee in a pan – add 10 cashews broken first fry until golden then add 1 tablespoon raisins and let it bubble up. Fry until golden brown.

fry nuts and raisins

Making sweet pongal

Combine it with pongal, stir thoroughly. Turn off the heat. Sweet pongal is now prepared!

add to pongal

Sakkarai Pongal in Pot

Sakkarai pongal is traditionally made in pot. Sakkarai pongal is not only made for Pongal festival but can be made for various other small occasions at home. We make sweet pongal or sakkarai pongal for aadi velli, auspicious days, or even for small pooja at home.

sakkarai pongal in traditional bronze pot

Sakkarai Pongal is a dish that is typically prepared on the Pongal festival or Makar Sankaranthi using the first harvested rice of the year. It is then offered to the Sun God as a sign of gratitude before being consumed.

“Step by step, here is the process for making Sakkarai Pongal.”

  1. Combine 1/2 cup of water with 1 heaped cup of jaggery.

add water and jaggery to a pan

Allow it to dissolve completely and then set it aside.

let it boil

Pour 1/2 cup of milk into a traditional bronze pot.

add milk to a pot

4.Add 7 cups water to it.

add water to it

5.Let it boil.

let it boil

Maintain at a medium high level and allow it to overflow.

boil until it overflows

7.Stir well.

give a quick mix

Rinse 1 cup of uncooked rice and 1/4 cup of moong dal, then place them in the pot.

rinse raw rice and moong dal

Cook on medium-high heat until the rice is three-fourths of the way cooked and the water has nearly been absorbed.

cook rice and dal

Next, filter the mixture and include the jaggery syrup.

strain and add jaggery syrup

Mix thoroughly and cook until it reaches a thick consistency. Then, incorporate ghee-fried cashews and raisins.

mix it well

In a tadka pan, heat ghee and fry 2 tablespoons of cashews. Then, add 1 tablespoon of raisins and continue frying until they turn golden.

fry nuts and raisins in ghee

Add in fried nuts and raisins cooked in ghee, along with 3 tablespoons of remaining ghee and cardamom powder made from 2 small cardamom. Mix thoroughly and cook for one minute before turning off the heat. The mixture will thicken as it cools, so turn off the heat while it is still slightly gooey.

add to pongal

Expert Tips

  • Reduce the amount of water when making jaggery syrup, using only half the amount of jaggery is ideal.

  • For optimal results, utilize paagu vellam or jaggery with a dark hue to enhance the flavor and appearance of the pongal.

  • Be sure to turn it off while it is still runny as it will become thicker over time.

  • Serve hot at all times with a spoonful of clarified butter.

  • If you don’t have edible camphor, you can skip it, but it adds a divine flavor similar to that found in temples.


  • Include milk as well to enhance the flavor.

  • To incorporate the taste of saffron, soak it in milk and include it in your recipe.

  • You may also incorporate powdered jaggery instead of making it into a syrup. Just be sure to use a pure form without any impurities.

  • Instead of jaggery, you can use alternatives such as sugar, sugar candy (kalkandu), brown sugar, karupatti, or sugar cane juice.

  • You may also include finely shredded coconut.

  • To enhance the taste, incorporate clove powder into the mixture.

  • You have the option to use Quinoa, Sooji / Rava, Millet, Poha, or Wheat Rava as substitutes when making sweet pongal and wanting to try different ingredients.

Serving & Storage

When eaten hot, Pongal is delicious! However, it can become solid if the starch is not removed. To prevent this, add a small amount of water or milk and heat it on the stovetop or in the microwave before consuming it after 3-4 hours.

Sweet pongal can typically be stored at room temperature for 2 days. If refrigerated, it can be consumed the following day.


What does Sakkarai Pongal refer to?

Sweet Pongal is a delicious, yummy rice meal made by cooking rice &moong dal in jaggery syrup, milk, water and then flavoured with ghee and cashews.

What is the process for preparing Sweet Pongal?

  • Combine jaggery and water in a pan and heat until the jaggery is fully dissolved.
  • Toast uncooked moong beans and mix them into cooked rice.

  • Add water to the pot and cook under low to medium heat for 5 whistles. Allow the pressure to release naturally.

  • Add the jaggery syrup to the strained mixture. Stir well and allow it to simmer until it thickens.

  • Combine ghee-sauteed dry fruits with cardamom powder.

  • Drizzle with ghee and serve while hot.

Is it possible for me to prepare jaggery syrup the night before and keep it in the refrigerator?

That’s great – it will save a lot of time during the festival!

Can I use cooked or brown rice instead of raw rice for cooking?

It is recommended to use uncooked rice for Neivaidhyam. However, Sweet Pongal can be prepared with any type of rice, though the flavor may differ depending on the type. For Brown rice, cook for an additional 20-30 minutes.

When should I add the milk and will it curdle?

In the conventional approach, water and milk are combined and boiled before incorporating rice, dal, and other components. When using a pressure cooker, the boiled milk should be added before the jaggery syrup is incorporated.

Can coconut and edible camphor be added to Pongal?

Add grated coconut, edible camphor, and other flavors, as well as dry fruits.

7.What is the ratio of rice to dal? Can I use toor dal?

Use half as much moong dal as rice! Don’t use toor dal and if you don’t have moong dal, you can leave it out.

Why does rice stick to the pot?

To avoid rice sticking to the pot, it is important to stir it thoroughly and frequently.

sakkarai pongal recipe

If you have additional inquiries regarding this recipe for Sweet Pongal, please contact me at [email protected]. Additionally, you can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Youtube, and Twitter.

Have you attempted making this Sweet Pongal dish? Please share your thoughts on it. Don’t forget to mention us on Instagram @sharmispassions and use the hashtag #sharmispassions.

📖 Recipe Card


Sweet Pongal | Sakkarai Pongal

Sweet Pongal is a tasty and delectable dish that is prepared by cooking a combination of rice and moong dal in a syrup made of jaggery, milk, and water. This mixture is then enhanced with the addition of ghee and cashews. Sweet Pongal, also known as Sakkarai Pongal, is a popular dish often made during the Pongal Festival. The steps to make Sweet Pongal are detailed in this post, along with accompanying photos and a video.

Course Snack, sweet
Cuisine Indian

Recipe for cardamom powder, recipes for dried fruits, holiday, recipes using jaggery, recipes using milk, recipes using nuts, pongal celebration, recipes for pongal, recipes using rice, sweet dish recipes.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 3 people
Calories 365kcal
Author Sharmilee J



  • 1/2 cup raw rice
  • 1/4 cup moong dal
  • 3 cups water
  • 10 nos whole cashews broken
  • 2 nos cardamom
  • 1 tablespoon raisins
  • 3/4 heaped cup jaggery
  • 1/3 cup water for jaggery syrup
  • 1 tiny pinch edible camphor
  • 2 tablespoon + 2 teaspoon ghee

With milk version:

  • 1/2 cup raw rice
  • 3 tablespoon moong dal
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup jaggery
  • 1/4 cup water for jaggery syrup
  • a small pinch cardamom powder
  • 5 strands saffron
  • 2 to 3 tablespoon ghee
  • 1 tablespoon cashews broken
  • 1 tablespoon raisins


  • 1 cup raw rice
  • 1/4 cup moong dal
  • 7 cups water
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoon cashews
  • 1 tablespoon raisins
  • 2 small cardamom
  • 4 tablespoon ghee

For jaggery syrup

  • 1 heaped cup jaggery
  • 1/2 cup water



  • Grind cardamom and edible camphor together and set aside. Toast moong dal until it becomes fragrant.

  • Combine jaggery and water in a pot and heat for a few minutes until the jaggery is fully melted.

  • Wash the rice and dal thoroughly before adding it to the pressure cooker.

  • Take a measurement and pour water into it.

  • Cook on low-medium heat for 5 whistles using a pressure cooker. Allow the pressure to release naturally.

  • After releasing the pressure, open the container and thoroughly mash the contents.
  • Mix in jaggery syrup to the strain.

  • The syrup should have a slightly thick texture, but there is no need to test for consistency.

  • Stir thoroughly and allow it to simmer until it thickens.

  • Include ghee. Thoroughly combine and simmer on low heat.

  • Include ground cardamom and consumable camphor.

  • Heat clarified butter in a pan. Add cashews and fry until they turn golden, then add raisins and let the mixture bubble up. Continue frying until it turns golden brown.

  • Mix together and add to pongal. Turn off heat. Sweet pongal is now ready!

Traditional method for making sweet rice pudding in a pot.

  • Mix jaggery with water.

  • Allow it to fully dissolve before setting it aside.
  • Pour milk into a classic bronze pot.

  • Pour water into it.

  • Let it boil.
  • Maintain at a medium high level. Allow it to overflow.

  • Stir well.
  • Wash the rice and dal before adding them to the pot.

  • Cook on medium-high heat until the rice is three-fourths cooked and most of the water has been absorbed.

  • Next, filter and mix in the jaggery syrup.

  • Blend thoroughly and heat until it reaches a thick consistency. Then, introduce cashews and raisins that have been fried in ghee.

  • Heat clarified butter in a small frying pan – cook cashews until they are golden, then add raisins and cook until they are also golden.

  • Mix together ghee-fried nuts, raisins, the remaining 3 tablespoons of ghee, and cardamom powder. Cook for one minute, then turn off the heat. The mixture will thicken as it cools, so switch off the heat while it is still gooey.



  • I utilized paagu velam to achieve a deep brown hue. Alternatively, regular jaggery can also be used.

  • Do not skip the step of roasting dal, as it adds great flavor.
  • For maximum flavor and taste, incorporate high-quality aromatic ghee.

  • The amount of time needed to pressure cook rice varies depending on the type of rice, so make adjustments accordingly. Fresh rice requires slightly less water, while older rice needs more.

  • After cooling down, the consistency of Pongal becomes thicker. Therefore, be sure to turn off the heat accordingly. If it becomes too dry when serving, add a small amount of ghee and milk.

  • If the pongal is too thick when turned off, it will become excessively dry once cooled. Therefore, turn it off while it is still slightly gooey.

  • The primary component of temple taste is edible camphor, so do not omit it.


Serving: 125g | Calories: 365kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 26mg | Sodium: 21mg | Potassium: 118mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 36IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 1mg

The post Sweet Pongal | Sakkarai Pongal appeared first on Sharmis Passions.