Diwali, known as the festival of lights, will be celebrated by many Hindus across the world this Sunday, October 27. Many commemorate the holiday by exchanging boxes of colorful sweets or finishing off a meal with a treat like gulab jamun or carrot halwa. And even if you aren't celebrating Diwali, these treats are worth exploring.
Check out these eight Phoenix-area spots sure to satisfy your sweet fix during Diwali 2019.
Om Indian Bistro18631 North 19th Avenue, #150
Whether you want traditional Diwali sweets, like gulab jamun or halva, or crave something more modern like eggless chocolate cake, Om Indian Bistro has a wide selection of traditional and nontraditional desserts. Most treats are displayed in glass casing and are available for under $4. There are also options for traditional Indian ice cream, with flavors like kulfi, mango, and saffron.
Marigold Maison4720 East Cactus Road, Paradise Valley
Have a traditional Diwali meal and cap it off your choice of gulab jamun, mango kulfi, or lava cake at Marigold Maison. From October 21 to 27, this northeast Valley restaurant is offering a Diwali tasting menu with four courses, a side, and a dessert. The tasting menu is $55 per couple. Make reservations online at the Marigold Maison website.
The Dhaba1872 East Apache Boulevard, Tempe
Head to The Dhaba for Diwali desserts after celebrating with a traditional meal at home. Choose from badami kheer (a rice pudding sprinkled with almonds), ras malai (cottage cheese dumplings made with milk, white flour, cardamom, and pistachio), gulab jamun (a sweet made out of condensed milk), or kulfi. All of these desserts are available for $5. If you're feeling particularly indulgent, a whole plate of sweets is available for $10.
There are several types of traditional sweets available at Pastries-N-Chaat. Choose from pedas, which are made out of khoa, sugar, cardamom seeds, pistachio nuts, and saffron, or barfi — a combination of dried milk, cardamon, saffron, and pistachio nuts. Other options include non-Indian desserts, like chocolate forest cake, Swiss rolls, and different types of mousse. Dine in or pick out items to fill your to-go box.
Chennai Chettinaad Palace2814 West Bell Road
If you are hosting a Diwali party at home and need an array of sweets, Chennai Chettinaad Palace offers over 40 varieties, including milk-based desserts, ice cream, and dried treats. The restaurant also has a mithai stand, in which a diverse selection of sweets are sold. Call 602-993-0085 for catering orders.
New India Gate4939 West Ray Road, #1, Chandler
What if you can't wait till dinnertime for your Diwali sweets? No need to fret. A family-owned restaurant, New India Gate, offers an expansive menu and buffet with plenty of sweet options. Choose from gulab jamun, mango kulfi, kheer, carrot halwa, or pistachio kulfi. All desserts are less than $5.
Tikka Shack21001 North Tatum Boulevard, #48-1520
Begin Diwali with a traditional auspicious drink, the mango lassi — a yogurt-based sipper with mango puree available at Tikka Shack. It's creamy and smooth, with the right amount of tang and sweetness. On your way out, ask for gulab jamun or ras malai — fresh cheese patties soaked in cold, sweetened milk.
Curry Corner1212 East Apache Boulevard, Tempe
It's a compact eatery, but that doesn't mean Curry Corner doesn't include sweets on its menu. Kheer, a traditional rice pudding with saffron, almonds, and raisins, and halwa, are less than $3.50. Dine in or feel free to order these sweets to go.
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.