Independence Day Special: Tricolor Zarda (sweet rice) recipe

I wanted to post something special for this Independence Day and what else is better than a sweet dish to celebrate this occasion.

After a lot of thinking I came up with this tricolor recipe. It is Tricolor Zarda i.e sweet rice. We usually make this rice in orange color but this time I made it in 3 colors of our Indian National flag.

When I told my sisters about it, they asked me how I will make the Ashoka chakra in the middle. You know how siblings are. They will criticize even the best work of yours. I thought for a while and try to make it using raisins. I know it is not at all looking like Ashoka Chakra.

Now let us see how to make this simple sweet this.



Basmati rice (fragrant long-grain rice) – 1 cup
Ghee (clarified butter) – 2 – 3 tablespoons
Green cardamom (crushed) – 4 – 5
Cinnamon stick (1 inch piece) – 2 – 3
Almonds (chopped or sliced) – 5 – 6
Cashews (chopped or sliced) – 5 – 6
Water – as required to cook rice
Orange food color (dissolved in ½ teaspoon water) – 1 pinch
Green food color (dissolved in ½ teaspoon water) – 1 pinch
Raisins – 2 tablespoons
Desiccated coconut (grated) – for garnishing



  1. Soak rice for 20 – 30 minutes.
  2. Heat ghee in a deep pan and add green cardamom and cinnamon stick to it.
  3. Sauté them for a minute or 2 and add chopped almonds and cashews. Sauté them for a few seconds and add
  4. some water so that they do not burn.
  5. Now add rice and enough water and cook it till the rice is 80% – 90% done (Some water should have left in the rice).
  6. Add sugar and mix properly. Let the rice cook completely and sugar dissolved.
Opps! The Flag is inverted and eaten 😉


  • After the rice is cooked, add raisins and mix properly.
  • Now divide the rice into 3 equal parts in 3 separate bowls.
  • Add orange food color to one part, green to the other and let one part remain white.
  • Mix the color properly so that all the rice is covered.
  • Arrange the rice in a plate according to the color of flag and garnish with some desiccated coconut and raisin.
  • You can make this zarda in single color also.
Wish you all a very Happy Independence Day

Hope you liked this special Independence Day recipe. Do share your views in the comments below.

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