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17 June, 2015

Pineapple Kesari – a Father’s Day Special for Diabetes Friendly Thursdays

Comments : 24 Posted in : Desserts, Diabetes Friendly Thursdays, Indian sweets, Uncategorized on by : apsara Tags: , , , , , , ,


Celebrate Father’s Day with DFT Team with healthier and diabetes friendly desserts, this week.

“Kesari” is the ubiquitous dessert that you would find at any south-Indian celebration. The easy-to-prepare sweet is made with rava or semolina. Adding pineapple is a variation that adds a new dimension to the flavor taking it to a new level.

Making this special dessert for “Father’s Day”, and I’m happy to note that it was loved by my husband, the special “dad” in my house. I do wish I could make this for my own father, but may be the next time I visit him!

Here, I have created a version that is not only free of (refined) wheat or semolina, but is also healthier by the addition of a base that is made with nuts and oats. This would be suitable for a diabetic person as well, when taken in moderation.


Pineapple itself is considered to be a high-glycemic fruit and hence not the best fruit recommended for diabetics. But hey, that does not mean that it should be completely avoided! A cup of fresh pineapple has 21.6 g of carbohydrates and a typical serving for a diabetic patient is 15 g of carbohydrates. So, in moderation, this fruit can be consumed for the other benefits that it offers. Always go for the fresh fruit, not the canned one that has added sugar in it. (source: here)

Coconut palm sugar is a sweetener with a low glycemic index, meaning that it does not shoot up sugar levels as much as cane sugar, for example. This is possibly because it is 70-79% sucrose and is low in fructose, which ranks high in glycemic index (GI). It also has several micro-nutrients and is considered a better choice for diabetics. However, the carbohydrate content is the same as that of regular sugar, so once again, moderation is key! Read my sources here and here.

Pineapple Kesari (gluten-free, vegan)

  • Servings: 12
  • Time: 25 minutes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


cubed fresh pineapple- 1 cup

coconut sugar- 2/3 cup

water- 1 1/2 cup

almond meal/flour- 1 cup (Just grind up some blanched or whole almonds in a blender; I used leftover almond meal from homemade almond milk)

oat flour- 1/4 cup (Grind oats in a blender; I used certified GF oats)

coconut flour- 2 tbsp.

coconut oil- 1 tsp + 2 tbsp.

cardamom powder- a fat pinch

cashew pieces- 2 tbsp. for garnish


1. Boil water in a saucepan and add the cubed pineapple in it. Let it boil for 10 minutes.

2. Meanwhile roast cashews in a pan with 1 tsp. of coconut oil till they turn light brown. Set aside.

3. Add flours, coconut sugar in a heated non-stick pan (I use a ceramic coated pan). Add in the pineapple mixture and cardamom. Stir on medium flame till most of the water evaporates. Reduce flame to low, add coconut oil and stir gently till the mixture leaves the sides of the pan.

4. Transfer to a container, add garnish on top and allow to cool before serving. Store in the refrigerator for 3 days.

5. Recommended serving size: 1-2 tbsp. per person.


1. If coconut palm sugar is not available, honey or jaggery could be used. Try small amounts and use as required.

2. If coconut flour is not available, it can be omitted.


I am not a nutritionist or a dietitian. My knowledge is based on my research and reading from different resources. Please consult your doctor before making any changes to your diet.

Check the other recipes from the DFT team:

Sonal: Badam Anjeer ki Kheer

Shailja: Fresh Fruit Popsicles

Prachi: Cinnamon scented Oats Tart with Dark Chocolate Ganache

Swati: Oats Cinnamon Berry Baskets

Parvathy: Vegan Gluten free Brownies

Anupama: Apricot Coconut and Cashew Bites

Chahat: Watermelon and Kiwi Pops

Srividhya: Sugar-free Apple Rabdi

Suchitra: Fruit Bouquet- Father’s Day Special


24 thoughts on : Pineapple Kesari – a Father’s Day Special for Diabetes Friendly Thursdays

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  • Parvathy V Nair
    June 18, 2015 at 2:25 am

    My all time favourite Kesari !!! Lovely recipe

    • apsara
      June 19, 2015 at 1:58 am

      Thank you, Paro ♥

  • June 18, 2015 at 5:01 am

    Seeing pineapple kesari I was expecting rava but love your variation.. I haven’t used Coconut sugar should search for it..looks delicious

    • apsara
      June 19, 2015 at 2:07 am

      Yes, Vidya, I had to make the modification to replace rava, but my family loved it. Do try coconut sugar, it’s great.

  • June 18, 2015 at 9:31 am

    the way you manage to create gluten-free and dairy-free dishes simply awes me every time! this including! indeed, every dessert needs to be consumed in moderation, pineapple would work very well in Kesari! – my husband’s favorite too 🙂 I must try using almond meal as Kesari sometime 🙂 sounds absolutely delicious!

    • apsara
      June 19, 2015 at 3:10 am

      Thank you so much, Anu. Pineapple is indeed a nice variation to the regular kesari, very popular in weddings, etc. I do hope you try this!

  • June 18, 2015 at 10:05 am

    I always appreciate desserts using healthy ingredients. Your idea and effort to make kesari healthier is really commendable. Looks so delicious!!

    • apsara
      June 19, 2015 at 3:20 am

      Thank you, Puneet.

  • June 18, 2015 at 4:28 pm

    kesari with almond, oats and coconut? wow you guys rock man.. I second Anu’s comment. your gluten free and diary free always awwwwssss me. Great apsara.

    • apsara
      June 19, 2015 at 3:27 am

      Thank you, dear. Just thinking out of the box, for suitable substitutions.

  • June 18, 2015 at 4:36 pm

    I have made Kesari before but this is surely tempting me to try it out soon ! Thanks for sharing the recipe Apsara 🙂


  • Sonal
    June 19, 2015 at 12:20 am

    This is just excellent. A great spin on Traditional dessert! ❤️❤️

    • apsara
      June 19, 2015 at 3:29 am

      thank you, dear. DFT gives an excellent opportunity. ♥

  • June 19, 2015 at 2:03 am

    Pineapple kesari is my fav south indian dessert! I have to have it when ever I’m in Bangalore. The innumerable darshinis make some of the tastiest kesari ever! But you make it vegan and gluten free – wow! hats off Apsara.

    • apsara
      June 19, 2015 at 3:32 am

      thank you, so much, dear Namrata. We love this in our house too. Great when pineapple is in season.

  • June 22, 2015 at 6:22 pm

    What a perfect Father’s Day dish! I’ve never had kesari but you make it pretty irresistible. This looks simply gorgeous!

    • apsara
      June 22, 2015 at 9:34 pm

      Thank you, Michaell! Yes, kesari is pretty common in India, and I love it too.

  • June 23, 2015 at 4:08 pm

    Pineapple kesari is a favorite of mine, but it is usually made with sooji and tons of ghee!! I love the way you have modified the recipe to make it more healthy and gluten free! Great job in modifying a very traditional dessert to make it healthy!

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