Gulab Jamun Recipe

Cooks in 55 minutes Difficulty Medium 5 comments
5 from 1 vote

Semolina and Condensed Milk Gulab Jamun

Finding a gulab jamun recipe (Gulam Jambo) with semolina was like finding a needle in a haystack. My sister was visiting  last weekend, I hadn’t seen her in over a  year  so wanted to make plenty of homemade treats our mother used to make…or as my younger sister puts it ‘just like Amma made it!’ (Amma being the Tamil word for mother). I searched the web trying to find a similar recipe but there were none in sight. The only gulab jamun recipes I could find were the round ball-like gulab jamuns made with milk powder and flour – not what I wanted to make. I eventually got Amma’s recipe from my older sister. This Gulab Jamun recipe which uses condensed milk and a tablespoon of semolina to create the perfect finger-shaped gulab jamun (like Amma made it). The search for this recipe inspired the start of this blog! – a place to share Amma’s recipes with my sisters and the world!

South African gulab jamun recipe

What is Gulab Jamun?

For readers who’ve never heard of ‘Gulab Jamun’, it can be classified as a doughnut. Traditionally made from flour and milk powder then fried and finally dipped in a sweet rose syrup. The South African Indian version differs in two aspects, first, the finger-like shape and secondly, this recipe
uses condensed milk (Try my homemade condensed milk recipe). and semolina which gives the Gulab Jamuns a rather firm texture and produces perfectly shaped gulab jamuns.

South African Gulab Jamun Fingers with Coconut

This recipe features plain gulab jamun as well as coconut-covered ones. To make the coconut version, simply roll the gulab jamuns in desiccated coconut.

South African gulab jamun recipe

Ingredients for the Gulab Jamun Recipe

  • 1 cake flour
  • semolina (heaped)
  • ghee
  • baking powder
  • bicarbonate of soda
  • cardamom powder
  • condensed milk
  • oil for frying
  • Ingredients for Syrup

    • granulated white sugar
    • water
    • rose water
    For Coconut Gulab Jamuns
    • 2 cups desiccated coconut
    • How To Make Syrup For Gulab Jamun

      • Add the sugar to the water. Stir until dissolved over medium heat. Add 1 teaspoon of rose water and a pinch of cardamom powder (elachi powder). If you do not have any rose water don’t worry, simply add the cardamom to the syrup it tastes just as good.
      •  Boil the sugar water, stirring continuously until the sugar dissolves and the mixture appears slightly thick. Don’t allow the syrup to get too thick, the syrup should be light so that it soaks through the gulab jamuns but should be sticky enough to bind the coconut.
      • Once Gulab Jamuns are fried dip them into the syrup then dry out onto a wire rack or kitchen paper. For coconut gulab jamuns see step 3 (above)
      coconut gulab jamun

      South African Gulab Jamun Recipe

      Gulab Jamun Fingers Recipe

      5 from 1 vote
      Recipe by Ms Pillay


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      • Gulab Jamun Ingredients
      • 1 1/4 cup 1 1/4 cake flour

      • 1 tablespoon 1 semolina (heaped)

      • 1 tablespoon 1 ghee or butter

      • 1 teaspoon 1 baking powder

      • 1/4 teaspoon 1/4 bicarbonate of soda

      • 1/2 teaspoon 1/2 cardamom powder

      • 150 ml 150 condensed milk (or half a can)

      • 300 ml 300 oil for frying

      • Gulab Jamun Syrup
      • 1 cup 1 granulated white sugar

      • 1 1 ,5 cups water

      • 1 tablespoon 1 rose water


      • Combine the 1 flour, semolina, cardamom powder, bicarb and baking powder.
      • Add ghee then work into a fine crumb-like texture. Add condensed milk. Mix until a soft dough is formed.
      • Add the remaining 1/4 cup of flour to work the mixture into a stiff dough. Once a ball is formed let the dough rest while you make the syrup. (See recipe below).
      • Shape the dough into long, thin finger-like shapes – they will expand once fried. Heat the oil in a heavy-based pan on medium heat.
      • Fry the gulab jamuns until slightly brown. Remove from oil then immerse into the syrup. For coconut, gulab jamuns immerse the syrupy gulab jamuns in a bowl filled with desiccated coconut. Serve hot or cold. Store in an airtight container.

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    1. I used proper measurements to measure out ingredients. I found that your goolab jamuns cracked when fried and the dough was a bit hard to work with. Tasted great though. Made not many jamuns . Was hoping to use for prayer.

    2. Sorry to hear that the recipe did not work. It is my tried and tested recipe. I tried it again today.

    3. Hi – I made this today. I have my Amma's recipe- but my tablet wasn't charged and I didn't want to disturb my Amma. So I tried your's. My boys loved it- similiar to my Amma's recipe- we love a crispy outside and just a coating of syrup. Was perfect thankyou

    4. I tried this today, my first time and it was really good. Thank you

    5. renette Lochan

      I was so disappointed, It was the worst recipe ever used, All were cracking.
      I have made with other recipes and they were all very good.

      But I wanted to try your recipe as I left my book at home. Will never try this again

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