Exploring 8 Different Types of Jalebi Across India

June 1, 2024

This South Asian dessert variety is an icon on the map of traditional Indian sweets. There might be a dozen types of jalebi and they come from Egypt and the Middle East to Persia and Turkey. The exact era of its invention is unclear but it has made its mark and finds mention in many scripts at various times, starting from the 10th century. The word “Jalebi” originates from the Arabic word “Zulabiya”. In India, people make it with a fermented batter of refined flour (maida) and besan. To enhance the flavor, we add other ingredients such as saffron and cardamom. You can recognize Jalebi through its famous spiral shape which is then dipped in sugar syrup. The renowned funnel cake from America resembles our Indian traditional Jalebi. Pakistan and Nepal, the neighbors of India have their versions of this sweet treat. In Nepal, people call it “Jerry,” deriving the name from “Jangiri” and the Mughal Emperor Jehangir. Like a memorable collage, jalebi also owns a bag full of glorious past and stories connected with it. It still remains a humble sweet, often seen being deep-fried in roadside sweet shops. It holds a special place for the people of the Northern part of India. People serve it during festivals, special occasions, and weddings.

To tickle your sweet tooth, follow along as we will be

Exploring 8 different types of jalebi across India

1. Imarti


One of the most loved in the group is Imarti, made by soaking husked Bengal gram (urad dal) overnight in water. Grind this dal and whisk it enough to make a very fluffy batter. A circular shape with a design on its border is a consistent look of this dessert. Similar in all jalebi recipes, sugar syrup is an important element which needs to be made to perfection. After deep frying, all types of jalebi need to pass through the syrup for the sweetness tag.

2. Khoya Jalebi

Khoya Jalebi

A jalebi variety from Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh, it is prepared with a base of khoya or mawa. Simmer milk until all the liquid evaporates to create this heavy and rich ingredient. Unlike other syrup-filled goodies, this one isn’t bright orange, but a darker brown color. Its taste is similar to that of a Gulabjamun, and so is its color. An absolute praiseworthy dessert, it tastes divine with toppings of cold milk or malai(milk cream).

3. Aloo ki Jalebi

Aloo ki Jalebi

A surprisingly easy preparation is what leads to a sweet-tooth craving prescription like no other. Aloo aka potato, is rightfully termed as everyone’s friend. A top name in the list of this distinguished sweet dish, it is made by mixing grated aloo, maida, and rice flour with other ingredients. Pour this batter into hot oil to create spiral flowers and your aloo ki jalebi is ready. 

4. Paneer Jalebi

Paneer Jalebi

Mirroring Churros, a sweet Mexican dessert, Paneer Jalebi is an elegant version of the sugary fried fritters. These types of jalebi come from the culinary state of West Bengal. Paneer is like cottage cheese. It is purééd and mixed with refined flour, corn flour, and baking powder. Before piping them into hot oil, you add aromatic spices. These bite-sized jalebis are then soaked in sugar syrup. 

5. Jaleba


If you were to guess, the name of this variant would give you an idea about its size. Jaleba is a king-size version of Jalebi which weighs around 250 grams. It can go as high as 500 grams also. The cover is crispy but the inside is sweet and soft, which makes this jalebi variety an exciting option.

6. Rabdi Jalebi

Rabdi Jalebi

In Northern India, serving and eating Rabdi Jalebi is an event. There is a hype about its goodness that’s discussed with much excitement. Though these types of jalebi are the usual crispy jalebi but served with a bowl of lacchedaar rabdi. A combo chosen for special days, weddings, festivals etc., garnished generously with dry fruits like pistachios and almonds.

7. Urad Jalebi

Urad Jalebi

Hailing from parts of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, we have stumbled upon a variety that uses Urad Dal(lentil) flour instead of maida and needs no fermentation. Saffron and cardamom are the two spices which are a constant in all the different types of jalebi. After deep frying the beautiful spirals into a circular shape and soaking them in sugar syrup, they are decorated and enjoyed heartily.

8. Jangiri


This is another preparation that’s traditionally done with soaked urad dal. Jangiri is unlike the other distinct jalebis, which are maida(refined flour)based. Jangiri’s shape is peculiar and particularly hard to perfect the small spiral flowers. Coated with sugar syrup, these fried disc-shaped sweets can melt in your mouth.

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Jalebi’s admiration and origin go beyond the confines of India, onto the neighboring countries and Medieval regions. There are countless variants to choose from and the availability of these syrup-infused spirals is plenty. You can find it with utmost ease at sweet or halwai shops on the street. Not to mention, its status as a delicacy in many fine dining restaurants. So tickle those taste buds and indulge in these orangish swirls today. 


1. Which state Jalebi is famous?

Aloo Jalebi in Mathura, Uttar Pradesh is quite famous. Many other states like Gujarat and Rajasthan have their own special Jalebi recipes. 

Jangiri and Imarti are the most liked Jalebis.

3. What is Indian Jalebi made of?

Some people make jalebis with maida (refined flour) and may add gram flour, rice flour, and other ingredients. Mix the batter with yogurt, cardamom, and saffron, and pipe it in hot oil for deep frying. After soaking in sugar syrup and garnishing with nuts, you can eat your chosen variety with yogurt, rabdi, fafda, kadhi etc.

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