Desserts, Vegetarains

Persian Sesame Tahini Halva( Halva Ardeh)

Halva is one of most favourite desserts in the  Middle East countries such as Iran, Turkey, Arabic countries around the Persian Gulf, and even in North Africa , East Europe….The halva means sweet and usually most type of halva are dense.

And the Sesame tahini halva ( halva shekari) made from sesame paste and is just piece of heaven in your plate. Soooooo delicious, so rich, with dried -crumbly texture, and fulllllll of taste and garnished with pistachio. Oh my God you have to taste it.


Ardakan city in Yazd province in centre of Iran is well known for making high quality Sesame halva.. It’s said, sesame halva was invented around 500 years ago in Iran. One of Iranian kings was looking for a simple -nutritious food which could be easily carried by his soldiers and do not need to be warmed up, therefore, top chefs invented Sesame tahini halva.



1 ½ cups tahini

1 cup icing sugar or powdered sugar

1 cup dried milk powdered

chopped pistachio



In a large bowl, mix dried milk powder and icing sugar. Add tahini and mix well together.



Cover your plate or bowl with plastic wrap. Pour some of halva mixture in the plate and press it down. Sprinkle some chopped pistachio on the halva paste. Then pour another layer of halva paste and sprinkle chopped pistachio and press it down.


Fold the plastic wrap. Refrigerate it for 24 hours and then serve it with a cup of tea or coffee.






8 thoughts on “Persian Sesame Tahini Halva( Halva Ardeh)”

  1. So glad to have found this – since I visited Tehran on business late last year I have been trying to recreate foods I tried there (the Sholeh Zard and Mirza Ghassemi turned out particularly well) and have been trying to find out what this treat I found so moreish was, and a recipe for it…

    A question, though – my daughter and I are GF and DF… Can I use dried coconut milk powder (or other?) in place of ‘normal’ Dried Milk, and if so can you suggest a quantity equivalent, if different?

    Thank you!


    1. Hi David, I am glad you like Persian cuisine and would like to re create them. About your question, Yes you can add 1 cup coconut milk powder instead of dried milk and go on with rest of instruction or use walnuts instead of pistachio. In Tehran i have seen cocoa flavor of this halva too. I hope my answer was helpful. Rozina

  2. Just to let you know – first batch a success!

    I am not sure if it is because I tried it with coconut milk powder (as above, for Dairy-free), but it did not really ‘set’ as I was expecting – the Halva I had on my trip to Tehran was very powdery / crumbly and this was more like a very firm paste, with a distinct ‘wobble’ to it when still in the tray.

    I mixed it up again with extra Milk Powder and Icing Sugar to make the ingredients equal amounts (1 cup each Tahini, Milk Powder and Sugar) and returned it to the ‘fridge to set – it turned out fantastic!

    Thank you again – the only challenge now is not eating it all in one go… (trying my best to save it for visitors, so they can experience it, too)!


    1. How good. I am glad you are happy with your halva. But if you are ok with adding milk powder at the first place, so it’s better you just follow the recipe and garnish it with coconut milk powder ??

  3. Hello Rozina,

    Apologies, my reply wasn’t too clear – I used Coconut Milk Powder throughout (including the extra added) as we are diary-free, for allergies.

    Only a few pieces left now (!), but wondering how long you might expect this to keep for if a bigger batch were made?

    Kind regards,


    1. Hi David, Ok i got what you mean about milk. And i know this halva is very yummy and I can not resist this halav. This halva should be kept in an airthight container
      in dry and cool place or in the fridge for about 6 months.

      All the best, Rozina

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