Turkish Delight Recipe (2024)

Published: by Amira · This post may contain affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission.

The easiest and tastiest Turkish delight treats that you can ever make at home. Simple ingredients, no thermometer needed this is great for gifting as well.

Jump to Recipe

Turkish Delight, also known as Lokum or rahat lokum, is a gel-like sweet candy that comes in various colors and flavors. The classic Turkish delight recipe is flavored with rose water. These are just the perfect sweet treats for parties or to go with your coffee.

Next time, try this Turkish flour halva.

Turkish Delight Recipe (1)
Jump to:
  • ❓Why This Recipe Works
  • 📝 Ingredients
  • 🥄 Instructions
  • 💡 Tips
  • Troubleshooting
  • 🍽️ Serve With
  • You Might Need
  • Related Recipes
  • More Turkish Recipes
  • Turkish delight

❓Why This Recipe Works

  • An easy recipe with simple ingredients, no Xanthan gum or other special ingredients.
  • No thermometer is needed.
  • Very adaptable to your liking in terms of texture with lots of flavors.
  • Vegan, gluten free and if you leave out the nuts it will be a nut free candy recipe too!

If you look up Lokum or Turkish delight recipe, many people describe it as soft and sometimes very soft. I came to realize that different people have different expectations on them according to where you have been raised.

The Turkish delight I grew up with in Egypt is stretchy and chewy, not as if you are eating jello. The most common problem I saw was that people complained that their Turkish delight was not set to their liking.

After a dozen of trials I've come to a recipe that is so simple and very adaptive. You'll finally get your perfect lokum according to your taste and not mine.

This recipe does not need a candy thermometer or cream of tartar. We will simply depend on our senses to determine the right time to take it off the heat.

📝 Ingredients

Note: This is an overview of the ingredients. You'll find the full measurements and instructions in the recipe card (printable) at the bottom of the page. The full ingredient list is in the recipe card below.

Turkish Delight Recipe (2)

Ingredient Notes

  • Water is the main liquid to dissolve cornstarch, using fruit juices or milk is possible check out the notes section for more about that.
  • Food coloring, red food coloring is the most common. I've used many food colors and color combinations. I highly recommend Wilton Color Right to simply get any color you like.
  • Lime or lemon juice, it really does not make a difference.
  • Corn syrup: use light corn syrup. I've not tried using honey instead, but I expect it will work just as fine, but it might affect the flavor a bit.
  • For flavors, classics use rosewater or orange blossom water. In Egypt, the most famous is vanilla-flavored. Other flavors can be used as well. Check the notes for more about that.
  • Nuts of your choice, this is completely optional but highly recommended. These small squares are sweet and adding nuts balances the sweetness.

🥄 Instructions

Note: This is an overview of the instructions. The full instructions are in the recipe card below.

Turkish Delight Recipe (3)
  1. Pour water and cornstarch in a medium saucepan and whisk well until combined with no lumps.
  2. Heat the mixture over medium-high heat and whisk until it thickens, which will take probably 2-3 minutes.
  3. Reduce heat to the lowest possible flame. Mix in rosewater and lime juice.
Turkish Delight Recipe (4)
  1. Set a timer to 1 hour. Add a fifth of the sugar and mix well until the sugar dissolves completely.
  2. Pour 1 Tablespoon corn syrup and mix. Repeat this process every 5 minutes until you finish all the sugar and corn syrup.
Turkish Delight Recipe (5)
  1. We aim that the bottom of the pan be clear with no burnt mixture as shown above. Use a wooden spoon or a rubber spatula to check it.
  2. Keep cooking the mixture on a very low flame and start checking the consistency when your timer reads 10 minutes. Take a small portion of the mixture with a spoon and dip it in a cup of iced water. Wait until it cools down completely and test the texture. You might want to chew on it as well to make sure it has reached your preferred texture.
Turkish Delight Recipe (6)
  1. Take it out of the heat, add food coloring and mix. Adjust the flavor to you liking if you need to add more rosewater, this is the time to do so.
  2. Mix in nuts if using.
Turkish Delight Recipe (7)
  1. Empty the Turkish delight mixture in a container lined with parchment paper.
  2. Wet your hands with water and carefully press the lokum to fill the container. Let it set in a cool dry place.
Turkish Delight Recipe (8)
  1. In a small bowl mix together confectioners sugar and corn starch.Dust a cutting board with the icing sugar mixture. Flip the delights over and dust the other side as well.
  2. Using a sharp knife cut into small cubes. Dust the sides of each square with more of the cornstarch mixture to prevent stickiness.

💡 Tips

  • Please note that this authentic Turkish delight recipe needs a bit of patience to make so make sure to give it time.
  • For different flavors, you can use juice instead of water, but be careful with the sugar; adjust the sugar level to your liking.
  • You can also use milk, but when using milk, do not add lime juice until you are done with adding all the sugar and corn syrup or else your milk will curdle.
  • When using juice or milk keep in mind that your delights might take longer to cook to your perfection. For my taste it took me almost 30 minutes more.
  • You can use any flavor extract you like but the most traditional Turkish delight flavors are rosewater, vanilla, lemon, mint, pomegranate and mastic. I’ve made this with great success using pomegranate juice and crushed mastic.
  • The most famous in Egypt is vanilla flavored with walnuts and shaped into a rope.
  • If you have a candy thermometer and if it would help you to know, my Turkish delights was good for me when it reached between 195F and 205F.
  • Getting the right texture depends greatly on what you like and on the heat you are using. I've noticed that to reach the right texture for me, it takes 1 hour on an electric stove, while the same consistency takes 1 hour and 10 minutes on a gas stove.
  • We had so much fun using the Wilton color right chart to make different colors for this Turkish delight recipe.

Troubleshooting

  • If the Turkish delight is grainy or has bits of something like hard candy then you either did not give sugar time to dissolve and melt between additions, was in a hurry and added the sugar all at once, or in less addition, the heat was high and you did not turn it to the lowest possible flame.
  • If your Turkish delight did not set to what you want, do not throw it away. Here is how to fix that : in a saucepan, add one tablespoon of water and the unset delight mixture and turn the heat to low. Break up the mixture with a spatula to help them melt back. Keep cooking and stirring every 5 minutes. Adding an extra 1-2 teaspoons of lime juice OR raising the heat can accelerate the setting. BUT you need to be aware that adding extra lime juice could affect the taste, this is not a problem when making lemon or pomegranate flavored ones but if you are making other flavors it might be unpleasant. Also raising the heat to medium-low can expedite the cooking but you need to stay alert and stir every minute or two to prevent burning.

🍽️ Serve With

  • It is common to serve Turkish delight with Turkish Coffee to complement the bitterness of the coffee.
Turkish Delight Recipe (9)

You Might Need

The following links might be affiliate links. Which means when you purchase the product(s) recommended we might get a small portion as a commission without affecting your purchase price. Thank you so much for being a part of Amira’sPantry!

We loved using the Wilton color right set, it helped us make many color combination for different occasions and it was fun to use with kids.

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Turkish Delight Recipe (10)

Turkish delight

The easiest and tastiest Turkish delight treats that you can ever make at home. Simple ingredients, no thermometer needed this is great for gifting as well.

4.75 from 8 votes

Print Pin Rate

Course: Candy, Dessert

Cuisine: Egyptian, Middle Eastern, Turkish

Diet: Vegan, Vegetarian

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Let it set for:: 4 hours

Servings: 16

Calories: 94kcal

Author: Amira

Ingredients

  • cup water 150g
  • cup cornstarch 40g
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • 1-2 teaspoon rosewater or any extract for flavor
  • 1 cup granulated sugar 200g
  • 5 Tablespoons corn syrup. 75g

Optional:

  • ⅓ -½ cup nuts of your choice

For final coating:

  • 4 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 4 Tablespoons powdered sugar

Instructions

  • Pour water and cornstarch in a saucepan and whisk well until combined with no lumps.

  • Heat the mixture on medium and keep on whisking until it thickens, will take probably 2-3 minutes.

  • Reduce heat to the lowest possible flame. Mix in rosewater and lime juice.

  • Set a timer to 1 hour.

Add sugar and corn syrup as follows: When your timer reads

  • 60 minute ( in the beginning) add ⅕th of the sugar, mix it well with a spatula until sugar no longer visible then mix in 1 Tablespoon corn syrup.

  • 55 minutes (after 5 minutes of first addition): add another ⅕th of the sugar, mix it well with a spatula until sugar no more visible then mix in 1another Tablespoon corn syrup.

  • 50 minutes (after 5 minutes of first addition): add another ⅕th of the sugar, mix it well with a spatula until sugar no more visible then mix in 1another Tablespoon corn syrup.

  • 45 minutes (after 5 minutes of first addition): add another ⅕th of the sugar, mix it well with a spatula until sugar no more visible then mix in 1another Tablespoon corn syrup.

  • 40 minutes (after 5 minutes of first addition): add the remaining ⅕th of the sugar, mix it well with a spatula until sugar no more visible then mix in the last Tablespoon corn syrup.

  • Let the mixture cook stirring it every 5 minutes to ensure even cooking and prevent scorching.

  • Line a 5”x5” glass container with parchment paper and spray or brush with oil.

  • When your timer reads 10 minutes start checking your Turkish delight by taking a piece ( about ¼ to ½ teaspoon) on the tip of a spoon. Immediately immerse the spoon in a cup of iced water. Leave it there for 40 seconds to a full minute to cool down.

  • Take the spoon out and carefully check the consistency and texture of your delights, taste it to make sure it has reached your preferred chewiness. Please make sure it has completely cooled down or else you will burn your tongue.

  • When you’ve reached your desired consistency, take it out of the heat.

  • Now is the time to adjust color and more flavor if desired.

  • Mix in the nuts if using.

  • Empty the Turkish delight mixture in the container. Wet your hands with cold water and press to fill the container. Be very cautious as the mixture will be hot.

  • Brush a piece of plastic wrap with oil and cover the delights.

  • Let it cool completely and set on counter top, will take approximately 2-3 hours or overnight.

  • Mix the coating ingredients together and dust a clean counter top with some of the mixture.

  • Take the Turkish delight out of the container using the parchment paper. And flip it over the counter top.

  • Peel off the parchment paper and dust the top with more of the coating mixture.

  • Oil or wet ( with cold water) a sharp chef’s knife and start cutting the delights into squares.

  • Dust the sides of each square with more of the coating powder to prevent stickiness.

  • Store Turkish delights in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks. Make sure to separate layers with plastic wrap or parchment paper.

Video

Notes

  • You can use juice instead of water but be careful with the sugar, adjust sugar level to your liking.
  • You can also use milk, but when using milk do not add lime juice until you are done with adding all the sugar and corn syrup or else your milk will curdle.
  • When using juice or milk keep in mind that your delights might take longer to cook to your perfection. For my taste it took me almost 30 minutes more.
  • If your Turkish delights did not set to your liking, do not throw it away. Here is how to fix that. In a saucepan, add 1 tablespoon of water and the unset delights and turn the heat to low. Break up the delights with a spatula to help them melt back. Keep cooking and stirring every 5 minutes. Adding an extra 1-2 teaspoons of lime juice OR raising the heat can accelerate the setting. BUT you need to be aware that adding extra lime juice could affect the taste, this is not a problem when making lemon or pomegranate flavored ones but if you are making other flavors it might be unpleasant. Also raising the heat to medium-low can expedite the cooking but you need to stay there and stir every minute or two to prevent burning.
  • You can use any flavor extract you like but the most common are rosewater, vanilla, lemon, mint, pomegranate and mastic. I’ve made this with great success using pomegranate juice and crushed mastic.
  • The most famous in Egypt is vanilla flavored with walnuts and shaped into a rope.
  • If you have a candy thermometer and if it would help you to know, my Turkish delights was good for me when it reached between 195F and 205F.
  • Troubleshooting: If the Turkish delight is grainy or has bits of something like hard candy then you either did not give sugar time to dissolve and melt between addition, was in a hurry and added the sugar all at once or in less addition, the heat was high and you did not turn it to the lowest possible flame.
  • Getting the right texture depends greatly on what you like and on the heat you are using. I've noticed that to reach the right texture for me it takes 1 hour on electric stove while the same consistency takes 1 hour and 10 minutes on gas stove.
  • We had so much fun using the Wilton color right chart to make different colors for our delights.
  • If all else fails or if fixing it is too finicky, you can add water to make Turkish delight flavored beverages Use it as a topping for ice cream or into seltzer water. The possibilities are endless.

Nutrition

Calories: 94kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Sodium: 5mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 20g | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 1mg | Iron: 1mg

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First published Jan 9, 2014. Last updated September 8, 2021 for better images, step by step instructions and readability.

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Turkish Delight Recipe (15)

About Amira

I’m overjoyed that you have stopped by! My hope is to introduce you to new flavors, creative ways and fresh takes on favorites. To help you create food with style that will bring everyone around your kitchen table. From weeknight dinners for crazy busy days to desserts with the “wow” factor, and classic comforts from the Mediterranean. One thing in common, they are all recipes that have been tried and tested by family and friends.

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Anna Likousis

    Turkish Delight Recipe (16)
    They are amazing

    Reply

    • Jeraldine

      I was wondering if there's something else I could use instead of corn syrup. I can't have it but would love to make these.
      thanks

      Reply

  2. C. Jamal

    Turkish Delight Recipe (17)
    This is perfect, that's what my husband said. TBH I do not even know what Turkish delights taste like but my husband wanted to replicate these long ropes sold in Egypt so we went for it. First it was a bit soft for his taste so we returned it to the pot as suggested and added an extra teaspoon of lemon juice. It set beautifully and it was not too sweet.

    Reply

    • Amira

      They are the best I loves them with walnuts so much. I am very happy that my recipe worked for you.

      Reply

  3. Chuluuna

    How long the lokum made is stored?

    Reply

    • Amira

      Chuluuna, I would say a month.

      Reply

  4. John@Kitchen Riffs

    Who doesn't like something sweet? These look wonderful, and look pretty easy - and fun! - make. Thanks so much.

    Reply

    • Amira

      Haven't heard of any yet :). Thanks for dropping.

      Reply

  5. Victoria

    These look like a lot of fun to make!

    Reply

    • Amira

      They are, thanks for stopping by

      Reply

  6. Amira

    Indeed they are ... my kids are thrilled with these homemade sort of gummies , I just need to try making them a little healthier with juice.

    Reply

  7. Denise Browning@From Brazil To You

    Hi, Amira! My kids would love to eat these colorful candies. Thanks for the recipe! I bet that the homemade ones taste much better that the store-bought candies.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

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Turkish Delight Recipe (2024)

FAQs

What is traditional Turkish delight made of? ›

Turkish delight or lokum (/lɔ. kʊm/) is a family of confections based on a gel of starch and sugar. Premium varieties consist largely of chopped dates, pistachios, hazelnuts or walnuts bound by the gel; traditional varieties are often flavored with rosewater, mastic gum, bergamot orange, or lemon.

Why is Turkish delight healthy? ›

On the other hand, luxurious varieties of Turkish delight are often filled with nuts and dried fruit. These luxury varieties of Turkish delight, therefore, have more nutritional value. A Turkish delight packed with pistachios may still be high in sugar, but it also provides healthy fats and protein.

What is the most popular flavor of Turkish delight? ›

Rosewater is the most popular flavor of Turkish Delight, but orange blossom water, vanilla, cinnamon, and lemon are also readily available.

What is Turkish delight taste? ›

What does Turkish delight taste like? This traditional treat comes in a huge variety of delicious flavours. Whether you adore pomegranate, pistachio, or mint, you can get your hands on a wonderful range of fruit, nut, and herb-based aromas. The most popular flavour is rosewater.

What is Turkish delight called in USA? ›

In most of the world, "Aplets & Cotlets" were based on a treat called lokum, a word derived from Arabic, but the British and Americans know it as "Turkish delight."

Is Turkish delight good or bad for you? ›

Because Turkish delights are made primarily with sugar, they're not very healthy. They're the same as many other popular candies and gummy treats when it comes to their effects on your health.

Why is Turkish delight good for kidneys? ›

Due to the fact that Turkish Delight is a carbohydrate source, doctors actually recommend that kidney patients eat this tasty treat. It has also been known to help acne, boils & scars. The chewy textures help to strengthen the teeth and reduce tonsillitis.

What is a fun fact about Turkish delight? ›

Here are 10 interesting facts about this sweet treat.
  • Turkish delight is believed to have been invented in the late 1700s in Istanbul, Turkey. ...
  • The original recipe for Turkish delight contained only sugar, water, and cornstarch. ...
  • Turkish delight was a popular gift among the Ottoman Empire's elite.
Feb 24, 2024

What the heck is Turkish delight? ›

What is Turkish Delight? Turkish Delight or Turkish Delights also called Lokum are a fragrant jelly candy recipe native to Turkey. I make these delicate candies in a variety of ways including with rosewater, bergamot, cinnamon or orange and sometimes include coconut, dried fruits and nuts.

What is the famous brand of Turkish delight? ›

HazerBaba has become a well-known brand in over 30 countries, single-handedly producing the majority of all Turkish delight exports.

What Greek sweet is like Turkish delight? ›

Loukoumi is a jelly like candy traditionally flavored with rose or mastic- rose is my favorite flavor! Originally a Turkish confection, it's been adopted by Greeks as their own. You can find varieties with mixed nuts, almonds or pistachios but I've always been told those are more Turkish recipes than Greek.

What does Turkish delight smell of? ›

Transport yourself to the Grand Bazaar, winding through the streets of Istanbul. Senses pique at the aromas of rich coffee and tobacco, curling past wafts of ginger and cinnamon that take your breath away.

Is Turkish delight full of sugar? ›

Turkish Delight, also known as Lokum, is a popular confectionery originating from Turkey. In simple words, it is a jelly-like soft nougat bar mainly made from starch and sugar and typically flavoured with rosewater, lemon, or other fruit flavours.

Should you refrigerate Turkish delight? ›

Although it's important to keep your Turkish delight cool, don't store it in the fridge. Your refrigerator will draw more moisture out of your Turkish delight, causing it to sweat even after it has stabilized at room temperature. Turkish delight is best stored in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight.

What does cream of tartar do in Turkish delight? ›

Ingredients used in this Easy Turkish Delight

Cornflour: The one made with corn. I use proper cornflour, not wheaten; trust me, it's a thing, so check your label. You use less of this than the traditional method. Cream of tartar: used as an acid to help with taste and texture.

Are there different types of Turkish delight? ›

These traditional flavors of Turkish delight are still available at stalls in Istanbul's Spice Bazaar, along with flavor variations such as sour cherry, cinnamon, hazelnut, ginger and apricot.

Does Turkish delight have animal gelatin? ›

Traditional Turkish Delight is 100% vegan; its recipe doesn't contain animal products. But some modern variations or commercially produced versions might include ingredients like gelatin or dairy. It's advisable to check the ingredients list or choose specifically labelled vegan options.

Is Turkish delight traditional? ›

Turkish delight, known as Lokum in Turkey, is a centuries-old confectionery with a rich and fascinating history. Believed to date back to the late Ottoman Empire, these sweet treats have captivated taste buds across generations.

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