Thandai Ice Box Cake

Layers of biscuit cake, topped with whipped thandai and splattered with colorful rose water, this no bake cake is an absolute delight for Holi!

Thandai Ice Box Cake

What is an Icebox Cake?

An Icebox Cake is a dessert that’s typically made by layering cream, fruit, nuts and wafers or biscuits. It’s set in the refrigerator and there’s no baking required!

Classic Icebox Cakes became popular in the 1930’s, as housewives started using the “icebox” (a small, non-mechanical refrigerator) as a kitchen appliance. Companies started printing icebox cake recipes on the back of boxes of chocolate wafers and graham crackers, helping the dessert take off!

Thandai Ice Box Cake

While it may sound a little odd, crunchy cookies turning into a cake, it somehow works, that’s the genius of an icebox cake. In the refrigerator, the cookies/wafers soften just enough to be tender and flaky, soaking up the cream and fruit into a dessert that resembles a fancy layered torte, with thin layers of cake.

Thandai Ice Box Cake

Thandai Ice Box Cake

Since Holi is around the corner I thought it would be perfect to make an Ice box cake with the flavors of thandai. For the cake layer I used Marie biscuit (similar to Rich Tea in the UK) as it’s neutral in flavor and soaks up liquids quite well. The whipped cream is flavored with thandai powder and a drop of vanilla. The cake, like many of my desserts is mildly sweet, nothing that’s cloyingly tacky or sticky. It’s light, colorful and and absolute delightful treat that can be made well ahead of time. 

Thandai Ice Box Cake Thandai Ice Box Cake

 Here’s what you’ll need to make it:

  • Marie Biscuit or Rich Tea Biscuits
  • Heavy Cream
  • Confectioners Sugar
  • Thandai Mix (powder); homemade or store bought
  • Vanilla extract
  • Rose water
  • Food color; optional 

Thandai Ice Box Cake

Making Thandai Ice Box Cake

You can make this cake in a rectangle or round cake pan. I used a 6 inch springform pan. Start by whipping your heavy cream with the confectioners sugar, thandai mix, and vanilla extract. Whip until you get stiff peaks. 

In a pan layer your biscuits, followed by a thick layer of whipped thandai, followed by biscuits, repeat until you’ve filled up the pan, end with a layer of whipped thandai.

Thandai Ice Box Cake

Cover the cake with a cling wrap and refrigerate overnight. You can make this call 2-3 days ahead of time!

Once you’re ready to serve, prepare a mixture of a drop of rose water mixed with your favorite food colors. I used pinks, purples, blues and greens. Remove cake from springform pan and using a clean food only toothbrush or paint brush splatter on the cake for a pichkari effect. 

Serve and enjoy. Refrigerate any leftovers 

Thandai Ice Box Cake

Oh and for my dessert lovers, stay tuned as I have a few more no bake cakes coming your way! 

Thandai Ice Box Cake
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Layers of biscuit cake, topped with whipped thandai and splattered with colorful rose water, this no bake cake is an absolute delight for Holi!
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Indian
Serves: 4
  • 2 cups cold heavy whipping cream
  • ⅓ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoon thandai mix powder 
  • 30 Marie biscuits/rich tea (more or less, depending on the shape of your dish)
  • 1 tablespoon rose water; divided amongst a variety of food colors 
  • Optional garnish: sprinkles, edible flowers
  1. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat heavy cream, powdered sugar, vanilla and thandai powder until stiff peaks form.
  2. Place a layer of the Marie biscuits or rice tea biscuits in the bottom of a 6 inch springform cake tin or baking dish of choice, breaking them as necessary in order to fit.
  3. Gently spread ¼ of the whipped cream on top of the biscuits. Top with a second layer of biscuits and then another layer of whipped cream.
  4. Repeat the layers until you have used a fourth layer of biscuits and the final ¼ of the cream.
  5. Cover loosely and refrigerate for at least 6 hours - overnight.
  6. To give the colorful pichkari look, place the rose water in a plate and a few different food color drops spread out. Using a food brush, dip in the colors, hold at a distance from the cake and splatter.
  7. Alternatively, garnish the cake with sprinkles, nuts, or edible flowers.
This cake can be made 2-3 days ahead of time.

For an added crunch, add a sprinkle of nuts in the center layer.


4 thoughts on “Thandai Ice Box Cake

  1. Hi Nisha.. thank you so much. Can’t wait to try it. Can you please mention which store bought brand Thandai you used for the cake? Thanks

  2. Is there a trick to whipping the cream? Can you do a video , I made your mithai cake too but my cream whipping skills are lacking . Love love your desserts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *