Makar Sankranti, a festival celebrated with great fervor and enthusiasm in various parts of India, marks the transition of the sun into the zodiac sign of Capricorn. Falling in the middle of January every year, this festival holds cultural and religious significance across the nation. It is known by different names in different regions, such as Pongal in Tamil Nadu, Lohri in Punjab, and Uttarayan in Gujarat. Makar Sankranti is a time when families come together to celebrate the harvest season, embrace traditions, and indulge in delectable delights that are an integral part of the festivities.


Significance of Makar Sankranti:

Makar Sankranti signifies the end of the winter solstice and the beginning of longer days. It is considered an auspicious time for spiritual practices and is celebrated with various customs and rituals. Flying kites, taking holy dips in rivers, and making charitable donations are some common traditions associated with this festival. The shift in the sun’s position is believed to bring positive energy and prosperity.


Regional Celebrations:

Pongal in Tamil Nadu:

In Tamil Nadu, Makar Sankranti is celebrated as Pongal. The highlight of the celebration is the preparation of ‘Pongal,’ a traditional dish made with newly harvested rice, jaggery, and milk. The boiling over of milk symbolizes prosperity and abundance. The festival lasts for four days, each day holding its unique significance.


Lohri in Punjab:

Lohri, celebrated predominantly in Punjab, is a festival dedicated to the agricultural community. Bonfires, traditional folk dances, and singing around the fire are common during Lohri. The festival marks the end of winter and the onset of longer days. People exchange greetings and share traditional sweets like sesame seed and jaggery chikkis.

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Uttarayan in Gujarat:

In Gujarat, Makar Sankranti is celebrated as Uttarayan with vibrant kite-flying competitions. The sky becomes a canvas as colorful kites soar high, symbolizing the victory of light over darkness. Special dishes like ‘Undhiyu,’ a mixed vegetable curry, and ‘Chikki’ made with sesame seeds and jaggery are relished during the festivities.


Delectable Delights During Makar Sankranti:

Til Ladoo (Sesame Seed Sweet Balls):

Til Ladoo, made with roasted sesame seeds, jaggery, and ghee, is a popular sweet prepared during. These bite-sized delights are not only delicious but also rich in nutrients.



  • 1 cup sesame seeds (til)
  • 1 cup jaggery, grated
  • 2 tablespoons ghee


  • Roast sesame seeds until golden brown.
  • In a pan, melt ghee and add grated jaggery. Cook until it forms a syrup.
  • Mix the roasted sesame seeds into the syrup.
  • Shape the mixture into small ladoos.


Gur Ki Roti (Jaggery Flatbread):

Gur Ki Roti is a sweet flatbread made with jaggery, whole wheat flour, and ghee. It is a wholesome and flavorful dish enjoyed during Makar Sankranti.



  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup jaggery, grated
  • 2 tablespoons ghee


  • Mix whole wheat flour, grated jaggery, and ghee to form a soft dough.
  • Divide the dough into small portions and roll them into rotis.
  • Cook on a griddle until golden brown on both sides.


Khichari (Mixed Lentil and Rice Dish):

Khichari, a one-pot dish made with rice and mixed lentils, is considered auspicious during Makar Sankranti. It is often offered as prasad in temples.



  • 1 cup rice
  • 1/2 cup split yellow lentils (moong dal)
  • 2 tablespoons ghee
  • Cumin seeds, mustard seeds, and asafoetida for tempering
  • Vegetables like carrots, peas, and potatoes (optional)


  • Wash rice and lentils. Cook with water until soft.
  • In a pan, heat ghee, add tempering ingredients, and sauté vegetables.
  • Mix the cooked rice and lentils with the sautéed vegetables.

Makar Sankranti is a festival that beautifully blends tradition, spirituality, and culinary delights. As families come together to celebrate the changing season, share joyous moments, and relish these delectable recipes, the essence of unity and cultural diversity is truly embraced. May this Makar Sankranti bring prosperity, happiness, and a taste of these delightful traditions into every home!

Happy Makar Sankranti!!