Akbar Mashti Ice Cream. Rose Saffron Pistachio Ice cream

Akbar Mashti ice cream is an extremely popular Persian ice cream flavor that I had for the first time last summer when we were on holiday in Vancouver, Canada.

The inspiration

At popular local gelato parlor Bella Gelateria in Vancouver is where we had this delectable ice cream and absolutely loved it.  Flavored with saffron, rose water and pistachios, seriously folks, this ice cream is creamy delicious!


Saffron, rose water, and salted pistachios – what a fabulous trio!  

I love rose essence, and am a huge fan of saffron and pistachios too!  Since I can’t go back to Vancouver for this ice cream I figured I’d try and replicate it at home.  What a delectable homemade ice cream this turned out to be!!  Positively mouth-singing ice cream flavor this is.


The original recipe is egg-based and has pistachio essence along with saffron, pistachios and rose essence, but in my version I skipped the eggs and made it with heavy whipping cream.  


Since I have roses still blooming this summer I also added finely chopped rose petals to give the ice cream delicate specks of pink.  But really, the flavors that predominate in this exotic ice cream are rose essence, saffron and pistachios. Give it a try!


The Background on Akbar Mashti Ice Cream an Iranian favorite

Wondering why this popular Iranian ice cream flavor is called Akbar Mashti?  It is named after Akbar Mashti, the man who introduced ice cream to Iran in the 1920s.  One of his uniquely Iranian ice cream flavor creation was a combination of rose water and saffron, with sometimes the addition of pistachios. This flavor became insanely popular in Iran and to this day still remains as the most well-known and beloved ice cream flavor among Iranians.  source: The Hershon Persian Saffron Rose Pistachio ice cream – بستنی سنتی


Akbar Mashti Ice Cream. Rose, Saffron Pistachio Ice cream


  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2 tbsp warm milk
  • 1 tsp saffron
  • 2 tbsp fresh rose petals finely cut
  • 1 tsp rose essence or 1 tsp rose water
  • 1/2 cup roasted salted pistachios finely cut into small pieces or finely chopped
  • 1 tsp vanilla


  • Warm the milk with the saffron in the microwave for about 20 seconds. Let the saffron soak in the warm milk for a few minutes to infuse the milk with the saffron flavor and color.
  • In a mixing bowl whisk together whipping cream, honey, rose essence, and vanilla. Add saffron milk and mix into the cream.  Add a little of the pistachios and rose petals, not too much.  Save the rest to add later as the ice cream thickens.
  • Pour this mixture into the ice cream maker.  Continue to run the ice cream machine until it starts to thicken.  Then slowly add the pistachios and rose petals.
  • Once the ice cream is thick and creamy to your liking,  ice cream is ready.
  • Transfer to a container and freeze.
  • When ready to serve, garnish with chopped pistachios, rose petals and saffron threads.

8 thoughts on “Akbar Mashti Ice Cream. Rose Saffron Pistachio Ice cream”

  1. Dolly , don’t you celebrate Janmashtami ? This is a major Festival in both North and South India ….

  2. When my grandkids return home from their Holiday Trip, this will be the Treat i will be making for them before they start School with slight variations … as they are allergic to Pistachios , i will instead use Mango slices …

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