Desserts, Middle Eastern Recipes

Easy No Bake Knafeh Cups

Layers of knafeh dough, cream and pistachio in a cup

Want a fancy dessert with the stress? Drop some shredded phyllo crust in a cup, pour the sweet syrup over it then a layer of cream and your Easy No Bake Knafeh Cups are ready to be served!

Knafeh (or Kunafa, knefeh or Konafi) is a traditional, popular Middle Eastern pastry delight that resembles waffles, pancakes, or cheesecake. The Knafeh recipe was invented by Palestinian Arabs in about the 10th century and came to the territory of the present Turkey and Arab countries a long time ago.

Create joy in the depths of your heart and perfume your house with the smell of this insanely delicious Easy No Bake Knafeh Cups dessert. Trust me, you will adore this multilayered amazing dessert!😋

Easy Knafeh cups created by layering knafeh dough with cream and topped with pistachios.
Give yourself a treat!

Why You’ll Love this Amazing No Bake Knafeh Dessert

I love having hot, melty cheese knafeh while the filling is still gooey! But what if you can have it cold with soft filling and still find it just as delicious.

Simply put, it is easier and ready to serve at iftar time and at any happy celebration or achievement.

Moreover, one spoon will put you in a good mood.

This Kunafeh delight supplies the body with essential sugars that provide you with necessary energy.

Whenever you are craving a creamy dessert with a crunchy crust then the No Bake Knafeh is the best choice.

Some Knafeh Transformations

The Middle East has seen variations of the Knafeh dessert:

Have you ever tried hot cheese kunafeh in the special piece of bread called kaak? Because you should!

Imagine some knafeh rolls or asab3 filled with ricotta or mozzarella cheese. Soo yummy!

You’ll definitely feel like you’re dreaming when you combine sandy smooth knafeh with achta, the Arabic-style cream.

Despite all the above variations, nothing can replace the ultimate Easy No Bake Knafeh Cups presented here!😉

Make Shredded Phyllo Dough at Home

Whenever you have time and you like to make shredded pastry at your own place, follow these steps:

In a bowl, combine 100 grams of flour, 75 g cornstarch, water and vegetable oil and mix.

Then pour the mixture in a fine batter bag or plastic bottle with small nozzle in the cap.

Smear a pan with some oil over medium heat and pip the batter. Move your hands fast to form thin lines. Cook for few seconds and that’s it.

Make It Your Celebratory Treat!

Layers of knafeh dough, cream and pistachio in a cup.
Crunchy, creamy, and yummy!

Frequently Asked Questions

How long can I store knafeh leftovers?

Leftovers will keep well in the fridge for up to three days.

Can we make the sugar syrup at home if sugar is not available?

Sure! you’ll need two main ingredients: water and sugar. Heat two portions of sugar with one portion of water and lemon juice then add orange blossom water and simmer for one minute.

What is na’ameh Kunafeh?

There are two main types of knafeh dough: Na’ameh and Khisneh. Na’ameh is very smooth, with ground semolina dough or farkeh used for the topping. Khishneh is much rougher with crunchy pieces of pastry created using shredded dough or kataifi for the topping.

Can I substitute the butter?

Of course; you can use ghee.

Tips for the Best No Bake Knafeh Cups

Make sure the cornstarch is well dissolved without any visible cornstarch lumps.

Use sugar syrup and get the perfect consistency with orange blossom water!

Even if the use of red or orange food dye is optional, coloring the knafeh dough can imitate the color of the bird’s nest.

Briefly, drizzle the knafeh dough with enough butter and bake until it becomes nice and crisp.

The shredded phyllo dough dries out very quickly, so it is better to exposure to air at a minimum. Don’t open the package before you’re ready to use it.

Eat this sweet dessert with a strong good quality cup of coffee to balance the taste.

A crust of Knafeh dough soaked in a sweet syrup and layered upon with cream and pistachios served in a cup
What a heavenly taste!

Ingredients You’ll Need for the Knafeh Cups

For the Cream

Heavy whipping cream: It allows air to be trapped when whipped, roughly doubling the volume.

Half n half or milk, orange blossom water, and sugar: Mixing these ingredients with the heavy whipping cream creates the rich flavorful cream to make the best dessert ever.

Cornstarch: Use cornstarch to thicken the cream mixture.

Ricotta cheese: The creamy ricotta is the perfect ingredient to add freshness and richness to the cream filling.

For the Knafeh Dough

knafeh dough: I use shredded phyllo dough that’s ready to use.

Butter: Good quality and unsalted fresh butter yields an amazing smell and a unique flavor.

For the Sugar Syrup

I used sugar syrup.

Steps to Prepare

First, in a pot, whisk together the half n half, heavy cream, sugar, cornstarch and orange blossom until well combined and all the cornstarch is dissolved.

Then, cook on the stove over medium heat for around 6 to 10 minutes and keep mixing until thickened. Set aside to cool.

Once cooled, add the ricotta cheese and mix it in.

Now, in a saucepan, melt the butter stick on medium-low heat then add the shredded knafeh dough.

Next, mix for 6 to 8 minutes until crunchy.

After that, turn off the heat and let it cool until all ingredients are room temperature.

Then, line up the cups and follow these steps for layering: the crunchy knafeh dough, simple syrup on top and the cream.

Now, repeat these steps until you observe the desired knafeh cups and refrigerate them for 2 hours.

Finally, garnish with crushed pistachio nuts and dried rose petals. Bon Appétit!

Try Some Other Tasty Desserts!

Middle Eastern Rice Pudding (Riz Bi Haleeb)

Strawberry Mascarpone Crème Croissants

Palestinian Sesame Tea Cookies

Aish El Saraya Dessert

Sahlab Dessert Recipe

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Layers of knafeh dough, cream and pistachio in a cup

Easy No Bake Knafeh Cups

An easy delicious cup made up of crunchy Knafeh dough soaked in simple sugar layered with cream and topped with pistachios.
5 from 3 votes
Course Breakfast, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine Middle Eastern


For The Cream

  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup half n half or milk
  • 4 heaping tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon orange blossom
  • cup sugar
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese

For The Knafeh Dough

  • ½ package knafeh dough
  • 1 stick butter

For The Sugar Syrup

  • sugar syrup


  • In a pot, whisk together the half n half, heavy cream, sugar, cornstarch and orange blossom and mix until well combined.
  • Cook on the stove over medium heat for around around 6 to 10 minutes and keep mixing until thickened. Set aside to cool.
  • Once cooled, add the ricotta and mix it in.
  • In a saucepan, melt the stick of butter on medium-low heat and add the shredded knafeh dough.
  • Mix for 6 to 8 minutes until crunchy. Remove from heat and let cool until the ingredients are room temperature.
  • Line up some cups and start layering. Layer the crunchy knafeh dough and add simple syrup on top, then add the cream.
  • Repeat until done, and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  • Garnish with pistachio nuts and dried red petals if available. Enjoy!


  • Make sure all the cornstarch is dissolved in the mixture.
  • The use of food red coloring for the knafeh dough is optional.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

2 thoughts on “Easy No Bake Knafeh Cups

  1. April says:

    5 stars
    Great flavor and a perfect twist on traditional knafeh. Thanks for a new favorite.

  2. Maryam says:

    5 stars
    Loooove these! They’re the perfect party desserts!

5 from 3 votes (1 rating without comment)

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