Other than nature’s beauty, there’s one thing that Kashmir is synonymized for -Saffron. The bright red colored threads popularly known as Kesar are extracted carefully from the crocus sativus flower that blooms in the field of Pampore mountains, Kashmir. 

From adding magical aroma and flavor to the food to providing potent antioxidants and nutrients to the body, Kesar can cater to all. Right from Indian biryani to Italian risotto and Spanish paella, saffron is used as an important spice in a number of cuisines. Simply adding a few strands of Kesar to the food not only adds nutrients but also enhances the overall food experience. 

Amongst various varieties of saffron cultivated across the world. Kashmiri saffron is the craze people can’t get over. The clean weather, fertile soil, and temperature in which it’s cultivated make Kashmir Kesar exceptional. 

Through this article let’s understand the importance and benefits of using Kesar and the ways of incorporating it for a healthy life. 


From medicinal science to Ayurveda, researchers in all fields have proved the health benefits of using Kesar in day-to-day life. Here’s a list of research-backed benefits of saffron

1. Boosts Immunity

Kashmir Saffron is research-proven to be loaded with some of the most powerful antioxidants like crocin, safranal, crocetin, and kaempferol. These antioxidants work at neutralizing the negative effects of free radicals in the body. Plus, they also eliminate day-to-day toxic buildup in the blood. All of which help to build and boost immunity naturally. 

2. Brings a natural glow to skin

Kaempferol present in Saffron makes it capable to protect the skin against sun damage. For flawless skin, beauty experts recommend using a face pack by mixing strands of saffron with a pinch of turmeric and raw milk on a regular basis. The potent nutrients present in kesar naturally help to get rid of acne scars, pigmentation, and dull skin. 

3. Improves Memory

Saffron is rich in nutrients like vitamins A, B, C, zinc, magnesium, manganese, and antioxidant crocin. All of which are research-proven to improve mental ability. Apart from this, saffron works as a mood booster. This means it helps balance mood and emotions which is directly linked with good memory and cognitive health.

4. Eases menstrual  Pain

Among the many therapeutic benefits of saffron, one of the most important is its ability to relieve pre-menstrual symptoms (PMS) and menstrual cramps. This is because of the presence of anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds in it. Studies have proven that regular usage of Kashmiri saffron can naturally lower stress hormone (cortisol) in females. This naturally results in reducing the severity of menstrual pain and discomfort.   

5. Supports weight loss

Kashmir kesar is beneficial for those aiming to reduce weight. This is because it has the ability to suppress appetite in the most natural way. Plus, it works at improving levels of serotonin (a hormone that can regulate mood) in the brain. This plays a key role in controlling overeating, emotional eating, or binge eating.

how to eat kashmiri kesar for maximum benefits

No matter how potent an ingredient is, incorrect ways of consumption can always limit its overall efficacy on the body. To help you reap the best out of kashmir saffron, here’s what you can do –

  • Prior to consumption, always soak saffron for 10-15 minutes in milk or water. This helps improve the bioavailability of nutrients. 
  • Soaked saffron threads can be used in masala milk, turmeric milk, sweets, rice, or curry. 
  • Do not throw away saffron-soaked water. Instead, use it in the dough to color your chapatis. 
  • For therapeutic benefits, soak 2-3 threads of saffron overnight and consume it first thing in the morning, with a glass of lukewarm water. 
  • For boosting immunity, mix saffron with turmeric powder or basil leaves, and consume once a day. 
  • To refresh yourself after a hectic day, boil a few kesar strands and prepare a kesar drink. You need not add sugar or milk to it.

kashmir saffron and authenticity

Pure Kashmir Saffron is nature’s boon. To be able to embrace it, it’s important to have a basic understanding of what real Kashmir Kesar feels like. Following simple tips and tricks can help you churn if the kesar you are investing in is real or fake. 

Handpicking thread from saffron flower and a bowl full of plucked Kesar threads
  • Look for Color and Aroma- Fresh, original Kashmir Kesar is bright crimson red in color. On rubbing between fingers it releases a nice golden yellow stain and a pleasant aroma.
  • Check Its Size- Original Kesar strands usually measure 2-4cm in length and are trumpet-shaped, meaning bulging at one end. 
  • Taste- Saffron smells sweet. This doesn’t mean that it will also taste sweet. Original Kashmir saffron tastes slightly bitter (pungent-like), not sweet. 
  • Test with Baking Soda-  This is a popular way of checking saffron authenticity. Simply mix saffron and baking soda in a small container and then pour water on it, The real saffron will turn nice yellow in color.

why is kashmir saffron expensive?

People often wonder what makes Kashmiri saffron so expensive. Well, the reasons are genuine-

  • Species of Origin-

Kashmir saffron is obtained from a species of flowers that are extremely rare and expensive. Plus, it requires a special temperature. On top of that, each flower typically contains not more than 3 strands of kesar. 

  • Harvesting Process- 

Harvesting of Kashmir saffron takes place just once a year, starting from late October till mid-November. It is a very tiresome process and requires a good amount of manpower with a certain set of skills to harvest kesar successfully. 

  • Storage-

Storage of saffron is a challenge. To maintain its freshness, taste, and aroma, It requires specific storage conditions, which becomes difficult for saffron harvesters to maintain in the cold climate of kashmir. 

some interesting facts about Kashmir Kesar

  • Iran is the largest producer of Saffron in the world. India comes second after Iran. 
  • Kesar is known as a ‘sunshine spice’ due to its ability to uplift mood and relieve stress, anxiety, or depression. 
  • The mesmerizing fragrance of saffron is the reason Queen Cleopatra bathed in saffron-infused donkey milk. 
  • Traditionally, in Persia, saffron threads were weaved into the fabric to be gifted to divinities. 
  • Kashmir Saffron naturally contains crocin. This is the reason it’s beneficial for improving vision.
  • Saffron is a natural aphrodisiac. This means it can improve libido in both males and females.
  • Cultivation of saffron requires low temperatures. A moist or warm environment can spoil the saffron crop. 
  • On being soaked in water, authentic saffron takes 10-15 minutes to change color to yellow while the strands remain red.
  • Due to its healing and anti-inflammatory properties, warriors generously used saffron to heal their wounds.  

why choose kashmir saffron?

Though, priced slightly more, the nutritional benefits it imparts are worth every penny. Moreover, checking for Kashmir Saffron authenticity while making a purchase assures its purity.

Saffron flower and many kesar threads

Pure Kashmir Kesar is a potent ingredient loaded with impressive health benefits. What distinguishes Kashmir valley Kesar from Spanish, Italian, and Afghani saffron is its intense color, alluring aroma, deep pungent taste, and nutritional composition that comes from exceptionally high levels of crocin, safranal, and picrocrocin

final words

In the world of spices, Kashmiri Saffron is a game changer! Just a few strands of pure Kashmir Kesar is all that it takes to transform a boring food into a mouthwatering nutritionally dense delicacy. 

Needless to say, it’s a multipurpose spice that boosts health and makes everyone fall in love with homemade food!