Henriques has been in solid form with the bat in Australia's two warm-up matches, scoring 16 and 33 in addition to taking 4-12 and 1-30 with the ball.
The 26-year-old has won the race for the all-rounder's spot ahead of fellow uncapped player Glenn Maxwell who's been named 12th man.
Victoria's James Pattinson, whose Test summer was cut short by a side injury, has been recalled as the third fast bowler alongside Mitchell Starc and Peter Siddle.
The tourists will field only one frontline spinner -- Nathan Lyon -- and will rely on captain Michael Clarke and David Warner to share the slow-bowling load.
Clarke has overcome a hamstring complaint while opening batsman David Warner will play despite not having fully recovered from a fractured thumb.
"It has happened very quickly. It wasn't really in my list of goals at the start of this first-class season," Henriques told reporters on Wednesday.
Star all-rounder Shane Watson's injury dramas, which will see the Test vice-captain play this series as a batsman only, have fast-tracked the rise of the big-hitting right-hander.
"I can't say how much I'm looking forward to the opportunity," Henriques said.
"Mickey (coach Mickey Arthur) came into my room last night and told me the news.
"There's been a lot of injuries and in amongst those injuries there has been some inconsistent form.
"I never thought it (Test cricket) had passed me by. I always felt that once I could stay on the park for long enough, the rest would take care of itself.
"That if I was good enough, it would all come to fruition."
India are set to play three or even four spinners in marked contrast to Australia's approach.
Australia team: Michael Clarke (capt), Ed Cowan, David Warner, Phil Hughes, Shane Watson, Matthew Wade, Moises Henriques, Peter Siddle, Mitchell Starc, James Pattinson, Nathan Lyon, Glenn Maxwell (12th man).