Ube Dessert: Why This Filipino Treat is Everywhere

From the aisles of Trader Joe’s to entire themed festivals, foodies everywhere are celebrating ube dessert. In fact, ube is by far the most popular ingredient among the bakers who sell on the Airmart e-commerce platform. Let’s find out what all the hype is about.

What is ube?

ube halaya

The word ube, which means ‘tuber’ in Tagalog, is the name for a purple yam (not to be confused with a purple sweet potato).

Ube comes from the Phillippines, so naturally, it has long been the star ingredient in Filipino desserts like ube cheesecake, ube flan, and ube buko pie. The base for many ube desserts is called ube halaya, which is a jam made from mashed purple ube, coconut milk and/or condensed milk, and butter.

You can often find ube desserts of all kinds in your local Filipino bakery.

What does ube taste like?

The magical root vegetable that makes desserts pretty in purple is sweeter than a sweet potato and slightly nutty in flavor. People often describe the ube flavor as having a hint of vanilla to it as well.

Where to find ube dessert

If you want to try ube in the San Francisco Bay Area and LA, here are some Airmart shops that offer ube desserts:

In these shops, you’ll find ube donuts, ube mochi, ube cheesecake, ube pie, ube brownies, ube cake, ube cookies, ube pandesal, ube crinkles, and more.

Sweet Pipers even makes an ube spread for ube pancakes and ube ice cream.

ube cheesecake

Ube vs Taro

You may have seen a similar vegetable that gives food a violet hue. This is taro, a root vegetable from Southeast Asia that is a popular milk tea flavor. Unlike ube, taro is often used in more savory foods like curries, french fries, and chips.

Ube entrepreneurs

These Filipino bakers have built entire dessert shops around ube! Read their stories to learn how:

Open an ube dessert shop

If you’ve got an amazing ube dessert recipe, open an Airmart shop and share it with your local community!