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Buko Pandan - Food with Mae 3

Buko Pandan

Creamy Pandan and Young Coconut Dessert

What is Buko Pandan

Buko Pandan is a cold dessert with young coconut, milk and pandan jelly. These are the basic ingredients. Today there are many additional ingredients and toppings too. The word ‘buko’ means young coconut in particular because the word ‘niyog’ means mature coconut which will have coconut meat that is firmer than buko.

This dessert is enjoyed especially when it’s hot in the Philippines, however you will see Buko Pandan all year around and in being served as snacks and on special occasions. 

For my recipe I added some tapioca pearls to add more texture into the dessert. 

Swap it! Common Questions

Mr Gulaman – I used this jelly because it’s firmer than the usual jelly in the UK and it’s easier than the other brand. If you can’t find Mr Gulaman, you can buy jelly sheets too. I haven’t used this yet so please follow the instructions from the packet. 

Milk – to get the authentic taste of this dessert I would highly recommend you use condensed and evaporated milk.

Filipino products – I bought Mr gulaman, nata de coco, macapuno, tapioca and pandan essence from Chinatown, it’s also available in Earls Court Filipino grocery shops and you can find them in Wing Yip too. 

I bought the easy cooking tapioca pearls because it’s easy and saves me time. I also didn’t add the tapioca pearls until i’m ready to serve the dessert to avoid the pearls turning hard. 

Buko Pandan - Food with Mae 3


1 sachet green Mr Gulaman (unflavoured)
1 teaspoon pandan essence
2 packets young shredded coconut (thawed)
1 jar macapuno
1 jar nata de coco
1 can condensed milk
1 can evaporated milk
Tapioca pearls



To make the pandan Jelly follow the instructions of the Mr Gulaman packet, add pandan essence before adding the mixture into a mold or container. 


In a large bowl or container, add diced jelly, thawed & drained young coconut, macapuno, nata de coco, condensed milk and evaporated milk. Mix them well until all of the ingredients are all well incorporated. Taste it and add more sugar if you want it to be sweeter.




Refrigerate overnight or 2 or more hours before serving. Pour the mixture into cups or bowls, add the tapioca pearls and enjoy while it’s cold and chilled.

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