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Ube Halaya - Philippine Purple Sweet Potato Spread

Let's turn ube (purple sweet potatoes) into ube halaya spread! Perfect for your morning toasts, pancakes/waffles, and a great filling for bread/pastries.

Ube halaya is a Philippine bread/pastry spread with a naturally pretty purple color. It can be enjoyed as is as dessert, but I prefer to treat it as spread for my morning toasts, or as filling for my bread rolls. Ube halaya is my second most favorite Asian spread, right after srikaya (egg and coconut milk spread).

Ube Halaya - Philippine Purple Sweet Potato Spread

Like srikaya, you can buy ube halaya at most Asian grocery stores. But making it at home means it will be free of preservatives, and I get to control the level of sweetness too. Plus, it is actually super easy to make your own batch of ube halaya.

Ube Halaya - Philippine Purple Sweet Potato Spread

Here is what we need to make our own ube halaya: purple sweet potato, condensed milk, coconut milk, sugar, and butter. First, steam/boil the purple sweet potato until tender, then drain and mash with a fork/food processor. Combine mashed purple sweet potato with the rest of the ingredients in a sauce pot and bring to a boil, then lower the heat to a simmer, and continue cooking until the spread is thick. I usually stop cooking once I can see the bottom of my pot when I scrape the mixture with a spatula.

Ube Halaya - Philippine Purple Sweet Potato Spread

I store the spread in clean glass jars and place them in the fridge. If you want to make sure the spread will last for some time, it is best to treat the jar(s) as if for canning purpose, i.e. sterilize by cooking in boiling water first. On the other hand, if you plan to finish the spread within 2 weeks, it is not that important to sterilize the jars.

Ube Halaya - Philippine Purple Sweet Potato Spread

5.0 from 3 reviews

Author: Anita Jacobson




Prep Time: 10 mins

Cook Time: 30 mins

Total Time: 40 mins

Serves: 1 1/2 cup


  • 250 gram purple sweet potato, peeled and cubed into 1" (about 2 cups)
  • 1 can condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon salted butter (or 1 tablespoon unsalted butter + 1/4 teaspoon salt)


  1. Steam/boil sweet potato until fork tender. Drain the sweet potato, then mash with a fork (or with a food processor).
  2. Boil together mashed sweet potato with condensed milk, coconut milk, sugar, and butter in a sauce pot. Once it boils, reduce heat to a simmer and continue cooking until the spread is thick. I usually stop cooking once I can see the bottom of the pot when scrape with a spatula.
  3. Transfer the cooked spread into clean glass jar(s) and store in the refrigerator. Allow the spread to return to room temperature prior to serving.


  • Sandra Shaffer says:

    I've seen different recipes using purple sweet potatoes, but I've never tasted it. This spread sounds so tasty and easy to make. I would love to spread some on toast and enjoy with a cup of tea!

  • Jenn says:

    I have never heard of this before, but I'm definitely intrigued. And that color is so pretty!

  • Ginny McMeans says:

    This is such a unique recipe and I love it! Healthy ingredients and a beautiful color to boot. Thanks so much!

    • Anita says:

      Yup, this should be a pretty healthy spread :)

  • Christine says:

    This is simply amazing, Anita. I like spreading sweet potato on my toast for breakfast. I think I will really like this too! :-)

    • Anita says:

      Sweet potato! Somehow I have a feeling it should be pretty inter-changeable with purple sweet potato. Orange spread should look just as lovely as the purple one ;)

  • Brian Jones says:

    Wow that is a certainly a new recipe for me and can't even imagine the flavour, lovely colour too!

    • roy loredo says:

      I am sorry if the error i detected is only a problem with nomenclature. I just want to point out that "ube" is a purple yam and not a purple sweet potato. This particular yam tastes vastly different from the sweet potato. No offense meant.

  • tania says:

    i wonder if this would work with normal orange sweet potato and normal full cream milk instead of coconut? (not a big fan of coconut milk even tho i like srikaya)

    • Anita says:

      Hi Tania, it should work with normal orange sweet potato, but of course the color will be orange instead of purple :) I haven't tried using full cream milk, but I don't see why it won't work.

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