skip to Main Content

Luscious and silky bilo-bilo made of sweet potato and glutinous rice cooked in sweet and creamy coconut milk. This is Ginataang Bilo-Bilo, a favorite Filipino merienda, made even more special.

 

Love Filipino snacks? Try these recipes out!

Turon with Dulce De Leche
Sweet Potato Palitaw
Moist Pandan Pancake with Nutella

How to make the Sweet Potato Rice Balls (Bilo Bilo)

The ratio of the glutinous rice, mashed sweet potato and water is crucial. Too much of the potatoes and or water can make the balls weak and sloppy. Hence, if you find the dough sticky after mixing the ingredients and initial kneading, add small amounts of glutinous rice flour (about 1/4 cup at a time) until a firm dough is formed.

Use different kinds of sweet potato such as jewel potatoes or purple sweet potatoes to make different colored rice balls.

Orange and Purple Sweet Potato

Not only did the sweet potatoes provided natural color to the rice balls but it also enhanced the overall texture also. It’s luscious, smooth and overall yummy!

To form the balls, take a small portion and then shape (or roll) into a small ball in between the palm of your hands. This is a neat trick that has been passed around from generation to generation of Filipinos.

Filipino glutinous rice ball snack in coconut milk

Ingredients of Ginataang Bilo-Bilo

Making this snack is known to be a family bonding activity in the Philippines.  The kids can help in making the balls while the adults can focus on preparing the rest of the ingredients.

  • glutinous rice balls
  • coconut milk and cream
  • sago or tapioca pearls
  • diced sweet potatoes
  • diced saba bananas
  • strips of ripe jackfruit
  • sugar
  • pinch of salt

All of the ingredients listed above are equally important. However, there’s one ingredient that I think is essential in making a really delicious Ginataang Bilo-Bilo—and that is ripe jackfruit.

Fresh jackfruit

Ripe jackfruit is what gives this delicious snack the sweet aroma and fruity flavor. That’s why if I don’t find langka (jackfruit in Tagalog), then it’s a no go for me.

Fresh ripe jackfruit is recommended when making this dish. The canned in syrup should be fine too but as it is already sweetened, make sure to adjust the amount of sugar you are going to put in the coconut milk mixture.

I hope you give this a try soon. Let me know how it goes in the comment section below. Enjoy!

WATCH THE VIDEO ON HOW TO MAKE GINATAANG BILO-BILO USING SWEET POTATO RICE BALLS




Ginataang Bilo-Bilo with Sweet Potato Rice Balls

Luscious and silky bilo-bilo made of sweet potato and glutinous rice cooked in sweet and creamy coconut milk. Other ingredients such as saba bananas, langka (jackfruit) and sago are also added making this even more special.
Prep Time40 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Course: Snack
Cuisine: Filipino
Keyword: bilo bilo recipe, ginataan, ginataang halo halo
Servings: 6 -8 servings
Author: Mella

Ingredients

Rice Balls:

  • 1 cup water add more if needed
  • 2 1/2 cup glutinous rice flour
  • 1 medium-size sweet potatoes I used Jewel sweet potato
  • water for boiling

Other ingredients:

  • 4 cups coconut milk
  • 1 cup coconut cream
  • 2 cups ripe jackfruit or langka sliced into strips
  • 2 cups sweet potatoes diced
  • 2 cups saba or plantain bananas diced
  • 1 cup sago cooked as per package directions
  • 3/4 cup white sugar add more if preferred
  • pinch of salt

Instructions

How to make Bilo Bilo with Sweet Potato

  • Peel the sweet potatoes then cut into chunks. Place in a pot and add enough water to cover. Bring to a boil and cook until tender, around 15 to 20 minutes. Drain the potatoes and return to the pot. Mash with a fork or potato masher.
  • Place glutinous rice flour in a large mixing bowl then add water. Mix together by hands or a hard spatula.
  • Add mashed sweet potato. Knead with your hand until a smooth soft dough forms (see video). If the dough turns out dry, add a bit of more water, about 2 tablespoons at a time, until it becomes elastic and smooth.
  • To form the balls, take a small portion of the dough and then shape (or roll) into a small ball in between the palm of your hands. This recipe makes about 20 to 30 pieces of bilo-bilo.

How to Make the Ginataan

  • Pour 4 cups of coconut milk into a large pot. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Gently add the rice balls once it starts bubbling. Stir carefully using a wooden spoon to prevent them from sticking together.
  • When the rice balls start to float onto the surface, add the diced sweet potato. Cook for 5 minutes.
  • Add the jackfruit strips and diced saba bananas. Continue cooking for 5 minutes or until the fruits are cooked, stirring occasionally.
  • Finally, add the sago, sugar, coconut cream and pinch of salt. Gently stir until the sugar is completely dissolved. Taste and add more sugar if desired.
  • Remove from heat then transfer to serving bowls. Serve warm or cold. Enjoy!

Notes

  • The ratio of the glutinous rice, mashed sweet potato and water is crucial. Too much of the potatoes and or water can make the balls weak and sloppy. Hence, if you find the dough sticky after mixing the ingredients and initial kneading, add small amounts of glutinous rice flour (about 1/4 cup at a time) until a firm dough is formed.
  • Use different kinds of sweet potato such as jewel potatoes or purple sweet potatoes to make different colored rice balls.
  • Fresh ripe jackfruit is recommended when making this dish. The canned in syrup should be fine too but as it is already sweetened, make sure to adjust the amount of sugar you are going to put in the coconut milk mixture.
Jump to Video

Last Updated on

Leave a Reply

shares