Ube ice cream
Ube ice cream in the Philippines
Alternative namesPurple yam ice cream
TypeIce cream
Place of originPhilippines
Serving temperatureCold

Ube ice cream is a Filipino ice cream flavor prepared using ube (purple yam) as the main ingredient. This ice cream is often used in making the dessert halo-halo.


Ube–macapuno ice cream, served in Hawaii

Due to its vivid violet color and mildly sweet and nutty taste, ube has been a staple of Filipino desserts, most notably ube halaya. The earliest recorded use of ube in ice cream was in a recipe from 1922,[1] when ice cream's introduction to Filipino culture during the American occupation (as the local adaptation sorbetes) led to new flavors such as mango, pinipig and melon. The recipe called for mashed ube, milk, sugar and crushed ice.[1] During that time, ice cream was also hand-churned in a garapinyera, a manually operated ice cream mixer.[2]

Ube ice cream[3] has risen in popularity outside the Philippines, due to its use by Filipino immigrants in restaurants (often with halo-halo) and Trader Joe's line of ube products,[4] its vivid violet color and the spread of its pictures on social media.[5][6][7]

Use in halo-halo

Ube ice cream is a common ingredient in halo-halo, a popular Filipino dessert consisting of a mix of various ingredients, such as coconut, sago, sweetened beans, slices of fruit such as jackfruit or mango, leche flan and nata de coco, and ube itself in halaya form. Ube is seen as an essential ingredient of halo-halo due to lending the dessert its distinctive flavor and violet color. Thus, ube ice cream may be used in place of or together with ube halaya. Since evaporated milk is another essential ingredient of halo-halo, using ube ice cream as well makes for a creamier recipe.[8][9][10]

See also


  1. ^ a b Valdeavilla, Ronica (June 8, 2018). "Ube: The Philippine Purple Yam (More Popular Than Vanilla!)". The Culture Trip. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  2. ^ Bueno, Anna (October 14, 2016). "All hail ube, the culinary gem we took for granted". CNN Philippines. Archived from the original on September 6, 2023. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  3. ^ "Ube Ice Cream Recipe". Pinoy Recipe At Iba Pa. Retrieved June 16, 2017.
  4. ^ "The Ube Craze at Trader Joe's Doesn't Have to End at the Grocery Chain". Thrillist. July 2021. Retrieved April 4, 2022.
  5. ^ Crowley, Chris (August 10, 2017). "Is Ube the New Matcha?". Grub Street. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  6. ^ Bumatay, Christine (July 2, 2019). "Ube Ice Cream Is The Flavor Of Summer 2019, But Here's What Filipino Folks Want You To Know". Bustle. Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  7. ^ Fisher, Laura (July 16, 2019). "What Is an Ube and Why Is It So Trendy Right Now?". Real Simple. Retrieved March 28, 2020.
  8. ^ "Bon Appétit Whitewashed Halo Halo and Filipinos Are Pissed". Huffington Post. October 28, 2016. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  9. ^ "We tried a popular Filipino dessert called halo-halo that has ube ice cream in it". Business Insider. December 26, 2018. Retrieved May 28, 2019.
  10. ^ Pablo, Sarahlynn (October 5, 2014). "The Secret To Great Halo-Halo". Filipino Kitchen. Archived from the original on April 24, 2020. Retrieved May 28, 2019.