Ube Pandesal

Just when you thought Pandesal couldn’t get any better! Soft bread in bright purple color with cheese and sprinkled with graham crumbs. An exciting new take on this Filipino breakfast staple!

ube pandesal on baking pan

This new breed of pandesal is making a splash in the Filipino baking scene. Soft bread with its beautiful purple hue and oozing cheese. This has gained popularity late last year but I was holding back to make it.

I was thinking of ways on how to tweak it and be a bit different from other recipes out there. After some tries and endless taste test by my husband, I finally settled on this recipe. Enjoy this Filipino bread roll for breakfast and as a snack.

ube pandesal and ube jam

What is Pandesal

Pan de sal is Spanish for “salt bread”. But it is actually mild in taste with a little touch of sweetness. It is a common bread roll in the Philippines that is usually served at breakfast but can also be eaten at any time of day.

The usual ingredients for this versatile roll are flour, vegetable shortening, yeast, sugar, and salt. It is one of the Filipino bread that you will see on display at local bakeries. Just like pan de coco which I already have a recipe here, it’s a hallmark of a Filipino breakfast!

 How to Make Ube Pandesal

Making cheesy ube pandesal is not far from how you make the regular one. You can follow my pandesal recipe with some minor altercations like adding ube powder flavoring and food color and use the measurements below.

Powdered milk is also removed since I already used ube powder. For the yeast, I used dry activated yeast. You can also use instant yeast that you can directly add to the flour, sugar, and food coloring.

For the cheese filling, I used Vache Qui Rit, it is a blend of cream, milk and aged cheeses. You can use any quick melt cheese depending on what you fancy. Lastly, instead of using bread crumbs to sprinkle the pandesal, I used crushed graham. If you want something different yet delicious, this is for you!

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Tips for Ube Pandesal

  • When making the dough, it shouldn’t be too sticky or too dry. You should be able to mold it just like clay.
  • When using dry active yeast make sure that there are bubbles after adding water, if not discard and make a new one.
  • All ingredients should be at room temperature.
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5 from 3 votes

Ube Pandesal

Just when you thought Pandesal couldn't get any better! Soft bread in bright purple color with cheese and sprinkled with graham crumbs. An exciting take on this Filipino breakfast staple!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Resting Time1 hr 30 mins
Total Time2 hrs 5 mins
Course: Bread
Cuisine: Filipino
Keyword: ube cheese pandesal, ube pandesal, ube pandesal recipe
Servings: 12 pieces
Author: Mia


  • 333 grams or 2 ¾ cups bread flour
  • 53 grams or ¼ cup light brown sugar or granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp purple food color powdered
  • 4 tbsp powdered ube flavoring
  • 2 tbsp McCormick ube extract
  • 148 ml water warm or warm milk
  • 4 grams yeast
  • 33 grams shortening/ soften butter
  • 5 grams salt
  • 12 slices Vache Qui Rit or any kind of cheese
  • crushed graham or bread crumbs for topping


  • In a small bowl pour the warm water or milk then add the dry active yeast. Let sit for 5 mins to bloom.
  • In a different bowl place the bread flour, light brown sugar, salt, powdered ube flavoring, and food color. Mix until well incorporated.
  • When the yeast mixture is ready pour into the dry ingredients then mix by hand until incorporated. Add the McCormick ube extract then knead for 3 mins until it dough forms.
  • If you're using a stand mixer, attached bowl and use a hook attachment. Start mixer starting from the lowest speed. Increase speed after a minute or so.
  • Add vegetable shortening then knead until the dough become smooth and elastic. (NOTE: do not dust your work surface with flour to avoid making the dough dry and hard).
  • Place the dough into a greased bowl and cover with cling film or clean kitchen towel and let it rest for 1 hour or until it doubles in size.
  • When the dough is double in size, lightly punch it to release air. Cut the dough into small sizes, approx. 50 grams each.
  • Take a piece of dough and form into a ball. Flatten the dough then place the cheese on top of the dough. Seal the edges by gathering the ends and pinching them to seal. Make sure to put the sealed side down at the bottom.
  • Roll the shaped dough in crushed graham and transfer them to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rest again for 20 mins until double in size. While waiting, preheat oven at 160°c
  • After resting the dough place inside the preheated oven and bake for 20-25 mins.
  • Remove from the oven and let it cool for a couple of minutes. Bon appetit!



Proofing time or resting time depends on location. Warmer areas means faster proofing while colder areas takes more time. It all depends on the humidity.
You can add more of the liquid ube flavoring or you can dilute the ube powder into 1 tbsp of milk or water to make a paste-like texture.


  1. Hi, just wondering if u can give me more info about the powdered Ube flavoring? Where can u get it? Brand? Thank you 😊

    1. Author

      Hi Joyce,
      I bought the powdered ube flavoring in Asian store, It’s the one used for making bubble tea. I’ll try to get the Brand for you. If you can’t get your hands on some powdered ube flavoring, you can add more McCormick ube extract by making it 1 1/2 tbsp. Thank you and happy baking!

      1. Hi dear, is it one tbsp powdered Ube equals to 1 1/2 tbsp extract?

        1. Author

          Hi Loraine,
          I used 4 TBSP ube powder and 2 TBSP ube extract.

          Hope this helps

          1. Hi dear I meant I have no Ube powder but you said I can use Ube extract for it, so how much Ube extract to substitute Ube powder

          2. Author

            Hi Loraine,
            Add additional 2 tbsp ube extract to replace the ube powder. Goodluck

  2. Can I use mozzarella cheese and/or sandwich slice cheeses? as a filling…

    1. Author

      Hi Amichelle,
      I can definitely say yes to using sandwich slice cheese, just fold it so it will fit in the dough. FOr mozzarella cheese, it depends on what kind, the ready to eat type can probably work but not the fresh one. Hope this helps. Thank you for dropping by and happy baking.

  3. it didn’t say what oven temperature should bake? I assume 350 celcius?

    1. Author

      Hi Rhea,
      Thanks for dropping by, It says in the recipe card that you pre-heat the oven at 160°Celcius that is equivalent to 320°F
      “While waiting, preheat oven at 160°c
      After resting the dough place inside the preheated oven and bake for 20-25 mins.”
      The temperature set at preheating is also the temp for baking! Good luck and happy baking!

    1. Author

      Hi Anna,
      Yes, you can. Happy baking!

  4. Mine wAs doughy after adding the milk and yeast. So I decide to add a little water and when butter was added it became sticky so I added a little bit of bread flour.

    Can you give the us measurements for some of the ingredients?

    1. Author

      Hi Sharina,
      First of all, thank you for dropping by. What particular ingredients do you want in US measurements? I sent you an email and hope that helps. HAppy baking

  5. Hi! Where did you buy your cheese? Can i get it at any local stores? Thanks!

    1. Author

      Hi Neth,
      Where are you located? I personally live in France and the cheese I used is very common in local stores in Europe. However, you can just use any type of meltable cheese. Many thanks!

      1. Hi. Can i use all purpose flour?

        1. Author

          Hi Marshal,
          Yes you can use all-purpose flour. Happy baking

  6. Hi, the cheese keep oozing out of the bread. What am I doing wrong?

    1. Author

      Hi Gina,
      Make sure to seal the dough really well after placing the cheese inside. You can also lessen the cheese first and add more to see if it will ooze out. hope this helps. Thanks and good luck!

      1. Thank you.
        I also have the same problem with Jessica. I’m using Giron Foods powdered purple yam. You can’t taste the ube flavor.

        1. Author

          Hi Gina,
          Try adding a bit more of powdered ube or the liquid ube extract. Thank you

          1. My friend is using purple yam & cheese inside

  7. Hello! Can I add bread improver/enhancer?

    1. Author

      Hi Grace,
      Yes you can but I don’t have a measurement for it since the recipe gives a soft bread already. Hope this helps.

  8. Hello! I made this one but it doesn’t taste like ube. But perfectly turns out like a pandesal. How can I improve the taste? Thank you! 😊

    1. Author

      Hi Jessica
      Thank you for dropping by. What brand are you using for the powdered ube flavoring? Let me know.

  9. Can I use AFP instead of bread flour? If so, do I make any changes with measurements? Thanks

    1. Author

      Hi Raquel,
      Yes, you can use All-Purpose Flour. Its the same measurement with bread flour.
      Thank you and Happy Baking!

  10. Hi! I wonder if I can use ube jam or the real ube halaya for this recipe? Will it still turn out the same? Thanks!

    1. Author

      Hi Maria,
      Yes you can use ube jam or real ube halaya. Just omit the powdered ube in the ingredients.
      Expect the dough to be more sticky.
      Do not add too much flour when kneading or else the bread will be tough.

  11. Hi there! Your recipe says to use 2 Tbsp ube extract, but in the video it says 1 tsp. Can you clarify the correct amount, please? (The extract is very hard to find in London at the moment so I want to make sure I get it right!)

    1. Author

      Hi Julia,
      Please follow the recipe card which is 2 Tbsp. The video is a guide for the process.
      Thnak youand happy baking!

  12. Can i use butter instead of shortening? How much butter?

    1. Author

      Hi Marie,
      Yes, you can use soften butter or oil same quantity 33 grams or 2TBSP + 1tsp.

      Thanks and Happy baking!

  13. Hi..is it possible to use ube extract and liquid flavouring if I don’t have ube powder?thank u..

    1. Author

      Hi Yhen,
      If you don’t have the powdered ube, try adding more ube extract.

  14. How long can you store ube pandesal?expiration date

    1. Author

      Hi Laurice,
      You can store it in an airtight container and will be good for 2-3 days.
      If you place it inside a fridge (sealed in a container) it will last up to 5 days
      but remember to heat it in a microwave or oven.

  15. Hi. Can I use ube paste instead of ube powder? Whats the measurement for the ube paste? Thanks!

    1. Author

      Hi Susan,
      Yes you can use ube paste but I haven’t tried it yet so I can’t give you a measurement.
      I can suggest trying with 2 tbsp first and go from there.

  16. Do you have measurements for us measurements? Can i use instant yeast instead of dry active yeast? Thank you

    1. Author

      Hello Marie,
      Thank you for dropping by.Please see the video at the bottom of the recipe card where the measurements are Converted to US.
      Yes, you can use the instant yeast and add directly to dry ingredients.

      1. Hi Mia! Really interested to know how the ube pandesal will taste like so tried it today. Can you please help me in identifying what I did wrong because the dough was too difficult knead (somehow dry) and it didnt also rise after resting it for an hour.

        The things I changed from the procedure were:

        Added the instant yeast in the warm milk + 2tbsp of sugar just to check if it’s still active.

        Used softened butter since I dont have vegetable shortening.

        Id really like to be successful in this recipe you shared.

        Hoping to hear from you soon!

        1. Author

          Hi Nalyn,
          First, thank you for dropping by. Can you please tell me what kind of flour you used? If you’re using bread flour and it’s a bit dry, you can add 1 tbsp water or milk at a time until you get the desired consistency (not too wet and not too dry). Another reason is if you are using instant yeast, you don’t have to add milk, you can add instant yeast directly to dry ingredients. You activate yeast in warm water or milk if you are using dry active yeast. Hope this helps and just ask if you need any help.

  17. What if i dont have ube powder, just i have ube jam and ube essence. Is this okay? Im afraid the dough will not form?

    1. I dont have ube powder or ube flavoring, what i have is ube jam in the bottle and ube extract/essence only.

    2. Author

      Hi Joyce,
      Yes, you can subtitute the ube powder for 1/4 cup ube jam (room temperature).

      1. I read that you can use the ube from bubble tea? Hmmmm can you tell more? It is the taro powder? It will give a color as well?

        1. Author

          Hi Joyce,
          I wouldn’t suggest it since I haven’t tried it. I’m not sure if you’ll get the same taste using the taro powder.

  18. What makes the difference if we add an egg to the recipe?

    1. Author

      Hi Gia,
      You can add an egg if you fancy and won’t make any difference but I like to stick with the traditional way of making pandesal without egg.

  19. 5 stars
    same thing happened to me..Dust it with flour while forming into dough balls and see the magic..no more sticky dough 🙂

    1. Author

      Hi Ruth,
      Thanks for the great feedback! Well done!

  20. Hello.just wondering if i can prepare and rest my dough overnight.and bake it in the morning time.thanks.

    1. Author

      Hi Girlie,
      Yes, you can make the dough and let it rest overnight inside the fridge to slow down the fermentation (cover with cling film). Take it out 1 to 1 1/2 hours before shaping them into pandesal at room temperature. Once the dough is shaped let it rise for 30 minutes more or until double in size. Hope this helps.

  21. 5 stars
    Thanks bunchies for this recipe! Mine turned out sobrang lambot and masarap!!! I did not find any ube halaya or powder – I only used flavoring so the ube flavor is not that pronounced but overall the taste, texture and appearance is pretty decent. Next time na lang I’ll make sure that I have all ingredients na para perfect na sya hihihi! Oh btw, I think the use of grahams on genius! Thanks again so much! ❤️

    1. Author

      Hi Sandy,
      Thank you for the positive feedback! Happy that we are part of your baking adventures. Best!

  22. Hi,
    Just would like to ask what if I only have ube powder, do I need to increase the amount to conpensate for the flavoring and ube extract? Thanks…

    1. Author

      Hi Michelle,
      Yes, you can add an additional of 2 tbsp of ube powder. If you find that the dough is too dry, gradually add 1 tbsp of warm milk or water until you achieve an elastic consistency.
      Hope this helps and good luck!

  23. Can you please convert your recipes to cups and tablespoons? I want also the recipes of siopao and ube cup cake. Thanks!

    1. Author

      Hi Neneng,
      I’ll try to convert them as soon as I can. Cheers and keep safe!

  24. 5 stars
    I can say , it’s a success! Not bad for the first try 😉👍 Happy baking😍

    1. Author

      Hi Alo,
      Happy to hear that you had success. Cheers to more baking!

  25. Hi,
    If i would like to make more should i just double all the ingredients? Also, any tips for the ube pandesal to stay nice and soft? I have tried some recipes for pandesal and they usually becomes hard even when kept in a container.

    1. Author

      Hi Jean,
      Yes, just double the ingredients if you want to make more. A few suggestions to keep them softer longer is to use less flour to cover the counter when kneading the dough. Make sure that the dough has good rise. Lard or vegetable shortening is better than butter. Hope this helps. Happy baking!

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