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Halo Halo Cupcakes


I am helping out with a fundraiser for ARK, a local group who helps raise funds to allow Filipino children to continue their education. The group wanted the food of the evening to highlight the Filipino culture, so I figured halo halo cupcakes would be perfect!

Halo Halo is a traditional Filipino dessert that can be made with a million different things, including a variety of savory and sweet ingredients.

These include boiled kidney beans, garbanzos, sugar palm fruit, coconut sport,  caramelized plantains, jackfruit, gulaman, tapioca, and pounded crushed young rice.

Most of these ingredients (fruits, beans, and other sweets) are first placed inside the tall glass, topped with shaved ice, and then sprinkled with sugar, and either (or a combination of) leche flan, purple yam (ube), ice cream, and/or evaporated milk.

I obviously couldn’t fit all of these ingredients into one cupcake, but I did my best to capture the essence of Halo Halo.

Serving: 15 cupcakes

Prep Time: 1 hour

Bake Time: 12-14 minutes

Cupcake Base:

  • 1 1/4 cup flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 eggs, room temperature

Coconut Curd:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 3/4 cup coconut milk
  • 2 whole Eggs
  • 2 Egg Whites
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Ube Frosting:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp. ube extract
  • 1/8 tsp. purple gel food coloring

Cupcake Toppings:

  • 1 mango, cubed
  • 2 kiwis, cubed
  • 1/2 cup toasted coconut
  • 1/2 cup toasted rice cereal
  • 15 banana chips

Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a cupcake pan with cupcake liners. In a medium bowl, whisk together 1¼ cups flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside. Using an electric mixer, quickly beat together the 2 eggs on medium speed. 

Add sugar, and continue to beat on medium speed (about 30 seconds). Add vanilla and oil, and beat on medium speed. Reduce mixer speed to low, and slowly add about half of the flour mixture. Add half of the buttermilk, then the rest of the flour mix, followed by the rest of the milk.

Beat until just combined and smooth, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl. The batter should be thin. Pour batter into a lined muffin pan filling the cups about ½ full. 

Bake for 12 -14 minutes. Let them cool in the pan for a couple minutes, then place on a wire rack to finish cooling.


As the cupcakes bake, prepare the coconut curd. With a hand mixer, beat together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in each egg one at a time, allowing them to mix completely before beating in another egg. Beat in coconut milk, until incorporated.

Over medium heat, in a double boiler, stir the mixture. Add in vanilla, and stir mixture frequently until the mixture begins to thicken (about 10 minutes). Pour into bowl and let cool in fridge. If you have any left overs, place them in an air tight container, and use within a week.

For the frosting, beat the butter until it is fluffy, then slowly incorporate the powdered sugar, 1/2 cup at a time. Add in ube extract, purple food coloring, vanilla, and salt, and continue to mix until all ingredients are fully incorporated. Add cream as needed, until the appropriate consistency is reached.


Fill with the coconut curd. Pipe on the ube frosting with a large, round tip, creating a sort of a frosting bowl.

Top the cupcake with chopped, fresh mango, kiwi, jack fruit, and a banana chip. Sprinkle with toasted, shredded coconut, and brown toasted rice cereal.

I think that the cupcake has a great tropical vibe, and I like the contrast between the smooth coconut curd and fresh fruit, and the crunch of the rice cereal and toasted coconut.


5 Things I Learned Cooking for Crowds (the Life and Death of the Mystery Meat Group pt. 2) | The Errant Diner

Monday 16th of June 2014

[…] Looking back, we didn’t really do anything crazy: Ukoy, Lumpia, Beef Adobo Sliders, a cocktail…hell, we had Spam!  All can be found at the usual Filipino gatherings, but by trying to at least up the presentation factor, I believe we got it to taste that much better.  To end, we put out our pièce de résistance, and the reason we pulled Chelsey on board: Halo-Halo Cupcakes.  Just a few weeks prior, she had never tasted Halo-Halo, much less tasted it.  One 15-minute tasting at Maharlika was all it took for her to create this beauty of a dessert topped with Ube (purple yam) icing, candied fruits, and a coconut curd.  Check out the recipe here. […]


Thursday 10th of April 2014

As a Filipino woman who grew up on halo-halo, I LOVE that you made these cupcakes! I'm going to try my hand at them soon!

Bunny Eats Design

Monday 31st of March 2014

I've never had halo halo before but these look great! They look like they could be eaten by The Simpsons.

p.s. I love your matching nail colour :)

Brent ~ College Recipe Cafe ~

Monday 31st of March 2014

Love the tropical toppings! Glad you stopped by the cafe. Now I know where to find the sweets! Looking forward to seeing the next batch ...Cheers!


Sunday 30th of March 2014

Coconut curd is brilliant and so are those cupcakes, best of luck with the fundraiser and thank you so much for the follow, so glad to have found your blog.


Tuesday 1st of April 2014

Thanks!! The feeling is mutual :D