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Ube Pandesal with Cheese

This Easy Ube Pandesal with Cheese filling is made with ube powder. They stay soft, pillowy and moist for days after baking.

Pandesal made with Ube and with cheese filling.

With the rise to the worldwide fame of our humble ube or purple yam, came a lot of new food ideas and creations starring this pretty purple/violet root crop. From ube halaya, ice cream, cakes, cheesecake, and other delicacies, there seems to be no limit as to what you can make with ube.

These days, ube cheese pandesal seems to take the spotlight in the local scene.  A variation of the traditional Filipino breakfast bread, Pandesal.  And why not, we Filipinos love our pandesal, be it for breakfast or afternoon snack. And Ube Pandesal with melty cheese filling is perfect for both.

ingredients for ube pandesal

Ube Powder VS. Fresh Ube

This recipe uses ube powder that is now widely available in baking supply shops or even online. Alternatively, purple yam jam (ube halaya) can also be used. Just reduce the sugar as it usually contains sweetener already. Of course, fresh ube can also be used. It has to be boiled and then mashed. I would say to use about half a cup to 3/4 cup of ube jam for this recipe.

The ube powder is first rehydrated with hot water that will have a consistency similar to ube halaya. This will be added in making the dough. It will create a sticky dough. But because of the high water absorption of the ube powder, the resulting bread will be soft and moist even for several days after it is baked.

Pandesal made with purple yam

Notes on this Ube Pandesal:

  • This makes a very sticky dough.  As you knead the dough the stickiness will lessen. To handle it better instead of adding more flour, grease your hands with oil so the dough will not stick. Do the same to the surface where you will knead.
  • I used instant yeast for this recipe. Using dry active yeast takes longer time for the dough to rise than using instant yeast.
  • If you do not have the time, prepare the dough the night before. You can refrigerate it after kneading or once they are filled and formed. Cover with plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator overnight. Before using it, allow it to sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes before going on the next step. I recommend using dry-active yeast if you are going this route.
  • I used oil instead of butter for this recipe. Butter gives bread richer flavor but since this is already a flavored bread so I opted for oil which makes it softer and stays soft longer.

Ube Cheese Pandesal

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Ube Cheese Pandesal
5 from 1 vote

Ube Pandesal with Cheese

These Ube Pandesal are not just pretty, they are deliciously soft and pillowy with melty cheese filling. Perfect for breakfast or snack.
Print Rate
Course: Breakfast,Snack
Cuisine: Filipino
Keyword: pandesal,ube cheese pandesal,ube pandesal
Servings: 12 pieces
Calories: 239kcal
Author: Bebs
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Rising Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 20 minutes


  • 1/4 cup ube powder
  • 3/4 cup hot water
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 cup warm milk
  • 2 tablespoon vegetable oil - - plus more for greasing
  • 1 medium egg
  • 1 tablespoon liquid ube extract - (optional)
  • 1 block quick melt cheese (165g) - - cut into 12 cubes
  • 4 tablespoons breadcrumbs - - for coating


  • Place ube powder in a bowl. Pour in hot water and stir until completely rehydrated.
  • In a large bowl, add flour, sugar, and salt. Mix to combine.
  • Pour in warm milk and oil and add the egg and mix. Add the yeast and mix again.
  • Add the rehydrated ube and ube extract (if using) and mix well until well combined. It will be very heavy and sticky. Use your hand greased with oil if you have to or use a stand mixer.
  • Tip the dough on a flat surface. Rub oil to both hands and knead for 7-10 minutes or until soft and smooth. Do the windowpane test to check. (SEE NOTE )
  • Form the dough into a ball and lightly coat with oil. Place it back the large bowl and cover with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and place it in a warm area and let it rise until it almost doubled in size. Depending on how warm it is, could take 30 minutes to an hour or more.
  • Punch down the dough and divide it into 2 equal parts using a knife or dough slicer. Shape a part into a rectangle and then divide it into 6 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a ball. Repeat the same with the other half.
  • Flatten a ball and place a cube of cheese at the center. Fold the sides of the dough enclosing the cheese cube inside. Form it again into a ball and roll it in breadcrumbs, completely covering all sides.
  • Arrange the pieces on a baking sheet living some gaps in between (at least an inch). Leave them to rise for another 30 minutes. While waiting, preheat oven 340° F /170°C. Bake the Ube Pandesal for 20 minutes or until slightly browned. Remove from oven and serve while hot!


NOTE 1 : This makes a very sticky dough. To handle it better, grease your hands with oil so the dough will not stick. Do the same to the surface where you will knead.
NOTE 2 : The windowpane test is one of the best ways to tell if the dough has been kneaded sufficiently. All you have to do take a small piece of dough, flatten it and slowly stretch it with your thumbs and fingers. If it breaks or tears immediately then it needs more kneading. If it stretches into a thin membrane without breaking where you can see the light through when you hold it up against it, then it's good! 
Nutrition Facts
Ube Pandesal with Cheese
Amount Per Serving
Calories 239 Calories from Fat 72
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 8g 12%
Saturated Fat 5g 25%
Cholesterol 32mg 11%
Sodium 296mg 12%
Potassium 119mg 3%
Total Carbohydrates 33g 11%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Sugars 7g
Protein 8g 16%
Vitamin A 3.9%
Vitamin C 0.6%
Calcium 12.9%
Iron 9.3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe? Tell us how it went. Tag us at @foxyfolksy or leave a comment and rating below.


These Ube Pandesal are not just pretty, they are deliciously soft and pillowy with melty cheese filling. Perfect for breakfast or snack. | #bread #breakfast #filipino #purpleyam #ube #recipe


Bebs here! I love to cook and try new things and DIY projects! And although I think of myself as a homebody, I like seeing other places from time to time.
If you are looking for a recipe and it ain't here, make a request and I will try my best to make it for you!

This Post Has 18 Comments

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  1. Just tried this one and it went well. I just have to add more cheese though. It disappeared 😀 but some were gooey. Really nice! I love the recipe, not too complex for a newbie like me.

  2. Hi, just a follow up question regarding use of frozen ube – how much of the UBE (overall total measurement of ube) should I use if I were to use the frozen type?
    Do you have a youtube video so we can see how sticky the dough should be?

    1. Hi Hazel, sure you can but it will not be as soft and moist as the one with. But generally, it will still be soft. Use 3 cups flour instead.

  3. Hi Bebs,

    Can i use frozen ube?

    If yes, do i need to add the same water (3/4) as in your recipe using uber powder?

    1. Hi Michelle, sure you can use frozen ube. You may need to boil it first though. The water was to rehydrate the ube powder so no need for this. Just check if the dough is too dry then just add a bit.

  4. I find it not easy to make breads and always turn very hard after baking :(…. do you have specific temp for warm milk? Any substitutefor quick melt (its difficult to find here in middle east)… I’m thinking of trying this.

    1. You can use any cheese actually, it might not melt as much but would still be good. Milk should only be warm and not hot or it will kill the yeast. If you can still touch it with your finger and feel that it is warm then that should be fine.

  5. Hi, if you will use active dry yeast do you need to proof it first or just follow the instructions as is? Thanks!

    1. Hi Marian, most active dry yeats nowadays can be added to the flour or dough directly. But that is if you are 100% sure that the yeast is still good. Newly opened pack does not guarantee freshness. There are several factors that can “kill” the yeast, like hot temperature for example. So better be sure than sorry, proof if not sure.

    1. Hi Tito Vir, yup Armin liked them too. Sure you can bake them on a small countertop oven, just lower the heat a bit so they will not brown too fast or tent them with aluminum foil.

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