Sweet Potato Sago Soup with Glutinous Rice Balls (番茨西米汤圆糖水)

Sweet Potato Sago Soup with Glutinous Rice Balls (番薯西米汤圆糖水)

This delightful dessert soup combines the natural sweetness of sweet potatoes with chewy glutinous rice balls and the unique texture of sago pearls, simmered together in a sweet broth. Here's how you can make it at home.
Course Dessert
Cuisine Chinese


For the Soup:

  • 200 g sweet potato preferably the yellow variety for its sweetness, peeled and cut into small cubes
  • 100 g sago pearls
  • 1.2 liters of water
  • 100 g rock sugar adjust to taste
  • A few slices of ginger optional, for added warmth

For the Glutinous Rice Balls:

  • 100 g glutinous rice flour
  • About 60ml water adjust as needed to form a dough
  • Food coloring optional, for different colors


Prepare the Glutinous Rice Balls:

  • In a bowl, mix the glutinous rice flour with water gradually until a dough forms. It should be soft but not sticky.
  • Divide the dough into small portions. If using food coloring, mix it into the portions now to achieve various colors.
  • Roll the dough into small balls, about the size of marbles. Set aside.

Cook the Sago Pearls:

  • Bring a pot of water to boil. Add the sago pearls and cook until they are transparent. This usually takes about 10-15 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking.
  • Once cooked, drain the sago pearls in cold water and set them aside.
  • Prepare the Sweet Potato Soup:
  • In a separate pot, bring 1.2 liters of water to a boil. Add the cubed sweet potatoes and ginger slices (if using) to the boiling water.
  • Simmer until the sweet potatoes are tender, about 15-20 minutes.

Combine Ingredients:

  • Once the sweet potatoes are soft, add the rock sugar to the pot and stir until dissolved.
  • Add the drained sago pearls to the pot and mix well.

Cook the Glutinous Rice Balls:

  • Gently drop the glutinous rice balls into the soup. They are cooked when they float to the surface.
  • Stir gently to ensure they don't stick to the bottom.


  • Serve the dessert soup hot or allow it to cool and serve it at room temperature. It's also delicious when chilled, making it a versatile dessert for any season.

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