Ube Doughnuts with Coconut Milk Glaze (Purple Spudnuts)


It’s been a while since I’ve messed around with Ube—the sweet Filipino purple yam used in many Filipino desserts. So when I came across this Spudnuts recipe in Saveur, I knew it’d be perfect for my next Ube recipe. Rather than using a regular potato in the dough as per the Saveur recipe, I decided to use Ube instead.

If you remember from my Ube Cupcakes post waaaaay back in 2008, I used frozen grated Ube purple yam that I found at my friendly neighborhood Asian market. These doughnuts are of the same purple vein as I again used frozen Ube from my Asian market, but instead of the grated variety, I found some frozen whole peeled purple yams. That original Ube Cupcakes recipe also featured a macapuno coconut cream cheese frosting. Similarly, I gave these doughnuts a dip in a sweet, yet simple, glaze made from coconut milk and powdered sugar.

These Ube Doughnuts are really easy to make. Just boil the purple yams until tender, pass them through a potato ricer (you could also mash them if you’ve no ricer), then mix the yams with some flour, sugar, and baking powder. Even though there’s no yeast in these spudnuts, the baking powder helps to fluff them up as they fry in hot oil. The resultant doughnut is crisp and brown on the outside, and purple, moist, and cakey on the inside.


Don’t forget about the doughnut holes!

Ube Doughnuts with Coconut Milk Glaze (Purple Spudnuts)

Prep Time: 25 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: Makes about 12 doughnuts


  • 10 ounces frozen whole sweet purple yams, thawed
  • 9 ounces (about 2 cups) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup canned unsweetened coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • Canola oil, for frying
  • For the glaze:
  • 1/4 cup canned unsweetened coconut milk
  • 2 cups powdered sugar


  1. Slice the thawed purple yams into 1-inch pieces, then cook in boiling water until tender, 5-10 minutes. Drain the yams, then pass them through a potato ricer and into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg in a large bowl and set aside.
  3. To the bowl of the stand mixer, add the granulated sugar, eggs, coconut milk, and butter, then mix on low until smooth. With the motor running, slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until well combined. Let dough rest 10 minutes.
  4. Heat 2-inches of oil in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat until the oil reaches a temperature of 370 degrees on a deep-fry thermometer.
  5. While the oil is heating, transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface. The dough will be sticky at this point, so sprinkle a bit more flour over the dough as well. Using your hands, pat the dough out into a 10-inch round about 1/2-inch thick.
  6. Using a floured 3-inch doughnut cutter, cut out the doughnuts. Gather any remaining scraps, pat them out again, and cut more doughnuts.
  7. Working in batches, place the doughnuts, and doughnut holes, into the hot oil. Fry, flipping over once, until puffed and golded, 3-4 minutes. Using tongs, transfer the doughnuts to a large plate lined with paper towels.
  8. To make the glaze:
  9. In a medium bowl, whisk together the coconut milk and powdered sugar until a glaze is formed. While the doughnuts are still warm, dip them into the glaze, then let them drain on a wire rack set over a baking sheet. Serve immediately.

For more Ube Recipes, check these out:

  • Juan Luna April 8, 2013, 8:14 pm

    These purple doughnuts look wonderful! And thanks for posting links to your other ube recipes too! I’m going to have to try your ube ice cream, not to mention those Ube Cupcakes too!

  • KT April 21, 2013, 7:26 am

    Hi Juan Luna (I live in Antonio Luna Street),
    thanks for sharing this recipe! I’m new to cooking and I love your site! You inspire so many people! Keep it up!


  • Mireille July 6, 2013, 8:52 am

    I just made these and they came out so delicious…perfect without being too sweet. I am lucky I live in NYC and I can get fresh ube yam in Chinatown. So I used the fresh instead of the frozen. I just boiled and mashed it. Thanks for a great recipe. I’ve already made helayang ube. So glad to discover another ube recipe!

  • Jessica August 16, 2014, 12:05 am

    Those look heavenly!
    I wonder, would you be able to bake these instead of frying them?


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