7 Traditional Asian Desserts You Need To Try

The seasons are changing, and we’re packing up our beach towels to make room for cozy sweaters and more nights in. What better way to welcome in the cooler season than by lounging around and getting your sweet tooth on?

National Dessert Day is coming up on Oct. 14. Though we don’t believe dessert should be saved for one day only, here are a couple of our favorite traditional Asian desserts from around the globe.

Egg Tart

These delectable cups of heaven are filled with a luscious egg custard filling and often make their homes in Hong Kong bakeries and dim sum restaurants. The creamy eggy center is the perfect contrast to its flakey outer pastry crust!


Halo-halo, which translates to “mixed together” in Tagalog, is one of the Philippines’ most popular desserts. The colorful mixture is made with layers of shaved ice and evaporated milk mixed red beans, kidney beans, coconut jelly, jackfruit — the possibilities are endless! It’s often finished with a scoop of ube (purple yam) ice cream, leche flan (caramel custard pudding) and corn flakes on top.

Chè Ba Mau (Three-Colored Dessert)

Chè ba mau is a Vietnamese three-color dessert made with a layer of green pandan jelly, red beans or kidney beans and a yellow mung bean paste all mixed together over ice and coconut milk. It’s sweet, refreshing and rounds off a perfect meal.

Mango Lassi

Lassi is a traditional Indian yogurt-based drink that typically blends yogurt, water, sugar, spices and sometimes fruit. The mango lassi is the most popular sweet drink staple to pair with a traditional Indian meal or just cool down during warmer months. It’s made simply of yogurt, water, mango pulp and can be dressed with a spice such as cardamom or saffron.

Khao Niao Mamuang (Mango Sticky Rice)

Khao niao mamuang (mango sticky rice) is a traditional Thai dessert made of sweet sticky rice, fresh mango and coconut milk. A scoop of the sweet coconut sticky rice is typically plated besides ripe yellow mangoes and drizzled with a generous amount of coconut milk on top for an indulgent bite.

Hotteok (Korean Sweet Pancakes)

These Korean sweet pancakes are a popular street food in Korea and are filled with brown sugar, honey, chopped peanuts — whatever you’re in the mood for! The crispy outer layer, combined with the chewy dough filled with a sweet surprise, is a perfect winter treat.

Red Bean Soup

This red bean soup is often enjoyed at the end of a big meal. Made with sweet red azuki beans and Chinese rock sugar, it’s often mixed with clear tapioca pearls and delivers a pleasant, sweet finish. Throw some orange zest in to bring out its flavors!

How many of these have you tried?