• Thursday , 2 April 2020
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Sweet Rice Dumplings or Palitaw

Sweet Rice Dumplings or Palitaw

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I am craving! Sweet Rice Dumplings… they’re called “Palitaw” (Pah-lee-tao) in my country.  The word “Litaw” (Lee-tao) means to float which is what these cute little rice dumplings do once they’re cooked. The Palitaw is then scooped up with slotted spoon then rolled in freshly grated coconut and sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds and sugar. Yum-oh-yum.

I prefer a light sprinkling of coconut, sugar, and toasted sesame seeds. Why? dunno exactly. I like tasting the rice flavor as well bite into it’s chewy texture which can be less distinct when the palitaw is rolled in the ingredients mentioned above.

Sweet Rice Dumplings
sweet rice dumplings

The word “sweet” in sweet rice is used to describe a variety of rice grain that has a sticky texture when cooked.  It is not sweet at all, another name for this rice variety is glutinous rice.

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You can get gorgeous blue plates here or by clicking the picture below.

You can also get Unsweetened Raw Coconut Chips here

Helpful tips on how to make Palitaw

  • Add water to sweet rice flour a little at a time, dough shouldn’t be too wet
  • Form dough into small balls and flatten by using thumb to press down on dough
  • Spatula and a wide wooden spoon may also be used to shape the dough
  • Roll sweet rice dumplings in coconut and top with sugar and toasted sesame seeds
  • Or top the dumplings with whatever your yummy creative self wants!

Sweet Rice Dumplings

Sweet Rice Dumplings are also called Palitaw in the Philippines.  A Filipino sweet snack/merienda favorite. Palitaw is a simple and easy to make. The dumplings can be sprinkled with sugar and coconut or rolled in it. The toasted sesame seeds add an extra bite of crunch and delicious nuttiness.

  • Author: AmusingMaria.com
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 5
  • Total Time: 15
  • Yield: 6 to 8 1x


  • 1 1/2 cup sweet rice flour
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup water


  1. Bring 6-7 cups of water to a low boil in a deep cooking pot
  2. Put sweet rice flour in a bowl, add water gradually while mixing
  3. Knead dough until it forms a ball
  4. Add more sweet rice flour a tbsp at a time if dough is too wet
  5. Take a small piece of dough, roll into a ball
  6. Flatten with thumb into oval shape
  7. Carefully drop dough in water 2-3 at a time
  8. Leave enough space between the dumplings
  9. Wait for dumpling to fully float in water
  10. Scoop gently with slotted spoon
  11. Roll in sugar and coconut
  12. Sprinkle with sesame seeds
  13. Or sprinkle dumplings with toppings


  • Add water to sweet rice flour a little at a time, dough shouldn’t be too wet
  • Toasted sesame seeds add a crunchy and nutty flavor to the dumplings

Keywords: filipino food, filipino sweets. palitaw, rice dumplings, asian sweets, asian dessert, mochi, sweet rice, sticky rice, sweet rice flour recipes

Want to learn how to make a Filipino Rice Cake? Here’s a delicious recipe for Biko/Rice Cake with Coconut Syrup by Russian Filipino Kitchen.

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  1. Arielle
    at Reply

    These look delicious! May have to give them a try this weekend…

  2. Susan
    at Reply

    Wow! How simple and beautiful. I must try these. Thanks for sharing.

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