This ube syrup recipe makes delicious ube-flavored, deep purple color simple syrup. It only requires 3 ingredients and you can make a bottle of this perfectly handcrafted, homemade purple yam syrup in under 10 minutes.
❓What is Ube?
Ube, also known as purple yam, is a tuberous root vegetable found mostly in the Philippines. It has a vibrant, deep purple color and slightly floral and nutty, caramel-like sweet flavor.
Ube looks very much like purple sweet potato and is often mistaken for each other (especially okinawan sweet potatoes). While both have a vibrant purple hue and look almost similar, there is difference in taste and texture despite not being too obvious.
Ube, which is called purple yam, is also different from taro (also referred to as yam). You can easily differentiate ube with taro by its skin (which is brown and hairy) and its flesh (which is of a white hue with purple specks).
Ube can be found in Filipino or Asian stores or markets. It is sold in fresh form and can also be found in frozen grated form, in ube powder form or in concentrated extract form.
❤️Why you will love this recipe
- It is quick and easy, you can make it in under 5 minutes.
- It lasts well, just like any other simple syrups and you can make it in advance and use it anytime you like.
- You can use this recipe to make thick or thin syrup, depending on what you intend to use it for.
- The recipe does not require fresh ube but makes homemade syrup rich of ube flavor.
- The syrup makes a lovely alternative to regular simple syrup with its rich purple color and slightly, nutty and sweet flavor.
- Sugar -White sugar is recommended to preserve the purple color of the syrup. Both coarse sugar or granulated sugar will work for this recipe. Granulated sugar will dissolve quicker.
- Water - use filtered water at room temperature.
- Ube flavor (extract) - this is sold in thick liquid form. It is rich in flavor and color. I used McCormick ube extract. Different brands might vary in strength of flavor and color.
*Refer to the recipe card below for full list of ingredients and exact quantities. For best results, use a digital kitchen scale where applicable*
- This recipe makes simple purple yam sugar syrup made with one part sugar and one part water. In this consistency, it is perfect for sweetening drinks and beverages, brushing over cakes and cupcakes and as a general sweetener. If you wish to use it for drizzle on pancakes, toasts, waffles, ice cream and others, the increase the ratio of sugar to two parts and maintain the water to one part.
- For vanilla flavored ube extract, add half a teaspoon of vanilla extract together with the ube extract when making the syrup.
This recipe has not been tested with other substitutions or variations. If you do try, please let me know in the comments section below!
👩🏻🍳How to make
Step 1: Make simple syrup. Measure water into a small saucepan (image 1). Add sugar and turn on the heat to a medium flame (image 2). Cook the syrup until the sugar is completely dissolved. Turn off the heat as soon as the sugar is dissolved. Cooking the syrup for too long will alter its consistency.
Note: Stirring the sugar will help the sugar dissolve quicker. When stirring, make sure not to splatter it on the sides of your pan. Any undissolved sugar granules can cause your syrup to crystalize (especially if you are making a thicker syrup with a consistency of 1 part water to 2 parts sugar).
Step 2: Add the ube extract. Stir well to distribute the extract (image 3).
Step 3: Store in a clean bottle. Let the syrup cool completely to room temperature before pouring it into a clean and dry glass bottle, airtight container or mason jar (image 4). Refrigerate until ready to use.
- Sugar to water ratio - Maintain a consistent ratio of sugar to water. A standard ratio of 1:1 (equal parts sugar and water) works well for most purposes, but for a thicker syrup (to make ube pancake syrup, or for drizzling for example), you can use a 2:1 ratio (two parts sugar to one part water).
- Do not overcook the syrup - Overcooking can evaporate the water and alter the consistency of your syrup. To maintain the consistency of water and sugar ratio in the syrup, heat up the water only until the sugar is dissolved.
⭐What can you use the ube syrup for?
This ube syrup is literally simple syrup flavored with ube. You can use it in the same way simple syrup is used. Here is what you can do with this ube syrup:
- Cocktails, mocktails and other beverages - add to sweeten, flavor and color drinks. This syrup blends well in cocktails and beverages like milk teas, lemonades, lattes, and milkshakes. Simply add it to a tall glass, top it with ice cubes, your milk of choice and latte or cooked boba pearls and tea to make iced ube latte or iced ube milk tea.
- Baking - brush over ube cakes or ube cupcakes to keep them moist and add extra ube flavor.
- Coffee - use as a coffee syrup, to sweeten and flavor cold brews or iced coffee.
- Syrup for pancakes, toasts and waffles - add flavor by drizzling on pancakes, French toast or waffles. Use thick syrup (made with two parts of sugar and one part water) for best results.
- Topping for ice cream and yoghurt - add color and flavor by drizzling over ice cream, frozen yogurt, or gelato. Use thick syrup made with two parts of sugar and one part water.
- Dressings and sauces - use in place of regular simple syrup in salad dressings or sauces for a hint of color and extra flavor.
- Ube cold foam - make ube flavored cold foam by using the ube syrup in place of simple syrup when making cold foam. Use a milk frother or French press to create pretty purple hued foam for your iced coffee.
Store the syrup in clean dry bottle, mason jar or airtight container. It is best kept refrigerated and can last for at least one month.
Technically you can. Brown sugar can be used to make sugar syrups like in this brown sugar syrup for boba, however, it will change the color of your syrup to brown. When used to make this ube syrup, you will not get the vibrant purple color in your syrup. White sugar is recommended.
Syrup can crystalize if the sugar is not completely dissolved when cooking the syrup. This can happen if you did not cook the sugar until it is completely dissolved or if there are any granules of sugar that are stuck to the side of the pan that are not completely dissolved.
To prevent crystallization, make sure the sugar in the syrup is completely dissolved. Cook it over low heat and check before taking it off the heat. Also, when mixing the sugar in the water, take caution to not do it vigorously and cause the sugar granules to stick to the sides of the pan.
Adding lemon juice can help avoid crystallization, however, it may alter the taste of your syrup. Adding a little corn syrup to the syrup can also prevent crystallization.
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Homemade Ube Syrup
For best results, use the metrics measurements. US customary measurements have not been tested and are only meant for guide.
- 200 g white sugar
- 200 ml water
- ½ teaspoon ube extract
- Measure water into a small saucepan.
- Add sugar and turn on the heat to a medium flame. Cook the syrup until the sugar is completely dissolved. Stirring the sugar will help the sugar dissolve quicker (see Note 1).
- Turn off the heat as soon as the sugar is dissolved. Cooking the syrup for too long will alter its consistency.
- Add the ube extract. Stir well to mix.
- Let the syrup cool completely to room temperature before pouring it into a clean and dry bottle, airtight container or mason jar. Refrigerate until ready to use. Keep the syrup refrigerated.
- When stirring, make sure not to splatter sugar on the sides of your pan. Any undissolved sugar granules can cause your syrup to crystalize (especially if you are making a thicker syrup with a consistency of 1 part water to 2 parts sugar).
- This simple syrup is made using one part sugar and one part water. This ratio works well for most purposes, but for a thicker syrup (to make ube pancake syrup, or for drizzling for example), increase the ratio to two parts sugar to one part water by doubling the sugar measurement in the recipe.
- Overcooking can evaporate the water and alter the consistency of your syrup. To maintain the consistency of water and sugar ratio in the syrup, heat up the water only until the sugar is dissolved.
- To make vanilla flavored ube syrup, add half a teaspoon of vanilla extract along with the ube extract when making the syrup.