Puto (Steamed Rice Cake)

Whoa!  It’s been four days since my last entry!  I’ve got a couple of dishes lined up, waiting to be blogged about.  I’ve been wanting to update, but last Monday, making halayang ube left me dead tired from hours of continuous stirring.  And yesterday, I was sore (still am!) from all the kneading and rolling I did.  I shall tell you what I rolled and kneaded in another entry. ;)

Now, let’s talk Puto (Steamed Rice Cake).  I was finally able to make some!  I love puto!  I’ve been looking for a recipe for the longest time.  There’s a puto mix being sold at the Asian grocery but for some reason, I couldn’t bring myself to buy a box…much as I miss this native Philipine snack.  :D

I tested two recipes.  The first batch I made over a month ago and the 2nd batch, I made just last week.  These two recipes are so different from each other, the first having far more ingredients than the second.   In the absence of puto molds, I used individual silicone muffin molds instead.  I think they are worthy puto molds substitute.

Puto #1


2 cups rice flour
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups fresh milk
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons melted margarine


1. In a bowl, mix all the ingredients thoroughly until smooth.

2. Brush the bottom and sides of puto molds with butter and fill  2/3 full with the puto batter.

3.  Steam for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

I topped the puto with cheese bits.  Unfortuantely, they sank to the bottom. :D Tsk tsk.  The puto came out all right.  They were ok, to say the least.  But my taste buds were looking for a certain texture that’s somewhat cakey, which brings us to Puto #2.

Puto #2


2 cups rice flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 400ml can (approximately 2  cups) coconut milk


1.  Sift all the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl.  Then add the coconut milk and blend well until smooth.

2.  Fill greased puto/muffin molds 2/3 full.

3.  Steam for 30 minutes and test for doneness by inserting a toothpick in the center of the puto.  The putos are done when the toothpick comes out clean.

I liked the texture of this second batch of puto.  They came out soft and the coconut milk gave the puto a more native taste. :D  I prefer this second batch over the first.  Hubby and my little girl prefer this batch too.

My late maternal grandmother made very good puto and instead of puto molds she used round cake pans.  She topped her puto with salted duck eggs.  I didn’t top the second batch with anything for fear that they’ll end up at the bottom.  Maybe the next batch of puto that I make, Puto #3 and so on, I’ll have the courage to try topping them with cheese or salted duck eggs.

There are so many different kinds of puto and they come in different sizes.  My quest for the best puto recipe will continue…until I find THE ONE. :D

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61 Responses to “Puto (Steamed Rice Cake)”

  1. nessa says:

    thanks for the recipe. i made puto #2 today and it turned out fantastic! i actually put shredded sharp cheese on top before steaming them and they didn’t submerge in the mixture. everyone was a fan in my household. thanks for sharing!


    munchkinmommy Reply:

    Hi Nessa! You are welcome! I’m happy to hear that your puto adventure was a success. :) Thanks for dropping by to let me know. :) Cheers!


  2. Bella says:

    Which Asian store did you buy your steamer and puto molds?


  3. Lilia says:

    Hi I like your puto #2

    How about the rice puto using yeast instead of baking powder? Just want to try
    I just don’t know how to do it and what is the recipe for it?



  4. alma says:

    i have just tried baking following the above steps with exactly the same ingredients (puto#2)…been steaming for almost an hour and the puto is still not done…where could i have gone wrong?must be with the coconut milk…must it be thick or thin?


    munchkinmommy Reply:

    Hi Alma! I am sorry to hear that you had problems with the puto. You said you baked the puto. Did you do it in a water bath in the oven? Did you use puto molds? I really can’t think of where you went wrong when you followed the steps exactly. Puto should take as little as 15 to 20 minutes to cook in a steamer. The only time it took me over 30 minutes to steam puto was when I used an 8″ cake pan (just like my grandma used to do). I actually prefer to use thick coconut milk or coconut cream. Do let me know the ending of your puto adventure when you have time. :) Thanks for dropping by!


  5. Emily says:

    hi i was just wondering if it would come out okay if i replaced the coconut milk with water in the second puto recipe? thanks xx


  6. Nick says:

    Hi there,

    Have you tried using galapong?


  7. cookingBF says:


    I am determined to re-make a home made version of the “Ted’s Old timer Lapaz Batchoy” puto.. its really delicious! me and my girl fell in love with it.. Based on my taste observation, its should be just a simple recipe and your recipe #2 looks like the perfect match.. I’l try this when i get home :) thank you so much for sharing!

    If I may ask, should I use glutinous rice flour? or at least mix it with the regular rice flour? the ones at Ted’s seems a bit sticky/elastic. thanks


  8. Jake says:

    Just want to ask about the boiling point of the water… When steaming the puto, should it be at the high heat (boiling water bubbles coming up) should it be in medium heat, or should it be only low heat and only steam and no bubbles at the water?


    munchkinmommy Reply:

    Hi Jake! The water should be at a bubbling boil, so medium to high heat. Don’t forget to put a cloth cover so water from the pan cover don’t get into the puto. Good luck!


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