Pandan is slowly becoming one of my favorite ingredients. Recently, I made these amazing pandan mochi pancakes, and I absolutely love them! It has an almost coconut-like flavor, and when you use pandan extract, it gives your food a pretty green color. It is also a flavor that I associate with summer because it makes me think of tropical getaways. (Side bar, for more summer themed desserts, check out my s’mores mochi donut.) Over the past week, I was in the mood to make more mochi donuts, so I decided to make these pandan mochi donuts. They have a pandan flavored mochi donut topped with a coconut glaze and shredded coconut. So easy and so incredibly good!
What is pandan?
Pandan is a plant that is widely used in Southeast Asia to flavor foods. You can almost think of it like their vanilla. It has notes of rose, almond, and vanilla. But unlike vanilla, it gives food a green color as well as a yummy flavor. It is used in both savory and sweet foods. Some popular uses are pandan jelly, pandan rice cakes, and even pandan chicken. I personally like using pandan in desserts like creme brulee and mochi pancakes.
It is a popular ingredient in Southeast Asia, but not that popular in Western countries. Personally, I think the Western world is sleeping on pandan. Since it’s not widely used, it can often be hard to find. You can sometimes find fresh or frozen pandan in Asian grocery stores, but the most common form of pandan you will find is pandan paste. This is a very concentrated form of pandan however, so be careful how much you use.
Ingredients, Substitution & Adjustments
- Pandan extract – Adds the pandan flavor and green color. You can get pandan extract at a local Asian grocery store or on Amazon.
- Coconut milk – I love using full fat coconut milk because the coconut fat gives the donut a fluffier texture. You can also use whole milk.
- Unsalted butter – Adds richness and nuttiness to the donut batter.
- Granulated sugar – Adds sweetness and moisture to the donut
- Vanilla extract – Adds flavor to the donuts. Good substitutes are 1 vanilla bean or an equal amount of vanilla paste.
- Eggs – Adds richness to the donuts and binds the dough together.
- Sweet rice flour – This is the ingredient that gives the donut it’s squishy texture. I like to use Koda Farms mochiko sweet rice flour.
- Baking powder – Baking powder provides lift to the donuts and makes it airy.
How to make my pandan mochi donuts
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C). Add all the ingredients from melted butter to pandan extract in a large bowl. Mix together until combined. Add the sweet rice flour and baking powder. Mix until combined. Prep donut pan by greasing it with oil or butter. I used a donut pan with donut molds that are 3 inches in diameter. Spoon the dough into a pastry bag or Ziploc bag. Pipe the dough into the donut pans. Bake for 10-12 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.
Let donuts cool in the donut pan for 10 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely. While the donuts are cooling, make your coconut glaze. Combine coconut milk, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract to a bowl. Mix until combined. Set aside. Dip the donuts into the glaze and then top with shredded coconut.
Tips on how to make the perfect pandan mochi donuts
Use as much pandan extract as you want
Feel free to use more or less of the pandan extract. I tested this recipe with twice the amount of pandan extract, and it was honestly a little too green for me lol.
Rest your dough if it feels a little wet
If your dough feels a little wet, rest it for 5 minutes to allow it to dry out a bit before piping into the donut pan.
Use a Ziploc bag to pipe donuts into donut pan
I tried to spoon the batter into the donut molds, but I ended up making a mess. That’s how I ended up using a Ziploc bag to pipe them into the molds. It’s a lot quicker, and there is less mess.
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Pandan Mochi Donuts
Pandan Mochi Donuts
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter
- 6 tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 ¼ cup coconut milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp pandan extract
- 2 cups sweet rice flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
Coconut Glaze & Topping
- 3 tbsp coconut milk
- 1 ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ cup shredded coconut
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C).
- Melt the butter in the microwave (~30 seconds).
- Add all the ingredients from the melted butter to pandan extract in a large bowl. Mix together until combined.
- Add the sweet rice flour and baking powder. Mix until combined.
- Prep donut pan by greasing it with oil or butter. I used a donut pan with donut molds that are 3 inches in diameter.
- Spoon the dough into a pastry bag or Ziploc bag. Pipe the dough into the donut pans.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Let donuts cool in the donut pan for 10 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- While the donuts are cooling, make your coconut glaze. Combine coconut milk, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract in a bowl. Mix until combined. Set aside.
- Dip the donuts into the glaze and then top with shredded coconut.
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