Chilled Tapioca Pearls Recipe with Sweet Coconut & Melon

This Tapioca Pearls recipe is such a beautiful, exotic dessert. This is a recipe from my mom – she used to serve this in the summer time to cool off. Usually it’s made with honeydew, but the cantaloupe was on sale, ripe and smelled so fresh!

 

Tapioca Pearls with Sweet Coconut and Melon Recipe

Why This Tapioca Pearls Recipe Is So Good

  • Super easy to make.
  • One of my most searched for recipes!
  • A wonderful mix of textures, very unique and delicious.
  • A refreshing dessert – perfect for BBQ’s

Ingredients

  • Water
  • Sugar
  • Small tapioca pearls
  • Whole milk
  • Full fat coconut milk
  • Melon

How To Make This Tapioca Pearls Recipe – Step By Step

  1. In a medium sized pot, bring the water and sugar to a boil. When boiling, turn the heat to low and stir in the milk. When the mixture returns to a boil, turn off the heat and stir in the coconut milk.
  2. Make sure that you are not boiling the coconut milk (which would make it oily) Remove from heat, let cool to room temperature and chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
  3. Soak tapioca pearls in cold water for 20 minutes. The pearls will expand and turn bright white. Drain. In a medium pot, add about a quart of water and bring to a boil. Turn off heat, add the drained tapioca pearls and stir constantly for 1 1/2 minutes.
  4. Immediately drain in fine mesh sieve and run cold water through the sieve to stop the tapioca pearls from cooking further. Combine with the coconut milk mixture and continue to chill in refrigerator. You can prepare everything above up to 3 days in advance.
  5. To serve, ladle the sweet coconut milk with tapioca into a bowl and add a big spoonful of diced, fresh melon.

What Are Tapioca Pearls

If you have never heard of tapioca pearls, it looks like small balls that are about the size of quinoa, but made from tapioca flour. It can be found in Asian stores, or online. Be aware that these are a lot smaller than the tapioca pearls used for bubble tea.

Tapioca pearls are first soaked in cold water for about 20 minutes, this helps to soften them. 

Tapioca Pearls – So Popular!

Looking back through my blog stats, this is by far the most popular recipe searched. There aren’t a lot of Chinese cookbooks that feature this recipe, I wonder why?This isn’t a very well-known dessert in Asian American restaurants, but it can be found in dim-sum eateries in Hong Kong as a perfect ending to a meal.

A Refreshing Summer Dessert 

We served this as dessert after our Korean BBQ feast. It was just the right dessert to enjoy to cool us down after all the smoky heat of BBQ.

This dessert is perfect for summer, it’s super fresh, not too sweet, and has a chewy texture thanks to the addition of tapioca pearls. The combination of coconut and melon is divine!

Top Tips For This Tapioca Pearls Recipe

  • Make sure you don’t boil the coconut milk, as that will make it oily.
  • Soak the tapioca pearls in water for at least 20 mins.
  • You can prep this up to 3 days in advance.
  • Perfect to serve on a hot summer’s day.

Check Out These Other Sweet Treats

Have you tried this Tapioca Pearls recipe? Feel free to leave a star rating and I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

4.41 from 5 votes
Tapioca Pearls with Sweet Coconut & Melon
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
refrigerate
2 hrs
Total Time
20 mins
 
Servings: Serves 8Prep Time:Cook Time:
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Asian
Keyword: coconut, tapioca pearls, tapioca recipe
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 336 kcal
Author: Jaden Hair
Ingredients
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2/3 cup 1mm small dried tapioca pearls
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 cups full fat coconut milk
  • 2 cups 1/2 inch diced melon honeydew or cantaloupe
Instructions
  1. In a medium sized pot, bring the water and sugar to a boil. When boiling, turn the heat to low and stir in the milk. When the mixture returns to a boil, turn off the heat and stir in the coconut milk. Make sure that you are not boiling the coconut milk (which would make it oily) Remove from heat, let cool to room temperature and chill in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
  2. Soak tapioca pearls in cold water for 20 minutes. The pearls will expand and turn bright white. Drain. In a medium pot, add about a quart of water and bring to a boil. Turn off heat, add the drained tapioca pearls and stir constantly for 1 1/2 minutes.
  3. Immediately drain in fine mesh sieve and run cold water through the sieve to stop the tapioca pearls from cooking further.
  4. Combine with the coconut milk mixture and continue to chill in refrigerator. You can prepare everything above up to 3 days in advance.
  5. To serve, ladle the sweet coconut milk with tapioca into a bowl and add a big spoonful of diced, fresh melon.
Nutrition Facts
Tapioca Pearls with Sweet Coconut & Melon
Amount Per Serving
Calories 336 Calories from Fat 117
% Daily Value*
Fat 13g20%
Saturated Fat 11g69%
Cholesterol 3mg1%
Sodium 35mg2%
Potassium 266mg8%
Carbohydrates 55g18%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 42g47%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 2050IU41%
Vitamin C 9mg11%
Calcium 60mg6%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.