When you visit Thailand, you’ll notice quickly that this Southeast Asian country definitely has a sweet tooth! From condensed milk drinks in grocery stores to sugar-coated dumplings, there’s no shortage of delicious sweet treats for every occasion! Whether you prefer to live large or travel on a budget, Thai desserts are incredibly cheap, so there is no excuse not to try some!
We spent almost two years living in Bangkok and have traveled to Thailand so many times I’ve lost track. Even though we don’t have a sweet tooth, we both admit that Thai sweets are tasty and often so bright and colorful. Here’s the list we put together for must-try desserts in Thailand.
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Thai Sweets And Desserts To Eat In Thailand
In Thailand, sweets are known as khanom wan Thai, or ‘desserts from Thailand,’ and are a standard way to finish a meal. Most Thai food is designed to be shared, so desserts of Thailand are exactly the same. Think bite-sized pancakes, sticky rolls, and freshly chopped fruits covered in syrup served in paper cups with multiple forks.
Thai desserts reflect how certain ingredients are important to the culture and history of this beautiful country. As such, many desserts will feature fresh fruit like mangoes and guava, and sticky rice as their main star. The best Thai desserts are the simplest – complicated isn’t in the vocabulary for most Thai cuisine!
In Thailand, desserts often come from a base usually purposed for savory meals. Thai roti is a popular snack when filled with Nutella or fruit, and many buns or dumplings will contain sugary red bean paste in place of pulled meat.
You might be overwhelmed by all the options of delicious Thailand street foods, but don’t worry! Here are 9 delicious Thai desserts for you to try during your travels
|Dessert Item||🇹🇭 Thai Name|
|🥭 Mango Stick Rice||K̄ĥāwh̄enīyw mam̀wng|
|Thai Marzipan||Luk Chup|
|Sesame-stuffed Dumplings||Bua Loy|
|Thai Custard||Sang Kaya|
|Red Rubies Dessert||Tub Tim Grob|
|Tapioca noodles||Lod Chong|
|🥚 Golden Egg Thread||Foi Thong|
|🥥 Thai Coconut Pancake||Kanom Krok|
|🍌 Deep Fried Green Banana||Khao Mao Tod|
Learn more about eating in Thailand:
Mango Sticky Rice
The quintessential Thai dessert, mango sticky rice, is an absolute must-try! This is one of my absolute favorite desserts in Thailand. When we go back to visit Thailand, we eat mango sticky rice as much as humanly possible! There was a great street food stall just a few blocks from our apartment we used to visit often on the way home at night.
Popular all over the country, this delicious Thai sweet is sticky, tangy and will have you coming back for more. White rice is soaked in coconut cream and salt, then topped with juicy, ripe orange mango. The result is a creamy, chewy dish that is a perfect snack while exploring the bustling street markets that Thailand is so famous for.
You’ll find mango sticky rice seemingly at every street corner, but be careful – rice not stored properly can spoil quickly, so make sure that the vendor has adequate cool room for this lovely Thailand dessert.
One of the more unusual Thai desserts on this list, luk chup, is actually derived from marzipan! Luk chup was created in Thailand in the late 18th century, inspired by the Portuguese almond-based dessert. However, almonds were not common in Thailand, so the locals swapped them out for mung beans. Once considered the dessert of royalty, luk chup are often glazed and shaped to resemble miniature fruits and vegetables.
Luk chup is sweet, grainy, and definitely an acquired taste! High in protein, this Thai dessert is sold at street markets all year round. While you may not enjoy the taste at first, many locals claim that it will grow on you over time. Bangkok’s street food markets produce arguably the best versions of luk chup in Thailand, so make sure to track some down during your time in this thriving metropolis!
This dessert isn’t traditionally Thai, but it’s still incredibly popular! Unlike the coconut-focused Thai desserts, bua loy is a dish of round, sesame-stuffed dumplings swimming in a sweet and spicy ginger soup. Incredibly comforting, this Thai street food is perfectly chewy, warming, and has a great spicy kick!
The best place to eat bua loy is in Bangkok’s Chinatown, where the vendors stick as closely as possible to the original recipe. Sit down with a bowl of this delicious Thai dessert and watch the world go by around you for a moment of zen in a busy city.
Sang Kaya (Thai Custard)
Sang kaya is a Thai custard made from coconut cream. Originating from the north of Thailand, this dessert is popular due to its rich, creamy texture and distinctive flavor! Sang kaya is very thick, so most locals will wash it down with some milk tea or coconut water.
One of the more popular variations of this Thai dessert is sang kaya fug tong, or ‘pumpkin with custard.’ Slices of Thai pumpkin are deseeded, roasted, then stuffed with sang kaya. The result is a rich, not-too-sweet dessert that is both filling and nourishing. Grab a slice from a street vendor for around 10 Thai baht in the evening and enjoy the rich, creamy taste of this unusual dessert in Thailand!
Tub Tim Grob (Red Rubies Dessert)
One of the most popular Thailand desserts, tub tim grob, or ‘red rubies dessert,’ is a refreshing pick-me-up for when the humidity and heat become too much. Named for the water chestnuts said to resemble rubies, this delicious treat is crunchy, sweet, and like nothing you’ve tried before!
Tub tim grob is easy to make, and also relatively cheap as well! Diced water chestnuts are boiled, served with simple syrup and coconut milk. You’ll pick up one of these tasty Thai desserts from any street vendor or at a Thai night market for around 20 Thai baht, so make sure that you try it at least once during your visit!
Somewhere between a drink and a dessert, this Thai sweet is incredibly refreshing during the hot summer months! Tapioca noodles are soaked in iced coconut milk, and topped with sweet fruit syrup. This dessert from Thailand may look strange to foreigners, but it is one of the most popular sweet treats in the country – 70 million Thai people can’t be wrong!
Most commonly found in cafes or restaurants, lod chong is also fairly easy to make at home. There are many variations of this Thai dessert – look for mango, pineapple, or even chocolate!
The name foi thong literally means ‘gold thread,’ and that’s exactly what this Thai dessert looks like! While this treat may look complicated, it’s actually surprisingly simple. Egg yolks are drizzled through a funnel into a warm sugar syrup, creating the long, hair-like strands of this delicious dessert.
While the syrup may be simply sugar and water, banana or pandan leaves are sometimes added to give an extra dimension to this classic Thai sweet. Eat your foi thong warm and fresh, and of course, with plenty of syrup!
Kanom Krok (Thai Coconut Pancake)
Coconut is a regular star of Thai street food, and for an excellent reason! These delicious Thai coconut pancakes are cooked on a hot flat surface, served warm, and usually drizzled with sugar syrup.
Made with rice and coconut flour, kanom krok are lighter and fluffier than most other pancakes, and are perfect for soaking up any sauce. Get yours from any Thai street market topped with fresh mango for a deliciously rich, tropical Thai dessert experience.
Khao Mao Tod
Glutinous rice is a popular addition to many Thai desserts, and khao mao tod is no exception. This classic dessert of Thailand consists of green lady finger bananas, coated in rice flour and deep-fried until crispy. The result is a creamy, sweet interior with a crispy and delicious coating, and one that you won’t want to miss.
Usually served on a banana leaf, khao mao tod can be bought for around 15 Thai baht, and are a common feature of Thailand street food markets. While khao mao tod are usually served warm, be cautious when biting into them – the oil soaks into the banana flesh, and can burn your mouth if not careful!
Try Delicious Thai Sweets During Your Trip!
Whether you like something fresh and fruity or rich and creamy, Thai desserts have something for everything. The best Thai desserts are found in bustling, busy street markets, but if you’re in a rush, you can often source some of these unique sweets in convenience stores located on every corner. No matter what your tastes, budget, or personal preference, these Thai sweets will delight your tastebuds and warm your heart.
FAQs – Thai Desserts And Sweets
Without any doubt or second-guessing, the most famous Thai dessert is mango sticky rice. If you’ve never had mango sticky rice, stop what you are doing and go find it.
100% yes! It is not uncommon for Thais to eat several small snacks or meals during the day. One of the meals is desserts. Thais love sweet food, especially for dessert.
It should come as no surprise that one of the main ingredients in Thai desserts is coconut. From coconut milk to the flesh of a coconut, you’ll find it used in lots of Thai desserts.