Suman Malagkit (Steamed, sticky rice cake)

Suman Malagkit (Steamed, sticky rice cake) with coconut spread

Easy Suman Malagkit recipe using Pika Pika’s Coconut Spread

Equipment Needed

  • Large Pan
  • Steamer or large pot with steaming rack
  • Banana leaves
  • Strainer 
  • Twine (optional)

Prep Time: 25 Min 
Rice Soaking Time: 45 Min - 1 Hr 
Cook Time: 1 Hr and 30 Min
Total Cook Time: 2 Hrs and 55 Min 
Serving Count: 25 Pieces 


  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • ½ cup of granulated sugar
  • ½ cup of Pika Pika Coconut spread. Shop here
  • 1 ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups glutinous rice, otherwise called long grain sweet rice

Suman Malagkit (or simply called suman) is a sticky, steamed rice cake and a part of the Filipino Kakanin family of desserts. Variants of this dish exist throughout the Philippines, some regions create a mixture with cassava or latik. You can also enjoy this with delicious fruits like mango or even lychee and rambutan. This recipe makes use of our coconut spread as the sweetening base as well as a dipping sauce. Traditionally, this dish is wrapped in a log with banana leaves giving it its distinct, earthy aroma. Suman Malagkit usually pops up at birthday parties, celebrations or just as an afternoon treat, in Filipino homes. I remember this being a particularly fun activity that my mom and I would do together growing up.


1. Wash Rice
In a large bowl, add rice and fill the bowl with water until water covers the rice. Lightly stir rice with clean hands to bring out some starch. Drain water from the bowl. This does a first pass of cleaning out the rice and some excess starch.

Soaking rice. washing rice

2. Soak Rice
With the rice in the same large bowl, re-fill with water until the liquid covers the rice and soak for 45 minutes to an hour. This helps the rice absorb some of the water that will promote the gelatinous texture desired. You can always soak it longer if you prefer an even stickier consistency. After soaking, you’ll notice the rice is slightly larger. Drain well.

3. Prepare the Banana Leaves

While the rice is soaking, lay out banana leaves and wipe them with a damp cloth or paper towel to clean. After doing a first pass on wiping, heat both sides of the banana leaves over an open flame (I use a gas stove) for about 10-20 seconds per side. You’ll notice some color change as the banana leaves heat up. I like to move them from left to right to get equal amounts of heating on all parts of the leaf. This process makes the banana leaf pliable, adds another layer of sterilization and helps avoid crunching or tearing during the assembly of the suman. 

Once all the leaves are cleaned and pliable, trim the stiff edges and set them aside. Cut the banana leaf in 10x10 squares, it does not have to be exact.

Banana Leaves Coconut Spread Suman Malagkit Recipe


4. Cooking the Rice
In the large pan, add the coconut milk, sugar, coconut spread and salt. Stir until the sugar and salt are dissolved. Add rice and stir to evenly distribute the liquid. 

Cover and cook the rice over medium to low heat until the liquid is fully absorbed. Stir occasionally to make sure that the rice has not stuck to the bottom of the pan. You’ll notice the rice start to look gooey but it’s not yet cooked. Stir the rice until all the liquid is gone or is coating the rice. Once the liquid is gone, let the rice cool slightly as you will be handling / placing it in the banana leaves.

5. Assemble the Suman
Lay one banana leaf on a flat surface. Add 3 heaping tablespoons of the rice mixture on the bottom half of the leaf, roughly 1 inch away from the edge of the bottom, and centered between the left and the right sides of the leaf. Fold the bottom inch over the rice and tightly tuck. Roll once and fold in the left and right sides of the leaf towards the center to create the suman log. Roll the rest until the log is formed and tie with the stiff edges of the banana leaf or cooking twine on both edges of the log. Repeat this process until you have used all of the rice mixture.

Wrap Suman Malagkit with Banana leaves

6. Steam the Assembled Suman
In a large pot, add 1-2 cups of water. Make sure that water does not encroach on the steaming rack. Place  the assembled suman in the steaming rack and stack until full. Close the lid and let it steam at medium heat for 45 min to 1 hour or until rice is fully cooked. Remove the suman with tongs and let it cool.

7. To Serve
Peel the suman leaves and spread or dunk the suman with Pika Pika’s Coconut Spread. You can also pair with other fruits like mangoes, pineapples, rambutan and more.

Pika Pika Coconut Spread Suman Malagkit

Enjoy! Follow us on social for more recipes and ideas @eatpikapika


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