From Ice Cream To Cake: 5 Easy Chendol Recipes To Try This National Day

featured image how to make chendol

Ask any Singaporean what’s their go-to dessert and chances are the answer’s going to be chendol. Best enjoyed iced and after a hearty meal, the traditional dessert continues to capture the hearts of Singaporeans. For this year’s National Day, why not learn how to make chendol for your family and friends? Even if you’re not a fan of chendol in its traditional form (gasp!), we’ve got chendol recipes for variations such as chendol cake, chendol agar agar, and even chendol ice cream! Getting cravings already? Read on! 

Who created chendol? 

man scooping chendol into drink how to make chendol
(Credit: Robbi Firmansah / Unsplash)

It’s no secret that the origin of chendol (also known as cendol or chendul) has long been a contentious topic for Singaporeans and their Malaysian neighbours. However, the origins of chendol can be traced back to Indonesia instead! 

According to Indonesian historians, chendol was first created in Java during the 12th century, and was known as dawet. The sweet treat is believed to have been served as a drink at weddings. However, it wasn’t until British colonisation, which brought ice to the region, did ice begin being incorporated into chendol. While the true origin of chendol continues to be the subject of fierce debate amongst Southeast Asians, one thing’s for sure – it’s seriously delicious!

What does chendol taste like? 

chendol and dessert toppings how to make chendol
(Credit: bady abbas / Unsplash)

Named after the green, worm-like jelly strips that give the dessert its distinctive appearance, chendol is a sweet dessert that is typically served cold. The dessert itself boasts a strong coconut flavour, interlaced with the smoky, caramelised sweetness of palm sugar and fragrance of pandan leaves. Interestingly, despite its intriguing shade, the chendol jellies do not have any discernible flavour. The soft, springy jellies instead serve mainly to provide a change in mouthfeel. 

What ingredients are in chendol?

cup of chendol how to make chendol
(Credit: Kew Li Wen / Unsplash)

While there are variations in terms of ingredients and preparation styles all over Southeast Asia, chendol jellies, coconut milk, gula melaka (or palm sugar), and pandan leaves are four must-have components of chendol. The pandan leaves are used to give the jellies their distinctive, electric green hue – so no, food colouring is not involved! 

In Singapore, chendol is prepared using finely-shaved ice, which is then drizzled with fresh coconut milk and gula melaka syrup. It is served in a bowl as a dessert to be eaten with a spoon, instead of being slurped as a drink. Popular toppings for chendol include red beans, sweet corn, and even durian! 

How do you make chendol: The classic recipe 

Nothing’s quite like digging into a deliciously icy bowl of chendol on a hot afternoon. If you’re looking to recreate this iconic local dessert at home, we’ve got the best Singapore-style chendol recipe for you! (Bonus: once you’ve gotten the chendol jelly part down, you can incorporate the green jellies in all your chendol-inspired desserts!) 

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Servings: 6

Recipe ingredients:

Chendol jelly

  • 10 pandan leaves (about 100g)
  • 750ml water
  • 100g mung bean flour (or green pea flour)
  • 25g corn flour (or rice flour / corn starch / tapioca flour)
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp lye water (optional)

Gula melaka syrup

  • 200g gula melaka
  • 100ml water
  • 2 pandan leaves, knotted

Coconut milk mixture

  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • 2 pandan leaves, knotted
  • A pinch of salt

Other ingredients

  • Ice


  • Chendol strainer (or potato strainer / metal spatula with holes)
  • Blender
  • Large mixing bowl

Easy homemade chendol recipe:

Chendol jelly

  1. Prepare a large mixing bowl with cold water and ice cubes
  2. Chop pandan leaves (available on Shopee Supermarket) into about one-inch pieces
  3. Using a blender (available on Shopee Supermarket), put pandan leaves and 50ml of water to a blitz
  4. Strain the pandan mixture into a mixing bowl (available on Shopee Supermarket)
    (Pro Tip: To reduce the bitter taste, filter out the excess pandan using a fine strainer or cheesecloth!)
  5. Add the mung bean flour (available on Tiang’s Dried Goods), corn flour (available on Shopee Supermarket), salt, lye water (available on, and the remaining water to the mixture. Stir until well combined.
  6. Strain the mixture into a non-stick saucepan (available on Shopee Supermarket)
  7. Stir continuously for about 3 minutes until the mixture thickens to a paste
    (Pro Tip: The mixture is ready when it sticks to the spatula and drips down from it slowly.)
  8. Run the paste through the chendol strainer (available on Shopee Supermarket) directly into the ice bath
  9. Let chendol jelly set in the ice bath for 10 minutes
  10. Drain and set aside

Gula melaka syrup

  1. Chop gula melaka (available on Shopee Supermarket) into fine pieces
  2. Place chopped gula melaka, pandan leaves, and water into a saucepan
  3. Bring mixture to a boil, and simmer until all of the sugar is dissolved
  4. Remove from heat and let cool completely

Coconut milk mixture

  1. Cook coconut milk (available on Shopee Supermarket), pandan leaves, and salt (available on Shopee Supermarket) at medium heat, stirring continuously until bubbles form on the surface
  2. Once simmering, reduce to low heat and stir for another two minutes
  3. Remove from heat and strain the mixture. Let cool completely.


  1. Using a sharp knife (available on Shopee Supermarket), carefully slice an ice block into fine pieces. Alternatively, use a high-speed blender or food processor (available on Shopee Supermarket) to crush ice into fine pieces. Place shaved ice in a serving bowl (available on Shopee Supermarket).
  2. Drizzle coconut milk mixture over ice, followed by gula melaka syrup. Top it off with chendol jellies.
  3. Add desired toppings and enjoy!

How to make chendol: Red bean topping recipe 

Singapore-style chendol is not complete without time-honoured dessert toppings like red bean. This topping not only provides additional textures to the best-loved chendol, but also makes for a more vibrant-looking dessert! 

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour
Servings: 2

Recipe ingredients:

  • 50g red kidney beans (or adzuki beans), soaked overnight
  • 30g gula melaka
  • Water

Easy homemade chendol red bean topping recipe:

  1. Chop gula melaka into fine pieces
  2. Add red kidney beans (available on Shopee Supermarket) and water to a pot. Water level should be about 2cm deep.
  3. Bring mixture to medium heat. Once boiling, cover the pot with a saucepan.
  4. Let mixture simmer for 1 hour, checking on water level periodically. Add boiling water to the mixture whenever necessary. Ensure that the water level is always at least 1cm deep to prevent the beans from burning.
  5. After 1 hour, add chopped gula melaka to the mixture and boil off the excess water
  6. Remove from heat and let cool completely

How to make chendol desserts: Chendol cake recipe

Have a soft spot for pandan chiffon cake? You have to learn how to make chendol pandan cake! This chendol cake recipe brings not one, but two of Singapore’s best-loved desserts together for the ultimate teatime treat. We just love the combination of soft chendol jelly with fluffy pandan cake! 

Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 50 minutes
Servings: 4

Recipe ingredients:

Gula melaka syrup

  • 45g gula melaka, chopped
  • 30g coconut milk
  • 2 pandan leaves, knotted

Pandan juice

  • 2 pandan leaves, chopped
  • 50ml water

Gula melaka batter

  • 3 egg yolks
  • 45g gula melaka syrup
  • 10g neutral oil
  • 20g water
  • 60g cake flour
  • ¼ tsp baking powder

Pandan batter

  • 3 egg yolks
  • 45g white sugar
  • 10g neutral oil
  • 40g coconut milk
  • 20g pandan juice
  • 2 drops of pandan paste or pandan essence (optional)
  • 60g cake flour
  • ¼ tsp baking powder

Egg white foam

  • 6 egg whites
  • ¼ cream of tartar
  • 50g white sugar

Other ingredients

  • 100g premade or homemade chendol jelly


Easy homemade chendol cake recipe:

  1. Preheat the oven (available on Shopee Supermarket) to 160°C.

Gula melaka syrup

  1. Cook chopped gula melaka, coconut milk, and pandan leaves over low to medium heat until all ingredients are incorporated
  2. Remove from heat and set aside to cool completely

Pandan juice

  1. Using a blender, put pandan leaves water to a blitz
  2. Strain the pandan mixture into a bowl and set aside

Gula melaka batter

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk egg (available on Shopee Supermarket) yolks and gula melaka syrup until well combined
  2. Add oil (available on Shopee Supermarket) and water to the mixture. Mix well with spatula.
  3. Add sifted cake flour (available on Shopee Supermarket) and baking powder (available on Shopee Supermarket) to the mixture. Fold gently until well combined and set aside.

Pandan batter

  1. To another mixing bowl, whisk egg yolks and sugar (available on Shopee Supermarket) until well combined
  2. Add oil, coconut milk, pandan juice, and pandan paste (available on Shopee Supermarket) to the mixture. Mix well with spatula.
  3. Add sifted cake flour and baking powder to the mixture. Fold gently until well combined and set aside.

Egg white foam

  1. In another mixing bowl, whisk egg whites and cream of tartar (available on Shopee Supermarket) until foamy
  2. Gradually stream in sugar
  3. Whisk mixture at high speed until medium peaks form


  1. Divide egg white foam mixture into two equal portions
  2. Gently fold one portion into the pandan batter until well combined
  3. Fold in chendol jelly, drained and coated in flour, into the mixture
  4. Pour mixture into the loaf pan (available on Shopee Supermarket) to form the first layer
  5. Gently fold the second portion of egg white foam mixture into the gula melaka batter until well combined
  6. Pour mixture into the baking pan to form the second layer
  7. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes in the preheated oven at 160°C
  8. Once done, let cool completely before removing from the pan and cutting into slices

How to make chendol desserts: Chendol agar agar recipe

No oven, no problem! This no-bake chendol agar agar recipe takes all of your favourite chendol components and transforms them into one bite-sized treat. Fuss-free and kids-friendly, this is the perfect treat to prepare for all your National Day festivities! 

Prep time: 2.5 hours
Servings: 12

Recipe ingredients:

Coconut cream layer

  • 800ml water
  • 200ml coconut cream
  • 110g caster sugar
  • 3 tsp agar powder
  • 1 tsp konnyaku jelly powder
  • 120g premade or homemade chendol

Gula melaka layer

  • 500ml water
  • 1.5 tsp agar powder
  • ⅓ tsp jelly powder
  • 100g gula melaka, chopped


  • 18cm x 18cm springform baking pan
  • Cling wrap
  • Whisk
  • Strainer

Easy homemade chendol agar agar recipe:

  1. Wrap the bottom of the baking pan with cling wrap (available on Shopee Supermarket). Leave in the freezer.
  2. For the coconut cream layer, add water and coconut cream (available on Shopee Supermarket) to a pot
  3. Stir over medium heat with a whisk.
  4. Add caster sugar (available on Shopee Supermarket), agar powder (available on Shopee Supermarket), and konnyaku jelly powder (available on Shopee Supermarket) to the mixture.
  5. Stir continuously until the mixture reaches a boil. Remove from heat.
  6. Gently ladle the mixture onto the chilled springform baking pan (available on Shopee Supermarket)
  7. Halfway through, add chilled chendol to the mixture
  8. Add the rest of the mixture in, covering the chendol
  9. Chill in the refrigerator until the layer solidifies. (Pro Tip: Use a toothpick or satay stick to test whether the layer has solidified!)
  10. For the gula melaka layer, add water, chopped gula melaka, agar powder, and jelly powder to a pot
  11. Using a whisk, stir over medium heat until all the sugar has dissolved and the mixture reaches a boil. Remove from heat
  12. Strain the mixture directly onto the set coconut cream layer
  13. Chill in the refrigerator until both layers solidify
  14. Remove the springform pan and enjoy!

How to make chendol desserts: Chendol ice cream recipe

white ice cream being scooped how to make chendol
(Credit: Leighann Blackwood / Unsplash)

Store-bought chendol ice cream just not cutting it for you? Try your hand at making your own chendol ice cream! This chendol ice cream recipe gets you creamy, coconutty chendol-flavoured ice cream in under four hours. Best part? No fancy Thermomix machines or ice cream makers required! 

Prep time: 3.5 hours
Servings: 8

Recipe ingredients:

  • 6 egg yolks
  • 120g gula melaka, chopped
  • 250ml coconut milk
  • 250ml low-fat milk
  • 200ml whipping cream
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Premade or homemade chendol jellies


  • Whisk or electric mixer/food processor
  • Strainer
  • Large mixing bowl

Easy homemade chendol ice cream recipe:

  1. Whisk egg yolks until well combined
  2. Add chopped gula melaka, coconut milk, low-fat milk (available on Shopee Supermarket) and salt to a saucepan
  3. Cook the mixture over low heat, stirring continuously
  4. When the mixture starts to boil, take it off the heat. Strain the mixture to remove clumps.
  5. Add the gula melaka-milk mixture to beaten egg yolks, stirring slowly
  6. Add the mixture back to the saucepan. Cook over low heat until it thickens.
    (Pro Tip: the mixture is thick enough when it is able to coat the back of a spoon!)
  7. Remove from heat. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl and let cool completely. (Pro Tip: to speed up the process, place the bowl in iced water.)
  8. Once cooled, stir in the whipping cream (available on Shopee Supermarket) until well combined
  9. Leave mixture in the freezer for one hour
  10. Remove from the freezer. The mixture should be frozen at the edge but still soft in the centre. Using an electric whisk, beat the mixture until it’s creamy once again to remove any ice crystals that may have formed. Place the mixture back into the freezer for one hour.
  11. Repeat Step 10 at least three times. (Pro Tip: The more you repeat this, the softer your ice cream will be!)
  12. To store, pour the set mixture into a container
  13. Top with chendol jellies and enjoy!

Learn how to make the best chendol desserts for your loved ones this National Day 

We can’t think of a better way to celebrate Singapore’s independence than learning how to make chendol, one of the nation’s best-loved traditional desserts. While you’re at it, why not learn how to make some nyonya kuehs to surprise your loved ones with? If baking’s not exactly your forte, check out our selection of beef and chicken rendang recipes instead – we guarantee you’ll be in high demand at every potluck! (Psst: Don’t miss our upcoming National Day Sale for exciting deals and promotions for your favourite products!)

New to Shopee? Get $7 (min. Spend $15) with code*: HOWTOMAKECHENDOL
*TNC applies. Valid for new users from 2 Aug to 9 Aug 2022 only.