It’s an undeniable fact there’s a whole bunch of Thai sweets which may be enough to satisfy any hardcore sweet tooth. Thai sweets come in a variety of categories, depending on what types of fruits it consists or textures it presents. There’s a whole plethora of sweets you can choose on and most of them are unbelievably delicious. Makes you want to go for seconds, or even thirds! Hands down, Thai sweets are delicious and in no way they should be missed! If you’re eager to try every Thai sweet available in Thailand, here’s a nifty beginner’s guide introducing you to the sweets you’ll be sure to love!
Khao Neow Mamuang (Sticky Rice with Mango)
You can find this treat in most restaurants and hawkers (mobile shops on wheels). This basic treat contains sticky rice, topped with ripe mango and lathered with sweet coconut cream syrup. It’s quite a cheap sweet as well so it shouldn’t go for more than 30 Baht ($1). It’s a refreshing treat to have especially when the weather is quite hot; eating this sweet (especially when refrigerated) becomes extremely refreshing!
This is an extremely common sweet found in almost every sweet hawker stand, supermarket to lavish hotels. Woon comes in an assortment of colors but not flavors. There’s coconut woon which is basically jelly with coconut flavoring or coconut chunks in it. Other forms of woon come in an assortment of colors: Red, yellow, green, pink—you name it, it’s there! Sometimes in supermarkets you find something called Woon cakes; a 5-tiered, multi-colored ‘cake’ make out of nothing but jelly!
Khao Tom Mud (Sticky Rice Wrapped in Banana Leaves)
You can eat this treat as-is or warmed up. The main components of the treat are the sticky rice which contains a mixture of coconut milk, sugar and sweet black beans. Once the ingredients are ready, the khao tom mud is wrapped delicately in banana leaves and is ready to be served. The treat isn’t too sweet but it’s just right for any curious traveler.
Khanom Jark (Baked Flour in Palm Leaf)
The idea of eating baked flour is what you call ‘bread’ in the West. But in Thailand, it’s quite different. Flour, sugar, salt and coconut meat is mixed and placed in palm leaf. This is best served warm or hot. When biting into it, it’s quite soft and sweet. Just make sure you don’t eat the charred palm leaves! Those aren’t edible!
Khanom Chun (Thai Jello)
You can find most of these khanom chun-types jellies mostly in green or white. This jello is made out of coconut milk, flour and sugar. The jelly is then poured into a cookie pan and allowed to sit until it’s hardened.
Khao Lam (Sticky Rice in Bamboo)
If you happen to notice by now, a lot of the above mention dishes aren’t served in dishes but are served using naturally found props. This is no different; khao lam is a sweetened type of sticky rice jam-packed with black beans and a heavy mixture of coconut milk. Once all the ingredients are mixed, it’s shoved inside a bamboo shoot and roasted over fire. When it’s cooked, a machete is used to hack open the bamboo shoot. As the bamboo shoot is a makeshift plate, you can use your fingers to dig into the sticky rice and enjoy! And there you have it, sticky rice in bamboo! Caution though, it’s pretty hot so be careful!
Khanom Buang (Sweet Thai Crepe)
Walking down Bangkok’s sidewalks, surely you’ve seen these colorful, half-folded things on the sidewalks but aren’t sure what they are? These are called khanom buang or sweet Thai crepes. Unlike Western crepes, these crepes consist of meringue and foy tong as topping. Not as much diversity, but it does come in different shapes and sizes.
Nam Ponlamai Ban (Thai Fruit Smoothie)
Although this isn’t what you considered a Thai sweet, nothing is more refreshing than having a fruit or fruits blended together in a blender with ice chunks. The result? A delicious blended cocktail of fresh fruits and ice! It’s a great treat to have on an extremely, scorching hot day!
Not even a fraction of all Thai kanom is covered in this post as there are many more sweets which were unnamed. Don’t worry, all these sweets are available everywhere. There’s no limit what you can or can’t eat; you just need to step out of your comfort zone and try them all. Bottom line? You’ll love it and will be coming back for more!
- License: Creative Commons image source
- License: Creative Commons image source
Thailand has an assortment of sweets known as kanom. For Lindsey Edwards, she tries out different types of kanom when she comes to Thailand. Traveling the country from North to Central Thailand, Lindsey attends cooking classes held at Pullman hotels, supervised by renown chefs to make the perfect kanom. Her favorite kanom to date is woon cake.