Thai Sweet Gruel (Chè Thái) Recipe

Thai Sweet Gruel (Chè Thái) Recipe
4.4/5 - (16 votes)

Gruels (Chè) are highly popular desserts in Vietnam. Thai Sweet Gruel (Chè Thái) is among the top of the list. This is a Vietnamese adaption of the Thai’s dish that includes more varieties of tropical fruits. The mixture of colorful ingredients and cold ice makes it eye-catching and  especially desirable on hot summer days.​

Another great thing about this dish is all the ingredients are easy to find and you can add or take away some ingredients depending on your preferences. Note that durian is a part of this dish, so if you find its smell to be too strong for your liking, you can remove it or replace it with another fruit.

Let’s make some tasty treats now!

You can also watch the video for details on Thai Sweet Gruel REcipe below:


6-8 Cups

Ingredients - That Sweet Gruel (Chè Thái)

  • 1 can (20 oz / 565 g) of the following:
    • Water Chesnut (dice)
    • Rambutan or Longan (slice)
    • Jack Fruit (fresh fruit recommended if available and slice into thin strands )
  • 6 small pieces (or 3 large pieces) Durian (optional)
  • 2 cans ( 20 oz / 565 g each) Palm Seed
  • 1 can ( 14 oz / 396 g) Coconut Cream
  • Food Coloring - red, green
  • 33.8 oz (1 L) Coconut Water 
  • 1 package (1 tsp / 5 g) Jelly Powder
  • 4 tsp (16 g) Rock Sugar
  • 3.5 tbsp (42 g) Sugar
  • 1/4 tsp (1.25 ml) Pandan Color
  • 4 tbsp (48 g) Tapioca Starch
  • 1/3 package ( 3 g) Vanilla Sugar

Sugar Syrup

1.5 cup (300 g) sugar + 1 cup (250 ml) water

Boil and mix well

ThatSweetGruel - Ingredients


1. In a pot, add coconut water and rock sugar.

2. Then in a small bowl, mix 1 tbsp (12 g) sugar and jelly powder together and add it to the pot. Stir until boiling.

ThaiSweetGruel - making jelly

3. Next, add the pandan color and turn off heat. Stir well.

4. Pour the pot content into a container. Let it cool and then fridge for at least 1 hour.

5. Take the jelly out and slice it into small pieces (cubes or thin strands depending on your preference).

6. In a large bowl, add water chestnut and a few drops of red food color. Mix well.

7. Then, add the tapioca starch. Thoroughly mixed (You can add more starch to fully cover the chestnut if necessary).

8. Transfer the coated chestnuts to a colander or flour sifter to remove excess flour.

9. Prepare a cool water bath. Set it aside.

10. In a boiling water pot, add the flour coated chestnuts and stir immediately to prevent them from sticking to the bottom. Break apart any clump.

11. After about 1 minute, the chestnuts should float up. Transfer them to the cool water bath. 

12. Strain them and place in a bowl. Add 1-2 tbsp of sugar syrup. Note: This must be served within 4 hours or it would harden and turn starchy.


ThaiSweetGruel - Water Chestnut mix in flour
ThaiSweetGruel - Water Chestnut in sugar syrup

13. Next, in a pot, add the can of coconut cream, 2.5 tbsp (30 g) sugar, 100 ml water, 3 g vanilla sugar, 1/4 tsp salt. On medium heat, stir frequently until boiling. 

14. Now that we have all the ingredients prepared, we will add a bit of each (up to your discretion) into a cup.

15. Next, add ice and fill almost to the rim with the coconut cream mix. Top it off with a little bit of sugar syrup if you prefer a sweeter taste.

16. Finally, add a small piece of durian (optional)

ThaiSweetGruel - completed


I hope that was as fun to make as it was to enjoy the delicious treats!

Please let me know if you have any question or feedback. As always, keep that cooking passion strong!

If you enjoyed this recipe, please check out my other recipes here:

Egg Rolls - Image
Crispy Vietnamese Egg Rolls
Coconut Waffle - Feature Image
Pandan Waffle Recipe

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