When it comes to trends, it seems that purple is the new black. From smokey lilac hair to orchid makeup to everyone’s fave accessory, the Starbucks Berry Hibiscus Refresher, the color purple is lighting up our Instagram feeds. Amid all of the gorgeous color, *the* purple trend that really stands out is ube. Standard fare for birthdays, holidays and other fiestas in the Philippines, the purple yam mixed with sweetened condensed milk and butter provides a base for so many treats, from cake and ice cream to sapin-sapin to halo-halo to ube hopia. So, why are we suddenly seeing it stateside in everything from donuts to cookies to waffles? Chalk it up to the purple power of the ube as a natural food dye coupled with its Instagram-worthy gorgeousness. Adding ube to batters and glazes doesn’t alter the flavor one bit but does give the foods a vibrant purple hue without using chemical additives. Both beautiful and healthy, this is one food trend you will want to get in on. Scroll down for 14 examples that the purple power of ube is *the* food trend to follow.
1. Rice Cakes: This is how tea time looks in the Philippines! Doesn’t the purple and green of ube and pandan look eye-catching against the backdrop of that sunburst plate? The light, sweet and nutty flavor of these steamed rice cakes is delicate and not overly filling.
2. Halo Halo: When the weather gets hot, foodies in the know pop into a shop for some halo halo. This chilled scoop of purple ube ice cream is just the sweet treat to cool you down.
3. Birthday Cake: Here’s a gorgeous ube birthday cake fit to melt the heart of any Filipino mama. That vibrant purple icing is *almost* too beautiful to slice into, but we’re up for the challenge.
4. Crinkle Cookies: Eating ube crinkles is like downing a spoonful of ube jam, only in cookie form. And the sweet aroma that fills your kitchen while they’re baking will certainly wet your appetite for that first crunch.
5. Macarons: These two-tone ube macarons are to die for — so sweet, dense and chewy! Coupled with that peony-pink mani, this whole tableau is utterly Insta-worthy.
6. Shaved Ice: This halo halo presentation is a culinary work of art. We’re looking at ube shaved ice with jackfruit and mung bean mixin’s and a delectable coconut leche drizzle — one taste and you’re in foodie heaven!
7. Ice Cream: What could be better than ube ice cream on a hot summer night? Ube ice cream in an ube sugar cone — it’s a double purple sensory explosion.
8. Breakfast Jam: Ube jam is beloved by Filipinos worldwide. Just try slathering some on a mound of steaming pancakes, and you’ve got breakfast Filipino-American style.
9. Dulce de Leche Macarons: There’s no sweeter combo on earth than taro and dulce de leche — and none more beautiful to look at. The densely chewy almond goodness of this macaron cookie base plays so well with the caramel flavors of the whipped cream. These bite-size sweets are perfect for the dessert table of an outdoor wedding or garden party.
10. Ice Cream Sandwich: Now here’s a purple sammy you can really sink your teeth into. Creamy ube ice cream sandwiched between two slices of vanilla brings the meaning of the term ice cream sandwich to a whole new level.
11. Cookies: Baking an ube cookie that’s balanced just right takes lots of trial and error, but — *bonus* — you get to eat the fails. This crinkle took lots of trials but has achieved the pinnacle of perfection — it’s light and crumbly with just the right amount of ube jam sweetness.
12. Doughnut: If you love salted caramel, you are going to melt after one taste of this ube donut with salted ube frosting. It’s that salt-sweet combo that gets us every time.
13. Fried Ice Cream: Save room for dessert, because this one’s worth waiting for. A scoop of ube ice cream is sandwiched inside a fried bao, slathered with Nutella, then dusted in a light sprinkling of powdered sugar. It’s like the banana split of the Philippines.
14. Chicken ‘n’ Waffles: If you thought you couldn’t get a more decadent breakfast than that Southern specialty chicken and waffles, think again. This waffle has been given the royal purple treatment, thanks to the addition of ube halaya in the batter. It’s *almost* too beautiful to eat.
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