Vegan Kueh Salat | Sticky Rice Custard Cake

Yields: 10 Servings Difficulty: Medium Prep Time: 15 Mins Cook Time: 1 Hr 30 Mins Total Time: 1 Hr 45 Mins

Kueh salat or kueh seri muka is a super yummy Southeast Asian-style cake or snack or dessert. It took quite a while for me to figure out how to make a proper vegan kueh salat because the custard layer is so finicky. You want it to be soft enough to smoosh with your tongue but firm enough not to wobble around.

When we were kids, you would see kueh stands at public transport stops or outside our schools where you could buy a huge variety of these colourful snacks. These days it is a little harder to find a real makcik or nyonya-made (auntie-made) kueh outside of special cake shops or pasar malams (night markets). So I am glad to share this recipe!

This vegan kueh salat is not really difficult to make, but the instructions are quite specific. The wonderful pandan fragrance and the combination of the sticky rice, the coconut, and the custard is really worth it. Pay attention to steaming temperatures and make sure you cool the cake before playing with it!


  • Because of the long resting time, if you want to eat it in the afternoon, it is best to start making it in the morning.
  • If you cannot get butterfly pea flowers, you can use liquid food colouring or dried colouring powder.
  • You really need a good amount of pandan for the custard. If you don’t have enough you can use a combination of food colouring and pandan essence, but it won’t taste quite the same.
  • When you mix the custard, it will not look very green but it will become greener after cooking.
  • Make sure your rice is still hot when you pour the custard on so that the layers will stick together.
  • During the custard steaming time, it is important to keep the heat low (about 90ยฐC) or the custard may get bubbles. If your steamer does not have holes to release excess steam, you may need to open the lid a little bit so it does not get too hot.
  • After steaming the cake, leave it alone for at least 2-3 hours. If you cut it too soon it will not cut nicely.
  • When cutting, you need to clean your knife every. single. slice. Then dip it into hot water before cutting.

If you like Southeast Asian kueh, check out Vegan Kueh Dadar (Coconut Pandan Crepes).

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0/16 Ingredients
Adjust Servings
  • Sticky Rice
  • Blue Colouring
  • Pandan Juice
  • Pandan Custard


0/15 Instructions
  • Soak the glutinous rice in a big bowl of water for at least 4 hours. Overnight in the fridge is best.
  • Lightly grease your springform cake mold.
  • Drain the glutinous rice and mix with thick coconut milk, salt, and sugar. Pour into the cake mold.
  • Try to make sure the rice is evenly flat. Knot two pandan leaves and place on top. Steam for 40 minutes over high heat.
  • Soak the butterfly pea leaves in hot water for half an hour until all the blue colour is drained from the petals. Squeeze the flowers and strain the coloured water.
  • Blend the remaining pandan leaves with water to get pandan juice.
  • Squeeze the pandan pulp violently until all the juice is out.
  • By now your rice should be ready. Press it down firmly to compress into the mold.
  • Feel your inner Pollock and splash the blue water over the compressed rice. Steam for another 8-10 minutes until the blue colouring is no longer wet on the surface.
  • Mix all the items under 'Pandan Custard' and the pandan juice.
  • Mix well and try to get rid of all the lumps.
  • Remove the hot blue-ish rice from the steamer. Pour the pandan custard slowly into the mold through a fine-mesh sieve to catch all the lumps and bubbles.
  • Steam on low heat for 45 minutes.
  • After steaming, leave to cool for 3 hours before playing with it.
  • Cut with a wet, hot, knife.


  1. Hi Veganista! Please could you clarify the cake pan size this recipe is intended for (maybe 22cm?) – the recipe says 22 inches but that would be HUGE so I am assuming that’s a typo(?)
    p.s. I love your work! It is very special to find vegan recipes that are so authentic. I have been impressing my Malaysian in-laws since discovering your website ๐Ÿ™‚

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