Make your own Sampalok Candy at home! With a delicious medley of sweet, sour, and salty flavors, this tamarind candy is seriously addictive. Great for gift-giving or for any time you need a fruity treat!
I found sweet tamarind for sale at Seafood City on my last grocery trip, and since they’re not available regularly and they happen to be my all-time favorite, I bought a bagful of about four pounds.
As much as I love the fruit, four pounds proved to be A LOT. I spent the whole weekend snacking on my precious stash and still had roughly two pounds left, so I decided to turn them into sampalok candy.
Was I glad I did! These tamarind candies were quite a treat with the perfect balance of sweet, sour, and salty.
Unfortunately, I can only guesstimate the recipe’s yield as I couldn’t resist popping one tamarind ball after the other while I was shaping and coating them in sugar and salt. Fortunately, the recipe makes plenty and more than enough to feed my cravings for weeks!
What’ you’ll need
These tropical treats are easy to make and require just four ingredients.
- Tamarind pods– use ripe fruit, not unripe ones used for sinigang.
- Water– to soften the fruit and draw out the pulp
- Sugar– adds sweetness
- Salt– balances the sweetness
- In commercial preparations, it is customary to add mashed sweet potatoes to extend servings economically. Our recipe is pure tamarind pulp and sugar so the resulting product is softer in texture. Refrigerate the cooked mixture until completely cool to make shaping and rolling easier.
- Use a small cookie scoop to portion the candies easily and evenly.
- Add chili powder to the sugar-salt coating mixture for a delicious hint of spice.
How to store
- Wrap about three to four pieces of tamarind candies in cellophane and place in a resealable bag or container with a lid.
- You can also store them, unwrapped, in an airtight container.
- They’ll keep at room temperature for about 1 week or in the refrigerator for about 2 weeks.
- 2 pounds ripe tamarind pods
- 1 cup water
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Line a baking sheet with wax paper and set aside.
- Hull the tamarind, removing the outer shell and inner strings to separate the fruit.
- In a wide pan over medium heat, combine tamarind pulp, water, 1 1/2 cups of the sugar and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt. Bring to a boil.
- Lower heat and continue to cook, stirring and mashing with the back of a spoon, for about 15 to 20 minutes or until mixture is very thick and sticky.
- Using a teaspoon or small cookie scoop, scoop tamarind mixture and drop in a single layer on prepared baking sheet, leaving space between each mound. Refrigerate for about 1 to 2 hours or until completely cooled and slightly hardened.
- On a large plate, combine the remaining 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 teaspoon salt.
- Using the palm of hands, shape each tamarind mound into balls. Roll in sugar and salt mixture to fully coat.
- Wrap about three to four pieces in cellophane or store in an airtight container.
“This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.”