Sago Gulaman is an all-time favorite Filipino drink made with sago pearls or tapioca, gulaman (agar agar), brown sugar syrup, vanilla, water and ice. It is easy but takes some time to make.
This icy drink served on a hot scorching day is so refreshing. You can use other flavors like pandan aside from vanilla.
Sago Gulaman also refered to as samalamig by street vendors who sells a variety of sweet, chilled beverages in different flavors. Lamig means cold.
You’ll find many street vendors selling these drinks close to public transportation stations. This drink is best when cold so add cubed ice or crushed ice.
Prepare sago a day in advance. Sago takes a while to cook until it turns translucent. Click the link for a chewy sago.
Gulaman or agar agar can be prepared on the day you’re making Sago Gulaman. I use gulaman bars and it takes less than an hour to make.
Gulaman is soaked and boiled until dissolved, then transferred to a container like pyrex. Leave it in room temperature and it will fully set in half an hour. If you double this recipe and depending on the size of your container it might take longer.
Once set, cut into tiny cubes. You can flavor it with sugar and vanilla while cooking but I don’t since this drink is already sweet.
When both ingredients are ready, prepare simple syrup. This process is quick. In a pot, add water and brown sugar. Bring to a boil, then simmer until sugar is dissolved. Let it cool.
Now, all the ingredients are ready to make this refreshing drink. In a pitcher, combine all the ingredients. Pour water, sago and gulaman, simple syrup, vanilla and ice. Stir and it’s done. Time to enjoy it.
This recipe makes 3 to 4 servings using tall glasses.
As much as I love this drink, I limit myself to 3 glasses. It can be addicting plus I don’t like storing sago for more than 2 days. Sago is best when freshly made. Store leftover drink in the fridge.
Sago Gulaman Recipe and Video
Would you like to try Mango Sago, another refreshing Filipino dessert.
- ½ red gulaman bar
- ½ green gulaman bar
- 2 cups water
- ½ cup sago
- 8 cups water
Brown Sugar Simple Syrup
- 1 to 1 ½ cups brown sugar (1 cup is good for me but you might like it sweeter)
- 1 to 1 ½ cups water
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- Boil 4 cups of water and add sago pearls. Simmer for 20 minutes. Drain water and place sago in a colander under running cold water for 30 seconds. Pour sago in pot and add 4 cups of water again. Boil, then reduce heat and simmer sago for 1 hour. Turn off heat and leave cooked sago on stove top for 5 hours or until translucent. Set aside.
- Soak green gulaman (agar again 1 cup water for ½ an hour. Put on stove and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until dissolved. Transfer to a container to set. Do the same with red gulaman. Then cut into small cubes.
- In a pot, add brown sugar and water. Simmer until sugar is fully dissolved. Turn off heat and let it cool.
- In a pitcher, add 5 to 6 cups cold water, brown sugar syrup, vanilla, gulaman, sago pearls and ice. Stir.
- This sago gulaman recipe makes 3 to 4 servings using tall glasses. Enjoy!
- You can use other flavor aside from vanilla.
- While dissolving gulaman, you can flavor it with sugar and vanilla. I don't since this is already a sweet beverage.
- Click the link for a chewier sago.