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Peanut & Sugar Tang Yuan1

Peanut Tang Yuan (Glutinous Rice Balls)

A recipe for chewy glutinous rice balls stuffed with a sweet and crunchy peanut filling.
Course Dessert
Cuisine Asian, Chinese
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 18 pcs
Calories 116kcal
Author Michelle | Sift & Simmer


Filling: (best made ahead of time)

  • ½ C whole peanuts
  • 2 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoon natural peanut butter crunchy or smooth
  • 1 tablespoon icing sugar
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil or any light vegetable oil


  • 2 C glutinous rice flour
  • 1 C hot boiled water

Ginger Syrup:

  • 2 C water
  • ½ C granulated sugar or to taste
  • a few slices ginger


Make the peanut filling:

  • Make the filling a day before you want to make the tang yuan.
  • In a dry frying pan, add the peanuts and toast over medium heat, for 3-5 minutes, until aromatic.
  • Remove peanuts and let cool.
  • Add the cooled peanuts to a spice grinder or food processor and blitz together with the granulated sugar, until you obtain a coarse powder. (Be careful not to over blitz or it will turn into peanut butter).
  • Dump the peanuts into a small mixing bowl. Add the peanut butter, icing sugar, and coconut oil and mix together until you obtain a firm consistency (not too runny, and not too stiff). If it's too runny, add a little more icing sugar. If too stiff, add a touch more coconut oil. It will firm up in the fridge.
  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place into the fridge to stiffen.
  • When ready to make the tang yuan, remove the peanut filling from the fridge and use a melon baller to scoop small portions. Use the warmth from your hands to help mold the shape of the peanut filling.
  • Place the formed peanut filling balls onto a plate lined with plastic wrap.
  • Keep in the fridge until ready to use.

Make the dough:

  • In a medium mixing bowl, add the glutinous rice flour, make a well, and pour in the hot water in the center.
  • Use a silicone spatula or a pair of chopsticks to mix together and form a dough. If the dough appears dry, add 1 tablespoon of water and keep mixing. Use your hands to feel the dough -- it should be able to form a ball without it being sticky. If the dough is too wet, add a little more glutinous rice powder.
  • Break off small chunks of dough, about the size of a small golf ball. Roll into a ball, and use your thumb to make an indent.
  • Remove the peanut fillings from the fridge. Place one of the fillings in the center of the dough ball and enclose, pinching the dough together and roll gently so it forms a round sphere.  Place onto a plate lined with plastic wrap. Repeat with the remainder.
  • Note: Tang yuan can be frozen at this stage. Place into a freezer-safe container (be sure to leave some space between the spheres or they will stick together) for up to 3 months.

Make ginger sugar syrup:

  • In a small saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add in sugar and ginger slices and simmer over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved. Remove the ginger. Keep warm.

Cook the tang yuan:

  • Fill a small pot with water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Gently drop in the tang yuan and let them simmer for 2-3 minutes, until they float to the top. Reduce the heat a little so that they don't explode. Stir occasionally so that they don't stick to the bottom of the pot.
  • Carefully scoop out the glutinous rice balls with a slotted spoon and place into a serving bowl.
  • Serve tang yuan warm with ginger sugar syrup.


Tang yuan is best served warm.
The texture of glutinous rice balls will be quite hard when chilled. It's best to reheat in simmering water before enjoying.


Calories: 116kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 14mg | Potassium: 31mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 8g | Calcium: 4mg | Iron: 1mg