This fruity and easy Sago with Papaya and Pomelo is a vegan and gluten-free dessert made with sago pearls, coconut milk and your favorite natural sweetener. 

If you love boba tea or tapioca pudding, you’re going to really love this recipe for fruity dessert sago. It has a creamy, spoonable texture like chia pudding and just the right amount of sweetness. I’ve added tropical and citrus fruits for added sweetness and some tartness. The result is a refreshing, satisfying and totally vegan dessert you won’t want to share!

Sago Veggiekins Blog

What is Sago?

Sago is a type of starch that comes from palm trees. It’s a popular ingredient in Southeast Asia, especially Malaysia. It’s used for puddings and baking, because it thickens things up without any gluten.

Sago is similar to tapioca, but it’s not the exact same thing. Tapioca comes from cassava root and is more commonly found in South America. Sago has smaller pearls than most tapioca. However, if you can’t find sago for this recipe, small pearl tapioca will also work.

You can find sago in most Asian food stores near the rice and grains.

How to Make Sago Pudding

Making this simple pudding is quick and easy. All you need is a pot and a stove to whip up a big batch of creamy, sweet and delicious sago pudding.

ingredients for sago with coconut milk and pomelo


Here’s what you need to make vegan and gluten free sago pudding:

  • Sago. Look for small pearl tapioca. The sago expands quite a bit when cooked, so a little goes a long way.
  • Coconut milk. I recommend full-fat coconut milk for the richest flavor and creamiest texture.
  • Sweetener. You can use any kind of sweetener you like. I recommend maple syrup or coconut sugar. Though cane sugar will also work.
  • Salt. Just a pinch helps enhance the other flavors in your pudding.

ovrhead of a white bowl of Sago Veggiekins Blog

Topping Ideas

You can mix things into your sugo if you like to infuse it with flavor, or simply add your favorite toppings to each serving.

I like to lean into the classic Southeast Asian flavors when choosing toppings for this dessert. My favorites include:

  • Tropical fruits like papaya or mango
  • Citruses like pomelo, red grapefruit or oranges
  • Tart berries like golden raspberries
  • Nuts like toasted coconut or cashews for crunch
  • Condensed coconut milk for added creaminess and sweetness

Serving Suggestions

Typically, sago pudding is served d chilled. So you can make your dessert ahead of time and chill it in the fridge until you’re ready to serve.

white bowl of sago pudding with fruit and nuts

More Vegan Pudding Recipes

If you make this easy tropical Sago Pudding recipe, be sure to let me know what you think with a comment below!

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ovrhead of a white bowl of Sago Veggiekins Blog

Simple Sago Dessert with Papaya and Pomelo

  • Author: Remy Park


Make a creamy and sweet vegan Sago Pudding with pomelo, payapa and your favorite toppings.


Units Scale
  • 5 cups water
  • 1/2 cup sago (small pearl tapioca)
  • 1 can full fat coconut milk
  • 1/41/3 cup maple syrup, or coconut sugar*
  • pinch of salt

to garnish (optional)

  • red papaya
  • red grapefruit
  • pomelo
  • golden raspberries
  • toasted coconut flakes
  • coconut condensed milk
  • mango chunks


  1. In a large pot, bring 5 cups water to a boil. Add your sago pearls and cook according to package directions, stirring frequently. Pearls should become clear once fully cooked.
  2. Drain and rinse your pearls in a fine mesh strainer with cold water, then return to the pot. Add coconut milk (adjust to your desired consistency, use less for a thicker pudding, use more for more of a sago soup), along with maple syrup or coconut sugar and salt to taste. Keep in mind the sago will thicken up as it sits, so add more coconut milk than you think you’ll need.
  3. At this point, you can add mashed papaya, grapefruit and pomelo chunks into the pot to add flavour, or you can simply serve as toppings.
  4. Finally, transfer mixture into a large bowl and allow to chill in the fridge. To serve, garnish with toppings of choice.

Filed under: Eat, Gluten Free, Sweet Treats

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BY Remy Park • September 8, 2021

Sago with Papaya and Pomelo (vegan, gluten free)

ovrhead of a white bowl of Sago Veggiekins Blog

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Hi there, I’m Remy! Welcome to Veggiekins Blog, home to nourishing vegan + gluten-free recipes and tips to live your best balanced and holistic life. I’m a human on a mission to empower you to be well and be kind to your mind, body and soul with the healing power of plants.

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COPYRIGHT © 2020 Veggiekins    ☼    Website by Sunday Stories

COPYRIGHT © 2020 Veggiekins   ☼   Website by Sunday Stories