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Yemas: Filipino Candy Recipe

Filpino yemas

Filpino yemas

What Are Yemas?

Yema is Spanish for egg yolk.

Let's learn how to make a traditional Spanish dessert known as yemas (also called yemas de Santa Teresa), which is made from egg yolks, sugar, and water and has a powdered sugar coating. They're usually round in shape.

The Filipino version of this dessert uses milk instead of water, they are served plain—without the powdered sugar coating. The shape is also different: rather than being round, they are shaped like tall, slender pyramids. In comparison to the Spanish version, the Filipino version tastes creamier because of the milk.

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

15 min

15 min

30 min

8 to 10 servings


  • 1 can condensed milk
  • 8 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Combine all ingredients in a pot and mix.
  2. Heat the pot over low heat and simmer until it thickens, stirring often, to the point that you can shape them like cookie dough, about 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. Remove the pot from the heat and allow it to cool.
  4. Take 1 tablespoon at a time of the mixture, shape or mold it into pyramids, and serve.


  • You can use other flavor extracts, such as lemon.
  • Instead of condensed milk, you can substitute 4 cups of fresh milk. First, simmer the milk until it reduces to about 1 cup. Add 1 cup of sugar to the reduced milk before proceeding with the recipe above.
  • Shape the cooked, dough-like mixture into balls instead of pyramids.
  • Try coating the yemas in powdered sugar or chopped nuts.
  • For a firmer texture, refrigerate the yemas before serving.
  • Wrap each individual yemas in plastic wrap to give away to family and friends.

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