Here are the 8 Halo-Halo You Should Try When Traveling around the Philippines

Beat the heat!
by | May 03, 2017

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The weather has been sizzling hot and humid lately and all of us are looking for ways to cool down. Times like these, nothing beats a refreshing glass of every Pinoy’s favorite dessert — the halo-halo. Literally mix-mix, this treat is typically made of shaved ice, evaporated milk, sweetened fruits, leche flan, purple yam and jelly is a surefire way to cool you down when the temperature rises.

If you’re traveling around the country this summer, here are some of the unique versions of halo-halo you should definitely look out for.

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Halo-Halo de Iloko from San Fernando, La Union

Those visiting La Union usually make a stop at Halo-Halo de Iloko, a homegrown restaurant that serves reputedly the best halo-halo in the city. Their version has all the standard ingredients like tapioca, nata de coco, coconut strips, red beans, ube halaya (candied purple yam), plus some yema, bits of cheese and ice cream. What makes it special is the presentation. This signature dessert is served on half a coconut shell with a frond of a palm leaf sticking out, which makes it look extra festive and appetizing. It’s big enough for two to three people to share!

Razon’s Halo-Halo from Guagua, Pampanga

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Razon’s Halo-Halo from Guagua may not be as colorful as other types of halo-halo. In fact, it’s made with only three ingredients: macapuno, saba banana, and leche flan topped with powdery shaved ice. However, locals and loyal patrons swear by this time-tested recipe, making it a must-try every time you visit the Culinary Capital of the country.

Kabigting’s Halo-Halo from Arayat, Pampanga

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Another favorite from Pampanga, Kabigting’s Halo-Halo has always been popular in their hometown of Arayat. Their version also has just three simple ingredients: mashed beans, corn and carabao milk pastillas with a base of extra fine shaved ice. The carabao milk pastillas gives it that distinct creamy sweet taste you’ll find yourself craving.

DJC’s Halo-Halo with Cheese from Tiwi, Albay

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If you’re going to Legazpi in the Bicol region, you have to try DJC’s famous Halo-Halo topped with grated cheese! Originally from the small town of Tiwi in Albay, they now have branches all over Legazpi and Naga City. For those who don’t like overwhelmingly sweet desserts, the salty cheese adds a touch of contrast to the otherwise sweet flavor of this well-loved dessert.

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Ice Castle Halo-Halo and Ice Cream House, Cebu

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While there are many restaurants serving halo-halo in Cebu, Ice Castle Halo-Halo & Ice Cream House, one of the oldest dessert stores, is the all-time fave of Cebuanos. They don’t skimp on ingredients here, generously topping their halo-halo with either one or two scoops of ice cream and corn flakes, aside from standard ingredients, for a deliciously filling and colorful treat!

Apareja Buko Halo-Halo from Koronadal, South Cotabato

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Apareja is the most  famous halo-halo in Koronodal, South Cotabato. The dessert, which makes use of ingredients harvested from the owner’s plantation, is served in a buko shell. It makes use of shaved ice, kaong, sweetened kamote, banana, nata de coco, evaporated milk and topped with leche flan, corn kernels and scoop of ube ice cream!

Knickerbocker from Hacienda de Palmeras, Zamboanga City

The Knickerbocker is a halo-halo-like dessert that’s a popular cooler for those visiting Zamboanga City. It’s a mix of sliced fresh fruits like mango, watermelon and banana with bits of jelly, topped with strawberry ice cream and milk. Unlike other halo-halo variants, this doesn’t have shaved ice, so it’s not strictly a halo-halo. You’ll still want to try it though. You can try it in Hacienda de Palmeras and Pinoy Patio in Paseo del Mar, the seaside boulevard.

Durian Halo-Halo from Davao

Davao is known for durian, a pungent-smelling fruit that is an acquired taste  for most visitors. You either love it or hate this tropical fruit! Commonly associated with Davao, durian is commonly used in coffee, ice cream, candies and other food souvenir items. It’s no surprise that it’s served on halo-halo as well. Aling Fopings Durian Halo-Halo makes use of ice mik, durian jam, durian ice cream, nata de coco and pinipig. How’s that for a unique treat?

Does your hometown have their own unique version of halo-halo? Let us know so we can try it out!

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Kara Santos is a freelance writer and photographer. When not on the road or motorcycling off somewhere for the weekend, she’s leveling up her experience points in the latest PlayStation RPG. Read about her real-life and virtual adventures on her blog Travel Up.


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