Carioca Recipe (Filipino Sticky Rice Balls)

Carioca Recipe – Are you a fan of sticky and sweet desserts? Then you may like carioca. Carioca is one of the many names for cascaron. Do not confuse this for cascarón, which is a hollowed-out chicken egg filled with prizes derived from the same term. Cascaron refers to a Filipino doughnut made of deep-fried ground glutinous rice, grated coconut, and sugar. The dessert is commonly ball-shaped, but it can be elongated, pancake-shaped, or doughnut-shaped. It is also commonly eaten on a skewer.

Other names for this dessert are tinudok and bitsu-bitsu (or bicho-bicho). The latter, however, should not be confused with bicho or bicho-bicho, which is a Chinese Filipino version of youtiao made with regular flour. If you’re interested in trying out a stickier variant of a doughnut with a fun texture, try out this Carioca Recipe:

carioca recipe

Carioca Recipe

A sticky, sweet, and chewy glutinous rice doughnut topped with a caramel sauce
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine Filipino
Servings 12 servings


  • For the Carioca
  • 1 1/2 cups glutinous rice flour
  • 1 cup water and 1 tablespoon or so more if needed
  • canola oil
  • For the Sugar Coating
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water


  • In a bowl, combine glutinous rice flour and 1 cup of water. Stir until flour is moistened. If needed, add 1 tablespoon of water at a time to form a firm but smooth and pliable dough. Dough should not feel dry or too sticky.
  • Scoop about 1 teaspoonful of dough and roll in palm of hands into 1-inch balls. Using the sharp end of one bamboo skewer, poke through each dough ball.
  • In a wide pan over medium heat, heat about 3-inches deep of oil. Gently add balls into the oil and cook, stirring occasionally, until they float to the top. Continue to cook for another 1 to 2 minutes or until golden.
  • With a slotted spoon, remove from pan and drain on paper towels.
  • Dip carioca in the sugar syrup until fully coated. Arrange in single layer on a wire rack set over a pan or on a parchment-lined baking sheet to cool.
  • Skewer in bamboo skewers if desired.
  • For the Sugar Coating
  • In a saucepan, combine dark brown sugar and 1/4 cup water. Stir until sugar is dissolved.
  • Over medium heat, bring to a boil. Continue to cook WITHOUT stirring until syrup golden brown.

Variations of a Carioca Recipe

Just as there are different names for this dessert, there are variations of carioca. One variation of this dessert is shaped like flattened oval. It is known as pinakufu or paborot. Something similar to this would be is panyalam, which a traditional Filipino-Bangsamoro fried rice pancake. However, paborot is usually connected with buñuelo, the similar fritter made with regular flour from which it is derived from.

You can check out even more Filipino desserts with our “Graham de Leche Recipe” and “Crema de fruta Recipe.” Aside from these you can also enjoy other sweet and chewy desserts like “Cassava Suman” or “Bukayo.”

carioca recipe

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