What’s Pandan? Benefits, Uses, Taste, and Substitutes !

What's Pandan Benefits, Uses, Taste, and Substitutes

Pandan (Pandanus) is definitely an aromatic plant prized because of its sweet floral scent and flexibility.

Its spiky leaves grow in fan-formed bunches and thrive in tropical climates. Certain varieties also bear fruits that appear to be somewhat like red-orange pinecones.

Pandan can be used broadly in South and Southeast Asian cuisines, though Western curiosity about the guarana plant keeps growing because of its purported health advantages and culinary qualities.

This short article explains all that you should learn about pandan, including its uses, benefits, and substitutes.

What’s pandan?

Pandan, also referred to as screwpine, is really a tropical plant prized mostly because of its lengthy, blade-like leaves. It’s a well known component in lots of Sri Lankan, Thai, along with other South Asian dishes.

You’ll find pandan in your area or perhaps in niche markets worldwide. Its foliage is offered either frozen or fresh and measure about 12-20 inches (30-51 cm) with respect to the variety.

Over 600 species exist, though not every foliage is edible – this will depend around the subtype. All may be used in extracts or infusions or steamed into grain dishes for aroma.

Certain species, for example individuals that grow in India (Pandan odoratissimus) and also the Philippines (Pandan tectorius), produce edible fruits that appear to be like large, red-orange pinecones.

Pandan products and uses

Pandan fruit leaving possess a wide range of culinary uses.

The foliage is frequently steamed, juiced, or accustomed to wrap and flavor meats, as the fruit could be eaten raw or converted to marmalade. Pandan fruit can also be steamed and ground into an edible, highly nutritious paste that’s commonplace food inside a couple of parts around the globe.

Pandan foliage is generally pulverized to create an emerald-eco-friendly extract. The greater mature the leaf, the more dark the hue and much deeper the taste.

In addition, pandan leaf powder can be used to flavor both savory and sweet dishes. Its taste is referred to as a grassy vanilla having a hint of coconut.

Potential health advantages of pandan

While there isn’t much research on pandan’s health advantages, its leaves, fruit, flowers, roots, and oil have lengthy been utilized in non-Western traditional medicinal practises.

May reduce joint disease discomfort

Joint disease affects huge numbers of people worldwide and it is characterised by joint discomfort or stiffness.

In Ayurvedic medicine, coconut oil infused with pandan leaves is used topically to alleviate joint disease aches. Its effects are believed to originate from the oil present in its leaves, who have anti-inflammatory effects.

However, scientific studies are restricted to rats. Thus, scientific testing on people are essential.

Might help manage bloodstream sugar

Pandan might help manage your bloodstream sugar levels.

One study gave 30 healthy adults herbal tea produced from Pandanus amaryllifolius leaves carrying out a standard dental (75-gram) bloodstream sugar test. Individuals who drank the tea retrieved better in the bloodstream sugar test than individuals who drank warm water.

However, more research is essential.

May boost dental health

Eating on pandan leaves may freshen your breath because of their enjoyable aroma.

Some non-Western medicinal practices also employ this method to prevent bleeding gums. However, this effect must be studied more formally.

Potential downsides of pandan

Because pandan hasn’t been readily studied, its negative effects and interactions with medications are unknown.

Although pandan could have a mild laxative effect that may cause diarrhea if it is consumed in big amounts, more scientific studies are needed around the exact amounts.

Bear in mind that pandan fruit paste might be full of sugar. In addition to this, pandan-flavored desserts, junk foods, and chocolate consist of sugar and supply couple of – or no – benefits.

Thus, you may decide to limit your consumption of pandan-flavored products.

Using pandan

Pandan is amazingly versatile.

Its leaf extract is frequently combined with steamed grain and coconut milk to create a savory Malaysian dish known as nasi lemak. It is also accustomed to flavor soups, stews, and curries.

In addition to this, whole leaves are utilized to wrap meats before steaming or grilling, infusing all of them with a distinctive taste. The leaves and fruits of certain varieties may also be juiced.

In desserts, pandan is frequently combined with coconut. For instance, its vibrant eco-friendly extract is integrated into a crepe-like batter, then full of sweetened browned coconut to create an Indonesian dessert known as dadar gulung.

Pandan might be offered frozen or like a powder or extract. Its leaf powder and extract are efficient ways to add natural coloring and nutrients to some dish.

Pandan has non-culinary uses, too.

For example, to produce a topical cream for joint discomfort, infuse coconut oil with pandan leaves. Test drive it on the small area of the epidermis to actually do not have any allergy symptoms, for example redness or itching.

Keep in mind this use is not supported by scientific testing on people.


Based on where you reside, pandan might be difficult to get.

While no ideal substitutes for pandan exist, there are several methods for getting by inside a pinch. For example, should you can’t get hold of pandan leaves, you could possibly buy pandan extract or essence in Asian niche markets.

Other potential substitutes include:

Vanilla bean. Pods, paste, or extract from vanilla beans may lend somewhat similar sweet and floral notes.

Collard vegetables. For savory dishes, chop and boil these leafy vegetables while you would pandan leaves, per your unique recipe.

Matcha tea. This powder may impart an emerald-eco-friendly color but additionally adds caffeine as well as an astringent flavor. If these characteristics are undesirable, consider eco-friendly food coloring rather.

The conclusion

Pandan is really a versatile plant with a number of culinary and medicinal applications across South and Southeast Asia. Assistance decrease your bloodstream sugar as well as reducing joint disease discomfort, though more scientific studies are needed.

Its fruit and aromatic, pointy foliage is broadly eaten and utilized in numerous dishes, lending a unique color and vanilla-like floral notes.

Whether it isn’t generally grown or offered fresh in your town, search for powder, extract, or frozen pandan leaves.