How Do You Prepare Keo Meuk, The Cambodian Dessert Made With Coconut Milk And Squid Ink?

Imagine a culinary adventure where the sweetness of coconut milk intertwines with the bold richness of squid ink, creating a unique and surprising dessert. Keo Meuk, the Cambodian delicacy, combines these unexpected ingredients to tantalize your taste buds and leave you craving for more. But how do you prepare this intriguing dish? Let me take you on a delightful journey through the process of creating Keo Meuk, unraveling the mystery behind this delectable treat. Get ready to expand your culinary horizons and discover the surprising fusion of flavors in this unforgettable dessert.

How Do You Prepare Keo Meuk, The Cambodian Dessert Made With Coconut Milk And Squid Ink?


To prepare Keo Meuk, you will need the following ingredients:

Coconut milk

Coconut milk serves as the rich and creamy base for Keo Meuk. It adds a delightful tropical flavor to the dessert.

Squid ink

The key ingredient that gives Keo Meuk its distinctive black color is squid ink. This unique ingredient brings a subtle briny taste to the dessert, adding depth and complexity to the overall flavor profile.

Rice flour

Rice flour acts as a binding agent in the batter, ensuring that the Keo Meuk holds its shape while cooking. It also contributes to the dessert’s light and fluffy texture.


A pinch of salt is necessary to enhance the flavors of Keo Meuk. It helps to balance the sweetness and bring out the natural tastes of the other ingredients.


Sugar is added to sweeten the Keo Meuk and make it a delightful treat. The amount of sugar can be adjusted to suit your personal preference for sweetness.

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Water is needed to create the right consistency of the batter. It helps to achieve the desired texture and ensures that the Keo Meuk cooks evenly.

How Do You Prepare Keo Meuk, The Cambodian Dessert Made With Coconut Milk And Squid Ink?

Step-by-Step Instructions

Now that you have gathered all the necessary ingredients, let’s dive into the step-by-step process of preparing Keo Meuk.

Preparing the Squid Ink

To begin, carefully extract the squid ink from fresh squid or use bottled squid ink. Squid ink can be found in specialty stores or online. If using fresh squid, gently separate the ink sac from the body and collect the ink in a small bowl.

Preparing the Coconut Milk

Next, heat the coconut milk in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir occasionally to prevent it from scorching. Once heated, remove it from the stove and set it aside to cool. This step allows the coconut milk to infuse with the squid ink, enhancing the flavor and color.

Making the Batter

In a large mixing bowl, combine the rice flour, salt, and sugar. Gradually add the cooled coconut milk infused with the squid ink while constantly whisking to ensure a smooth batter. Continue whisking until all the ingredients are well incorporated and the batter has a consistent black color.

Cooking the Keo Meuk

Heat a non-stick pan or skillet over medium heat and lightly grease it with cooking spray or oil. Pour a ladleful of the Keo Meuk batter onto the pan, spreading it into a thin and even layer. Cook the Keo Meuk for about 2-3 minutes on each side until it turns golden brown and crispy. Repeat this process until all the batter is used.

Serving the Dessert

Once the Keo Meuk is cooked to perfection, transfer it to a serving plate. It can be enjoyed warm or at room temperature. For an extra touch of indulgence, drizzle some sweet syrup or sprinkle powdered sugar on top. Keo Meuk can be served as a standalone dessert or paired with other traditional Cambodian sweets for a delightful culinary experience.

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How Do You Prepare Keo Meuk, The Cambodian Dessert Made With Coconut Milk And Squid Ink?

Tips and Variations

While the traditional recipe for Keo Meuk is highly regarded, there are a few tips and variations you can explore to personalize your dessert:

Using fresh squid ink vs. bottled squid ink

Fresh squid ink offers a more intense flavor and aroma, giving your Keo Meuk a truly authentic taste. However, if fresh squid ink is not readily available, bottled squid ink can be a convenient substitute without compromising much on the overall quality.

Substituting rice flour with other flours

If you have dietary restrictions or prefer a different texture, you can experiment with alternative flours such as gluten-free flour, cornstarch, or tapioca flour. Keep in mind that different flours may alter the consistency and taste of the Keo Meuk, so it’s advisable to adjust the portions accordingly.

Adding additional flavors

While Keo Meuk is traditionally enjoyed in its pure squid ink and coconut milk form, you can get creative and add additional flavors to customize the dessert. Consider incorporating ingredients like vanilla extract, pandan essence, or even a sprinkle of cinnamon for a unique twist.

Adjusting the sweetness level

The level of sweetness in Keo Meuk can be adjusted according to personal preference. If you prefer a sweeter dessert, increase the amount of sugar in the batter. Conversely, if you prefer a more mildly sweet flavor, reduce the sugar accordingly.

How Do You Prepare Keo Meuk, The Cambodian Dessert Made With Coconut Milk And Squid Ink?

Benefits of Keo Meuk

Apart from being a visually stunning and delicious dessert, Keo Meuk offers several health benefits due to its key ingredients:

Rich in nutrients

Coconut milk is packed with essential nutrients such as vitamins C, E, and B-complex, as well as minerals like potassium, magnesium, and iron. These nutrients contribute to overall health and well-being.

Boosts immune system

Squid ink contains a variety of antioxidants and antimicrobial properties that can help strengthen the immune system. Consuming Keo Meuk may potentially boost your body’s defenses and promote better health.

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Good for heart health

Coconut milk is known to be heart-healthy as it contains medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs), which can help improve cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease. Including Keo Meuk in your diet may contribute to a healthier heart.

Enhances brain function

Squid ink has been linked to improved brain function due to its high content of omega-3 fatty acids and essential amino acids. These nutrients are known to support cognitive function and may help enhance memory and concentration.

How Do You Prepare Keo Meuk, The Cambodian Dessert Made With Coconut Milk And Squid Ink?


Keo Meuk, the Cambodian dessert made with coconut milk and squid ink, is a unique and flavorsome treat that offers a delightful blend of textures and tastes. With its striking black color and rich combination of ingredients, Keo Meuk is sure to impress both visually and on the palate. Whether you choose to stick to the traditional recipe or explore variations, this dessert is a must-try for anyone looking to indulge in a truly unique culinary experience. So, gather the ingredients, follow the step-by-step instructions, and savor the deliciousness of Keo Meuk.