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Apam Gula Hangus

Apam gula hangus is made in a steamer and, with the addition of a salted caramel glaze, tastes just like Werther’s Original candies!

Apum Gula Hangus

What is Apam Gula Hangus

Apum Gula Hangus

Apam gula hangus are steamed caramel cupcakes popular on the streets on Malaysia. It literally translates to burnt sugar steamed cupcake. I added fleur de sel to mine to make it a salted steamed caramel cupcake or a salted apam gula hangus.

Advantages of Baking in the Steamer

1. Steamed cupcakes have a nice, spongy texture.

2. If your entire oven is in use (or you don’t have a working oven), you can still make cupcakes.

Disadvantages of Baking in the Steamer

1. Unless you have a giant commercial steamer, you can only make four cupcakes at a time.

2. Because the cupcakes are not in a cupcake tin, they spread out and don’t have as nice of a shape if you use paper liners. To ensure that steamed cupcakes hold their shape, I suggest using silicone liners. If that isn’t important to you, make them with paper liners as you see in my images.

Is Apam Gula Hangus Frosted?

Traditionally, apam gula hangus is not frosted. However, I add a salted caramel glaze to mine.

I use the frosting in two ways. I poke holes in the cupcakes and drizzled lots of caramel inside of them. Then, I put the caramel in the fridge until it hardens more and spread it on top.

Apam Gula Hangus Recipe

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Apam Gula Hangus
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5 from 2 votes

Apam Gula Hangus

A twist on apam gula hangus with a salted caramel frosting!
Course Dessert
Cuisine Malaysian
Keyword apam gula hangus, salted caramel frosting
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 612kcal


Cupcake Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup boiling water
  • 1/2 t fleur de sel or any salt of your choice
  • 1 1/4 cup plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter melted
  • 1/3 cup milk

Salted Caramel Glaze Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon fleur de sel or any salt of your choice


Cupcake Instructions

  • In a small saucepan on low hear, melt the sugar. 
  • When the color turns golden brown, immediately remove from heat and pour in the boiling water. (Note: This takes 10-15 minutes) 
  • Return to the heat and stir until the caramelized sugar dissolves in the water. 
  • Remove from heat, stir in fluer de sel, and cool completely.
  • In a small mixing bowl, sift together flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside. 
  • In a separate mixing bowl, mix cooled caramel syrup, egg, sugar, melted butter and milk. Stir well until sugar dissolves. 
  • Combine the wet ingredients to the sifted flour mixture. Whisk gently until it is lump free. Pour the batter into cupcake liners until 3/4 full. 
  • Steam on high for 15 minutes. (Note: Be careful not to burn yourself when removing the cupcakes from the steamer. I used tongs.) Cool completely before glazing.

Salted Caramel Glaze Instructions

  • Melt the butter in a large, deep heavy-duty saucepan. Stir in the sugar and and stir until golden brown. (Note: Do this on low to medium heat. The first time I did it, I did it on high and everything burnt. This should take about 10 minutes.)
  • Take off the heat and pour in half the cream and whisk like a crazy person until the caramel is smooth. Whisk in the rest of the cream and the salt.

Cupcake Assembly

  • Poke holes in the cupcakes and drizzle copious amounts of the caramel into them.Chill the rest of the caramel in the freezer for about 15 minutes. Once it is thicker, spread the caramel over the cupcakes.


I got the recipe for this cupcake from Pusiva's Culinary Studio. I have reprinted the recipe below. The only change from the original was to add the fleur de sel. A VERY important point about this recipe is that it did not state how many cupcakes it would make. As it turns out it, it only made 6 cupcakes. Definitely double it if you would like more than 6.
I got the salted caramel frosting recipe from Vanilla Garlic. He used it on Apple Cardamom cupcakes which make me drool just looking at them.


Nutrition Facts
Apam Gula Hangus
Amount Per Serving
Calories 612 Calories from Fat 315
% Daily Value*
Fat 35g54%
Saturated Fat 21g105%
Cholesterol 133mg44%
Sodium 1136mg47%
Potassium 85mg2%
Carbohydrates 71g24%
Sugar 50g56%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 1230IU25%
Vitamin C 0.2mg0%
Calcium 55mg6%
Iron 1.3mg7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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