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Baked ‘Ulu with Butter and Brown Sugar

Fae Hirayama, author of The Breadfruit Cookbook


1 ripe ‘ulu (skin will be yellow and brown, flesh soft)
1/4 cup or 1/2 block butter
3 tablespoons brown sugar


Wash a ripe breadfruit and remove core by pulling stem. Trim top edge of ‘ulu if needed.
Fill cavity with butter and brown sugar.
Cover ‘ulu with foil and place in a baking pan filled with 1 cup water (to prevent scorching).
Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees.

To serve, unwrap breadfruit and cut in half lengthwise.
Bring to the table in a shallow bowl.
Scoop ‘ulu with a large spoon to serve, making sure each piece is topped with some of the sugar and butter in the center.

For a richer variation, fill with one block of butter and stuff cavity with brown sugar.

“My grandmother loved breadfruit. For years, I thought ‘ulu had to be cooked in the ashes of a fire wrapped in foil or tī leaf, so that the edges burned just a little and the insides were chewy and brown. I remember watching her pull out the core and trim out the edge just a bit then cut a block of butter in half and push it into the center of the breadfruit. She then followed it with a heaping spoonful of brown sugar careful to cover the top with foil. She would take the breadfruit outside and bury it in the ashes. Nothing smelled as good as the ‘ulu as it cooked. When the ‘ulu was done, she cut it into quarters, and we ate it scraping the wonderful sweet, sticky brown bits near the skin!”