A bowl of champorado is the ultimate comfort food. It’s hot, made out of chocolate, and evokes a certain home-y feeling. The sweet chocolate rice porridge is a Filipino breakfast staple. It’s traditionally made from scratch using malagkit and tablea. But nowadays, people fill their pantries up with instant champorado mix, a convenient option that still uses glutinous rice and some form of cocoa (usually powder). How do the different supermarket brands compare?
Alfonso’s Chocolate Champorado is the cheapest at PHP24.85. That said, though, it’s only good for one person. It comes in a convenient ready-to-eat-bowl, but that’s about the only thing we like about it. The malagkit has a peculiar spongy texture, and it reminds us of wet rice krispies. “When it goes down [my throat], it feels like little slugs,” a member of our team commented. The soup was very watery, and the chocolate over-all tasted old—like forgotten-in-the-cupboard-for-a-year type of old.
We’ll say that Galinco’s Sarap Pinoy Champorado falls on safe neutral ground. We appreciated that, although it came out watery, the soup was still discernibly chocolate-forward. It actually had the most real chocolate taste. The rice, on the other hand, was soft and tensile. Unremarkable, but not bad.
Maya’s Champorado is another budget-friendly option at PHP27.35. It claims to make five bowls, but after cooking, it reduced drastically to just one serving. However, it did turn out to be the most appealing of the bunch, being the thickest in texture. The rice was fluffy, and the chocolate was rich but had a salty element to it. “It tastes like you poured Goya chocolate in it,” says a member of the team.
White King is the most expensive of the lot at almost PHP30 for five bowls. It was very liquid-y out of the pot, but thickened to a great consistency after a few minutes. It had a better chocolate flavor than Maya, but it didn’t meld well together with the malagkit. One member of the team remarks that it’s not champorado. “It’s more like rice and chocolate that were [cooked separately,] then just put together.”
The Verdict: Maya
Maya’s thick, chocolate-y, and slightly salty instant champorado makes it the one we’d choose to eat on rainy mornings. So too bad it doesn’t live up to the promise of five bowls—although, we’re not opposed to getting a box each.