Arroz con Leche is the Spanish version of the well-known rice pudding. It’s the ultimate comfort dessert. And almost without fail, this dessert will make you feel closer to home with every spoon, especially when served warm… so simple, but so perfect!
Arroz con Leche Recipe
There are as many versions of Arroz con Leche in Latin America as there are abuelitas (grandmas). It is not rare that one family have two, or three, recipes in their repertoire. One from each grandma, plus one more from an aunt who thinks she is the cooking star of the family. The best part? None of the recipes are alike, but they are all delicious!
For example, many uses evaporated milk, some us sweetened condensed milk, and others just sugar. Some use an egg. Raisins, or coconut, are optional but common.
My take on this traditional dessert is very simple and easy to make. I use whole milk to cook the rice, not water. Sometimes, to make it even richer, I like to mix powdered milk with water. This gives me creamier milk with less water in it and works great. And I like to add gradually the milk, just like I do when cooking risotto. In my opinion, this is key to getting the rice to release its starch and create its own delicious creaminess.
Another of my secrets is that I let the rice pudding cool completely, and if it is too thick, often it is, I add heavy cream to achieve consistency my family likes.
There you go…All my Arroz con Leche secrets are revealed!
Ahhh… Arroz con Leche!! And don’t forget to add a dust of McCormick® ground cinnamon, which is 100 percent pure flavor, with no added fillers. McCormick® knows the best meals begin with the best ingredients, which is perfect to enhance the flavor of all my recipes, for that reason are a must in my kitchen!
Arroz con Leche an easy dessert to make ahead if you’re hosting a party since it can be served hot, warm, or well-chilled. Either way, it’s going to knock everyone’s socks off.
- 5 cup whole milk, warm
- 1 -2 cinnamon sticks
- 2 strips of lime zest
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 cup white rice
- 7 oz sweetened condensed milk (half can)
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- ground cinnamon to serve (to taste)
- Heat, in a medium-size heavy saucepan, over medium heat 3 cups of milk, cinnamon stick, lime zest, sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil, uncovered. When it starts to boil reduce the heat to low, add rice and cook for 10 - 15 more minutes or until milk is almost evaporated. Continue adding milk, stirring constantly, 1/2 cup at the time. Wait to add more milk until the liquid has been almost completely absorbed by the rice. With the last ½ cup of milk also add the condensed milk; cook for 2 -3 minutes, or until it thickens to desired consistency. Be aware that as the rice cools it thickens. Turn off the heat.
- Add butter and stir to incorporate.
- Let cool uncovered, until it reaches the desired temperature. You can serve it hot, warm, or cold.
- Serve hot, warm, or cold sprinkled with ground cinnamon to taste.
Watch How to Make It
This recipe is also available in Español
Let the rice pudding cool completely, and if it is too thick, often it is, I add heavy cream to achieve the consistency we like, about 2 - 3 tablespoons.
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Please note that nutritional information is a rough estimate and it can vary depending on the products used.
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