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Spanish Rice Pudding

Spanish Rice Pudding

Spanish rice pudding (Arroz con Leche) is a typical creamy dessert in Spain that is made by cooking rice slowly in milk with sugar. Learn more about it.

Spanish rice pudding (Arroz con Leche) is a typical creamy dessert in Spain that is made by cooking rice slowly in milk with sugar. Rice pudding can be served cold or hot and is usually accompanied by cinnamon, raisons, vanilla or lemon shavings for additional flavor.

It is commonly believed that Spanish rice pudding was introduced into Spain centuries ago during the Moorish occupation of the Iberian Peninsula. This theory is derived from the fact that there are many traditional mixtures of cinnamon and rice in Arabic cultures. This original Spanish rice pudding recipe was exported to South America during the Spanish colonization and later spread around the whole world.

Spain is not the only country where rice pudding is popular, different varieties of this delicious dish can be found in nearly every part of the world. Rice pudding around the world varies depending on the preparation methods and the ingredients used. In fact, the recipes can even vary greatly within the same country. Some rice pudding recipes call for the pudding to be boiled and others to be baked. In some regions, a non-sweet version of rice pudding is a common dinner.

Today, rice pudding is a very popular and traditional dish in Argentina, Bolivia, Uruguay, Honduras, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Spain, Portugal, Venezuela, Panama, Peru, Columbia, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Chile, The Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Ecuador and Mexico. However, many variations of sweet rice-based dishes known as sweet rice porridge are also common throughout Asia. In Nordic countries rice porridge is a common breakfast and sometimes dinner, in England rice pudding is a typical dessert, and nearly every eastern and western European country also has its own version.

Rice Pudding Variations in the Hispanic World

Traditional Spanish Rice Pudding Recipe (Arroz con Leche Recipe)

Ingredients for 4 people

In a small saucepan, add just enough cold water to cover the rice. Place on medium heat until it breaks a boil and cook until the water has been absorbed. Drain rice and rinse well with cold water. In another saucepan, add the rice, half of the boiling milk, the lemon and orange rinds, and the cinnamon stick. Cook slowly while stirring continually, careful to not let it burn on the bottom. As the mixture reduces, slowly add the rest of the hot milk. When it has reached a creamy consistency, mix in the sugar and butter.

Serve in individual dessert bowls and sprinkle cinnamon on top.