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Puerto Rican Arroz Con Leche

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Arroz con leche is a traditional rice pudding from Latin America made with cooked rice, sweetened condensed milk, and cinnamon. It is often served as a dessert or snack and can be made with either white or brown rice. While the exact origins of arroz con leche are unknown, it is likely that the dish was created to use leftover rice.

Today, it is enjoyed by people of all ages and is a popular choice for celebrations and special occasions. While the basic recipe for arroz con leche is fairly straightforward, there are many different ways to make it. Some recipes call for adding fruit, nuts, or spices, while others include chocolate or espresso. No matter how it is prepared, arroz con leche is a delicious and comforting treat.

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Are you supposed to eat arroz con leche cold or hot?

Arroz con leche can be eaten cold or hot. Some people like to eat it cold because it's refreshing on a hot day. Other people like to eat it hot because they think it tastes better that way. There is no right or wrong answer; it's just a matter of personal preference. So try it both ways and see which you like better!

What are arroz con leche made of?

Arroz con leche is a traditional Spanish dessert with rice, milk, and sugar. It can also include cinnamon, lemon zest, and raisins. You can add chocolate, coffee, or even fruits like strawberries to arroz con leche in recent years.

You might enjoy these Puerto Rican recipes:

Is arroz con leche good for you?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the health benefits of arroz con leche will depend on the ingredients used and how it is prepared. However, arroz con leche, made with whole milk and short-grain rice, is a good source of nutrients like calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin B12.

It also contains some protein and healthy carbohydrates. Additionally, because it is typically made with less sugar than other desserts, it may be a healthier option for those looking to limit their intake of added sugars. Ultimately, whether or not arroz con leche is good for you will depend on your individual dietary needs and preferences.

Can I Add Sugar Instead of Condensed Milk to the arroz con leche?

You can add sugar instead of condensed milk to the arroz con leche, but keep in mind that this will change the flavor and texture of the dish. If you decide to add sugar, start with a small amount and taste as you go, adding more until it reaches the desired sweetness. Additionally, you may want to cook the rice for slightly longer if you use sugar instead of condensed milk, as the sugar will take longer to dissolve.

For this Arroz con Leche, you can swap the condensed milk for 1/3 cup of white sugar.

What if my arroz con leche is hard?

If your arroz con leche is hard, you may need to add more milk or water to the mixture. You can also try cooking it on a lower heat setting. Of course, you can always start over with a new batch if all else fails!

Why do Puerto Rican enjoy Arroz con Leche during the holidays?

Puerto Ricans enjoy Arroz con Leche during the holidays because it is a traditional dish that is typically served during Christmas. Arroz con Leche is a rice pudding that is made with milk, sugar, and rice. It is often flavored with cinnamon and vanilla. Puerto Ricans typically make Arroz con Leche from scratch, but it can also be bought pre-made at most Latin grocery stores.

Arroz con leche plated

How long can Arroz Con Leche last in the refrigerator?

Arroz Con Leche can last in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Please make sure you store it in an airtight container to maintain its freshness.

Can you freeze rice pudding?

You can freeze rice pudding, but it's important to note that the texture will change once it's thawed. The rice will become softer, and the pudding will have a more icy consistency. If you plan on freezing rice pudding, it's best to do so in individual servings so you can thaw only as much as you need.

Photo of arroz con leche plated.

What are the ingredients to make Arroz con Leche?

To make arroz con leche, you are going to need these ingredients:

  • Rice: You can use either white or brown rice.
  • Milk: Whole milk will give the richest flavor, but you can also use low-fat or non-fat milk.
  • Heavy cream: This will give the pudding a richer texture.
  • Sweetened condensed milk: This is what sweetens the pudding.
  • Cinnamon: This is a traditional flavoring, but you can also use vanilla extract.
  • Orange peel: This is optional, but it gives the pudding a nice citrus flavor.
  • Star anise or ground clove: These are optional but add a nice touch of spice.
  • Cinnamon: This is a traditional flavoring for this dish.
  • Vanilla extract: This is another common flavoring added to this recipe to bring
  • out the sweetness of the other ingredients.
  • Raisins: This is a common ingredient that people add to their arroz con leche.

How to Make Arroz Con Leche

Now that you have the ingredients follow the steps below to make the Arroz con Leche.

  1. To being, using a small pot, add the rice, milk, orange peel, and star anise and heat over medium heat.
  2. Bring the liquid to a simmer and mix until the rice is tender for about 20 minutes.
  3. Once the rice is tender, add the condensed milk, cinnamon, and vanilla extract and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
  4. Remove from the heat.
  5. Add and mix the heavy cream.
  6. Remove the orange peel and star anise from the pudding.
Photo of arroz con leche plated.

Your Arroz con Leche is Ready!

If you are not eating it warm, place the rice pudding in a container and place it in the refrigerator.

Arroz con Leche Recipe

Arroz Con Leche Recipe

Arroz Con Leche Recipe

Yield: 6 serving
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Creamy and delicious Puerto Rican Arroz con Leche made with rice and milk you are going to love.

Arroz con leche is a traditional Puerto Rican dessert that is traditionally served during the holidays.


  • ½ Cup rice
  • 4 Cups milk
  • ½ Cup heavy cream
  • ⅓ Cup condensed milk
  • Orange peel from around ¼ orange
  • 1 Star anise or ¼ Tsp ground clove
  • 1 ½ Tsp cinnamon
  • 2 Tsp vanilla extract


  1. In a small pot over medium heat, place rice, milk, orange peel, and star anise if using. Bring to a simmer and let it cook, constantly mixing until rice is tender (around 20 minutes). 
  2. Add condensed milk, cinnamon, and vanilla extract and cook for 5 more minutes.
  3. Remove from fire. Mix in heavy cream and remove orange peel and star anise.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 231Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 41mgSodium: 112mgCarbohydrates: 23gNet Carbohydrates: 0gFiber: 1gSugar: 10gSugar Alcohols: 0gProtein: 8g

This calculation might not be accurate.

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