Arroz con Leche

​​Source: Dina's Cocina

Whenever I make arroz con leche (mexican rice pudding), I remember the chilly days when my mom would make us this creamy and delicious dessert. 

It’s made with just a few ingredients (rice, milk, cinnamon) and sweetened with piloncillo (a hard block of unrefined cane sugar; mostly common in Mexican regions). 

You can enjoy arroz con leche either warm or chilled. It’s a yummy and comforting dessert that I’m sure you will enjoy!

Arroz con Leche

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Serves: 4 to 6


  • 1 cup of white long grain rice 

  • 1 large Mexican cinnamon stick

  • 6 mini piloncillos (about 8 oz total)

  • 2 cups whole milk

  • 1 can (12 oz) of evaporated milk

  • 3 cups of water

  • Cinnamon powder, raisins or coconut flakes for garnish (optional)

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  1. Rinse the rice. Place the 1 cup of rice inside a mesh strainer and rinse under your kitchen faucet for about 1 minute. By rinsing the rice, you will remove the starch; which would otherwise cause the rice to get gummy or clump together as it cooks.

  2. Using a medium-size pot, boil three cups of water and, after the water boils, add one cinnamon stick. Let it boil for about five minutes. (You should break the cinnamon stick in half to release more of the flavor and get a richer and darker color in the water).

  3. After the water and cinnamon stick has boiled for five minutes, reduce the heat to low and add rice into pot. Stir the rice, then, cover and cook on low heat for 18 minutes. 

  4. After the rice has absorbed most of the water and is mostly cooked, uncover the pot and add the whole milk and the evaporated milk. Stir the milk mixture into the rice and increase the heat to high. Allow the mixture to boil.

  5.  After the milk boils, a layer of skin will form on top of it. Reduce the heat to low and add 6 mini piloncillos (about 8 oz total) and stir occasionally for 10-15 minutes to avoid the rice mixture from burning or sticking to the bottom of the pot. After 10-15 minutes, the piloncillos will completely dissolve and the liquid will thicken.

  6.  Remove from heat and allow arroz con leche to rest for 15-20 minutes. After it has rested, a layer of skin will form on top. Stir arroz con leche, then, serve and sprinkle some cinnamon powder on top. Enjoy!

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  • If you prefer your arroz con leche sweeter you can add more piloncillos.

  • For a thicker consistency, allow the arroz con leche to rest for a longer time after you remove it from the heat.

  • Leave the cinnamon stick in the arroz con leche; so it can continue to release the cinnamon flavor.

  • You can buy piloncillos at any Latin or Mexican store.

  • If you can’t find the mini piloncillos, you can use 2 medium-size piloncillos or 1 large piloncillo.

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About the Author

Dina Pulido

Dina is originally from Lazaro Cardenas, Michoacan and grew up eating delicious Mexican food at home. She has been cooking for over 20 years and enjoys preparing meals for all of her loved ones. She also teaches a cooking class through her local church in Mountain View, California.

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