ColombiaOne.comColombia newsColombian Rice Pudding: A Traditional Christmas Dessert

Colombian Rice Pudding: A Traditional Christmas Dessert


rice pudding
Rice pudding is one of the most traditional Christmas desserts. Credit: Manuel m. v/CC BY 2.0

A must-have dish during Colombian Christmas is rice pudding, or, ‘arroz con leche’ as Colombians call it. .

This simple delight has captivated taste buds worldwide for centuries, transcending cultural boundaries. In Colombia, they take it seriously, serving this delicious dish on Christmas tables.

Rice Pudding in Colombian Christmas

At the heart of rice pudding lies the magic of simplicity. Rice, milk, sugar, and cinnamon come together to create a harmonious blend. The rice, tenderly cooked, gradually absorbs the milk, forming a creamy and comforting texture.

Sugar adds the necessary sweetness, while cinnamon imparts an intoxicating aroma that enhances the gastronomic experience.

Rice pudding is a versatile dessert allowing numerous variations. Whether incorporating fresh fruits, a hint of vanilla, or infusing nuts, the possibilities are endless. Embrace experimentation and discover your unique twist on this timeless classic.

Colombian culinary heritage

From family gatherings to festive occasions, this dessert has become a staple connecting Colombians both in the country and abroad through shared memories and dishes.


1 cup of washed white rice
4 cinnamon sticks
2 cups of water
4 cups of milk
a pinch of salt
2 butter spoons
1 ½ tablespoons of vanilla extract
1 ½ cups of sugar
1 12 ounces of condensed milk


• In a small pot, add water and cinnamon sticks, bring to a boil and cook for 10 minutes. Remove and discard the cinnamon sticks.
• Place the rice and cinnamon water in a large pot over medium heat and cook for 5 minutes.
• Add the salt, butter, vanilla extract, 2 cups of milk and sugar. Stir well to mix and cook uncovered for about 15 minutes.
• Reduce heat to medium-low. Add the rest of the milk and condensed milk. Stir with a wooden spoon. Cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until the rice pudding thickens.
• Stir well and remove from heat and let it cool to room temperature. The consistency should be very creamy. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight.

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