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  • Writer's pictureJeff & Jo's

Arroz con Dulce - The Dessert Rice

Arroz con Dulce is a traditional Puerto Rican dessert that combines the delicious flavors of rice, coconut, cinammon, cloves and raisins. I would call this the Puerto Rican version of rice pudding.This is most commonly eaten during the Christmas season in Puerto Rico. We bring you a super easy recipe that you will want to try every weekend at home. It will feel like Christmas all-year long!


1 ½ cups of rice (drained after soaking in water for at least 2 hrs)

2 ½ cups water

2 tbs fresh ginger grated

2 cinnamon sticks

1 tbs whole cloves

1 cup whole milk

1 can or 13.5 oz coconut milk

1 can or 12 oz evaporated milk

½ cup raisins (optional)

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1 tsp salt

1 can or 15 oz cream of coconut

½ cup shredded coconut (optional)

2 tbs butter (optional)

Ground cinnamon for garnish


We are going to start this recipe by preparing the spiced water or tea. Turn on the stove on high. In a large heavy pot, combine the water, fresh ginger, cinnamon sticks, and cloves. Mix all the ingredients with a large spoon.

Once the water starts boiling, stir the mixture one more time. Then, let it boil for 5 minutes. At the end of the 5 minutes, turn off the stove and let the mixture rest for 2 minutes.

At the end of these 2 minutes, remove the mixture from the pot and transfer it to a clean container. I am using a large measuring cup. Then, using a strainer to collect all of the spices, put the water back into the pot. The water will have a yellow brownish color as a result of the spices.

Turn the stove back on high and add the coconut milk, whole milk and evaporated milk to the large pot with the spiced water. Stir the mixture once to make sure that it is all combined.

Now, add the raisins if you have decided to use them. Once the mixture comes to a boil, stir it one more time making sure that nothing is stuck to the bottom of the pot. Then, add the drained rice to the milk mixture and stir to combine.

After stirring, add the salt and vanilla extract and mix to combine one more time. Let this boil on high for about 4 minutes, stirring every minute. Then lower the heat to medium and cook for another 6 to 7 minutes until the milk starts to thicken, stir continuously to make sure that nothing gets stuck to the bottom of the pan. Once the milk is thickened and the rice grains are almost cooked, lower the heat to low. Then, add the cream of coconut and shredded coconut and mix it all very thoroughly making sure to scrape the bottom and sides of the pot.

Then, let it cook for another 12 - 15 minutes until all the grains of rice are thoroughly cooked. Turn the stove off. If you decide to use the butter then add the butter to the rice mixture and stir one more time.

Then add the rice mixture into a large glass container. Flatten the top of the mix and let it cool to room temperature. Once it reaches room temperature, sprinkle the cinnamon on top, cover the container and place it in the fridge.

You can eat it after just a couple of hours in the fridge, but it will keep well for days. Enjoy!

Check out our instructional video, showing how to make this recipe step-by-step HERE.

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