Arroz Con Dulce: Puerto Rican Rice Pudding

Arroz Con Dulce: Puerto Rican Rice Pudding

The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 75 mins
Chill: 4 hrs
Total: 5 hrs 25 mins
Servings: 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
287 Calories
15g Fat
39g Carbs
3g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 287
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 15g 20%
Saturated Fat 13g 67%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 231mg 10%
Total Carbohydrate 39g 14%
Dietary Fiber 1g 5%
Total Sugars 26g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 1mg 6%
Calcium 30mg 2%
Iron 3mg 15%
Potassium 277mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Translated, arroz con dulce means "sweet rice" in Spanish. The dessert is a sweet rice pudding with coconut and raisins that is normally associated with the holidays, thanks to spices like cinnamon, ginger, and cloves. Arroz con dulce is a traditional Christmas dessert in Puerto Rico and several other islands, but it's delicious any time of year.

This is a forgiving recipe that can easily be tweaked to your tastes. Add star anise to the steeping spices for a little extra spice, add orange peel or a little orange extract, or use currants or dried cranberries in place of raisins. It’s very easy to add your special touch and make it your own.

For best results, use whole spices and fresh ginger. If you don't have whole spices handy, some ground spices can be added along with the raisins and coconut.


Click Play to See This Puerto Rican Rice Pudding Recipe Come Together

"This rice pudding is cool, lush, and so perfectly sweetened. The combination of warm spices and ginger work well together without being too overwhelming; the coconut flavor pairs so nicely; and the coconut flakes and raisins add delightful bursts of texture and flavor." —Kayla Hoang

Arroz Con Dulce: Puerto Rican Rice Pudding Tester Image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


  • 1 (1-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced

  • 2 to 3 medium cinnamon sticks

  • 6 whole cloves

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1 (13.5 to 14-ounce) can coconut milk

  • 1 cup medium or short-grain rice

  • 1/2 cup granulated or brown sugar

  • 1/2 cup golden raisins

  • 1/4 cup sweetened coconut flakes

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, for garnish

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for Puerto Rican rice pudding - Arroz Con Dulce

    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

  2. In a large saucepan or pot, bring 3 cups of water to a simmer. Add the ginger pieces, cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, and salt. Simmer for about 15 minutes until the flavors are infused into the water.

    Add the ginger pieces, cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, and salt to a pot with water

    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

  3. Remove the spices and save the infused water.

    Remove the spices and save the infused water

    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

  4. Add the coconut milk and 1 more cup of water. Bring to a boil.

    milk and spice mixture cooking in a pot

    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

  5. Add the rice, sugar, raisins, and coconut and thoroughly stir. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for 20 minutes, stirring a few times.

    Add the rice, sugar, raisins, and coconut to the milk mixture in the pot

    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

  6. After 20 minutes, remove the lid and stir. Continue to cook for another 20 to 30 minutes or until the rice is cooked through and creamy. The water should be absorbed. If the water is absorbed but the rice is still not cooked, add a little hot water (about 1/4 cup) at a time and continue to cook until done.

    rice and raisins cooking in a pot

    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

  7. Once the rice is cooked, pour into your serving dish or dishes. Allow to cool and place in the refrigerator to chill until ready to serve. Garnish with cinnamon before serving and enjoy!

    Arroz Con Dulce: Puerto Rican Rice Pudding in cups

    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni


  • Double-check that you are using medium or short-grained rice and not long-grained rice.
  • This isn’t a recipe you can leave unattended. It will need stirring to keep it from sticking and burning in the pan.
  • It’s meant to be served cold. To speed up chilling, put the finished rice in your serving dish or individual dessert cups and refrigerate before serving.
  • The amounts of spices are flexible, so feel free to adjust them to your preferences.
  • Save a few raisins and maybe a cinnamon stick for garnish.

How to Store Arroz Con Dulce

  • This rice pudding will last for several days in the refrigerator. Make sure to cover and wrap it tightly with plastic wrap.