Spanish Rice Pudding Cake - Tarta de Arroz con Leche

rice pudding
Rice pudding serves as the base for this cake recipe. Getty Images
  • Total: 55 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 50 mins
  • Refrigerate: 4 hrs
  • Yield: 4 Servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
452 Calories
9g Fat
79g Carbs
15g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4 Servings
Amount per serving
Calories 452
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 9g 12%
Saturated Fat 4g 21%
Cholesterol 10mg 3%
Sodium 112mg 5%
Total Carbohydrate 79g 29%
Dietary Fiber 4g 13%
Protein 15g
Calcium 174mg 13%
*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.)

Arroz con leche, which is rice pudding, is a traditional Spanish dessert, eaten in many regions in Spain and all around Latin America. It is sweet and creamy, made with rice, cooked in milk or cream, then with flavored with cinnamon and lemon.  This recipe updates the traditional rice pudding by adding gelatin and egg whites to create a firm cake that can be cut into pieces. 

Because rice pudding is so popular in the Spanish-speaking world, there are many versions of Rice Pudding Cake, so we have included some of them at the bottom of this recipe.


  • 1/2 to 1 cup water
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups whole or reduced fat milk
  • 1/2 medium lemon peel
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/3 lb. medium grain rice
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 8 fl oz whipping cream
  • 1 envelope unflavored powdered gelatin (or 3 gelatin sheets)
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Pour water and vegetable oil into a medium saucepan, and place the cinnamon stick and lemon peel in milk. Cover and heat on high, and bring to a boil.

  3. Add rice to water and cook rice for 10 minutes, then add milk and finish cooking rice. Once rice is fully cooked, remove and discard cinnamon stick and lemon peel. Turn heat down and stir in sugar until dissolved.

  4. While rice is cooking, pour whipping cream into a large measuring cup and add gelatin. Whisk gelatin until dissolved.

  5. Pour in the whipping cream with gelatin. Stir well.

  6. Put the egg whites in a medium glass mixing bowl and beat to a stiff peak with an electric beater. Remove saucepan from heat and carefully fold egg whites into the rice mixture.

  7. Pour rice pudding into a glass baking dish or mold and allow to cool. Once cooled, chill in the refrigerator for several hours until the mixture has set.

  8. When ready to serve, cut into pieces and sprinkle top with ground cinnamon.


  • Substitute an envelope of mix instead of powdered gelatin.
  • Create a cracker crust with either Maria crackers or graham crackers and melted butter.
  • Make a base of a light cake or bizcocho, then spread the arroz con leche on top.

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