A friend of mine was surprised to find out that a rice pudding recipe exists. He’s Asian, and he was not familiar with seeing congee (a kind of Asian porridge cooked with rice) is being seasoned with sugar, milk, and cream. He was, until he had a bite out of this American treat.
In this recipe, we’re turning this amazing treat into a healthy, tasty breakfast.
Does Rice Pudding Contain Gluten?
Gluten is a group of proteins found a lot in wheat and products made of wheat— bread, pasta, pastry, etc. To people who have gluten-related disorders, it is an allergen that can trigger a variety of unwelcome reactions. Other than that, it’s harmless and is what makes bread dough stretchy.
Rice pudding is one of very few desserts/breakfasts that have no gluten. Although having a similar look to wheat, rice is 90% starch, only 8% protein and none of the proteins are gluten. It’s safe to say that all kinds of rice (even sticky rice) and products made of rice are gluten-free, unless it is included in a product with gluten.
Bottom line is, if gluten is your enemy, rice is for sure the ally you can trust.
What Nutrients Can You Get from Rice Pudding?
Rice pudding can provide lots of calories. Rice contains a lot of carbohydrates, while milk and cream have all the good fats we need to keep our body energized until lunch rolls around.
Different from a traditional rice pudding recipe, ours has fresh berries. Not only are they packed with fruit sugar, but they also contain a fair amount of fiber. Fiber can improve our digestive system and keep us satisfied for longer after we’re done eating.
In terms of micronutrients, strawberries and especially blueberries contain lots of antioxidants, which may help reduce inflammation in our body and help decrease cancer risk. They also have a considerable amount of minerals, which can improve the overall functioning of our bodies.
Although we used Jasmine rice simply for the sake of the gorgeous photos, you don’t have to. You can sneak even more nutrients into the pudding just by substituting Jasmine with brown rice. Brown rice, in fact, may have an anti-diabetic impact and help lower high cholesterol levels.
How Long Should You Cook Rice Pudding?
Unlike other recipes, our recipe calls for cooked rice, and we utilize a rice cooker to make it. There’s a good reason why most Asians own a rice cooker— it cooks rice in under 10 minutes and needs no supervision. Once it was done, we simmered the cooked-rice in 3 cups of water for about 20 minutes before adding in the dairy products and other flavors.
And don’t worry, simmering rice doesn’t take away the nutrients in it.
If you don’t have a rice cooker, simply simmer 1 cup of rice and 4 cups of water in a big pot until it reaches a texture of congee or porridge. This process can take up to 40 minutes, so you can start the timer and do something else.
Although we all tend to put the lid on when simmering rice, it’s better for you to leave a gap. Doing so will help prevent the rice water bubbling up and spilling out all over your cooktop.
How Should Rice Pudding be Served?
Rice pudding is a versatile dish. You can make a big batch of it and then serve it as either a breakfast or dessert.
Since our rice pudding recipe makes portions with enough calories to fuel you for hours, each serving can be an overwhelming dessert for one. If you wish to serve this dish as a dessert, use only half of everything and reduce the amount of raisin to only 1 ounce. The new recipe makes 4 servings, so adjust once more if you care for leftovers and don’t have a lot to feed.
Although rice pudding can be served chilled or warm, we prefer it warm. When it’s chilled, its texture is denser and it feels like we’re having a dessert, not something to start the day. Having a warm bowl of rice pudding to snack on cold days is cozier, don’t you think?
Rice Pudding Recipe
- 8 oz cooked medium-grain rice
- 2 cups water
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 4 tbsp honey divided in half
- 4 oz old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
- 4 oz raisin
- 4 oz almonds sliced and toasted
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- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- If you’re using uncooked rice, cook 3/4 cup of uncooked rice in 3/4 cup of water. You can either use a rice cooker or a pot.
- When that’s done, measure 8 oz of cooked rice and place into a pot with 2 cups of water. Simmer for 15 minutes.
- While that’s cooking, mix 2 oz oatmeal, 2 tbsp honey, 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder in a small bowl. Spread the mixture over a lined baking sheet and bake for 8 minutes at 350°F. Remember to take it out halfway through, mix it well, then pop it back in the oven. Set aside to cool.
- Return to the pot and add the milk. Simmer for another 20 minutes. Add heavy cream, honey, and stir to incorporate.
- Divide the raisins, baked oats, toasted almonds in half. Mix one half with the rice pudding.
- Scoop the rice pudding into serving bowls and sprinkle the rest of the toppings on. Serve warm.
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