How to Make the Best Rice Pudding

Rice pudding is the ultimate comfort food and incredibly simple to make from scratch. There are endless variations and you can add flavoring to the base pudding mixture as well.

Here’s what you’ll need:

• Medium saucepan

• Quart of whole milk

• Cup of uncooked white long-grain, white short-grain, or Arborio rice

• Handful of granulated sugar

• Pinch of salt

• Optional: a quarter teaspoon of vanilla or almond extract, chopped nuts, dried fruit, a dash of nutmeg, brown sugar, honey, or any combination of these

Here’s what to do:

First, pour a quart of whole milk (you can substitute 2% for a healthier version, or add some half-and-half or cream to make it creamier) into a medium saucepan.

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Stir in a full cup of uncooked white long-grain, white short-grain, or Arborio rice; a handful of granulated sugar; a pinch of salt; and any additional flavorings.

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Try a quarter teaspoon of vanilla or almond extract, some brown sugar, honey, maple syrup, or agave syrup. To make a chocolate rice pudding, stir in some cocoa powder or even add some Hershey’s chocolate syrup.

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Turn the heat up to medium-high and bring the mixture almost to a boil. It will start to steam right before it comes to the boil and that is a good indicator that you should turn the heat down.

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Reduce the heat to low and let the pudding simmer, uncovered, and stir occasionally for about 20 minutes. Cook until all the milk is absorbed, and the rice is fully cooked through. Next, stir in the add-ins. Raisins, dried cranberries, blueberries or even chocolate chips are all good choices. Make sure the add-ins are evenly distributed and serve. Rice pudding can be served warm, or chilled after a few hours in the refrigerator. Pour into individual ramekins or serve as one big pudding in a large bowl. Top with some whipped cream or a few fresh berries for a delightful dessert.

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Original story by CHOW Food Team, updated by Caitlin O’Shaughnessy