This old-fashioned rice pudding recipe is the definition of simple comfort. Serve it warm or cold and enjoy it for breakfast or dessert!

Old-Fashioned Rice Pudding in a bowl with berries and jam

This old-fashioned rice pudding recipe is comfort in a bowl. I love making it on a cold, rainy day when all I want to do is curl up on the couch in my favorite lounge clothes. What’s better? It’s actually not all that bad for you.

Whether you’re looking for a simple way to satisfy a sweet tooth or just trying to edge your way back to childhood comfort, this recipe for rice pudding comes together with just 5 wholesome ingredients and about 30 minutes of cooking time. It’s perfect to batch cook at the top of the week and have on hand for quick snacking – especially for you busy parents out there!

What Rice is Best for Rice Pudding?

Hands down, the best rice for to use for this recipe is basmati. It has a sturdier long-grain and really pleasant aromatics that are released as it slow cooks. The next best option is jasmine rice. That being said, if all you have on hand is regular white rice, use it! The pudding will still be melt-in-your-mouth delicious.

Ingredients for Old-Fashioned Rice Pudding

How to Make this Rice Pudding Recipe

Making this recipe only requires 5 ingredients and a tiny bit of prep. Below, find a quick hitter overview of the recipe before you dive in.

  • Bring the Milk to a Boil: In a Dutch oven or soup pot, bring the milk to a boil.
  • Add in the Dry Ingredients: Next, add in the rice, oatmeal, salt, and sugar. Turn the heat down to medium and cook the pudding for 20-25 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent it from burning to the bottom of the pan. Serve warm or cold with your favorite toppings!

Tips & Tricks

Here, find a handful of tips and tricks to help you nail this rice pudding recipe.

  • Watch the milk closely. Milk tends to boil very quickly, so keep a close eye on it to prevent it from burning. Immediately after it begins to boil, add in the rest of the ingredients to bring the temperature down.
  • Use basmati rice. Basmati rice has a sturdy long grain and wonderful aromatics, making it the best rice for making rice pudding. Alternatively, you could use jasmine as the next best option.
  • Opt for Whole Milk. Nothing compares to the creaminess whole fat milk adds to the pudding. While you can use 2% or non-fat, it just doesn’t yield the same texture.

Hot Tip: If you want an Indian-style pudding, swap the whole milk for coconut milk and add in a bit of cardamom. YUM!

Serving this Rice Pudding Recipe

Rice pudding can be served for either breakfast or dessert and eaten either hot or cold. If you’re eating it in the early hours, top it with fresh berries, jam and some chopped nuts. If you’re enjoying it after a meal, top it with ground cinnamon and raisins or some chocolate shavings.

Old-Fashioned Rice Pudding in a bowl

Storing Leftovers

Whether you’re storing a little leftover pudding in the fridge or freezing some to keep on hand for whenever a craving strikes, find all best tips here.

  • Refrigerator: If you plan to eat your leftovers within a week, store the pudding in an airtight container in the fridge. Not only with the container keep the rice from hardening, but it will also prevent the pudding from soaking up any smells in your refrigerator.
  • Freezer: To have pudding on hand for up to 3 months, freeze it. To do so, allow the pudding to first cool down completely. Then, portion it into small freezer-safe bags. To thaw, place a bag in the fridge overnight or sit it on the counter at room temperature for a couple of hours.

Reheating Tip: The best way to reheat rice pudding is in a saucepan with a little butter over low heat or in the microwave for a couple of minutes.


Do you eat rice pudding hot or cold?

You can eat rice pudding hot or cold. It all depends on your personal preference!

Why did my rice pudding turn out runny?

Rice pudding is supposed to be a bit runny when it comes off the heat. However, it will thicken as it sits at room temperature or chills in the fridge.

Why did my rice pudding turn out chewy?

Your rice pudding turned out chewy if you didn’t cook the rice long enough. Before removing the pudding from heat, taste a spoonful to ensure the rice is fully cooked.

How long does rice pudding last in the fridge?

Rice pudding lasts for up to a week in the fridge. As it marinates in itself, the flavors continue to develop and the pudding gets thicker. Hello, delicious leftovers!

Can you freeze rice pudding?

Yes, you can freeze rice pudding for up to 3 months. It’s best to portion it out in small, freezer-safe bags so you can thaw small amounts at a time.

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About Author

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Natalya Drozhzhin

Natalya founded Momsdish to demonstrate that placing a homemade meal on the table is not hard at all. Natalya makes cooking easier and approachable, by simplifying the ingredients, while still producing the same great taste.