The Secret To Making The Perfect Arroz Con leche: Basmati Rice And Its Properties

Few desserts got to cross every possible ocean as arroz con leche did. Even if its origins are uncertain, it has become widely popular in Central and Latin America, and at the time it is known and tasted in many countries around the globe. Now, because of its popularity, there are just as many recipes as people eating it, possibly. So, the question is how do you make arroz con leche? You’ll be surprised to know that if you weren’t doing this already, once you do it, you’ll find a better way to make it here.

The original recipe takes only two or three ingredients, so what could you possibly do better? Change the rice type to Basmati and you’ll taste a new dessert. Let’s see why you should choose this specific type of rice over other types and the perfect recipe for you to follow!

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Basmati rice: properties and characteristics

Basmati rice is a fragrant type of rice and that is its main characteristic. It’s a nutty-tasting white rice coming from the Asian continent, of course. Basmati literally translates to ‘full of aroma’ and it’s the first thing you notice when you cook it. Its fragrance fills up any kitchen and heightens the flavors of any dish you make.

This type of rice, together with other aromatic kinds, is highly used to make desserts or pudding-like preparations. They are high on starch and that is why it is suggested that you rinse it ahead, this will prevent the rice from coming out mushy and sticky. Rinsed Basmati rice will come out fluffy and separate, that’s what we want in these kinds of recipes.

Storing, freezing and reheating Basmati rice

One of the benefits of this type of rice is that, after you cook it, you can store it in an airtight container and take it to the freezer for up to three months! This characteristic makes it the perfect option for people who like planning their meals ahead or storing their fridges just once a week.

To reheat it, you’ll just need two tablespoons of water and a saucepan over low heat. Besides, because of its aromatic property, adding a tablespoon of butter to the cooking process will take the rice to the next level, for sure.

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  • 1 cup of Basmati rice.
  • 2 cups of water.
  • 2 cups of milk.
  • 2 or 3 cinnamon sticks.
  • 1 tbsp of lime zest.
  • 1 ½ cup of sugar.
  • 1 ½ cup of raisins.
  • 1 tbsp of ground cinnamon.


  1. You’ll start by rinsing the rice. Wash it under cool water for a couple of times until the water comes off clear. Drain it well and set aside.
  2. Prepare two cups of water in a medium saucepan and take it to the stove. Bring to a boil and after that, stir in the rinsed rice.
  3. Take the heat to a simmer and cook for at least fifteen minutes with the saucepan uncovered. Stir in two cups of whole milk and add the cinnamon sticks.
  4. Add a tablespoon of lime zest and a cup and a half of sugar.
  5. Blend everything together and cook, over a simmer for another fifteen minutes. Do not stir too often, only when needed. 
  6. After that time, remove the cinnamon sticks and discard them. Serve them and garnish the serving bowl with some raisins. You can also sprinkle some ground cinnamon all over. Enjoy!

Whether you’re making a Spanish version of this recipe by adding some citric peel to the mix or the Mexican version, with flambé raisins to garnish the meal, this is a classic you can’t miss. Comment below if you give this recipe a try!