Spicy vanilla rice pudding

Try not to eat this all straight from the pot! Its amazing warm. The vanilla is nice and spicy! Super simple to make, and it barely has any sugar. Sorry for posting two dessert recipes so close to each other. I have a cold and I don’t feel like cooking, writing, or honestly eating. Dinner is going to be subway and some soup. Then it’ll be early bedtime for LK!

I stole this recipe from Smitten Kitchen, which is one of my all-time favorite blogs.

  • 1/2 c Arborio rice
  • 4 cups fat free milk
  • 1/4 c sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split into four pieces (heads up; cheap vanilla!)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3/4 tsp almond extract

Combine everything except the extract in a medium saucepan. Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Stir occassionally to keep bottom from burning. The mixture will be very thin for about 25 minutes, but all of a sudden it will start to come together. After 30-40 minutes, rice will be tender and plump, and milk will have thickened into a pudding. At this point, remove from heat and stir in almond extract. Split into 4 servings, and top each with a piece of vanilla bean (which will have softened to a nice, chewy raisin-like texture. Yummy and spicy!)

Oh yeah, while we’re on the dessert theme… check out this awesome giveaway Mo is hosting for low fat doughnuts!


  1. Rice pudding = deliciousness!! Ha, I would definitely eat it straight from the pot.

  2. I started scarfing it down straight from the pot. I was grossing myself out with it a little, but it tasted too good to care.

  3. I love rice pudding!! Yum!

  4. I love the trend of herbs in desserts. I bet the bay leaf is a nice compliment to the vanilla bean. Sophisticated comfort food in a bowl.

  5. I love rice pudding, especially with lots of vanilla. The bay leaf is a nice touch.

  6. Natasha - 5 Star Foodie says:

    Sounds wonderful with vanilla and almond extract!

  7. I love rice puddings like these and this looks so yumm.

  8. Lori, Sara, Natasha, and Happy Cook- thanks!

  9. nutmegnanny says:

    Oh this looks great! I love Smitten Kitten too!

  10. MMMMM…your rice pudding looks so yummie!! Nice touch with the almond extract!!

  11. Springtime says:

    Ooohh, I’ve just been looking for a rice pudding recipe made from arborio rice!
    I want to try to make a lavender infused rice pudding… now’s my opportunity!

  12. Lauren,thanks for following my blog :-)
    I love rice pudding-we call it ‘kheer’. Try out the variations with rice ‘vermicelli’, broken wheat and tapioca pearls- yummy!!

  13. majorica pearls says:

    Great posting, Thanks for very useful information

  14. I rarely use bay leaves but it really did add a nice, unidentifiable flavor to this. It just tasted really “warm”

  15. lavender would be delicious! I was thinking about playing around with a lavender version too. Maybe with a touch of fresh mint as well.

  16. isn’t she fantastic?

  17. thanks!

  18. thre’s an Indian restaurant here that does kheer with vermicelli and rose. Its SO good.
    thanks for stopping by!


  1. [...] over at Smitten Kitchen is a genius when it comes to desserts. I blogged about her rice pudding not too long ago, and when I saw the recipe I knew right away that i would have to try it [...]

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