This Coconut Rice Pudding is simmered gently until it is impossibly thick and creamy and is served warm with sweet and sticky caramelised bananas and toasted coconut flakes. It is a dreamy dessert combination that you’ll want to make again and again.
There are two main ways to make rice pudding – baked in the oven or simmered on the hob. I’ve always understood rice pudding to be best cooked in the oven but after 6 recipe tests this method was not delivering the consistency that I was looking for. I couldn’t quite understand it and was close to giving up but decided to go against my previous beliefs and try making a rice pudding on the hob.
What a transformation! The two cannot even be compared. TRUST ME.
Simmering the rice pudding on the hob leads to a completely different dessert out of the same ingredients – one that is thick, rich and creamy, like a rice pudding should be. A bowl of comfort and warmth.
Top this with gorgeously sticky caramelised bananas and crisp, nutty, toasted coconut flakes and you’ve got yourself a beautiful dessert and simply the best rice pudding recipe!
Why you’ll love this Coconut Rice Pudding
Easy to make. It’s very straight forward to make, with the most difficult bit being patient whilst it simmers away gently on the hob!
Using simple ingredients. This recipe uses 8 simple ingredients that you are likely to already have in your pantry including pudding rice (you can also use arborio or short-grain), almond milk, tinned coconut milk, caster sugar, vanilla, coconut flakes, bananas and a touch of oil for frying the topping.
Warming and comforting. This is a great recipe for a cooler evening; it’s like a creamy, comforting hug in a bowl.
How to make this Coconut Rice Pudding
Gather together your ingredients – this rice pudding recipe is made with cream (in addition to almond milk) so you’ll want to use a tinned full fat coconut milk with the thick creamy layer (like this one) rather than the drinkable type from a carton.
Add the rice, almond milk and sugar to a large saucepan. Simmer gently for 25 minutes.
Add the tinned coconut milk and vanilla and simmer gently for another 20-25 minutes until it is thick and creamy.
Add the banana chunks and coconut flakes to a frying pan with a little coconut oil. Sprinkle the banana with sugar and fry for 4 minutes, stirring the coconut flakes occasionally and turning the banana once to make sure it’s caramelised on both sides.
Recommended ingredients: Make sure to use tinned coconut milk (the type that is thick and creamy) rather than the drinkable carton variety. You will also want a rice that thickens during cooking such as pudding rice, arborio/risotto rice or short-grain.
Simmer gently: Once you have brought the saucepan of rice, almond milk and sugar to the boil you want to turn the heat down and simmer it gently. If you cook it over too high a heat it can boil over and burn on the bottom. Gently does it!
Variations: If you don’t like banana you could caramelise some diced mango instead using the same method as the banana, it’s also delicious and will give a fresh and fruity tang.
Serving: Take the rice pudding off of the heat whilst you make the topping. The topping takes 4 minutes to make and during this time the rice pudding will go even thicker and creamier and cool to a perfect temperature for enjoying (rather than scalding hot!).
Do I have to use almond milk? We have tried this with a number of dairy free milks and almond seems to work the best because it has a neutral flavour that doesn’t carry over into the pudding. That being said you could use oat milk (although you will likely taste a bit of the oatiness). We haven’t tried using coconut milk from a carton in place of the almond milk but think this would also work well – let us know if you try it!
Do I have to use tinned coconut milk? Ideally yes. It adds a thick, creamy texture to the rice pudding along with a mild hint of coconut flavour. You could substitute the tinned coconut milk for dairy free cream such as soya cream but this will alter the flavour of the rice pudding.
I don’t have pudding rice, can I use a different rice? We recommend arborio/risotto rice or short-grain rice if you don’t have pudding rice.
Can I double the recipe? Yes absolutely! You’ll need a large saucepan and the rice pudding may take longer to cook – keep it simmering until it is thick and creamy (see the pictures in this blog for an example of how thick and creamy it should be).
Can I bake this rice pudding in the oven rather than using the hob? Do not, I repeat, DO NOT cook this recipe in the oven!!! It just isn’t the same. This is a stovetop recipe.
Can I use a different topping if I don’t like banana? Caramelised banana goes so well with the coconut in this pudding but if you don’t like or can’t eat banana then we’d recommend caramelising some diced mango in place of the banana chunks, until they are sticky and delicious, as mango also goes beautifully with coconut.
Can I reheat this rice pudding? We’d recommend eating this rice pudding when freshly cooked. Storing and reheating rice can be tricky from a food-safety perspective and the rice pudding will also thicken even more on cooling so it won’t be as enjoyable as freshly cooked.
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Loved this Coconut Rice Pudding? Here are some more delicious vegan desserts to try
Looking for more warming dessert recipes? Try this Blueberry Thyme Crumble which has a jammy, aromatic filling with a sweet and crumbly oat topping. Perfect with vanilla ice cream!
One of our favourite desserts! Check out this recipe for The Best Vegan Banoffee Pie which features a crisp, sweet shortcrust pastry base lined with fresh banana, rich and delicious caramel sauce, dairy free whipped cream and is finished with a sprinkling of dark chocolate.
One of the most popular recipes on the blog – these Raspberry Trifle Cupcakes have a soft and fluffy vanilla cupcake base, creamy custard centre, silky smooth vanilla buttercream frosting and are finished with raspberry jam and a fresh raspberry. Delish!
If you’re a fan of a fruity dessert then this one is for you. This Key Lime Pie features a sweet, ginger nut biscuit base with a tangy lime filling and is topped with whipped airy free cream and a sprinkling of lime zest.
I hope you LOVE this recipe for Coconut Rice Pudding! Share this recipe with someone you think will love it and don’t forget to tag @aveganvisit on social media when you try out the recipe – I absolutely love seeing your re-creations! Enjoy 🙂 x
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The Coconut Rice Pudding Recipe:
Coconut Rice Pudding
For the rice pudding:
- 150 g pudding rice (substitute: arborio rice)
- 800 g almond milk
- 50 g caster sugar
- 400 g tin of coconut milk
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
For the topping:
- 30 g coconut flakes
- 2 bananas (cut into large chunks (approx 3cm thick))
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- Add the rice, almond milk and sugar to a large saucepan.150 g pudding rice, 800 g almond milk, 50 g caster sugar
- Bring to the boil and then turn the heat down and simmer gently, stirring often, for around 25 minutes. Don’t have the heat too high otherwise the pan could boil over.
- Add the coconut milk and vanilla and simmer for another 20-25 minutes, stirring often, until the milk has developed a thicker, cream-like consistency. It will thicken more once it is off the hob. Remove from the hob and set aside to thicken more whilst you make the topping.400 g tin of coconut milk, 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- Heat the oil in a saucepan. Add the banana chunks and sprinkle them with 1 tbsp of sugar. To the other side of the saucepan add the coconut flakes and fry both over a medium heat for 4 minutes, stirring the coconut flakes occasionally during that time but turning the banana only once halfway through.30 g coconut flakes, 2 bananas, 1 tbsp caster sugar, 1 tsp coconut oil
- Serve the rice pudding warm topped with the caramelised banana and crispy golden coconut flakes.