This vegan rice pudding is creamy, not too sweet, and delicious hot or cold! Serve it with spiced orange compote for a fruity twist!
This recipe was originally published on July 7, 2022. It was updated with new information on August 18, 2023.
Table of contents
- Why You'll Love This Creamy Vegan Rice Pudding Recipe
- Rice Pudding Ingredients
- How to Make Vegan Rice Pudding
- How to Make Orange Compote
- Recipe Pro-Tips
- Serving Suggestions
- Storage Directions
- Dietary Adaptations
- Tools Needed
- Frequently Asked Questions
- More No-Bake Vegan Dessert Recipes
Why You'll Love This Creamy Vegan Rice Pudding Recipe
Rice pudding is a very nostalgic dessert for many across the world! Besides it being delicious, here are some reasons why you'll love this recipe:
- Creamy dreamy texture. Thanks to the evaporated oat milk, this stovetop rice pudding is so creamy that no one will know it's vegan😉
- Familiar flavors. The combination of cinnamon and vanilla provides that warm comforting flavor that we all know and love.
- Delicious fruity twist. The classic rice pudding pairing would be raisins, but I love topping it with my delicious citrus compote. The juicy and refreshing compote pairs so well with that rich and creamy pudding!
- Simple ingredients. The rice pudding only requires 8 ingredients and the compote only 7 ingredients, one of them being the vanilla pod after the seeds have been scraped and used for the pudding.
Rice Pudding Ingredients
- Rice - Short grain rice works best.
- Water - Cooking the rice in water before adding milk helps to ensure that the rice will be cooked through.
- Evaporated oat milk - I used Nature's Charm's evaporated oat milk for the creamiest dairy free rice pudding. You can use evaporated coconut milk or canned coconut milk, as a quick substitution. These substitutions will have a coconut flavor to them, but you'll end up with some delicious coconut rice pudding!
- Granulated sugar - You can also use organic cane sugar!
- Vanilla bean - Use the seeds from a vanilla bean for the best vanilla flavor! You can also use 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract or vanilla paste.
- Cinnamon stick - Using a cinnamon stick will give you a subtle cinnamon flavor compared to when you use ground cinnamon. If you don't have a cinnamon stick, you can use ¼ to ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon instead.
- Salt - Salt is necessary for almost all desserts to bring out the flavors and balance out the sweetness.
- Vegan butter - Just a tab of vegan butter makes this rice pudding silky and rich
- Orange peel - The orange peel adds a subtle citrus note to the rice pudding.
Extra Ingredients for the Orange Compote
- Oranges - Use any orange you like to eat, but it may be more difficult to segment smaller oranges like clementines.
- Grapefruit - You can skip it if you don't like grapefruit, but I like the slightly bitter bite that grapefruit has.
- Maple syrup or agave syrup - Either sweetener will work in this recipe.
How to Make Vegan Rice Pudding
Step 1: Add the rice and water to a pot and heat it on medium-high heat. Once it reaches a boil, turn the heat down to low and simmer for 10 minutes.
Step 2: Add the evaporated oat milk, sugar, vegan butter, salt, orange peel, cinnamon stick, and seeds scraped out from a vanilla bean to the pot. Heat it on medium-high heat.
Step 3: Once the mixture reaches a boil, reduce the heat down to low and simmer for 30 minutes while stirring often to avoid the rice from sticking to the pot.
Step 4: Take the pot off the heat, pour the mixture into a heat-safe bowl, and let it cool.
Step 5: If serving the rice pudding cold, cover the bowl making sure the plastic wrap touches the surface of the rice pudding and put the bowl in the refrigerator to chill for about an hour.
How to Make Orange Compote
Step 1: Cut the oranges and grapefruit into segments and put them into a heatproof bowl.
Step 2: In a pot, add the sugar, water, maple syrup or agave, any juice collected while cutting the citrus, cinnamon stick, and the vanilla bean pod leftover from making the rice pudding. Heat it on medium-high.
Step 3: Once it reaches a boil, turn the heat down to low and simmer for 10 minutes.
Step 4: Pour the liquid over the oranges and let it cool completely. Serve with the rice pudding.
- Rinse the rice first. Rinsing the rice with water helps to remove some of the starch. Put the rice in a bowl, fill it with water, swirl with your hand for a few seconds before pouring out the starchy water, and repeat a couple more times. Removing the extra starch will make this rice pudding creamy rather than mushy.
- Stir every few minutes. While the rice is simmering in the milk mixture, stir the pot every few minutes to make sure the rice doesn't stick to the bottom of the pot.
- Take it off the heat before it gets too thick. Rice pudding will thicken as it cools and even more while it chills in the fridge. If you cook it for too long, you can end up with a brick-like rice pudding. After letting the rice pudding cook for 30 minutes, take it off the heat immediately and pour it into a heat-proof bowl so it doesn't continue to cook in the pot.
- Make sure the plastic wrap is touching the surface of the rice pudding. Once the rice pudding has cooled to room temperature, cover the bowl with plastic wrap making sure that it's touching the surface. This stops the rice pudding from creating a film on its surface.
This dairy-free rice pudding is absolutely delicious on its own, but it's also fun to add toppings or mix-ins! While you can go classic with raisins, you can try something new and serve it with something fruitier!
I served mine with orange compote, but you can also serve it with other compotes or cooked fruit, jam, or even fresh fruit. Think blueberries, strawberries, bananas, or stewed apples!
If you cook the rice pudding with coconut milk to make vegan coconut rice pudding, you can serve it with some fresh mangoes for a tropical twist!
You can store this vegan rice pudding in an airtight container in the fridge for 3 days.
That's right, you can freeze leftover rice pudding! For best results, let freshly cooked rice pudding cool until room temperature, and put individual portions into thick freezer bags, making sure to get as much of the air out as possible as you close the bag.
You can freeze them for up to 3 months. Defrost them overnight in the refrigerator.
This recipe is gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan! If you want to make this with dairy, you can easily use regular evaporated milk and butter instead of the vegan options I use.
Frequently Asked Questions
Traditional rice pudding contains dairy, often in the form of milk or cream. To make rice pudding dairy free, simply swap the dairy milk and dairy butter for dairy-free substitutes, like evaporated oat milk and vegan butter.
Some recipes also contain egg yolk to add richness. To make rice pudding vegan, make sure your rice pudding doesn't include any eggs as well as dairy.
According to Mackenzie Burgess, registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) and recipe developer at Cheerful Choices, "Rice is a great source of carbohydrates, which is our body's preferred energy source. It's also low in saturated fat and sodium." Although this recipe uses white rice, she recommends that "If you're looking for a bit more protein and fiber, try to vary your diet between both refined grains (white rice) and whole grains (brown rice, quinoa, oatmeal, etc)."
As for the orange compote, Mackenzie says "This recipe also contains oranges and grapefruit which are rich in potassium, folate, and vitamin C. Research shows vitamin C acts as a powerful antioxidant and can help support the body’s immune response to infection."
No, you can't taste the oat milk in this rice pudding recipe. The cinnamon, vanilla, and orange are so flavorful that you can't taste the oat flavor of the evaporated oat milk.
Yes, rice pudding is a gluten-free dessert! All ingredients in this recipe, including the evaporated oat milk, are gluten-free.
Although it comes down to personal preference, I think short-grain rice makes for the best rice pudding. I suggest using arborio rice, pudding rice, or sushi rice. That said, if all you have at home is long-grain rice, go ahead and use that!
Yes, you can use leftover rice! Just skip cooking the rice in water, and add the cooked rice to the pot with the evaporated oat milk, sugar, cinnamon stick, orange peel, and vanilla seeds.
More No-Bake Vegan Dessert Recipes
And there you have it, my fellow dairy-free food adventurers! My Creamy Vegan Rice Pudding Recipe. For more scrumptious dairy-free, gluten-free, and/or vegan dessert inspiration, make sure to follow me on Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram. You can also get all of my newest content delivered straight to your inbox by signing up for my email newsletter — I promise not to spam you!
Vegan Rice Pudding
Rice pudding ingredients
Orange compote ingredients
- 3 oranges
- 1 grapefruit
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- ½ cup water
- 1 tablespoon agave syrup or maple syrup
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 vanilla bean pod (use the leftover pod from the rice pudding)
- Add the rice and water to a pot and heat it on medium-high heat. Once it reaches a boil, turn the heat down to low and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the evaporated oat milk, sugar, vegan butter, salt, orange peel, cinnamon stick, and seeds scraped out from a vanilla bean to the pot. Heat it on medium-high heat.
- Once the mixture reaches a boil, reduce the heat down to low and simmer for 30 minutes while stirring often to avoid the rice from sticking to the pot.
- Take the pot off the heat, pour the mixture into a heat-safe bowl, and let it cool.
- If serving the rice pudding cold, cover the bowl making sure the plastic wrap touches the surface of the rice pudding and put the bowl in the refrigerator to chill for about an hour.
- While the rice pudding chills, make the orange compote. Cut the oranges and grapefruit into segments and put them into a heatproof bowl.
- In a pot, add the sugar, water, maple syrup or agave, any juice collected while cutting the citrus, cinnamon stick, and the vanilla bean pod leftover from making the rice pudding. Heat it on medium-high.
- Once it reaches a boil, turn the heat down to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Pour the liquid over the oranges and let it cool completely.
- Serve with the rice pudding.