Invalid Cooking: Rice Pudding

Rice Pudding is one of my all-time comfort foods.  So much so, that although I check recipes on most everything I cook, I make this rice pudding so often that that I generally wing it.

And by the way, it is gluten-free.

You can find many varieties of rice pudding in various cookbooks.  I like this one because you start with leftover cooked rice.  So when I make rice for dinner, I always make extra and stick it in the refrigerator until I am moved to make rice pudding. It is a very handy food to have around for people who are sick, because it goes down smoothly and has at least a bit of nutrition. Although rice is mainly just a filler for our tummies, the milk, eggs and cranberries pack some good nutrients.

While I originally found the basic recipe for cooked-rice pudding in theJoy of Cooking cookbook, I have made it my own. Canned coconut milk makes my rice pudding a little more exotic than  the usual plain milk recipes. Additionally, while most recipes call for raisins, I use dried cranberries (and sometimes currants).  It doesn’t matter. Rice pudding is great with additions of almonds, canned fruit (adjusting liquid if you have a juicy fruit), or any dried fruit you favor.

The other place I depart from Joy of Cooking and other recipes, is that I do not add lemon or grated lemon peel.  I’ve tried it. Didn’t think it added anything.

So here is my very own leftover-rice pudding.

Rice Pudding


  • 2 1/2-3 C cooked rice (can be cold from the refrigerator)
  • One can of coconut milk, plus 1/2 can water
  • A smidge (okay, 1/8 tsp) of salt
  • 3-6 Tablespoons of sugar, depending on your sweet tooth
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 Cup of dried cranberries
  • 2 slim pats of butter (about 1 Tablespoon all together), plus butter for dish
  • A few shakes of nutmeg or mace

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Smear butter over inside of 2 12 quart Pyrex baking dish or similar casserole dish.

Beat four eggs, add coconut milk, salt, sugar and rice. Break up any clumps of rice as you mix it in.  Add and mix in cranberries.  Dump mixture into buttered dish. Put bits of butter on top. Sprinkle top with nutmeg (to taste).  Bake at 350 until you can insert a knife in the center and it comes out clean. Fifty minutes or more if you have an old oven like I do.

Eat warm, or refrigerate to eat cold. If you want to guild the lily, put whipped cream (or canned whipped topping) on each serving.


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