How to make Ghanaian Rice Pudding (Rice Water) Recipe

Rice Water, also known as Rice Pudding, is a popular and delightful dessert enjoyed in Ghana and many other West African countries. It’s a simple yet flavorful treat made from rice, milk, and spices. Here’s how you can prepare this delicious Ghanaian Rice Pudding:

Ghanaian Rice Pudding (Rice Water) Recipe

Table of Contents


  • 1 cup jasmine rice (you can use any long-grain rice)
  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup coconut milk (optional, but adds a nice flavor)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar (adjust to your desired sweetness)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • A pinch of salt
  • Sliced bananas, raisins, or nuts (optional, for garnish)
  • Ground cinnamon or grated nutmeg (for garnish)


  1. Rinse the rice: Place the rice in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse it under cold water until the water runs clear. This helps remove excess starch from the rice.
  2. Cook the rice: In a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine the rinsed rice and 3 cups of whole milk. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat to low, cover the saucepan, and let the rice simmer for about 15-20 minutes or until the rice is tender, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
  3. Prepare the spiced milk: In a separate saucepan, combine the remaining 1 cup of whole milk and the coconut milk (if using). Add the cinnamon stick, ground nutmeg, ground cardamom, and a pinch of salt. Heat the mixture over low heat, allowing the spices to infuse the milk. Do not let it boil.
  4. Combine the mixtures: Once the rice is cooked and tender, pour the spiced milk mixture into the rice and stir well to combine. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer over low heat.
  5. Add sweetness: Stir in the granulated sugar and continue to simmer the mixture for an additional 5-7 minutes, or until it thickens to a creamy consistency. If you prefer a thicker pudding, you can simmer for a bit longer.
  6. Add flavor: Remove the cinnamon stick from the rice pudding and stir in the vanilla extract. This will enhance the overall flavor of the pudding.
  7. Serve: Ladle the warm Ghanaian Rice Pudding into serving bowls. You can serve it plain or garnish it with sliced bananas, raisins, nuts, and a sprinkle of ground cinnamon or grated nutmeg on top.
  8. Enjoy: Serve the Rice Water while it’s still warm for the best taste. It can also be enjoyed chilled, but it might thicken further as it cools down.

This Ghanaian Rice Pudding is a delightful and comforting dessert that will satisfy your taste buds. Enjoy it with friends and family, savouring the flavours of West Africa!