If you’ve never tried rice pudding, then you are missing out on a real treat. Made from rice, milk, and spices, this dish is enjoyed the world over in many variations. It is simple to make, comforting to eat, and easy to digest.
Often recipes make quite large batches of rice pudding so you may end up with a lot of leftovers that you can’t consume before they go bad in the fridge.
You might wonder whether you can store your leftover rice pudding in the freezer for longer-term storage and future enjoyment.
So, can you freeze rice pudding? Yes, you absolutely can. You will want to portion it out into airtight freezer bags or storage containers and then use it within about 3 months for the best results. It will last longer than that, but the quality and taste may be diminished.
Read on to discover how to make a delicious rice pudding from scratch, the best way to freeze it for long-term storage, and how long you can keep it in the fridge before it will go bad.
What Is Rice Pudding?
There’s something infinitely comforting about a cozy bowl of rice pudding. If you’ve never tried this delightful dish, then I highly suggest you pop into your kitchen to give it a try. This dish is deceptively simple and absolutely delicious.
Rice pudding has been made in different variations throughout the world and there are both sweet and savory iterations. Today, we’ll share a recipe for the most common rice pudding.
Generally, a basic rice pudding is made with rice, milk/water, cinnamon, sugar, vanilla, and raisins.
Can You Freeze Rice Pudding?
If you want to make a big batch of rice pudding so that you can always have some on hand for those days when you need a little comfort food, you might be wondering whether you can freeze the leftovers for long-term storage.
Since rice pudding already breaks down a lot of the starch and consistency of the rice during the cooking process, it can freeze really well without impacting the taste or texture. If you want to freeze your leftovers, then make sure you use them within 3 months for the best results.
You can keep your rice pudding in the freezer for longer than 3 months, but the quality will start to decline. It may also impact the flavor and texture or even get freezer burnt if you leave it in there for too long. So make sure you label and use your rice pudding within three months to keep that great taste.
How Long Does Rice Pudding Last In The Freezer?
If you want to enjoy the best quality rice pudding, make sure you eat it within 3 months of freezing. It will likely last longer than 3 months, but the flavor and texture may change or it could develop freezer burn.
How To Freeze Rice Pudding Properly
To freeze your rice pudding properly, you will want to take the following steps. There are shortcuts you can take, but these may impact the final product or make your rice pudding last for less time in the freezer.
So, if you don’t cut corners, you could be enjoying the fruits of your labor months down the road.
Steps To Freeze Rice Pudding:
- Let your rice pudding cool fully. You might even put it in the fridge overnight before continuing with the freezing process.
- Divide your leftover rice pudding into serving sizes that you or your family can comfortably eat in one or two sittings. You don’t want to freeze the whole thing since that means you will have to thaw and eat all of it within a couple of days.
- Put your portions of rice pudding into thick freezer bags or airtight storage containers.
- If you are using freezer bags, make sure to gently press out all the air before sealing the bag. Any air in the bag can lead to freezer burn. Don’t fill it all the way to allow some space for expansion.
- If you are using storage containers, place a piece of plastic wrap on top of the rice pudding to protect it from air that can cause freezer burn. Make sure to leave an inch of space at the top for expansion.
- Find some masking tape and a permanent marker. Write the date and contents on the tape and then stick it to your freezer bag or container.
- This step may seem silly since I’m sure you believe you will remember what you have frozen and when. But trust us, after a few weeks it all blurs together. Better to be safe so you know by what date you need to eat your rice pudding.
- Place your rice pudding containers in the freezer and enjoy within 3 months.
How Long Does Rice Pudding Last In The Fridge?
If you make a big batch of rice pudding and have some leftovers, rest assured that they will last in the fridge for about 4-5 days. That means rice pudding is a great choice for batch cooking since you can use it as a delicious breakfast.
You can portion out 4 days worth of rice pudding and then top it with fruit, coconut, nuts, and seeds for a delicious, filling breakfast that’s easy to grab-and-go for those busy mornings.
You can enjoy it chilled or reheat it on the stovetop or in the microwave, depending on your preference.
How To Store Rice Pudding In The Fridge
Depending on how much space you have in your fridge you can either store your rice pudding in one big container or in individual servings.
The process will be the same; just repeat it several times over if you’re using a few different containers.
Steps To Properly Store Rice Pudding In The Fridge:
- Let your rice pudding cool to room temperature. You can spread it out on a baking sheet or plate or just give it a stir every few minutes as it cools to release heat and steam.
- Once your rice pudding is cooled you can place it all into one large airtight container or portion it out into several smaller serving-size containers.
- To keep it fresh, place a small piece of plastic wrap on top of the rice pudding, pressing it down gently to cover it without any air pockets.
- Seal your container(s) and place a small piece of masking tape on the lid of each one.
- Write the date and contents on the lid and store them in the fridge. These labels will help you figure out whether the food is still good when you do your fridge cleanouts.
- Enjoy your rice pudding within 4-5 days. You can eat it chilled or reheat it on the stovetop or in the microwave. Feel free to top it with your favorite fruits and nuts for a delicious treat.
Basic Rice Pudding Recipe
- 1/2 cup of white rice. Short-grain is the most common, but feel free to use your favorite.
- 2.5 cups whole milk, coconut milk, or non-dairy milk
- Pinch of sea salt
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup white or brown sugar or even honey or maple syrup (I prefer maple!)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 – 1/3 cup of raisins, craisins, currants, or dried blueberries
- In a medium saucepan combine the rice, milk, and sea salt.
- Bring the contents of the saucepan to a gentle boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer, stirring the pot regularly. You can cover the pot between stirrings.
- After about 25-30 minutes, the rice should be tender.
- In a small mixing bowl, you can whisk together the egg and maple syrup (or honey, white, or brown sugar). To temper the egg mixture, whisk in about 1 tablespoon of the rice mixture at a time until fully incorporated.
- With the heat low (make sure it’s not boiling or it could curdle the egg), whisk the egg and sugar mixture into the rice and milk. Once fully incorporated, you can let the rice cook for another 5-10 minutes.
- Stir in the cinnamon, vanilla, and raisins (or dried fruit of your choice) and serve.
- Rice pudding tastes great warm or chilled depending on your preference.
As you can see, rice pudding is simple to make and endlessly customizable. You can eat it warm or chilled, sweet or savory, plain or topped with your favorite fruit and nuts. Each bowl is a comforting hug for your belly and delicious.
Rice pudding lasts about 4-5 days in the fridge, which makes it a great choice for batch-cooked breakfasts. You can also store it in the freezer for up to 3 months if you want to enjoy it down the road.
Before you freeze it, make sure you divide it into portions so you don’t have to thaw and refreeze it later. Do you have a favorite way to enjoy rice pudding? Let us know in the comments!