Arroz Zambito

Peruvian Creole Rice Pudding

This criollo version of Arroz con Leche adds pecans, raisins, and, most importantly, chancaca, a raw cane sugar that gives the dessert its brown color and deep, rich flavor. – Editor’s Note

This recipe is courtesy of Gastón Acurio and reproduced with permission of Phaidon Press. Click here to purchase your own copy of Acurio’s cookbook Peru: The Cookbook from Phaidon.


  • ¾ cup (4¾ oz/140 g) white short-grain rice
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 6 cloves
  • ¾ cup (3½ oz/100 g) raisins, plus extra for decoration
  • cup (1¾ oz/50 g) chancaca sugar*, grated
  • 5 cups (40 fl oz/1.2 liters) evaporated milk
  • ½ cup (3½ oz/100 g) granulated sugar
  • cup (2 oz/50 g) shredded (desiccated) coconut
  • pinch of ground cinnamon

Serves 4-6


  1. Place the rice, 4 cups (34 fl oz/1 liter) water, cinnamon sticks, and cloves in a pan. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the water has evaporated and the rice is cooked.
  2. Remove the cinnamon and cloves. Add the raisins, chancaca, and evaporated milk and cook for 15 minutes, stirring. Add the sugar and continue to cook over low heat, stirring continuously, for another 15 minutes or until the rice pudding thickens to a creamy consistency.
  3. To serve, spoon the rice pudding into dessert glasses and sprinkle with the coconut, ground cinnamon, and a few extra raisins.

*Chancaca is a typical raw unrefined Peruvian sugar