Savory Rice Pudding with Corn and Coconut

It’s savory, but also sweet, and bursting with corn flavor.

For a while, I’ve been thinking about making a savory rice pudding, something that could serve as a side dish or base for a stir fry or other veggies. Since it is Corn Season in Vermont, the idea of combining rice pudding with corn pudding sounded like a good idea.

What type of corn pudding do you like?

There are many variations of corn pudding ranging from something that more closely resembles corn bread, a souffléd creation, or a thick and creamy pudding-like dish that is baked in the oven. All kinds of possibilities, and every family seems to have their own variation.

More corn flavor

I wanted to make something with a rice pudding- or risotto-like texture, and pack in as much corn flavor in as possible. I’ve been using light coconut milk in place of the dairy cream for a while, and the resulting rice is just as delicious as the full-fat. Whenever I make a corn chowder, I always use the cobs to enhance the broth, so I used that technique here as well. It’s amazing how much corn flavor you can extract from those seemingly bare and useless cobs! Tons! By puréeing half of the corn, even more corn flavor will get into the base.

corn and peppers

At the farmers market this week, I found some beautiful little Shishito frying peppers, sweet and flavorful, although I’m told one in eight turns out to be rather hot!

I only used a few in this recipe, and none were hot. Most often, these wrinkly little peppers are cooked whole and served as a side or finger food. If you want more heat in this dish, add a finely minced Serrano pepper.

Roasted Shishito Peppeers
Shishito peppers are quick and easy to roast. Just drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and roast for five or six minutes, or until blistered, in a 450 degree oven. Delicious little side dish, that comes with its own handle!

A little sour to balance the sweet

This is a rich dish, and My grandson added the lime at the end. He thought the pudding was good but too sweet for his liking, so he added a squeeze of lime. It balanced out the sweet perfectly, and he couldn’t get enough of it after that!

Savory Rice Pudding with Corn and Coconut

corn and rice pudding
Top the pudding with shrimp sautéed in garlic paprika oil and you have a lovely meal! (This is a bread plate, not a dinner plate, and the shrimp are rather small, one wouldn’t eat a dinner plate of this pudding!).
  • 4 large ears of corn
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cans light coconut milk
  • 3 tbsp. butter, divided, or vegan butter
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 3 Shishito frying peppers, minced, or left whole
  • Salt and pepper
  • Juice of one-half to one lime

Remove the corn from the cobs and set aside. You should have about 3 cups.

Break the cobs in half and place in a saucepan with two cups of water. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 20 minutes. Discard the cobs and pour the corn water into a measuring cup. I had a little more than a cup of this flavorful water. Add the coconut milk to the four-cup mark.

Add 1 tbsp. of butter to the the corn water pan and add the rice. Over medium heat, stir for about a minute until all the rice grains are coated and start to change color a bit, but not brown. Add the milk mixture, salt and pepper to taste, bring everything to a simmer, then reduce the heat to keep it just at the simmer. Stir this frequently but not constantly for 35 to 40 minutes. You will want to stir more frequently toward the end so you do not scorch the rice.

corn cooking
Half of this mixture will be pureed, the rest will add more texture to the finished dish.

In the meantime, heat a skillet and add another tablespoon of butter and the tablespoon of olive oil. Add the shallot and peppers and sauté for a minute or so. Add the reserved corn, salt and pepper, and cook for about six minutes, until the corn has softened and the flavors have blended.

Take half the corn mixture and purée it in a food processor or blender. Add this purée to the rice mixture.

Once the rice is thickened and fully cooked, add the rest of the corn, taste and correct the seasoning.

Place in a serving bowl, top with last tablespoon of butter, and squeeze the lime over all, start with a half a lime, and add more if you like; it all depends on how juicy or stingy the lime. Garnish with parsley if desired. You can also drizzle some paprika and garlic oil over all!

Garlic/Paprika oil:

This is yummy as a drizzle on vegetables, a starch, or you can use it to sauté shrimp to top your corn rice pudding!

In a small saute pan over medium, heat 1/4 cup olive oil and add two crushed garlic cloves. Stir in 1/2 tsp. smoked Spanish paprika. Swirl around for a minute or two, but don’t let the garlic brown. Remove to a dish and let cool to room temperature.

© Copyright 2020– or current year, The New Vintage Kitchen. Unattributed use of this material is strictly prohibited. Reposting and links may be used, provided that credit is given to The New Vintage Kitchen, with  active link and direction to this original post.

The New Vintage Kitchen does not accept ads or payment for mention of products or businesses.

Member of Slow Food



27 Comments Add yours

  1. Love the idea of this risotto-like dish. The addition of corn and coconut milk is so unique, and I’m sure very tasty.
    I too would probably add a squeeze of lime in there, but that’s something I do to almost any dish… 🙂

    1. Thanks! I’m so glad you appreciate this. And you’re so right, the squeeze of lime is really important. That little bit of acid at the end makes all the difference!

      1. It adds such nice flavor and aroma to just about anything! 🙂

  2. sounds divine!!!

    1. Thank you! We loved it.

  3. CarolCooks2 says:

    This dish sounds delicious and lime would definitely be my addition as well as chilli oil 🙂

    1. Oh yes Carol, chili oil would be prefect here too! I’ll remember that!

  4. I’m a fan of risotto, so this dish gets my vote! Yumolicious! 🌿🌱🍃

    1. Thank you! It was a hit all around.

  5. This sounds wonderful, I love fresh corn in any fashion! Thanks for the tip using the corn cobs too!

    1. There’s so much flavor left in them!

  6. suzannesmom says:

    I used to make rice pudding the next day whenever I had made too much rice for dinner. This sounds like a great variation.

    1. It was certainly different, and everyone liked it.

  7. This is such a healthy risotto! I love the green peppers adding so much flavour to the dish! Yummy

    1. Thank you so much! It’s amazing but the light coconut milk makes this every bit as rich as the heavy cream used to, thanks of course to the starchy Arborio rice!

  8. Yummy! I love your creativity in cooking Dorothy!

    1. Why, thank you so very much! It’s my playtime!

  9. Karen says:

    What an interesting combination of flavors. I really do like the idea of a savory rice pudding.

    1. Thank you! I had been thinking for quite a while about a savory rice pudding, and this worked out really well.

  10. Georgy Holden says:

    This looks great, I look forward to trying it.

    1. Thank you so much. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

  11. This is to die for! I’m so going to be making this over the weekend. I already have the roasted shisito peppers and some shrimp in the freezer. Thank YOU!

    1. Thank you! I’m sure you will love it! My family has already asked for it again! (How convenient you had the peppers!)

      1. Can you believe the luck? The kitchen Goddesses are smiling!

      2. ‘Tis meant to be!

  12. Such a lovely blog you have. I am a travel blogger form India. Please have a look at my blog too.

    1. Thank you so much! I will indeed take a look.

Please leave your valued comment here...