Recipe | Shir Berenj (Persian Rice Pudding)

Rice pudding is one of the easiest dessert to make which is perhaps why it exists all over the world. The recipe just varies based on local ingredients of each country. The common ingredients everywhere are rice and milk. It is one of my favorite desserts to have during summer because when cold, it is almost like ice cream! Since I can’t make ice cream at home, this is the next best alternative. It is creamy, thick and delicious. Perhaps even a healthier option compared to ice cream.

For this recipe, I used Egyptian rice because of the high starch content which makes the pudding thicker and creamer, but you can swap that for any of your choice. Egyptian rice is quite similar to calrose rice and sushi rice. The pudding can be served plain or with any toppings of your choice such as honey, whipped cream, cinnamon powder, chocolates chunks, fresh berries, rose petals or my most preferred, chopped nuts. Experiment and find your favorite one.

Recipe: Shir Berenj
Serves 2 - 4


½ cup of rice
1 ¼ cups of water
2 cups of whole milk
4 tablespoons of sugar
3 cardamon pods
¼ cup of rosewater
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract (optional)


In saucepan add rice and water, cover and boil on medium low heat until water has been fully absorbed and rice is soft. Once rice is soft, turn gas to low. Gently add milk, rose water, vanilla extract and stir. Add cardamon pods and sugar and stir until fully incorporated. Occasionally stir with wooden spoon until the pudding thickens. Add more milk if needed. Once thick, set aside to cool. Pour in a separate bowl and chill. Serve cold.

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