Delicious Arroz Con Gandules Recipe for Foodies

Hey there foodies! Are you looking to tantalize your taste buds and try something new? Join me in exploring the rich flavor of Arroz con Gandules y Leche de Coco, a traditional dish from the heart of Puerto Rico.

This dish is perfect for any occasion, whether it’s a holiday side dish or just a weeknight dinner. It’s a true crowd-pleaser that will have all your friends and family asking for the recipe.

The Puerto Rican cuisine is not only about great flavors; it’s also about sharing with loved ones and savoring every bite. This dish is no exception. It combines rice and pigeon peas with luxurious coconut milk and a delicious blend of spices, creating a symphony of taste that will transport you straight to the Caribbean.

Cooking this dish will also connect you with Puerto Rico’s rich culinary traditions, passed on from generation to generation. You’ll feel as though you’re in la cocina tradicional (the traditional kitchen) of Puerto Rico itself.

So come and join me on this culinary adventure as we immerse ourselves in the warm flavors of juicy pigeon peas, hearty rice grains, and creamy coconut milk. Trust me; this dish will soon become one of your favorites!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco
Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco

Food is not just about filling our stomachs, it’s about the experience and the emotions it brings. When I cook, I love to prepare dishes that make people happy and bring comfort to their souls. Today, I want to introduce you to a dish that will do exactly that – Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco.

This traditional dish is famous in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. What makes it unique is the combination of rice, pigeon peas, and coconut milk. It’s a simple dish that is rich in flavor, and it will surely make your taste buds dance with joy!

You’ll love this recipe for many reasons. Firstly, it’s straightforward to make. With a few ingredients and simple steps, you’ll be able to create a wholesome meal in no time. Secondly, the blend of spices adds depth to the dish without overpowering it. The garlic powder, onion powder, adobo seasoning, and sazon goya with coriander and annatto are perfectly balanced to give you an explosion of flavors.

Thirdly, this dish is versatile. You can pair it with chicken or pork for a hearty meal or serve it as a side for your holiday dinner parties. It’s affordable, easy to scale up or down based on your guest list.

Lastly but most importantly, Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco is healthy! It’s packed with nutrients from the pigeon peas and coconut milk; this dish can boost your energy levels all day long.

In conclusion, Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco is a must-try recipe; It’s easy, healthy, versatile and flavorful! Once you take your first bite into this dish, you’ll understand why it has become a staple in Caribbean cuisine. Don’t miss out on creating memorable food experiences; add Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco to your recipe rotation today!

Ingredient List

 A taste of the Caribbean: Arroz con gandules y leche de coco
A taste of the Caribbean: Arroz con gandules y leche de coco

Let’s talk about the star players of this dish – the ingredients! You will need:

1. Rice: Any long-grain rice will work for this recipe, but I recommend using arroz con gandules for best results.

2. Water: You’ll need 3 cups of water to cook the rice.

3. Tomato Sauce: We’ll use 1/4 cup of tomato sauce to add a tangy depth to the dish.

4. Ham: 1/2 cup of diced ham will be used to add a salty and savory flavor.

5. Coconut Milk: The creamy and rich coconut milk is the ingredient that sets this dish apart from other rice dishes. You’ll need 1 can (13.5 oz) of leche de coco to infuse our rice with its heavenly taste.

6. Seasonings: Some familiar seasonings like 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of garlic powder, 1 teaspoon of onion powder, and 1 tablespoon of adobo seasoning will be used to create a fragrant aroma and delicious taste in every grain of rice. We’ll also use a packet of Sazón Goya with Coriander and Annatto for that iconic orange-hued Caribbean color.

7. Pigeon peas: No arroz con gandules recipe would be complete without these protein-packed legumes! You’ll need 15 oz can of gandules (pigeon peas), drained and rinsed.

Gather all these ingredients, and we’re ready to start cooking!

The Recipe How-To

 Fluffy rice and creamy goodness in every bite
Fluffy rice and creamy goodness in every bite

Now, let’s dive into the most exciting part of the article, how to make Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco, which is also known as Moro de Gandules, a traditional dish from Puerto Rico that I’ve added my own twist.


  • 2 cups of rice
  • 4 cups of water
  • 1 can (8 oz) of tomato sauce
  • 3 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 tbsp of adobo seasoning
  • 1 tbsp of garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp of onion powder
  • 8 oz of diced ham
  • 1 envelope of sazón goya with coriander and annatto
  • 1 can (15 oz) of pigeon peas, drained
  • 1 can (13.5 oz) of coconut milk

Step-by-step Instructions:

  1. Rinse the rice grains to remove excess starch until the water runs clear.
  2. In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
  3. Add diced ham and cook until it’s sizzling but not crisp, stirring occasionally for about 3 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic powder, onion powder, and adobo seasoning to the pot and stir for about a minute until fragrant.
  5. Stir in tomato sauce and pigeon peas into the pot, then add sazón goya with coriander and annatto; mix well.
  6. Add in rice to the pot and stir so that it absorbs all the flavors from the pot.
  7. Pour in water and coconut milk into the pot.
  8. Bring the mixture to a boil then lower heat to low and cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid.
  9. Cook for about 20 to 25 minutes or until the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender.
  10. Remove the pot from heat and let it sit with the lid still on for an additional 5 to 10 minutes to steam further.
  11. Fluff with a fork, then serve warm as a side dish.

This easy-to-follow recipe is rich but balanced in flavors that will surprise your taste buds, perfect for any holiday side dish series or a regular day in the kitchen. Make cooking fun and accessible by trying out this fácil receta (easy recipe) of arroz con gandules y leche de coco.

Substitutions and Variations

 A vibrant mix of colors and flavors
A vibrant mix of colors and flavors

One of the great things about cooking is the ability to be creative and experiment with different ingredients. This arroz con gandules y leche de coco recipe is no exception. Here are some variations and substitutions you can make:

– Meat: If you don’t eat ham, you could substitute it for chicken, turkey or beef. You could also make it vegetarian by omitting the meat altogether.

– Rice: Although this recipe calls for long-grain rice, you could use any type of rice you have on hand. Just keep in mind that different types of rice may require different cooking times or liquid ratios.

– Spices: If you don’t have all the spices listed in the ingredient list, that’s okay. Adobo seasoning and sazon goya with coriander and annatto can be substituted for cumin or paprika. For a spicy version, add some cayenne pepper or chili powder.

– Coconut Milk: If you can’t find coconut milk in your local store, almond milk can be used as a substitute. However, keep in mind that the flavor will be slightly different.

– Pigeon Peas: Pigeon peas (gandules) are a staple ingredient in this dish, but if you can’t find them, black beans or kidney beans would work too.

– Serving Style: While this recipe is traditionally served as a side dish, it can also be used as a main course by adding extra vegetables like carrots, celery or bell peppers to make it more hearty.

Remember, cooking should be fun and enjoyable! Don’t be afraid to adapt this recipe to your own taste preferences and dietary needs.

Serving and Pairing

 Impress your guests with this exotic dish
Impress your guests with this exotic dish

Now that you have prepared this delicious Arroz con Gandules y Leche de Coco recipe, it’s time to think about how you want to serve and pair it. This dish is so versatile that can be the star of the show or a great side dish to other protein and vegetable options.

One way to serve this dish is by adding some toppings to give it a nice crunchy texture. You can add chopped nuts like almonds or cashews for some crunchiness, or fried plantains for some sweetness. Another great option is to add a dollop of sour cream or crema fresca on top.

If you want to enjoy it as a side dish, consider pairing with grilled chicken or roasted pork. The flavors of the rice will complement those meats perfectly. It’s also an excellent option for vegetarian meals, as the rice provides a lot of proteins and nutrients.

Lastly, don’t forget to serve this dish alongside a refreshing drink. An ice-cold beer or a tropical cocktail will complete the experience in the best possible way.

Whatever your preference may be, be sure to share your experience by trying different serving and pairing combinations with your family and friends.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Combining Latin American and tropical influences
Combining Latin American and tropical influences

This arroz con gandules y leche de coco recipe is perfect for making ahead of time, which makes it an ideal dish for hosting dinners or gatherings. Once prepared, it can be stored in the refrigerator for up to three days without any effect on its flavor and texture. And if you have leftovers, those can be frozen for a couple of months.

When reheating the dish, remember to add a splash of water or broth, and heat it gently over low heat. You don’t want the rice to dry out or lose its fluffy texture. Additionally, if you prefer to make this recipe in advance, you can cook the rice separately from the pigeon peas and ham. Then combine all ingredients, except for the coconut milk, into one container and store it in the fridge until you are ready to serve.

Another pro tip is to reheat this dish covered with aluminum foil in your oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175C) until hot throughout — this will help retain its moistness and flavor. Once hot again, add a dash of fresh cilantro as a final touch and you’ll have a dish that tastes like new.

With these tips in mind, you can enjoy this delicious arroz con gandules y leche de coco recipe whenever you like!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Rice and beans never tasted so good
Rice and beans never tasted so good

Now that you’ve decided to try out the Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco recipe, let me share with you some tips on how to ensure perfect results every time you make it. This dish is a traditional Puerto Rican and Dominican holiday side dish that can also be enjoyed all year round. It’s a delicious and heartwarming meal that is sure to impress your family and friends.

Here are some tips for making the best Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco possible:

1. Rinse the rice thoroughly before cooking: This prevents any unwanted starch from sneaking into your rice, which can make it too sticky.

2. Use good quality rice: The quality of the rice affects the texture of the final dish. Using long-grain rice will ensure each grain is separate, while short-grain rice will give you more stickiness.

3. Add enough water: For every cup of rice, use two cups of water, but when included tomato sauce or coconut milk, calibrated correctly so as not to end up with a liquid or dry con.

4. Use the correct amount of salt and seasonings: Salt, garlic powder, onion powder, adobo seasoning, sazon goya with coriander and annatto (optional) all add flavor to this dish, but be careful not to overdo it.

5. Let the dish rest before serving: Once cooked, let the dish rest for about 10 minutes before serving. This allows the flavors to meld together and for the moisture to distribute evenly throughout.

6. Serve with a protein: To balance out this carb-heavy dish, consider serving alongside some protein like grilled chicken or roasted pork.

7. Get creative with variations: While this recipe is fantastic just as it is, feel free to get creative with substitutions and variations.

8. Be patient: It’s essential that you abstain from lifting of the cover pot during cooking; this will allow the rice to cook, and all flavors to penetrate within. Some people even put one sheet of aluminum foil under the lid ensuring no steam escape.’

By following these tips, you’re sure to have the best Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco on your plate every time!


Now that you know how to prepare this delicious dish, let me answer some of the most common questions people have about Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco. Here are some of the FAQs you might have about this recipe!

Why does my arroz and gandules keep coming out soggy?

Overcooked rice is often mushy or soggy due to an excessive amount of water absorption. This causes the grains of rice to split and results in a gummy texture.

What is arroz con coco made of?

Arroz con coco is a delectable Colombian dish that translates to “coconut rice”. It is made by combining rice, coconut milk, water, sugar, salt, and raisins into a side dish or appetizer.

What is Moro de Guandules con Coco and where does it come from?

Moro de guandules con coco is a Dominican Republic dish from the Samaná region, where the locals incorporate coconut milk into many of their classic meals. This flavorful and mild dish is typically served alongside roasted meat, and it’s a beloved part of the Dominican culinary tradition.

What are Puerto Rican arroz con gandules made of?

One of the most popular dishes in Puerto Rico is arroz con gandules. It’s a delicious mix of rice, pigeon peas, and pork that are all cooked together in one pot with sofrito. This savory blend is often served with roasted pork and is considered to be the national dish of Puerto Rico.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco recipe is a must-try for anyone looking to add some Latin flavors to their kitchen. With its fragrant blend of rice, pigeon peas, and coconut milk, this dish is an explosion of flavors in your mouth. Not only does it taste amazing, but it’s also easy to make and requires minimal ingredients.

Whether you’re serving it as a side dish or making it the main course, this recipe is guaranteed to please. So why not try something new and join in on the holiday side dish series with this Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco recipe? It’s perfect for any occasion, and I promise it won’t disappoint!

Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco

Arroz Con Gandules Y Leche De Coco Recipe

This recipe goes well with baked chicken or pork chops. As always a nice side salad to make it great! With the touch of coconut milk, this recipe will bring a touch of the Puerto Rico in to your kitchen.
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Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Puerto Rican
Calories 1474.9 kcal


  • 1 (15 1/2 ounce) can coconut milk (goya)
  • 1/4 teaspoon sazon goya with coriander and annatto
  • 1 (15 1/2 ounce) can pigeon peas (gandules, goya)
  • 1/2 lb ham (not sliced)
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce (goya)
  • 1/2 cup oil (canola oil is healthier)
  • 4 cups water
  • 3 cups rice (goya medium grain rice or long is fine)
  • 2 teaspoons adobo seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • salt
  • 2 teaspoons sofrito sauce


  • In a large pot add sazon, oil, sofrito, onion powder, garlic powder, adobo, ham, gandules, coconut milk, and tomato sauce. Simmer over medium fire. Stir ingredients together and let heat up for about 3 minutes. Add water continue to mix all ingredients together.Add salt to taste. Let it simmer until it comes to a boil. When water is boiling add rice. Stir in the rice so it all evens out with taste. Cover the pot. When you see all the water has dried stir rice so it all cooks evenly. Covering the the rice allows it to cook but also helps to keep it nice and moist not dry and hard. (if rice seems a bit hard just sprinkle a bit a water on top and cover) at times this will happen if it's your first time making rice.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 497gCalories: 1474.9kcalCarbohydrates: 200.8gProtein: 50.4gFat: 53.5gSaturated Fat: 23.3gCholesterol: 29.5mgSodium: 1242.2mgFiber: 22.1gSugar: 10.2g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Easy, Inexpensive
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Dora is a chef well-versed in Brazilian and American cuisine. After a hard day's work in the kitchen of her restaurant, she finds the time to jot down recipes for her food blog. Her recipes are sure to delight foodies everywhere, as she strives to make each one unique and enjoyable to read.