Fine Desserts

Danish Risalamande (Almond Rice Pudding)

4.83 from 17 votes
There's nothing better than rice pudding — except for maybe a Risalamande recipe, which adds almonds & cherries to a creamy and perfect holiday dessert!
Top-down view of 3 dishes of my risalamande!

Hi Bold Bakers!

Risalamande, or almond rice pudding, has been a Christmas favorite in Denmark for years now — and I know it will be a big hit in your kitchen too! It’s such a comforting treat; it is so sweet and soft. I love how creamy this homemade Risalamande is, and the bright and sweet cherry sauce is the perfect accompaniment!

It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that risalamande is Denmark’s favorite dessert, especially around the holidays. It’s typically what is served every Christmas Eve after dinner. 

But what sets risalamande apart from typical rice pudding besides that incredible cherry sauce? This unbelievably creamy pudding includes chopped almonds, heavy whipping cream, and vanilla extract, which makes it so much more flavorful than you could imagine! 

This recipe is part my Bold Baking Holidays Worldwide! You can find the other recipes from around the globe in my Holiday Headquarters.

What Is Danish Risalamande?

Despite originating in Denmark, the name is based on the French “riz à l’amande,” which means “rice with almonds.” In the late 1800s, this rice pudding became more popular in the area when imported almonds started to become less expensive. 

Around Christmas, families will make a big batch of risalamande to enjoy on Christmas Eve or for Christmas dinner, and children will even leave out a bowl of the pudding for the “nisser,” or Christmas goblins! Don’t worry. You’re not required to share this with any freeloading garden gnomes.

Cherries on top of my risalamande recipe!

What You Need To Make Danish Risalamande

How To Make Danish Risalamande

Don’t let the fact it’s a Christmas tradition keep you from making this all year long! Here is how you make risalamande (and don’t forget to get the full recipe with measurements, on the page down below):

  1. To make the rice pudding, stir together the milk, rice, sugar, and salt in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer, but don’t let it boil.
  2. Once simmering, reduce the heat to low. You want to cook the pudding at a very slow simmer, stirring occasionally, until the rice absorbs all the liquid and becomes soft. This should take around 30 minutes.
  3. Once the rice has absorbed the liquid, turn off the heat and stir in 3/4 cup chopped almonds and the vanilla extract. Set aside to cool.
  4. While the rice cools, make the cherry sauce by combing the cherries and sugar in a small saucepan over medium-low heat.
  5. In a small bowl, dissolve the cornstarch and water. Pour this into the pan with the cherries.
  6. Cook, constantly stirring, until the cherries soften and the sauce becomes thick and clear. This will take about 3 to 5 minutes. 
  7. Once the rice pudding is cooled, whip the heavy cream to soft peaks and fold into the rice pudding.
  8. Scoop into serving bowls and top with cherry sauce. Sprinkle the remaining chopped almonds on top!

A close up of the cherries and rice pudding to show texture.

Gemma’s Pro Chef Tips For Making Danish Risalamande

  • You will want to use SHORT grained rice (like Arborio, Calrose, or even sushi rice) to get the right consistency.
  • While cooking the rice pudding, if all the liquid is absorbed before your rice is soft and creamy, add a splash more of milk. Make sure the heat is on low, so it doesn’t evaporate instead of getting absorbed!
  • This recipe can be halved or doubled, depending on your group size.
  • If you don’t like almonds, feel free to omit them or use a different nut, like pecans.
  • When you are using nuts in a recipe that are not being baked in the oven, be sure to toast the nuts to bring out all their lovely flavor.

How Do I Store Danish Risalamande?

This rice pudding is best the day it is made, but you can keep any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Before serving, warm it to room temperature in the microwave! 

Make More Holiday Recipes!

And don’t forget to buy my Bigger Bolder Baking Cookbook!

Full (and printable) recipe below!

Danish Risalamande Recipe (Almond Rice Pudding)

4.83 from 17 votes
There's nothing better than rice pudding — except for maybe a Risalamande recipe, which adds almonds & cherries to a creamy and perfect holiday dessert!
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 6 people
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
There's nothing better than rice pudding — except for maybe a Risalamande recipe, which adds almonds & cherries to a creamy and perfect holiday dessert!
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 6 people

Ingredients

Rice Pudding

  • 2 ¼ cups (18floz/507ml) whole milk
  • ½ cup short-grained white rice
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup (3¾oz/106g) plus ¼ cup (1¼oz/35g) toasted almonds chopped and divided
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (8floz/225ml) heavy whipping cream

Cherry Sauce

  • 2 cups (10oz/284g) cherries (fresh or frozen)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 6 tablespoons water
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch

Instructions

To Make the Rice Pudding:

  • In a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat, stir together the milk, rice, sugar, and salt and bring to a simmer.
  • Once simmering, reduce the heat to low and cook at a very slow simmer, stirring occasionally, until the rice absorbs all the liquid and is soft, about 30 minutes.
  • Once cooked, turn off the heat and stir in ¾ cup (3¾oz/106g) chopped almonds and vanilla extract. Set aside to cool completely.

To Make the Cherry Sauce:

  • While the rice is cooling, make the cherry sauce: In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the cherries and sugar.
  • In a small bowl, dissolve the cornstarch and water, and pour into the pan with the cherries.
  • Cook, stirring constantly, until the cherries are softened and the sauce is thickened and clear, about 3-5 minutes.
  • Once the rice is cooled, whip the cream to soft peaks and fold into the rice.
  • Scoop into six serving bowls. Top with the cherry sauce and sprinkle with the remaining ¼ cup (1¼oz/35g) chopped almonds.
  • This rice pudding is best eaten the day it is made but you can store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to three days. Warm-up for a minute to room temperature in the microwave before eating.

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Aimee Stowers

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Natascha
Natascha
1 month ago

Hi Gemma, I am so happy that you made danish risalamande, it looks terrific 🙂 But as a Dane, who makes this for the family every year, I do have some comments: First of all, the almonds have to be peeled, not toasted, risalamande has to be all white. Second, when the risalamande is served there will either be one hole (peeled) almond in one of the servings or in the bowl (this is different in every family), the person who get the hole almond gets the almond-gift. This is traditionally a little pig made by marzipan or another treat.… Read more »

Jendy
Jendy
1 month ago

This looks delicious, Gemma. Thank you for always answering questions form your fans so. quickly. My daughter-in-law is lactose intolerant. Could I make this using almond or soy milk?

Andrea Jennyc
1 month ago

I can’t wait to try this! My husband is Danish and his grandmother usually makes this every year on Christmas Eve. This year, his grandparents moved into a seniors home, so they won’t be able to make it, so I am so happy to have a recipe, so I can make it instead! His family always hides a whole almond in it somewhere and whoever gets the whole almond in their portion gets a little gift!

Eliza F.
Eliza F.
19 days ago

This rice pudding that I made from this recipe is very delicious! (Unfortunately, I found the recipe after the holidays, so I just made a single serving for myself, but it was still lovely). I made some alterations to the ingredients, too- I had no frozen cherries, so I just used maraschino cherries in syrup, adding a bit of lime juice, and I was out of cream as well, so I put half-and-half in with the milk and and a teaspoon of butter at the end. Even with these changes, it was absolutely delightful to eat. Thank you so much… Read more »

28 days ago

I have never had anything like this before and I’m really glad I tried it out. Absolutely delish. 😋

nikki
1 month ago

looks yummy give me some i need it it will make my day

About Us

Meet Gemma

About Us

Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I want to help you bake with confidence anytime, anywhere! No matter your skills, I have you covered. Sign up for my FREE weekly emails and join millions of other Bold Bakers in the community for new recipes, baking techniques, and more every week!

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