Sticky Rice and Mango – Thai Dessert

Sticky rice and Mango; Thai Sticky rice and Mango; Khao Niaow Ma Muang; Thai Dessert; Recipe Sticky Rice; Photo Sticky Rice and Mango; Rice Dessert; Rice and Milk; Thai Food

Sticky Rice and Mango – Thai Dessert.

Sticky Rice and Mango or Khao Niaow Ma Muang is a traditional Thai dessert and very delicious. It was one of the dishes that we had to make when I went for a cooking class in Chiang Mai in 2006. It was also the last time that I had the opportunity to taste it. It is not something that is readily available in other countries and mangos are not always in season.

Recently when I visited Thailand again I told my friends to try it. They did – for breakfast! Who says you can only eat it after dinner? I must warn you that it is a really sweet treat.

Sticky rice and Mango; Thai Sticky rice and Mango; Khao Niaow Ma Muang; Thai Dessert; Recipe Sticky Rice; Photo Sticky Rice and Mango; Rice Dessert; Rice and Milk; Thai Food
Sticky Rice and Mango prepared by Sunrise Bungalows in Koh Samui.

sticky rice and mango recipe

If you like to try new food or want to treat your friends with a traditional Thail Dessert then this is the recipe to use. (Recipe courtesy of

Here are step-by-step instructions for this very simple dessert. It just happens to be vegan and gluten-free, too! It’s so delicious, all that warm, sticky, sweet and slightly salty rice, drenched in coconut milk, and eaten spoonful by spoonful with fragrant mango. And it all only takes 20 minutes or so — if you don’t count the time you need to soak the rice.

This recipe will make between 2 and 4 servings.

What You NeedIngredients
1 cup Thai sweet or sticky rice, available in Asian groceries
1 can coconut milk, unshaken
3 tablespoons raw or white sugar, divided
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch (or tapioca flour, available in Asian groceries or in gluten-free section)
2 ripe mangos
Toasted sesame seeds and mint, to garnish

Covered saucepan
Steamer basket
Small saucepan

Instructions1. Gather your ingredients. The sticky rice is the most important thing here; you cannot use regular rice. Here’s a photo of the sticky rice I use; it comes in 5-pound bags at the Asian grocery. The grains themselves are small, quite plump, and very white.

2. Soak 1 cup of dry sticky rice in water for about 1 hour. (Some recipes instruct you to soak it overnight, but 1 hour seems sufficient.)

3. Drain the rice and rinse it thoroughly. Then pour about 1 cup of water into a saucepan, and place the rice in a steamer insert inside the saucepan. Cover tightly and steam over low to medium heat for 20 minutes.

4. While the rice is steaming, make the first sauce. You will make two coconut sauces to go on the rice: One thin one to mix into the rice itself, and then a thicker sauce to spoon over top. Start by opening the can of coconut milk and spooning out the thick cream on top.

Place the thicker coconut cream in a small bowl. You should have approximately 1/2 cup, give or take a bit. (All measurements here are approximate, which is completely fine for this recipe.)

5. Pour the thinner, lighter coconut milk left in the can into a small saucepan. (It will be a little over 1 cup.) Stir in 2 tablespoons sugar and 3/4 teaspoon salt. Warm over medium heat, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes. Do not let the sauce boil.

6. By now the rice is probably done. The grains should be tender and shiny. Spoon the rice out into a bowl (it will be clumpy).

7. Slowly pour the warm coconut milk over the rice in the bowl, stirring frequently. You want the milk to coat the rice but not leave puddles. Keep stirring, and stop pouring in coconut milk when it looks like the rice is saturated. You may not use all of the milk.

8. Set the rice aside to finish absorbing the coconut milk; after 15 minutes or so it should have soaked up any milk that is still liquid.

9. While the rice is standing, make the coconut topping sauce. Rinse out the coconut milk saucepan, and pour in the coconut cream that you took off the top of the can. Stir in 1 tablespoon sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together a few teaspoons of water and the cornstarch.

10. Whisk this cornstarch slurry into the coconut cream and cook over low heat for about 3 minutes, or until the mixture thickens considerably. Set aside.

11. To cut up the mango, first cut off the bottom so it can stand upright.

12. Slice away the skin in thin strips, until the mango is completely peeled.

13. Cut off the flesh in slices, starting with the broad cheeks on each side, then the thinner strips that will come off either side.

14. To serve, place about 1/3 cup cooked sticky rice on each plate, and arrange mango slices around it. Drizzle with the coconut topping sauce, and sprinkle with a few toasted sesame seeds. Garnish with a mint sprig, and eat while still warm.

Where: Koh Samui, Thailand

When: 13 March 2013


I have been fortunate to have done quite a bit of travelling over the last 10 years. By heart I am an adventurer and I love exploring new places, cultures and food. Travelling can become stressful and expensive. Over the years I have learnt to travel as cost effective as possible, simply by travelling more clever. is a Adventure and Budget Travel site where I review Airlines, Accommodation, Transport, Restaurants and give helpful travel information.

Thank you for visiting. Have a fabulous day!

%d bloggers like this: