This coconut sticky rice with mango will transport you to a tropical island! Our simplified mango glutinous rice recipe is bursting with tropical flavors, creamy textures, and a sticky sweet coconut sauce that will have you begging for more. Plus it’s SO easy!

We made healthy and accessible ingredient swaps and included two simple methods to cut down on cooking time for Thai sweet rice, including microwave and rice cooker instructions. This recipe is gluten-free, vegan, and perfect for summer!

Feature image shows coconut sticky rice with mango served on a light blue color plate with sticky rice sauce.

What is mango sticky rice

Mangoes and Sticky Rice, or Khao Niao Mamuang, is a classic Thai dessert that’s loved for its sweet and creamy flavors. It features glutinous sticky rice soaked in rich coconut milk, paired with juicy, ripe mango slices. This gluten-free treat is especially popular during mango season in Southeast Asia.

The chewy texture of the rice blends perfectly with the smooth mango, creating a delightful mix of flavors and textures. Plus, it’s a visually stunning dish with the vibrant yellow mango against the white rice. Whether you’re new to Thai cuisine or a longtime fan, this sweet coconut rice is a must-try!

Ingredients

We’ve made some tweaks to ensure our glutinous rice mango dessert recipe is as easy and accessible as possible. These ingredients for this Thai dessert with coconut milk can easily be found in your local grocery store and the resulting treat is gluten-free, vegan, and so simple to make.

Photo shows ingredients used to cook sticky rice in rice cooker.
  • Ripe mangoes: Chilled or room temperature.
  • Long grain sticky rice: Thai glutinous rice or Thai sweet rice work best. See below for alternatives.
  • Water and salt: For cooking and seasoning the rice.

For the sticky rice sauce:

Photo shows ingredients needed to make sweet rice and mango.
  • Full-fat coconut milk: Unsweetened coconut milk or coconut cream in a can.
  • Vanilla extract: An accessible substitute for the traditional ingredient of pandan leaves.
  • Coconut brown sugar: Or sub palm sugar or your sweetener of choice.
  • Tapioca starch: Optional, used to thicken the sauce. You can use cornstarch or arrowroot.
  • Toasted sesame seeds: White or black. Or sub toasted mung beans or coconut flakes.

Best rice for mango sticky rice

Photo shows a comparison difference between short grain sticky rice vs. long grain sticky rice.

When making Mango Glutinous Rice, the best and most authentic choice is Thai glutinous rice, also known as long-grain sticky rice or sweet rice. This rice comes in two colors: white and purple. For this Thai sticky mango rice recipe, we’re using the white variety.

You might also come across short-grain stickyrice from Japan or Korea. While these types of rice are also sticky and sweet, they are slightly less chewy compared to the Thai long-grain version. This means they have a softer texture and may result in more of a coconut and mango rice pudding.

You can find sticky rice online or at major Asian grocery stores. For the best sticky rice with coconut milk, stick with Thai glutinous rice to achieve that perfect chewy texture and authentic flavor.

Can I use Jasmine rice or sushi rice?

Despite some articles suggesting that you can use sushi rice (short grain white rice) or Jasmine rice (medium-long grain white rice) as substitutes, overcooked white rice that turns mushy and sticks together is not the same as sticky rice.

The texture and flavor are different. Glutinous rice, also known as sweet rice or sticky rice, becomes sweet and chewy once cooked. Regular white rice, like Jasmine or sushi rice, lacks this sweet, chewy, and toothy texture. For an authentic mango sweet rice dessert, using glutinous rice is essential.

How to make sweet rice and mango

This quick sticky rice with mango recipe includes two fast and easy methods for making sticky rice: rice cooker sticky rice and microwave sticky rice. This reduces the prep time of soaking used in traditional sticky rice recipes. Here’s how to make coconut sticky rice dessert:

  1. Cook the sticky rice: See below for instructions for making sticky rice in rice cooker or microwave sticky rice. After the rice is done, keep it covered and warm so it doesn’t harden.
  2. Make the sauce: In a small saucepan, add the ingredients from the milk to the sugar. Stir over medium-low heat, uncovered, to warm up the coconut milk mixture, about 5 minutes.
Person demos how to make mango sticky rice.
  1. Soak cooked rice in the sauce: While the sauce is still hot, pour half the amount of the coconut milk sauce over the rice and gently combine. Cover to keep warm and soak the sticky rice in coconut sauce for 20 minutes to absorb.
Person demos making sticky rice sauce with sweet coconut milk.
  1. Thicken remaining sauce: Make a slurry with the starch and water. Bring the sauce to a gentle simmer in a pot over medium heat. Stir in the slurry until slightly thickened. Let cool.
  2. To serve: Peel and slice the mango. Divide the glutinous rice pudding into 4 bowls and top each with mango, a sprinkle of sesame seeds, and a drizzle of sweet coconut sauce.

Rice cooker method

Person demos how to wash and clean rice before cooking.

Rinse the rice: Begin by giving your rice a good wash. Rinse it 3-4 times in a colander/strainer until the water is mostly clear.

No need to soak the rice. Add the rice (150 gram) to the rice cooker with room temperature water (148 gram). Set for white, mixed rice, or sweet rice setting. Let sit for 15 minutes before serving. See my rice cooker sticky rice for more details.

Microwave method

Person demos how to soak sweet rice before microwaving.

Soak the rice in hot boiling water (1-inch above the leveled rice) for 20 minutes, drain, and microwave on medium-high powder (700W) for 5 minutes. Flip the rice, level it, and microwave for 5 more minutes. See my how to make sticky rice in a microwave for more details.

How to eat Thai mango sticky rice

Once plated, serve this coconut milk Thai dessert at room temperature or slightly chilled. While you can use your hands, Thai glutinous rice with mango is typically eaten with a fork due to the sticky sauce. Enjoy a forkful of sticky rice, fresh mango, and gooey sweet sauce.

Is mango sticky rice served hot or cold

You can serve glutinous rice with mango warm, at room temperature, or chilled, as long as the rice remains soft, sticky, and gooey. Glutinous rice tends to clump and harden when cooled, but in my experiment, the rice stays soft after refrigeration for up to 2-3 days. This is because the rice is soaked in sweet coconut sauce during cooking. After soaking, the glutinous rice and coconut milk continue to combine, turning more pudding-like in texture without affecting the taste.

Make ahead and store leftovers

  • Make-ahead:
    • You can cook the sticky rice up to 3 days in advance. Let it cool to room temperature and store it in an airtight container in the fridge. The rice will harden, but to reheat, simply take the amount you need and put it in a heatproof bowl. Loosely cover the bowl and microwave on medium for 1 minute. The steam will help the rice return to its original soft and sticky texture.
    • The coconut sauce lasts 3-4 days in the fridge when stored in a sealed glass jar. However, because of the milk content, the sauce can go bad quickly. It’s best to make the sauce just before serving.
  • Storage:
    • Pack the soaked-sweetened sticky rice separately from the mangoes and the sauce. Chill them in the fridge. The rice should remain soft and not harden by the next day. Over time, the texture will become more like Thai rice pudding, but this won’t affect the taste.

Helpful tips

  • Rinse Thoroughly: Rinse the sticky rice 3-4 times until the water runs almost clear. This helps remove excess starch, preventing the rice from becoming too sticky and mushy.
  • Soak Properly: For the microwave method, soak the rice in hot boiling water for 20 minutes before cooking. This ensures even cooking and the right texture. See Microwave sticky rice and How to cook glutinous rice in rice cooker.
  • Use the Right Rice: Stick to Thai glutinous rice for the authentic chewy texture. Other types of rice, like Jasmine or sushi rice, won’t provide the same result.
  • Cook with Care: Whether using a microwave or rice cooker, follow the cooking instructions closely. Properly cooked sticky rice should be soft, chewy, and slightly sticky.
  • Soak Rice in Sauce: After cooking, soak the sticky rice in half of the coconut sauce while it’s still hot. This allows the rice to absorb the sweet flavors and maintain its soft texture.
  • Serve at the Right Temperature: Serve the dish warm, at room temperature, or chilled. Ensure the rice remains soft and sticky by properly storing and reheating it.
  • Storage Matters: Store the rice, mangoes, and sauce separately in the fridge. This keeps the textures and flavors intact for up to 2-3 days.
  • Reheat with Steam: To reheat hardened rice, microwave it on medium power for 1 minute in a heatproof bowl, loosely covered. The steam will help restore its original texture.

FAQs

What can I use instead of sticky rice?

For a similar texture, use Japanese or Korean short-grain sweet rice. However, they are less chewy and not as authentic as Thai glutinous rice.

Is sticky rice the same as sushi rice?

No, sticky rice is glutinous and sweet, while sushi rice is short grain with a different texture and flavor. See my tips on the best type of rice to use for this mango and sticky rice recipe.

How do I keep sticky rice from getting hard?

Soaking cooked sticky rice in coconut milk sauce keeps it soft. You can also reheat it in a microwave with steam to restore its texture.

More Asian dessert and beverage recipes

If you enjoy this sweet sticky rice recipe from Thailand, take a look at some of my other popular Asian desserts and drinks! They are simple to make, healthy, and perfect for the summer months!

A side close shot shows ripe mangoes sliced and sweet coconut rice pudding served on a plate.
Recipe image for mango sticky rice served on a light blue plate.
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Coconut sticky rice with mango recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Author: ChihYu Smith
Super easy coconut sticky rice with mango made in a rice cooker or microwave! This delicious and easy-to-make dessert is perfect for summer!
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Ingredients 

  • 2 whole fresh ripe mangoes, either chilled or room temperature
  • 150 gram long grain sticky rice, Thai glutinous rice or Thai sweet rice
  • 148 gram water, for rice cooker, see notes
  • ¼ tsp salt

For the coconut sticky rice sauce:

  • 13.5 oz. canned full fat coconut milk, unsweetened
  • ¼ tsp coarse sea salt
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp coconut brown sugar, or palm sugar
  • 1 tsp tapioca starch, optional
  • Serving Toasted white or black sesame seeds, or toasted mung beans, coconut flakes

Instructions 

  • Cook the sticky rice: There are two methods to make sticky rice quick and easy. The first method is using a microwave. The second method is using a rice cooker. For detailed cooking steps, please click the link(s) to see more. Essentially, rinse the rice 3-4 times until the water almost runs clear.
  • For microwave sticky rice: Soak the rice in hot boiling water (1-inch above the leveled rice) for 20 minutes, drain, and microwave on medium-high powder (700W) for 5 minutes. Flip the rice, level it, and microwave for 5 more minutes.
  • For sticky rice in rice cooker: No need to soak the rice. Add the rice (150 gram) to the rice cooker with room temperature water (148 gram). Set for white, mixed rice, or sweet rice setting. Let sit for 15 minutes before serving.
  • After the rice is done. Keep it covered and warm
  • Make the sauce: In a saucepan, add the ingredients from the milk to the sugar. Stir with a wooden spoon over medium-low heat, uncovered, to warm up the milk, about 5 minutes.
  • Soak the rice: While the sauce is still hot, add the sticky rice to a large heat resistant bowl and pour in half the amount of the coconut milk sauce. Gently combine the rice with the milk to allow the rice to soak up the sweet sauce for 20 minutes. Cover the bowl to keep the rice warm.
  • Thicken the remaining sweet coconut sauce: Make a slurry by combining the starch with 1 tbsp water. Bring the sauce to a gentle simmer over medium-low heat, take care not to spill the milk. Add the starch and stir with a wooden spoon until the sauce is slightly thickened with a light glossy texture, about 1 minute. Turn off the heat. Set the sauce aside to cool to room temperature.
  • Serve, peel the mango and carefully slice it along the core with a small paring knife and dice each halve into bite sizes. Divide the rice pudding into 4 serving bowls and top each bowl with mango, about half mango per serving. Sprinkle sesame seeds on top and drizzle with a few tablespoons of the thickened sweet coconut sauce.
  • Serve at room temperature or slightly chilled as long as the rice texture is still soft and gooey.
  • Leftovers: Pack the soaked-sweetened sticky rice separately from the mangoes and the sauce. Chill them in the fridge. The rice should remain soft and not hard the next day. The texture will turn more rice pudding-ish texture overnight.

Notes

  • How much rice does this recipe make? This recipe makes a little over 1 cup of sticky rice.
  • Rice to water ratio: The water quantity listed in the recipe is for the rice cooker in 1.5 parts sticky rice to 1.25 parts water ratio. If using a microwave, you just need to soak the rice in hot boiling water 1-inch above the leveled rice for 20 minutes before microwaving. See microwave sticky rice or rice cooker sticky rice for details.
  • Thicker sauce: If you prefer a thicker sticky rice sauce, increase the starch quantity by another teaspoon.
  • Is mango sticky rice served hot or cold? You can serve it warm, at room temperature, or chilled, as long as the rice remains soft, sticky, and gooey. Glutinous rice tends to clump and harden when cooled, but in my experiment, the rice stays soft after refrigeration for up to 2-3 days. This is because the rice is soaked in sweet coconut sauce during cooking. After soaking, the rice continues to absorb the sauce, turning more pudding-like in texture without affecting the taste.
  • My rice is too hard: If your rice turns too hard to enjoy, take the amount you need and put the rice in a heatproof bowl and loosely cover it in the microwave on medium for 1 minute. The steam will help the rice bounce back to its original soft and sticky texture.
  • Can I use sushi rice or Jasmine rice? Unfortunately no. Despite some articles suggesting you can use sushi rice (short grain white rice) or Jasmine rice (medium-long grain white rice) as substitutes, overcooked white rice that turns mushy and sticks together is not the same as sticky rice. Glutinous rice, also known as sweet rice or sticky rice, becomes sweet and chewy once cooked, while regular white rice lacks this unique texture and flavor. To get the authentic taste and feel of Mango Sticky Rice, using glutinous rice is essential.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving, Calories: 245kcal, Carbohydrates: 25g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 15g, Saturated Fat: 13g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 209mg, Potassium: 188mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 4IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 14mg, Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Thai
Keyword: Coconut sticky rice with mango, Mango sticky rice
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