Maizena is a delicious, silky, vanilla-and-cinnamon-scented Puerto Rican breakfast pudding that’s ready in minutes! It’s also ridiculously easy on your wallet and comes in under a dollar a serving. My mother used to make it for me when times were really, really tight. It was so mouthwateringly luscious I had no idea it wasn’t a fancy treat.
What Is Maizena?
Maizena is a popular Latin milk-based breakfast pudding that gets its name from the brand of cornstarch it’s thickened with. It’s flavored lightly with vanilla and cinnamon and sweetened with granulated sugar. Like any pudding, you can eat it cold, but it’s traditionally consumed while steaming hot. The Maizena I grew up eating was a stark white color. I mix cinnamon and a touch of nutmeg into mine while it cooks to deepen its flavors. This gives my recipe for Maizena a creamier color.
What You Need To Make Maizena
You can get this easy, budget-friendly, and ridiculously delicious breakfast pudding on your table in no time! Here’s what you’ll need:
Whole Milk– is preferred because the fat content helps create a silky mouth feel. But you can use evaporated milk or plant-based milk. If going the plant-based route, make sure you use fatty milk like coconut, soy, or macadamia. It helps create the velvety texture Maizena is known for.
Heavy Cream- adds a satiny finish. If you don’t have cream, just substitute it with a cup of whole milk and a tablespoon of butter. You can also substitute heavy cream with unsweetened coconut cream if you don’t do dairy.
Sugar– granulated sugar is the standard but feel free to use your favorite sweetener. Honey, brown sugar, and agave are all great options.
Cinnamon, Nutmeg, and Vanilla – add earthy flavor, floral notes, and depth. If you want to steer from traditional flavors, you can also use apple pie spice, pumpkin pie spice, orange zest, lemon zest, or mix in some chocolate syrup.
Cornstarch– thickens the pudding and gives it a beautiful glossy finish. If you don’t have cornstarch, you can use double the amount of flour, but the consistency won’t be as silky, and you’ll have to cook it longer to get the taste of raw flour out of the mix.
Maizena is best eaten hot and fresh, but you can store it and reheat it. It will last up to 5 days in the fridge. Freezing is not recommended. Place Maizena in an air-tight container with a sheet of plastic or parchment directly on the surface to prevent a thick skin from forming. Before reheating it, mix in a tablespoon of milk per cup to help loosen it. You can warm it in a microwave in 30-second increments until steaming.
- Place a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Add the milk, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and vanilla. Mix to incorporate.
- Add the cream to a bowl and mix in the cornstarch until no lumps remain.
- Whisk the cornstarch mixture into the milk mixture little by little.
- Bring the mixture to a boil and continue to whisk until the milk is pudding consistency and coats the back of a wooden spoon, about 3 to 5 minutes.
- Serve hot with a bit of cinnamon sprinkled on top.
See how we calculate recipe costs here.
How to Make Maizena – Step by Step Photos
Place a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Add the 4 cups of milk, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, a pinch of nutmeg, a pinch of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Mix to incorporate.
Add 1 cup of heavy cream to a bowl and mix in the 1/4 cup of cornstarch until no lumps remain.
Whisk the cornstarch mixture into the milk mixture little by little.
Bring the mixture to a boil and continue to whisk until the milk is pudding consistency, about 3 to 5 minutes. The pudding should coat the back of a wooden spoon and have clearly defined edges when a finger is run through it.
Serve Maizena hot with a bit of cinnamon sprinkled on top. Then give yourself a pat on the back for making a delicious breakfast from scratch without breaking the bank!