This mango sticky rice is a super delicious and popular Thai dessert also known as Khao Niaow Ma Muang. This heavenly dessert is made with rice, coconut, and sugar, and served with a side of sweet and ripe mango slices.
It is made with only a few handfuls of ingredients – mango, rice, coconut milk, sugar, salt, and cornstarch. The phenomenal combination of flavors, textures, and colors makes this an impressive dessert that is also delightful to eat!
This authentic dessert is so tempting and tastes just like a tropical rice pudding. Plus, making this mango sticky rice recipe is very easy and simple.
This tastes so good and looks too pretty that it makes an excellent dessert choice for summer get-togethers or parties. Just try this classic Thai dessert and I am sure it would directly take you to the streets of Thailand.
On this page, I have shared a step-by-step picture and video guide on how to make the best tasting Thai Mango Sticky Rice.
About Thai Mango Sticky Rice
Mango sticky rice is served as street food in Thailand as a traditional summer mango dessert. Like Thai Iced Tea , this tropical dessert is also served as a dessert in Thai restaurants all over the world.
This famed & eye-catching Thai dessert of Mango Sticky Rice is generally prepared with sweet glutinous or sticky rice. Here rice is cooked or steamed first, and then a sweet salty coconut sauce is added to the cooked sticky rice. After that, coconut absorbed rice is paired with sweet ripe mangoes, and served with a final drizzle of creamy sweet and salty coconut sauce!
I have cooked this rice on a regular stove top with a steamer basket, but you can easily cook the rice in a bamboo steamer. When making restaurant-style mango sticky rice, make sure to use the sweetest and ripest mangoes – they taste the BEST here.
Thai Sticky Mango Rice
✔ is simple and fun to make
✔ is gluten-free and vegetarian
✔ can be served at parties
✔ is made with just 6 ingredients
✔ can also be made using brown rice
✔ tastes tropical and coconutty
✔ is creamy, sweet, and refreshing
Mango Sticky Rice Ingredients
This refreshing and delicious Asian delicacy is made using simple 6 main and 1 optional ingredient. Here’s what you will need to make Thai Mango Sticky Rice:
Rice – This mango sticky recipe requires Thai sweet rice or creamy glutinous rice. They are easily available at Asian food stores worldwide. But if you don’t find glutinous rice, then you can also use any other white rice of your choice.
Coconut Milk – It is the star ingredient of this dessert, so I would recommend using full-fat coconut milk. Any good-quality coconut milk can be used here, just don’t use the low-fat or light coconut milk as it wouldn’t give a rich and creamy taste.
Sugar – This original recipe used white sugar, but you can also use brown sugar to get caramelized flavors. Coconut sugar can also be used instead of white sugar.
Salt – A little bit of salt is added to Thai coconut sauce to give it a sweet and salty flavor. I have used pink salt here, but you can use any other salt of your choice.
Corn starch – It is used for thickening the coconut sauce. If you don’t want to thicken the sauce then you can certainly leave it out.
Toasted sesame seeds – Adding toasted sesame seeds on top gives this rice a nice crunch. You can use both white or black sesame seeds here. Some authentic recipes also use crispy yellow mung lentils for topping, but I personally like sesame seeds here.
Sticky Mango Rice Variations
Serving – You can either serve the rice over a bed of coconut sauce or drizzle rice with coconut sauce. You can either scoop the rice onto the plate or mold them using a bowl. I have shared both ways of serving in the recipe video on this page.
Sesame seeds – I have used unhulled sesame seeds for this recipe, but you can also use hulled or black sesame seeds. Yellow mung beans or lentils can also be used here.
Topping – For a fancy topping, you can decorate this dessert with toasted coconut flakes or desiccated coconut.
Mango – You can thinly slice the mangoes or simply chop them up.
Sweetener – Granulated white sugar can be swapped with brown sugar, palm sugar, coconut sugar, or even muscovado sugar.
Amazing Tips & tricks to make Mango Sticky Rice
Mango sauce/puree – To make them taste more tropical, you can drizzle rice with some mango puree or mango sauce.
Coconut Sauce – For a fancier look, you can also add finely chopped mango chunks to the coconut sauce.
Cooking Rice – Thai people prefer to steam glutinous rice to get a chewy texture. But you can also boil sticky rice in a pot or a rice cooker.
Rinsing – When using glutinous rice, you need to wash and rub rice quite a few times or until the water becomes clear and no more white milky color. For me, it takes 5-6 times to get clear water.
Soaking – Rice should be soaked for at least 30 minutes to 1 hour to get the soft exterior. You can also soak them overnight to cut down the cooking time.
Lining – For steaming rice, you can either line your steamer basket with either a cheesecloth, kitchen towel, or a muslin cloth. The idea is to use something strong that will allow you to pull the steamed rice out of the steamer basket.
After steaming the rice, make sure to add the coconut sauce while they are hot. This will allow them to absorb the sauce and your rice will not harden quickly. Also, to keep the rice soft, keep them covered while they are resting.
Leftover – If the serving coconut sauce thickens too much after cooling in the refrigerator, then you can simply add in 1-2 tablespoons of coconut milk and stir to get the desired pouring consistency.
How do you store leftovers?
You can store leftover sticky rice in an airtight container in the fridge. They stay fresh for up to 2-3 days.
How is Mango Sticky Rice eaten?
Mango sticky rice is served either warm or chilled. You can have it using a spoon or fork. Sometimes, natives also eat it using their hands.
How to serve leftovers?
Leftover rice can be served chilled, or you can simply reheat it in a microwave for about 30 seconds to 1 minute. Don’t overheat the rice, or it might turn hard. To prevent this, you can cover the rice bowl with a wet tissue while reheating.
Is it better to consume sticky rice warm or chilled?
To get the best chewy texture of rice, serve them warm or within a few hours of cooking. They also taste good when served cold, but they won’t have the same texture.
Is sticky mango rice vegan?
Yes, this dessert is completely vegan because it is made with all the ingredients that are suitable for dairy-free or plant-based diets.
Is it gluten-free?
This Thai-style dessert is absolutely gluten-free because they are made with sticky and gooey rice, which is not high in gluten content.
What types of rice can I use to make sticky mango rice?
Sticky rice recipes need gluey and sticky or sweet rice which has a high starch content. Other white rice that works well is basmati rice, jasmine rice, or sushi rice.
Thai Mango Sticky Rice (Step-by-step photo instructions)
For making Thai Mango Sticky Rice
- In a bowl rub and rinse the rice well and drain about 5-6 times, or until the water is clear. Soak rice in enough water to cover for at least 1 hour or overnight. I recommend soaking overnight if want to reduce the cooking time. Drain rice well in a sieve.
- After that, boil water in a pot with a steamer basket or in a steamer. Now, place a cheesecloth or table cloth on the basket and pour soaked rice on it. Flatten the rice with a spatula and steam rice, covered with a kitchen towel and a lid, for 30 to 40 minutes, or until grains are tender. Check the water level in the pan after 20 minutes, and add more water if necessary.
- Check the rice, by smashing them between the index finger and thumb, or eat them. If they are soft and chewy then they are ready, if not, then cook for some more time and taste again.
- Once the rice is cooked, transfer it to a bowl and let cool slightly.
- Meanwhile, add coconut milk, sugar, and salt to a pot and stir well to dissolve the sugar. Bring it to a slight boil.
- Once it starts boiling, remove it from the heat and pour half of the coconut milk sauce into the rice. Stir well until everything is well combined. Cover the bowl with a lid or cling film and let rice stand, covered, for 30 minutes, or until coconut milk sauce is absorbed. Covering the rice bowl would also it keep it warm and moist.
- While rice is standing, let's make thickened coconut sauce for serving. In a small bowl, make a cornstarch slurry by mixing one teaspoon of cornstarch and two teaspoons of cold water.
- Stir slurry into the rest of the sauce, and cook on low heat until thickened slightly. Don't make it too thick, because the sauce will thicken further after cooling. Transfer the coconut sauce to a small bowl and chill at room temperature.
- Peel mangoes, and cut the sides. Now, slice them diagonally.
- Serving: To serve, scoop sticky rice on a plate. Serve along with mango slices. Sprinkle sesame seeds and top with chopped mangoes. Drizzle with coconut sauce on rice and mangoes. Alternatively, mold ¼ cup sticky rice serving on dessert plates.
- Arrange mango slices on the rice or around the rice. Top with chopped mangoes, drizzle with sauce and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Enjoy!