The Filipino Champorado – Chocolate Rice Porridge evokes many memories for most of us. The sweet chocolate aroma from each bowl of this rich chocolate porridge reminds me of my parents making it for us during the colder days of the year. In the tropics like the Philippines, the colder months are close to Christmas, when we need warmth and comfort from the windy, cooler days or the heavy monsoons.
Champorado is a chocolate rice porridge well known among Filipinos for its hearty, comforting flavors. Usually served for breakfast, it is paired with salty dishes like dried fish. Champorado is made from the most basic ingredients found around the Philippines : sticky rice, coconut milk, sugar and chocolate.
The chocolate for this recipe is made from native cacao, that’s shaped into solid balls or tablets, called “tablea”. The chocolate tablea can also be made as a regular chocolate beverage. You simply cook and mix it with milk, and it becomes a richer version of what hot cocoa is here in America.
My Champorado recipe is one my late Mom used to make during my childhood in the Philippines. Mom isn’t around anymore but I have her old cookbooks with me and when I need a cooking question answered, I turn to Mom’s books. It’s like having her around again. A feeling I get when I see the stockpot of champorado on my stove top, after I’ve boiled it and added the coconut milk and chocolate.
Nothing else fills the belly and warms the heart than a thick, rice porridge with the sweet coconut flavors, blended with robust chocolate and made more luscious with sugar. Sometimes, if desired, you can further thicken the Champorado with the addition of fresh milk or condensed milk, like it’s done in the Philippines.
The thick texture of sticky rice mixed with chocolate does exactly what rice porridge is supposed to…evoke lovely memories of cold months, December and the holidays. Nothing else is as heartwarming.
Filipino Champorado - Chocolate Rice Porridge
- 1 cup sweet or sticky rice also known as malagkit to Filipinos
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 3 to 4 tablets tablea chocolate (Philippine cocoa tablets from Asian markets
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- Wash rice well and drain. Put the rice in a medium sized pot with the 3 cups water.
- Cover the rice and water and over high heat let it boil for 8 to 10 minutes. Lower heat to medium and stir rice to prevent from burning or sticking to bottom.
- Chop the chocolate tablets coarsely. Add the chopped chocolates and the sugar to the rice mixture. Toss in the pinch of salt, and keep stirring. The chocolate will melt within the cooked rice, which by now looks like thick porridge.
- After about 6 minutes, add the coconut milk just before removing the champorado from the stove top. Serve this warm for breakfast, or cold for “merienda” (an afternoon snack).
- Recipe Notes: The Filipino tablea package I bought from the Asian market contained a pack of 10 cacao tablets, with a total net weight of 7.05 ounces or 200 g. You can find these at Asian markets, in the Philippine aisle. Online groceries selling ethnic or Asian products may also have them. In the Philippines, they are widely available in supermarkets, neighborhood groceries, major department stores, artisan food bazaars.
- Champorado can be eaten warm at breakfast and is typically served with salty dishes, like dried fish herring (called “tuyo” in Philippine markets or Asian groceries). It is also good served cold when eaten during "merienda", or the afternoon snack. Keep this refrigerated if there are any leftovers. When reheating, add a little milk or water if rice dries up or gets clumpy.
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Notes on Nutrition: The nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.
Did you like this recipe? I have more classic recipes inspired by my late mother’s cooking in my popular cookbook: My Mother’s Philippine Recipes. If you’re learning how to cook Filipino food or a fan of Philippine cuisine, buy my cookbooks and books on Amazon.com sold worldwide in paperback and Kindle format.
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