Flavored with rich cinnamon and fragrant vanilla, arroz con leche is indulgent and creamy. (Photo/Betty Cortina)

5 Incredible Latin American desserts

From creamy arroz con leche to velvety rich flan, Latin American desserts are known for being insanely rich and extremely delicious. And while Latin American cookery places a lot of emphasis on slow-cooked savory specialties like labor intensive tamales or a simmered sopa de pollo, desserts have earned a very special place within Latin cuisine whether served alongside a cup of perfect cafecito after a meal or served up by the slice at a birthday party. So think beyond American-as-apple-pie for your next sweet craving and try one of five quintessentially Latin desserts: classics like dulce de leche, flan, churros, arroz con leche and tres leches cake, all tasty treats enjoyed in households and restaurants throughout the Caribbean and Latin America.

5 Incredible Latin American desserts tres leches cake plated wordpress food NBC Latino News

Making the perfect tres leches cake is nearly fool-proof – and always results in a light yet rich, moist cake. (Photo/Nina Terrero)

Sponge cake is elevated with the addition of milk, condensed milk and whipped cream for a elegant and timeless dessert that’s a favorite at birthday parties, weddings and family celebrations in Mexico and throughout Latin America. Get the recipe here.

5 Incredible Latin American desserts churros edited1 food NBC Latino News

Delicious, crispy churros. (Photo/Courtesy Aran Goyoaga)

Crispy dough fritters, rolled in sweet cinnamon sugar is a beloved dessert in Spain, which upon its introduction to Latin America, quickly became a favorite treat. Get the recipe here.

5 Incredible Latin American desserts dulce de leche horizontal edited food NBC Latino News

Dulce de leche is an indulgent treat. (Photo/Nina Terrero)

Dulce de leche – a sticky milk-based caramel – instantly makes anything taste better (we love it smeared on cookies, drizzled on ice cream and swirled into coffee) and our recipe for the creamy sweet is absolutely fool-proof.

5 Incredible Latin American desserts arroz con leche wordpress edit food NBC Latino News

Flavored with rich cinnamon and fragrant vanilla, arroz con leche is indulgent and creamy. (Photo/Betty Cortina)

Arroz con leche – otherwise known as rice pudding – is a traditional Latin dessert with roots dating as far back as Arab-ruled Spain. The dessert then was thought to ease digestion and when transported to the New World by colonizers, was transformed with the addition of fragrant spices in classic Latino style. Get the recipe here.

5 Incredible Latin American desserts flan food NBC Latino News

Flan is impressive with its gorgeous topping of thick, sweet caramel, but is a deceptively easy dessert to make. (Photo/Nina Terrero)

Sweet, caramel-topped flan – whose roots can be traced to Ancient Rome’s savory egg custards before it emerged as Spain’s beloved crema catalana – is one of the most common desserts throughout Latino cuisine. Get the recipe here.

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