What Is Baldo Rice? (Type Of Rice, Origins, Taste + More)

While rice is predominantly cultivated in Asia, there are rice varieties that grow in Western countries and are used mainly in local Western cuisine, such as Baldo rice.

You may have heard of Baldo rice before, but if you’ve never tried it, you may be wondering what Baldo rice is. Here’s what I found!

What Is Baldo Rice?

Baldo rice is a rice variant that is grown in Turkey and Italy. Additionally, Baldo rice is used in traditional risotto and other Italian rice salads and rice-based dishes. Mainly, Baldo rice is preferred because Baldo rice has consistent grains that can be easily separated. Moreover, Baldo rice has a buttery taste and a soft, fluffy texture.

In case you’re curious to learn more about the origins of Baldo rice and what makes Baldo rice the ideal grain for many Italian and Turkish dishes, keep reading!

What Kind Of Rice Is Baldo?

Unlike most rice variants, Baldo rice is a hybrid of Stripe 136 rice and arborio rice.  While Baldo rice is widely known to be short-grain, Baldo rice also has a long-grain format.

Long-grain Baldo rice is easy to separate and holds well during the cooking process. Meanwhile, short-grain Baldo rice is chunky and starchy.

Where Is Baldo Rice From?

Baldo rice originated in Italy and Turkey. Currently, both Italy and Turkey produce a few variants of Baldo rice that accommodate the requirements of Italian and Turkish cuisine.

What Does Baldo Rice Taste Like?

Baldo rice comes in long, medium, and short-grain formats. As such, there are differences in the taste and texture of each type of Baldo rice.

Generally, however, Baldo rice has a buttery aroma and taste that is strong enough to be noticeable, but not overwhelming.

While long-grain Baldo rice has a soft texture, short-grain Baldo rice is chewy. When cooked, short-grain Baldo rice becomes tender and lush.

What Is Turkish Baldo Rice?

Turkish Baldo rice is another name for Baldo rice that is cultivated in Turkey. Additionally, Turkish Baldo rice tends to be starchier than other types of Baldo rice.

Is Baldo Rice White Rice?

Baldo rice is a type of white rice. Either raw or cooked, Baldo rice appears white although some variants may possess a light shade of yellow.

Is Baldo Rice Wild Rice?

While Baldo rice and wild rice may look alike, Baldo rice and wild rice are not the same. Wild rice is not even a rice grain, but the seed of an aquatic grass.

Additionally, wild rice grows mostly in Canada and the US, while Baldo rice is grown in Italy and Turkey.

Moreover, wild rice has an earthy and grassy flavor. In contrast, Baldo rice has a slightly nutty flavor that’s mostly buttery and reminiscent of popcorn.

Is Baldo Rice Sticky Rice?

Baldo rice comes in varieties, and one of those is sticky rice. Since sticky Baldo rice is stickier than other types of rice used for making risotto, Baldo rice is the preferred variant.

Is Baldo Rice Long Grain?

Baldo rice is popularly known to be short-grain, but Baldo rice does have a long-grain version that is often used for making dishes like Turkish-style rice pilaf.

Is Baldo Rice Gluten-Free?

Is Baldo Rice Gluten-Free?

Baldo rice is naturally gluten-free, just like every other naturally grown and processed rice.

However, when Baldo rice is treated with gluten-containing ingredients, Baldo rice may not be safe for celiacs. This is usually the case with instant or boxed Baldo rice.

Is Baldo Rice Good For Paella?

Baldo rice, specifically Turkish Baldo rice, is a great choice for making paella because Turkish Baldo rice absorbs more moisture than most types of rice.

As such, Turkish Baldo rice turns slightly creamy when cooked but can still retain its shape.

Consequently, your paella will have a richer flavor and a better texture.

Is Baldo Rice The Same As Risotto Rice?

Baldo rice can be called risotto rice. However, Baldo rice is not the only rice that can be used to make risotto.

Moreover, the term ‘risotto rice’ is more synonymous with arborio rice than other rice variants traditionally used for making risotto.

Is Baldo Rice Good?

Baldo rice is generally considered a good type of rice, especially in Italian and Turkish cuisine.

Whereas other rice variants turn too tender or easily become mushy when cooked on the stove, Baldo rice tends to retain its shape and absorb flavors quite easily.

Additionally, Baldo rice has a subtle buttery taste that complements a wide variety of meat and vegetable dishes.

What Is Baldo Rice Used For?

Baldo rice is often used in making risotto, paella, Turkish pilaf, and other rice-based Italian and Turkish dishes.

However, Baldo rice can also be consumed every day as an alternative to regular white rice. Often, however, Baldo rice is preferred for special occasions and recipes.

Can I Use Baldo Rice For Sushi?

Baldo rice can be used to make sushi, given that you use the short-grain variety of Baldo rice. Additionally, you have to cook Baldo rice properly to avoid turning the Baldo rice mushy.

Since Baldo rice is incredibly sticky, Baldo rice should be sufficient to make good quality sushi.

What Is Similar To Baldo Rice?

Baldo rice can be likened to other types of Italian and Turkish rice, namely arborio, carnaroli, and vialone nano. These rice varieties are also commonly used to make risotto.

How To Cook Baldo Rice?

There are many ways to cook Baldo rice. If you’re preparing a rice-based dish, it’s best to use a recipe tailored specifically for that dish.

However, if you just want to make plain Baldo rice, you may do so in a rice cooker or on the stove. You may cook Baldo rice just like regular rice but don’t rinse Baldo rice.

Consider rinsing Baldo rice only if the starch coating the grains seems excessive to you. Otherwise, cook the Baldo rice straight away.

To produce more flavor from Baldo rice, consider toasting raw Baldo rice with butter on the stove first.

Take a look at our other articles to learn what parboiled rice is, what Basmati rice is, and what Jasmine rice tastes like.


Baldo rice is an Italian and Turkish rice variety that is primarily used to make risotto and Italian and Turkish-style paella, pilaf, and other rice dishes.

Just like other types of rice, Baldo rice can be long-grain, medium-grain, or short-grain. Moreover, Baldo rice has a buttery taste and a tender texture that are evident when cooked.

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