This easy Coconut Rice Recipe is made with just 5 simple ingredients including jasmine rice, full-fat coconut milk, ginger, and garlic. Vegan, gluten-free, and ready in under 30 minutes, enjoy this amazing aromatic rice with all your favorite Asian-inspired curries and stir-frys!
Coconut Jasmine Rice
Have you tried coconut rice? It’s next-level amazing. Fluffy, aromatic, and melt-in-your-mouth delicious, coconut rice is made with simple pantry ingredients like jasmine rice and full-fat coconut milk. It’s also pretty easy to make which means less plain white rice and more yummy coconut rice at dinnertime.
It’s also gluten-free, vegan, and ready in under 30 minutes!
- The Rice – I used Thai jasmine rice, although, admittedly, most rice varieties will work in this recipe. Long-grain white rice, however, will generate the best results, with jasmine rice being the best of the best. You can buy Thai jasmine rice on Amazon here.
- The Aromatics – To add more flavor, I cooked minced garlic, grated ginger, and the white parts of green onions in coconut oil before adding the rice. This is absolutely optional. If you prefer simpler coconut rice, skip one or all of the aromatics.
- Use Full-Fat Canned Coconut Milk – To make the very best coconut rice, you need a full can of full-fat coconut milk (or coconut cream). I do not have a preferred brand, just make sure you’re using coconut milk that isn’t sweetened or flavored. Light coconut milk is not recommended.
- Water – Each can of coconut milk (13.5 ounces) contains 1.625 cups of coconut milk. To cook two cups of dry rice, I added an additional cup of water, bringing the total liquid amount to 2.625 cups.
- Sugar? While I didn’t add any sugar to this particular recipe, many restuarants will include sugar to their coconut rice. If you want to give it a try, start with 2-3 tablespoons to see how you like it.
How to Make Coconut Rice
1. Wash the rice: It is super important to wash your rice under running cold water before cooking, not just to help clean it, but also to remove additional starches. These extra starches, when left to cook with the rice, leads to mushier cooked rice. After it’s been washed, allow it to dry as much as possible. If I’m in a hurry, sometimes I’ll lay out a couple of paper towels and pat it dry before moving to the next step.
2. Cook the aromatics first: Add the oil to your saucepan over medium heat and add your aromatics. Cook, stirring continuously, for 30-60 seconds. Ginger and garlic like to stick, so don’t leave it alone to cook – it will burn.
3. Toast the rice: Toasting the rice with the aromatics and the coconut oil is an easy way to add more flavor. You don’t need to stir the rice continuously (as you did with the aromatics), but stir often to prevent anything from burning.
4. Add the coconut milk (or coconut cream) and water: Bring to a boil over high heat. Immediately cover with a tight-fitting lid and reduce the heat to a simmer. Leave your rice to cook, covered, for 10-15 minutes. By this time, the liquid should be absorbed and the rice should be tender.
5. Remove from heat and gently fluff with a fork then immediately place the cover back on the saucepan and allow the rice to rest for 10 minutes. Uncover and fluff again, this time more thoroughly, though still gently. Season with salt, to taste, and garnish with sesame seeds and the green parts of your green onions, if desired.
Can I Use Low-Fat (Light) Coconut Milk?
I do not recommend using low-fat coconut milk. Diluted with water, low-fat canned coconut milk will not give you the same fragrant, flavorful, or delicious coconut rice (trust me, I’ve tried).
Serving Coconut Rice
The beautiful thing about coconut rice is that it pairs perfectly with a variety of dishes and cuisines. Coconut is the predominant flavor, so pretty much all Thai, Indonesian, and Caribbean recipes will taste even better with coconut rice versus plain. That said, one of my favorite ways to enjoy this delicious rice is with simple fish, chicken, or shrimp, roasted veggies, and fruit salsa (like this Mango Salsa).
Other serving ideas include,
- Sesame Crusted Salmon Patties
- Easy Teriyaki Chicken
- Thai Basil Chicken (Pad Kra Pao Gai)
- Pineapple Coconut Thai Fish Curry
- Jerk Chicken
- Honey Garlic Shrimp
Leftovers? Use them to make Thai Fried Rice (Khao Phat Kaphrao).
Have you tried making this coconut rice recipe?
Tell me about it in the comments below! I always love to hear your thoughts. And tag me #theforkedspoon on Instagram if you’ve made any of my recipes. I always love to see what you’re cooking in the kitchen.
Coconut Rice Recipe
- Transfer the uncooked rice to a fine-mesh strainer and rinse under cold water until the water runs clean. Tap the sides of the strainer against the side of the sink a couple of times before setting it aside to drain.
- Meanwhile, place the oil in a medium saucepan set over medium heat. Swirl to coat the bottom surface of your saucepan and add the ginger, garlic, and white parts of the green onions. Sauté for 30-60 seconds, mixing continuously, to prevent the ginger and garlic from sticking to the bottom of your pan.
- Add the rice and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of salt, mix to combine with the aromatics. Continue to toast the rice for 2-3 minutes, stirring continuously, to prevent burning.
- Add the coconut milk and water to the rice. Increase heat to high and bring to a low boil. Once boiling, immediately cover and reduce heat to low. Simmer, covered for 10-15 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender.
- Remove from heat, gently fluff with a fork, recover, and allow the rice to rest for approximately 10 minutes. Uncover and fluff again, this time more thoroughly. Season with salt, to taste, and garnish with sesame seeds and the green parts of your green onions, if desired.
- 1 (13.5 fl oz) can of coconut milk or coconut cream contains 26 tablespoons or 1.625 cups.
- Leftovers: Keep leftovers stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
- Can you cook this recipe using a rice cooker? I actually do not own a rice cooker, so I can’t answer this with complete certainty. If you do try to make this recipe in the Instant Pot, decrease the amount to water to 1/2 cup.
(Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.)