Coconut Rice

Freshly grated coconut, sauteed with spices and mixed with cooked rice. 

Coconut rice has good texture and is loaded with flavor. It tastes best when fresh tender coconut is grated and used. The coconut shreds are not cooked completely so they have a great texture which can be felt in every bite. But being tossed in the pan with all the fried spices, allows the coconut to take in some of the flavor.

The spices used are traditional Indian spices. We have mustard seeds and urad dal along with green chilies and dry red chilies. Curry leaves are the key for flavor and bring in all the aroma. I added some peanuts for some extra crunch.

The first coconut rice I ever had was at home. Mom keeps making it every once in a while. We often pair it with either potato or with raw-banana fry or just some chips. But the best part about coconut rice is that it can be paired with a lot of things. It can be fried veggies or meat or curries or chutneys. I have had coconut rice as part of Thalis or with an assortment of flavored rice items. The rice is served with fish curry, prawn curry and vegetable curries. Of course, you can have only coconut rice, no pairing, because it has so much of flavor in it.

An easy recipe and a great way to add a spiced rice dish to the menu. But the cooking of the rice is important. Coconut rice comes out best when the cooked rice has distinct grains. It should not be too soft and mushy. Cooling the rice to room temperature after cooking helps in the separation of the grains. If piping hot rice is dropped straight into the pan with the spices and the coconut and mixed, then the mixing and the heat will mash the rice together and the grated coconut and the tempering will not be mixed evenly.

Coconut Rice Recipe

Prep Time: 30 mins || Cooking Time: 15 mins || Ingredients: 10

Kitchen Tools: Pressure cooker, large pan/kadai, Knife, Chopping Board, Large Spoon


  • Rice: 1 cup
  • Freshly Grated Coconut: 1 cup
  • Peanuts: 12 – 15
  • Mustard Seeds: 1 tsp
  • Urad Dal / Split Black Gram: 1/2 tsp
  • Green Chilies: 2
  • Dry Red Chilies: 2
  • Curry Leaves: 8-10
  • Oil/Coconut Oil: 2 tbsp
  • Salt


  • Wash the rice thoroughly in water to remove the excess starch
  • Put the rice in a pressure-cooker, add 2 cups of water and cook on low heat: two whistle count
  • Once the pressure comes down, open the cooker & transfer the cooked rice onto a plate/large bowl and allow it to cool
  • Slit the green chilies

Here we go…

  • Heat the oil in the pan
  • Add the mustard seeds. Let them crackle
  • Reduce the heat & add the urad dal & the peanuts. Fry for a minute.
  • Add the green chilies, red chilies, curry leaves & give it a good toss
  • Add the grated coconut & mix well. Saute for 5 mins & turn off the heat
  • Add the cooked rice to the pan, sprinkle salt on it & mix thoroughly
  • Serve hot

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