Coconut rice is a popular, traditional side dish for many cultures. It can be found on tables across Asia, South America and even Jamaica. You can serve it with curries, black beans and pork, jerk chicken or even solo with a drizzle of honey and some crispy toasted almond slivers and dried fruit. I buy Basmati rice in 20 to 25 pound bags. I keep at least … a ridiculous amount around. It’s estimated that half of the world relies on rice for sustenance. It’s a wonderful, cheap grain that can be used in a wide variety of ways. It’s a staple for roughly HALF of the worlds population. Rice was cultivated across cultures 6,500 years ago, and its an ancient grain that is often under appreciated.
Right about now you’re thinking,. . . ” WHITE RICE???? “
I’m often asked, why not brown rice? I prefer white rice for my family for numerous reasons. The easiest answer is this: Preference and budget. My family HATES brown rice. I’ve converted them to primarily whole grains across the board, and they eat whole produce as often as possible. They eat whole grain muffins, pancakes, waffles and even pizza! They eat plenty of fruit, green vegetables and other sources of fiber. The other reason I’m not a major fan is due to anti-nutrients. Brown rice has a hull that can be impossible to truly break down and this can be troublesome for sensitive stomachs. This fiber in the hull is the source of gut irritation and it can leave you with a nutrient deficit. (As digestion occurs, the hull sweeps away nutrients along with the boom boom.)
Aside from the fiber content the profiles of brown vs. white rice are otherwise fairly similar. I personally don’t hate brown rice necessarily. If your family likes it, great! Soak it and cook it slow. White rice is good too though, I think the brown vs. white debate really truly just comes back to preference. There is benefit to quick digesting, gentler foods. There’s benefit to fiber and slower digestion. All together, starches in general simply are not the most nutrient dense foods you can eat. They have nutritious qualities sure, and most people rely on carbohydrates and starches for energy. Should you rely on rice as your primary source of nutrients though? Absolutely not.
Adding healthy organic fats and natural sea salt to any rice or starch makes it better. White rice is a fantastic carrier for coconut oil, grass-fed butter, pastured lard or bone broth. (and I always use celtic sea salt which contains essential vitamins and minerals.) In this recipe, plan white Basmati rice fortified with coconut milk! We love white rice, and I feel like its an amazing way to affordably supplement a whole-foods, nutrient dense diet. Its shelf stable, its filling and its a comforting traditional food that folks have been consuming for over 6,000 years. Sure, I always say avoid refined grains but there you have it. An exception to the rule.
Easy Coconut Rice
I almost exclusively cook my rice in my instant pot. (no surprise there) I make a pot of rice several times per week. Sometimes I use bone broth for the liquid, sometimes I make “faux saffron rice” with turmeric and herbs. Most of the time however, I just make plain white rice and I add coconut oil, butter, celtic sea salt and some rice vinegar. I always just toss in equal parts rice to liquid, but every now and then I make a small batch of this coconut rice in a pot… on the stove! It’s actually a little crazy in my house to see rice on the stove. Admittedly, I’m TERRIBLE with making rice on the stove. I have burnt rice or under cooked rice more times than I can count. When my oldest was still in diapers I purchased my first rice cooker, and I’ve basically never tried rice in a pot since.
- 1 Cup Long Grain Rice such as Jasmine or Basmati
- 1 Can Coconut Milk
- 2 1/2 Ounces Water
- 1 Tablespoon Honey (or other desired sweetener)
- 1/2 Teaspoon Celtic Sea Salt
+Toasted Coconut For Garnish
- Combine rice, coconut milk, water, honey and salt in a small sauce pot.
- Bring to a boil over medium heat.
- Stir ONCE AND ONLY ONCE.
- Cover with a tight fitting lid and reduce heat to low.
- Simmer for 20 MINUTES.
- Remove from heat WITHOUT OPENING.
- Rest for 5-10 minutes.
- Fluff rice with a FORK, toss in toasted coconut if desired.
(If the rice isn’t quite cooked dry, crack the lid to let out steam and place it back on the stove to dry up a bit. If its not quite cooked through. Add a splash of liquid and put it back on low heat until soft.)
Serve and Enjoy!
Toasted Coconut- Place desired quantity of NO SUGAR ADDED shredded coconut into a dry skillet. Place over medium heat and stir coconut for about five minutes. Once you smell the coconut and see it beginning to become golden, turn off the heat. Remove the pan from the heat if necessary. Stir the coconut until it is toasted throughout. Its better to under cook than over cook. You can always pop it back onto the heat if it needs a moment more. Once its burnt though… Ew.