My delicious and quick Turmeric Rice is the perfect Indian-inspired side dish for any night of the week! This easy fluffy rice is packed with flavor from turmeric and aromatic seasonings to make an incredible side dish that goes well with any main course!
Turmeric rice, also called yellow rice, is as easy to make as steaming rice so there's no reason not to add it to your go-to rice side dishes!
Fluffy, perfectly seasoned, and beautifully golden Turmeric Rice is a side anyone will enjoy!
Rice is one of the best side dishes, but sometimes it can get a little tiring. This delectable turmeric rice shakes it up a little! I cook long grain rice with onion and garlic plus some delicious herbs, spices, and chicken stock to kick up the flavor!
It comes together super quickly, too! In just under 30 minutes, you can have perfectly fluffy, seasoned rice with your dinner that tastes just like out of a restaurant.
The best part about this recipe is that you can serve it with so many things! It would pair well with an Indian curry, grilled chicken or a grilled pork chop, or even a delicious stew! Whatever you decide to pair this turmeric rice with, it’ll be amazing!
❤️ Why You'll Love This Recipe!
So Flavorful! White rice is great, but who can resist a buttery, flavorful rice dish? I know I can’t!
Quick and Easy! Turmeric rice may seem complicated, but it’s not at all! This recipe comes together more quickly than it takes to order take-out!
So Beautiful! The turmeric in this recipe gives the rice a beautiful golden hue that will wow everyone who tries it!
My incredible turmeric rice is the perfect side dish! The herbs and spices are really what makes this rice so special!
- Long Grain Rice – The rice is the base for this recipe, and I like to use a white, long grain rice like basmati or jasmine! You can substitute brown rice if you prefer, but the spices won’t soak into the rice as much.
- Butter – You can use whatever your favorite brand of butter is here, but I do recommend using real butter and not margarine for the best flavor! European butters have a higher fat content which will add a richer flavor too!
- Coconut Oil –The extra oil helps the butter not to burn as we sauté the onions and garlic. Coconut oil also has a slightly nutty taste that compliments the rice well. You can also use olive oil.
- Onion – The onion should be finely diced or grated so it melds perfectly into the rice. You can use either white or yellow onion – whatever you prefer!
- Garlic – You should finely mince or use pre-minced garlic.
- Ginger Paste – Ginger adds a delicious warmth to the rice. It’s a classic pairing with garlic in Indian cooking. You can also use freshly minced ginger or ¼ teaspoon of dried ginger.
- Turmeric – Turmeric is a spice often used in South-Asian and Middle Eastern cooking. It gives the rice a beautiful golden glow!
- Chicken Broth – Adding chicken broth instead of water makes this dish extra delicious!
- Bay Leaf – Bay leaves add a light floral note that helps to balance the flavors of the dish. You can use fresh or dried.
- Thyme – I love the peppery, herbal bite that thyme gives to this dish! You can use fresh if you happen to have it, but dried thyme is perfect.
- Salt & Pepper – The classic seasoning combo! You’ll just add these to taste to help balance the flavors of the rice.
🔪 Step-by-Step Instructions
My perfect turmeric rice is perfectly tender and fluffy, never mushy! Be sure to keep an eye on the onion and garlic while it sautés, so it doesn’t burn!
- Prep. Rinse 1 cup of long grain rice in a fine mesh sieve under cool running water until the water runs clear. Let all the water drain out, and then set aside. Then finely mince or grate enough onion to make ¼ cup (about ¼ large onion or 1 small onion). Then finely mince enough to make 1 teaspoon (about 1 clove). Finely mince or grate fresh ginger now, if not using ginger paste or dried ginger.
- Sauté the aromatics. In a heavy-bottom saucepan, melt 1 tablespoon of butter with 1 tablespoon of coconut oil over medium-high heat. Add ¼ cup of finely diced onion and 1 teaspoon of finely minced garlic (add minced or grated fresh ginger too, if using). Sauté until tender and opaque, about 4 to 5 minutes.
- Add the rice and spices. Add 1 cup of rinsed rice and 2 teaspoons of turmeric to your saucepan and stir to coat. Then add 1 ½ cups of chicken broth, 1 bay leaf, ¼ teaspoon dried thyme, and ¼ teaspoon each of salt and pepper, or to taste (if using ginger paste or dried ginger, add that now).
- Cook rice. Stir the rice and spices to combine, then bring to a boil. Cover with a tight-fitting lid, reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 17 minutes.
- Serve! Once cooked, remove the lid, and fluff the rice with a fork. Serve immediately or cover until ready to serve.
My delicious, Indian-inspired Turmeric Rice goes perfectly with a spicy Indian curry, slow cooker butter chicken, my great naan bread, or an amazing grilled or roasted main. Try making my curry chicken marinade for tender spiced chicken that would pair wonderfully with this rice! Enjoy!
💭 Tips & Recipe Notes
Rinsing the rice is an important step, don’t skip it!
- Rinsing the rice removes the excess starch from the outside of the rice, so it cooks up perfectly fluffy with visible grains of rice and it’s never mushy or starchy!
Want to make this amazing dish in an Instant Pot? I’ve got tips!
- Complete Step 1 as normal. When you’re ready to sauté, use the Sauté function on your Instant Pot and add the butter and olive oil. Then cook the aromatics as directed, and add the rice, turmeric, chicken broth, and other spices.
- When you’re ready to cook – seal and lock the lid, set to Manual, High Pressure and cook for 5 minutes. When finished, allow to naturally release for 10 minutes, then quick release any remaining pressure. Fluff the rice with a fork and serve immediately!
- I recommend using these settings and not the Rice function on the Instant Pot, as it will yield a different result.
When using chicken broth, you can use homemade, store-bought, or even bouillon paste or cubes!
- If using bouillon cubes or paste, make sure to follow the directions and use enough to make 1 ½ cups of broth so it isn’t too diluted.
- If you prefer, you can also use beef broth if making a beef or lamb main course to go with the turmeric rice!
🥡 Storing & Reheating
This delightful turmeric rice stores very well in the refrigerator! Add cooled rice to an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
My tasty turmeric rice can also be frozen! Transfer the cooled rice to an airtight container or freezer storage bag and it’ll keep for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to use it, it’s best to let it defrost in your fridge overnight.
For this beautiful, aromatic rice, you can easily reheat it in the microwave! Simply transfer to a microwave-safe bowl or container (if not in one already) add a drizzle of water or chicken broth over the top, and microwave for 1-minute intervals until heated through, stirring between.
You can also heat on the stovetop! Transfer rice to a saucepan, add a drizzle of water or chicken broth, then reheat gently over medium heat, stirring often until heated through to keep it fluffy and to prevent sticking.
Turmeric is a spice commonly used in South Asia, the Middle East, and other places around the world! In its fresh form, turmeric looks similar to ginger, but it has a distinct yellow-orange color. It adds gorgeous color to dishes, and it’s good for you too – turmeric is high in antioxidants, vitamins C & B6, manganese, and it’s very anti-inflammatory!
Not at all! Though turmeric and ginger give the dish warmth and lots of flavor, they’re not spicy. If you’d like to make it spicy, however, you can add some cayenne or sauté a chopped chile like a jalapeño or bird’s eye chili with the other aromatics!
You can easily make this recipe vegan or vegetarian! For a vegetarian version, simply substitute your favorite veggie broth for the chicken broth. For a vegan spin, use veggie broth and either use vegan butter or extra coconut oil in place of
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- 1 cup long grain rice (white rice like basmati or jasmine)
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil (or olive oil)
- ¼ cup onion (white or yellow onion, finely diced or grated)
- 1 teaspoon garlic (finely minced)
- 2 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 ½ cups chicken broth
- 1 bay leaf
- ¼ teaspoon dried thyme
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon each, salt & pepper (to taste)
- Rinse the rice in a fine mesh sieve under cool running water until the water runs clear. Set aside.1 cup long grain rice
- In a heavy bottom saucepan, melt the butter with the coconut or olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the diced onion and minced garlic and saute until tender and opaque, about 4-5 minutes.1 tablespoon butter, 1 tablespoon coconut oil, ¼ cup onion, 1 teaspoon garlic
- Add the rinsed rice and turmeric to your saucepan and stir to coat.2 teaspoon turmeric
- Add the chicken broth, bay leaf, dried thyme, ground ginger, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine then bring to a boil. Cover with a tight-fitting lid, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 17 minutes.1 ½ cups chicken broth, 1 bay leaf, ¼ teaspoon dried thyme, ¼ teaspoon ground ginger, ¼ teaspoon each, salt & pepper
- Remove the lid and fluff the rice with a fork once cooked. Serve immediately, or cover until ready to serve.
Angela is an at home chef that developed a passion for all things cooking and baking at a young age in her Grandma's kitchen. After many years in the food service industry, she now enjoys sharing all of her family favorite recipes and creating tasty dinner and amazing dessert recipes here at Bake It With Love!