White rice is a must in all houses. Its versatility and ease of cooking make it the perfect side dish for any preparation.

It is handy to have a bowl of white rice to go with any meal. However, it can get very tedious to have it all the time. There is more than basic white rice to accompany meals.

Variations to plain white rice

With simple steps, white rice can become the star of any meal. The recipes are endless since they are customizable to any taste and preferences.

It could be arduous to choose one to liven up all meals. The following selection is a helpful guide. It is a small example of the number of rice dishes different from plain and simple white rice.

  • Tomato rice: A colorful bowl of rice with onion, garlic, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, cumin, and chili powder cooked in a tasty broth. Some variations may include cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom.
  • Easy Paella: Paella is a complicated dish. Some versions make it easier just by omitting the meat and turning it into a vegetarian preparation. This paella has Bomba rice, tomato, onion, garlic, artichokes, peas, chickpeas, and peppers seasoned with saffron and smoked paprika.
  • Coconut rice: It is the most popular rice dish in Asian countries. Each country has its version of this common accompaniment. The traditional ingredients are jasmine rice, coconut milk, sugar, pandan leaves, and kaffir lime leaves served with desiccated coconut. To make an easy and fast version, go to https://mahatmarice.com/recipes/easy-coconut-rice/ and find recipes and information for making a tasteful coconut rice.
  • Rice bowls: It is a versatile dish made of a mixture of vegetables, proteins, and rice. It is a customizable dish where white rice is placed in a bowl with vegetables like tomatoes, shallots, or carrots; and protein like tuna or chicken.
  • Rice casserole: This dish is a slowly baked preparation where all components are cooked together in a casserole dish. Traditional ingredients include rice, chicken, green beans, peas, and carrots topped with cheese.
  • Curried rice: It is a strongly seasoned rice dish. It includes basmati rice with carrots, peas, cashews, and garlic flavored with curry, cumin, coriander, paprika, and chili powder.
  • Rice salads: Making salads with rice is a fresh and creative way of using white rice and turning it into a different preparation. Cold or warm rice can be used with various vegetables and dressed with oil, lemon juice, and herbs.

Exquisite rice dishes

It is not a complicated task to elevate the flavor of plain white rice. Adding additional ingredients during the cooking process or changing the cooking method, white rice will be the perfect complement for all meals.

Some extra ideas to make a different rice dish are explained below:

Pesto Green Rice


For the Pesto:

  • 2 cups of fresh basil leaves.
  • 2 tablespoons of pine nuts.
  • 2 teaspoons of minced garlic.
  • ½ cup of olive oil.
  • ½ cup of grated Parmesan cheese.
  • ½  teaspoon of salt.
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground black pepper.

For the rice:

  • 1 cup of Basmati rice.
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut oil.
  • 2 cups of stock.
  • Salt and black pepper to taste.
  • Fresh basil leaves and sliced almonds to serve.


  1. In a food processor, place basil leaves, pine nuts, and garlic. Blend until all ingredients are chopped.
  2. Pour olive oil into the food processor and continue blending. Add Parmesan cheese, salt, and black pepper. Mix very well. Set aside.
  3. In a saucepan, add the coconut oil and heat at medium temperature.
  4. Incorporate basmati rice, homemade pesto, the stock, salt, and black pepper.
  5. Cook until the mixture boils, then reduce heat and cover.
  6. Simmer for 20 minutes.
  7. Remove from the heat and let the rice cool down.
  8. Serve with basil leaves and sliced almonds at the top.

Turmeric Yellow rice


  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil.
  • 1 cup of diced onion.
  • 4 minced cloves of garlic.
  • 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder.
  • 2 cups of long-grain rice.
  • 3 cups of chicken stock.
  • Salt or to taste.
  • Black pepper or to taste.
  • Parsley for garnish.


  1. In a saucepan, add the coconut oil and cook at medium temperature.
  2. Incorporate onion and garlic. Cook until they are fragrant.
  3. Add turmeric powder and stir very well.
  4. Incorporate rice and toast.
  5. Pour chicken stock, salt, and pepper.
  6. Combine all ingredients.
  7. Let it boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  8. Serve with parsley at the top.