Easy Coconut Rice Recipe

Coconut sticky rice
Laurence Mouton / Getty Images
  • 25 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins,
  • Cook: 20 mins
  • Yield: 4 servings
Ratings (84)

Coconut rice makes a terrific accompaniment to many Thai and Indian dishes, but it's equally wonderful with nearly any Western-style entree. Quick and easy to make, this coconut rice recipe will come in handy for those times when you want to make dinner extra special without a lot of extra work.

Thai jasmine-scented white rice is used in this recipe. You can find it in most grocery stores in the rice section. If not, check at a local Asian or international market.

This recipe uses the stovetop method for cooking rice. You don't need any fancy equipment, just a pot with a tight-fitting lid and a heating element. If you have a rice cooker, see these instructions.

What You'll Need

  • 2 cups Thai jasmine-scented white rice (for brown coconut rice, see link below)
  • 2 cups good-quality coconut milk
  • 1 3/4 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coconut oil, or vegetable oil

How to Make It

  1. Rub the oil over the bottom of a deep-sided pot. You will also need a tight-fitting lid.
  2. Place the rice, coconut milk, water, and salt in the pot and set over medium-high to high heat. Stir occasionally to keep rice from sticking to the bottom of the pot and burning.
  3. Once the coconut-water has begun to gently bubble, stop stirring and reduce heat to low or medium-low so the water simmers.
  4. Cover tightly with a lid and let simmer 15 to 20 minutes, or until most of the liquid has been absorbed by the rice. To check, pull the rice aside with a fork. If most of the coconut milk-water is gone, go on to the next step.
  1. Turn off the heat, but leave the covered pot on the burner another five to 10 minutes, or until you're ready to eat.
  2. Tip: Your Coconut Rice will stay warm this way for up to one hour or more -- perfect for the spouse who's running late.
  3. When you're ready to serve the rice, remove the lid and fluff rice with a fork or chopsticks. Taste-test the rice for salt, adding a little more if needed.
  4. Serve right out of the pot, or transfer to a serving bowl. 


For a photo version of this recipe, see the Easy Thai Coconut Rice Step by Step. If you have a rice cooker, use this version of the instructions.

If you prefer to make brown rice, see the Brown Coconut Rice Recipe. Also, check out the Saffron Coconut Rice Recipe.