Coriander Rice | Indian Cilantro Rice

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Coriander rice is a fragrant, tasty and spiced rice made with fresh coriander leaves, basmati rice, spices and veggies. There are many variations of making this savory rice dish. Here I am sharing a one-pot and easy cilantro rice similar to a pilaf or pulao. The recipe comes together in less than 40 minutes and makes for a hearty, filling weekday lunch or dinner.

coriander rice served in a green bowl

About This Indian Cilantro Rice

This Indian Cilantro rice is one of those recipes that are a part of my everyday cooking. I make pulao and rice-based dishes often as they are easy to put together, healthy as well and cook quickly in a pressure cooker or Instant pot.

They can be paired with a raita or a salad. So kind of easy and also rice recipes go well in the tiffin box.

In this recipe, I have used basmati rice for its fragrance and texture. However feel free to use any variety of non-sticky rice that is available to you. You can also use long grained rice.

I have cooked the rice in a stovetop pressure cooker but it can also be made in a thick-bottomed pot or pan. I have mentioned the method to cook in a pan or pot in the notes section of the recipe card below.

Usually in coriander rice, I also add the spare veggies from the fridge, like one carrot or a couple of beans or a quarter of cauliflower or broccoli. Here, I added some potatoes and green peas. Though you can add any veggie and even skip if you want.

The vegetables that you can consider adding are potatoes, carrots, green peas, corn, capsicum (bell pepper), baby corn, cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, french beans, baby potatoes and edible fungi like button mushrooms. This will make the dish more filling, hearty and nutritious.

Serve coriander rice with a side raita or salad of your choice. It also taste good as is. You can also have a mango pickle or lemon pickle by the side with a few roasted papads.

Step-by-Step Guide

How to make Coriander Rice

Prepping Rice and Making Coriander Paste

1. Rinse 1 cup of basmati rice very well in water until the water runs clear of starch. Then soak rice in water for 20 to 30 minutes.

Later drain the water and keep the rice aside. Prep the other ingredients when the rice is soaking.

soaked and drained rice in a bowl

2. In a small grinder or blender or chutney grinder take the following ingredients:

  • ½ cup chopped coriander leaves (cilantro)
  • 2 to 3 green chilies (chopped)
  • ½ to 1-inch ginger (chopped)
  • 2 tablespoons of unsweetened desiccated coconut or 2 tablespoons grated fresh coconut
  • 3 to 4 medium garlic (chopped)
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon fennel seeds
green coriander paste ingredients in a grinder jar

3. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of water and grind or blend to a smooth paste. Keep this green paste aside.

green coriander paste in the grinder jar

Sautéing Coriander Paste

4. Heat 2 tablespoons of any neutral flavored oil in a pressure cooker. Add the following whole spices and fry till the spices become fragrant for a few seconds.

  • 2 to 3 cloves
  • 4 to 5 black peppers
  • ½ inch cinnamon
  • 2 green cardamom
  • 1 or 2 single strands of mace
spices added to pressure cooker with oil

5. Add ⅓ cup thinly sliced onions.

adding onions to pressure cooker

6. On a low to medium flame, stir and saute the onions till they become golden. Keep on stirring often so that the onions have a uniform golden color and do not get burnt.

sauteing onions

7. Lower the flame and add the ground coriander-spices paste that we had prepared earlier.

adding ground coriander-spices paste

8. Add a pinch of turmeric powder (ground turmeric).

adding turmeric to ground coriander-spices paste and onions

9. Mix and stir very well.

mix the mixture well

10. Add 1 medium potato (chopped) and ⅓ cup green peas. You can use any mix vegetables of your choice or even skip them. Stir again very well.

potato and green peas added to mixture

11. Then add the drained rice. Season with salt as required.

adding rice to the mixture

Cooking Cilantro Rice

12. Stir gently and saute the rice for a minute.

stir and saute the rice veggie mixture for a minute

13. Add 1.5 cups of water. Stir again. Taste the stock and it should feel a bit salty.

adding water for cooking coriander rice

14. Cover and pressure cook cilantro rice for 2 whistles or for 7 to 9 minutes on a medium to high flame. When the pressure settles down on its own, remove the lid and gently fluff the rice.

pressure cook the coriander rice

15. Serve cilantro rice with side raita or salad or a pickle. While serving you can garnish with some chopped cilantro leaves too. You can also squeeze some lemon juice and enjoy this dish.

It can also be packed for lunch box and makes for a filling, comforting and healthy meal.

coriander rice served in a green bowl

More Tasty Rice Recipes

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Coriander Rice | Indian Cilantro Rice

Coriander rice is an fragrant, tasty, healthy and spiced rice dish made with fresh cilantro leaves, basmati rice, veggies, herbs and spices. It makes for a nutritious and hearty meal paired with a veggie salad or raita.
4.75 from 16 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Cuisine Indian
Course Main Course
Diet Vegan, Vegetarian
Difficulty Level Moderate
Servings 3
Units

Ingredients

Main ingredients

  • 1 cup basmati rice – rinsed and soaked in water for 30 minutes
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 tej patta (Indian bay leaf)
  • 2 to 3 cloves
  • 4 to 5 black peppers
  • ½ inch cinnamon
  • 2 green cardamoms
  • 1 or 2 single strands of mace
  • 1 medium sized onion – thinly sliced or ⅓ cup thinly sliced onions
  • 1 pinch turmeric powder (ground turmeric)
  • 1 medium sized potato – peeled and chopped
  • cup green peas – fresh or frozen
  • 1.5 cups water
  • salt as required

For the coriander paste

  • ½ cup chopped coriander leaves (cilantro)
  • 2 to 3 green chilies – chopped
  • ½ to 1 inch ginger – chopped
  • 2 tablespoon unsweetened desiccated coconut or 2 tablespoon grated coconut
  • 3 to 4 medium garlic – chopped
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 2 to 3 tablespoon water for grinding

Instructions
 

Prepping rice

  • Rinse the basmati rice very well in water till the water runs clear of starch. Then soak the rice in water for 20 to 30 minutes. 
  • Then drain the water and keep the rice aside. Prep the other ingredients when the rice is soaking.

Making coriander paste

  • Take coriander leaves, green chilies, ginger, unsweetened desiccated coconut, garlic, cumin seeds and fennel seeds in a small grinder or blender or chutney grinder.
  • Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of water and grind or blend to a smooth paste. Keep this green cilantro paste aside.

Making coriander rice

  • Heat 2 tablespoons of any neutral flavored oil in a pressure cooker. 
  • Add the following whole spices – cloves, black peppers, cinnamon, green cardamoms and single strands of mace. Fry till the spices become fragrant. This takes a few seconds.
  • Add the thinly sliced onions. On a low to medium flame, stir and saute the onions till they become golden. 
  • Keep on stirring often so that the onions have a uniform golden color and do not get burnt.
  • Lower the flame and add the ground coriander-spices paste. Add a pinch turmeric powder. Stir very well.
  • Add chopped potato and green peas. You can use any mix vegetables of your choice or even skip them. Stir again.
  • Then add the drained rice. Stir gently and saute the rice for a minute.

Cooking coriander rice

  • Add 1.5 cups of water and salt as required. Stir again. Taste the stock and it should feel a bit salty.
  • Cover and pressure cook rice for 2 whistles or for 7 to 9 minutes on a medium to high flame.
  • When the pressure settles down on its own in the cooker, remove the lid and gently fluff the rice.
  • Serve coriander rice hot with side raita or salad or a pickle. It can also be packed for tiffin box and will make for a very healthy meal.
  • While eating you can drizzle some lemon juice to add some brightness and tang to the dish.

Notes

  • The entire coriander rice recipe can also be made in a pot or pan. Add 2 cups of water if cooking in a pot. Cover tightly and cook the rice grains till done. Do check while the rice is cooking and if required, you can add more water.
  • If you want then you can skip adding the veggies.
  • I personally like to add spare veggies to this recipe as it makes the dish more healthy, nutritious and also more flavorful. The veggies that can be added are potatoes, green peas, beans, cauliflower, broccoli, bell pepper, baby corn, brinjal, sweet corn, cabbage, baby corn and carrots. You can also include button mushrooms.
  • For a spicy rice increase the number of green chilies.
  • If basmati rice is not available to you then use any variety of non-sticky white rice or any long grained rice.
  • The recipe can be doubled.

Nutrition Info (Approximate values)

Nutrition Facts
Coriander Rice | Indian Cilantro Rice
Amount Per Serving
Calories 442 Calories from Fat 117
% Daily Value*
Fat 13g20%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 8g
Sodium 509mg22%
Potassium 564mg16%
Carbohydrates 74g25%
Fiber 7g29%
Sugar 4g4%
Protein 8g16%
Vitamin A 328IU7%
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) 1mg67%
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 1mg59%
Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 2mg10%
Vitamin B6 1mg50%
Vitamin C 29mg35%
Vitamin E 4mg27%
Vitamin K 17µg16%
Calcium 74mg7%
Vitamin B9 (Folate) 37µg9%
Iron 2mg11%
Magnesium 57mg14%
Phosphorus 162mg16%
Zinc 1mg7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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This Coriander Rice recipe post from the blog archives (first published in July 2015) has been updated and republished on 27 June 2021.

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Meet Dassana

Welcome to Dassana's Veg Recipes. I share vegetarian recipes from India & around the World. Having been cooking for decades and with a professional background in cooking & baking, I help you to make your cooking journey easier with my tried and tested recipes showcased with step by step photos & plenty of tips & suggestions.

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54 Comments

  1. i tried this recipe but my rice was not fluffy ???? i always wanted fluffy rice hope i will get when i try next time ..recipe was too good and easy … taste was good but only thing is it hase become like kichidi

    1. okay. next time you can add less water. different types and varieties of basmati rice need more or less water. also while grinding the coriander paste add less water and not too much water. in case you add more water while grinding, then add less water when pressure cooking rice.

    2. May be, you should cook rice for just 1 whistle because the Basmati rice is already well soaked for 30 minutes.

  2. Hi Dasanna

    Ever since i started trying your recipes ,i haven’t tried any other website .starters,breakfast,rice varieties,mocktails,what not everything it turned out so yummy .The best thing about your recipes is that the food is healthy with yummy taste ,i bet everyone who are following your recipes will definitely turn out to super chefs
    Thanks for the tasty recipes with beautiful photos and clear explaination

  3. Just made the coriander rice. I cooked it in a rice cooker instead of a pressure cooker and the aroma………………..mmmmm, what can I say? It filled the whole kitchen ? I couldn’t wait to open it and try. Turned out real tasty though it wasn’t as green as yours. Maybe I added a tad too much turmeric powder? It was a little spicy too. Kids had to eat it with yogurt. Overall, excellent. Will definitely make it again. Thanks for all your recipes and the step by step pictorial instructions. Your recipes make me look like a great cook!

    1. pleased to know this sita 🙂 thankyou so much for your kind words. alter spice as per your preference you are always welcome and glad we could help you.

  4. I am beginner at cooking. I tried your recipe. The dish was well liked by my family. Thanks. 🙂

    1. pleased to know this anoma 🙂 thankyou so much and glad your family liked it.

  5. Superb.. Awesome rice.. I alwasys try your recipes. E
    Easy, Simple and very tasty..5 stars

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