collection of 35 best rice recipes – rice is one of the staple cereal in india and is had almost all over in india. there are hundreds of rice recipes made regionally. the most popular variety of rice dishes are biryani, pulao, tempered rice dishes like lemon rice, curd rice, ghee rice etc.
in south india, we have flavorful rice recipes made with different ingredients like coconut, tamarind, peanuts, sesame seeds, spice mixtures, ghee, curd, tomatoes etc. the best part of making any dish with rice is that you can always use your choice of veggies, herbs and spices.
there are different varieties of rice available in india. though basmati rice is used very often in the north, the south india region has their own varieties of rice. apart from using rice to make rice based dishes, two popular south indian breakfast are also made with rice and lentils – idli and dosa. though in this post, i have shared only the varieties of rice recipes and not any breakfast items which are made with rice like idli or masala dosa or neer dosa or white dhokla.
till now, i have managed to share over 145 rice recipes on the blog. out of them, i am sharing the top rice recipes from the blog which are a favorite among readers.
top 35 indian rice recipes
1. veg dum biryani recipe – this is one of the most popular veg biryani recipe. an authentic vegetable biryani, slow cooked on dum. this cooking on dum gives the biriyani its uniqueness and deliciousness. this is how the biryani has the beautiful medley of the aromas, flavors and tastes caused by the blending of the ingredients used in making it.
2. veg pulao recipe – vegetable pulao is a comfort one pot meal when we don’t have time to do elaborate cooking. pair this mildly flavored aromatic veg pulao with a raita, mango pickle and roasted papad and you don’t need anything else. pulao lovers can also check these popular variations like:
3. veg fried rice recipe – this is one of our favorite indo chinese recipe. whenever we order an indo chinese menu then veg fried rice is always there. i have kept this vegetable fried rice plain and simple, so that the flavors of the vegetables are enhanced. the key to a good stir fried dish be it rice or noodles, is the smoky flavor that you get in the dish. now this is achieved by stir frying at a very high heat.
4. khichdi recipe – one pot comfort meal of rice and moong lentils. nutritious and light on the tummy. in india, when someone is ill or recovering from illness, then dalia and moong dal khichdi are often served to him/her. even doctors recommend khichdi to patients.
5. bisi bele bath recipe – it is one of the most popular traditional rice and lentils based dish from the karnataka cuisine. a delicious complete meal of rice, lentils and vegetables.
6. jeera rice recipe – a mildly spiced and flavorful indian rice dish flavored with cumin. this is one of the most popular rice dish in restaurants. many people prefer to have jeera rice instead of plain basmati rice to go along with dals or curry dishes. other flavorful rice dishes which you can make at times are:
7. lemon rice – crunchy, flavorful and sour rice recipe from south india. this is one of the most popular and often made rice recipe from south india. you can make lemon rice with freshly cooked rice or even with left over rice. if you have some left over rice then you can check this post sharing 28 recipes made using left over rice.
8. tomato rice recipe – spicy and tasty south indian tomato rice. i have a few more tomato rice recipes on the blog. but this one is my favorite. the taste of this tomato rice is inspired by the tomato rice we would often have at the cafe at isha yoga center, coimbatore, india. few more similar rice varieties you can try are
- tomato pulao (tangy pulao made with tomatoes and mixed veggies)
- tomato biryani (one pot spiced south indian style tomato biryani recipe)
- tomato bath (made with ground coconut masala).
9. ven pongal recipe – popular and delicious south indian breakfast made with rice and yellow moong lentils. this porridge like savory dish is laced with cumin, asafoetida and black pepper. not to forget the lovely aroma of ghee, which is used for tempering these spices.
10. ghee rice recipe – aromatic one pot rice made with ghee and spices from the south indian cuisine. any light based gravies, dals or even a complexly flavored korma or gravy goes well with ghee rice. i have also shared another delicious version of ghee rice from the kerala cuisine -> ney choru recipe.
11. curd rice recipe – popular and tasty south indian dish that is served with a south indian thali or meal. it is also known as thayir sadam or daddojanam or bagala bath.
12. tamarind rice recipe – popular south indian recipe of a tangy, sour & spiced rice. the recipe dish is also known as puliyodharai in tamil language. tamarind rice goes well for picnics or long journeys. it also make for nice tiffin box lunch.
13. peas pulao recipe – aromatic and tasty matar pulao recipe from the punjabi cuisine. the pulao has sweet tones because of peas. this pulao can be made with fresh or frozen peas. for best results, i would suggest you to use good quality fresh peas.
14. schezwan fried rice recipe – spicy and tasty indo chinese recipe of stir fried vegetables and rice in schezwan sauce. if you crave for something spicy for lunch or dinner, then schezwan fried rice is really a very good option. its easy to prepare if you have schezwan sauce ready with you. few more popular fried rice varieties from indo chinese cuisine are:
15. veg tehri recipe – aromatic, spiced one pot rice dish made with veggies and spices. a specialty from the uttar pradesh cuisine. other popular rice recipes from uttar pradesh region are:
16. mushroom biryani recipe – spicy and tasty vegetarian biryani with mushrooms from the chettinad cuisine. this biryani is not layered and dum cooked, but a one pot recipe. if you are fond of biryanis then you can also check these biryani recipes:
17. tawa pulao recipe – a popular mumbai street food of rice and vegetables sauted together with pav bhaji masala and other spices-herbs. you can also make this recipe in a frying pan or even in a kadai (wok).
18. rice kheer recipe – a favorite indian dessert made with basmati rice, milk, nuts and saffron.
19. vangi bath recipe – a delicious recipe of spiced brinjal rice from the karnataka cuisine.
20. kashmiri pulao recipe – aromatic, mild and sweet pulao recipe. kashmiri pulao is garnished with both dry fruits and fresh fruits. dry fruits gives warmth and is ideal for the cold climate of kashmir.
21. paneer biryani recipe – mildly spiced and delicious dum cooked layered paneer biryani. in this biryani recipe, the paneer cubes do not become dense or hard as we are not cooking them twice.
22. coconut rice recipe – light, tasty and mild south indian coconut rice recipe made with fresh grated coconut. if you have grated the coconut already, then its easy to prepare this rice. tastes best with freshly grated coconut. but you can use frozen coconut too.
23. paal payasam recipe – sweet, creamy south indian kheer or pudding made with milk and rice. paal payasam can be served hot or cold as a sweet or an after meal dessert.
24. sambar sadam recipe – sambar rice is an easy to prepare delicious one pot meal. making sambar rice is similar to making bisi bele bath. only the taste is different. you can serve sambar rice accompanied with a pickle or fresh curd or appalams (papads).
25. pudina rice recipe – fragrant and spicy pulao made with mint leaves and some more spices-herbs. in the recipe, you can also add veggies like peas, carrots, beans to make the dish more healthier. usually i add peas or both peas & potatoes.
26. paneer pulao recipe – aromatic, delicious and mildly spiced paneer pulao recipe. for this paneer pulao, i have ground whole spices to make a fragrant pulao masala. its this masala, that gives a nice aromatic flavor to the pulao.
27. plain biryani recipe – south indian style spiced flavorful biryani rice served as an accompaniment with a gravy dish. kuska biryani is quite known in south india and served in many hotels there. its a good alternative to plain basmati rice and you can serve with any gravy like a veg kurma or a masala gravy or even with dal.
28. sweet pongal recipe – sweet festive dish made with rice and mung lentils, flavored with cardamoms, dry fruits and ghee. sweet pongal is also known as sakkarai pongal in tamil language and is a sweet dish made during festive occasions in south india and is also served in temples.
29. palak rice – this is a very simple one-pot recipe of spinach rice. spinach with all its health benefits makes a good combo with veggies, lentils and cereals.
30. capsicum rice – for those who like capsicum or bell peppers, here’s an aromatic pulao made with green bell peppers, spices and rice. this is a mild pulao and so goes well with kids or folks who do not prefer spicy food
31. carrot rice – lightly spiced and delicious rice recipe that can be made quickly. it also goes well as tiffin box lunch. there is a subtle sweetness coming from the carrots. i have also sauteed onions, cashews and raisins which add to the sweet element in the recipe.
32. coriander rice – aromatic and spiced rice made with fresh coriander, spices and veggies. this is a one pot and easy cilantro rice recipe.
33. coconut milk rice – this is a fragrant, tasty and mild pulao made with mixed veggies and coconut milk. another delicious pulao variety which is made with coconut milk is this brinji rice recipe from tamil nadu cuisine.
34. corn pulao – spiced and tasty pulao made with corn kernels. in this recipe, a green chutney paste is made and this makes the pulao slightly spicy and delicious. so you get the spiced flavors along with the hints of sweetness coming from the sweet corn.
35. mango rice recipe – spiced and tangy rice made from raw unripe green mangoes. the tartness of the unripe mangoes, the subtle sweetness of fresh coconut and the heat of the red chilies balance very well in this dish. the tempering of curry leaves, mustard seeds and asafoetida perks up the flavors in the rice.