Coconut Rice is a popular South Indian variety rice made by tempering grated coconut with spices and then mixing them with cooked rice. Coconut Rice or Thengai Sadam is easy to make and at the same time flavorful and delicious. How to make Coconut Rice is explained in this post with step by step pictures and video for your easy reference.
Coconut Rice is a mildy spiced flavorful rice made with freshly grated coconut. Any spicy fry would a great side dish for coconut rice, potato fry is a ever popular combo. We love it with seppenkilangu roast.
About Coconut Rice
Coconut Rice, popularly called as Thengai Sadam in Tamil is a traditional South Indian rice made for special occasions and common lunch box dish. Grated coconut is sauted and used in this rice, hence it would hold good till evening even when it is cooked early in the morning. Also the flavour is retained and becomes more delicious as time passes by. That’s how this cook friendly and eater friendly coconut rice became a regular menu for lunch box to school & office and also during long bus & train journeys.
Coconut Rice – A Mandatory Rice for Baby Shower
Coconut rice is a mandatory rice for Valaikappu / Seemantham / Baby shower function. It is a tradition to make 5 variety rice that day. The new mom-to-be travels back to her mom place on that day and that’s how the tradition of making 5 variety rice initiated as these rice accompanies the new mom-to-be in the journey. Coconut rice is consumed first among the 5 variety of rice as it will hold good just for a day and tamarind rice is consumed last as it will hold good even on the next day or two.
Coconut rice is offered as prasadam in temples and the one made by the temple priest is extra delicious with lot of coconut, oil & cashews. It is also a standard menu for annadhanam during religious festivals and events.
Coconut Scraping for Coconut Rice
What is the sidedish for coconut rice?
Coconut rice goes well with fry, papad, vadagam, and curry. Usually I make fry – Potato fry / Yam roast/ sepankizhangu fry as side dish. When I go dry of vegetables, I make coconut rice and accompany it with appalam / vadagam.
My mother-in-law’s coconut rice used to be more flavourful and aromatic than mine. She gave a tip to add coconut oil instead of the regular oil for tempering which made by rice match her’s.
Is Coconut rice and Coconut milk rice one and the same?
No they are different even though the primary ingredient is Coconut. Coconut rice is made by tempering the spices with grated coconut and then mixing it with cooked rice. Coconut milk rice is a one post dish made by extracting coconut milk and then cooking it with rice.
Coconut Rice Ingredients
- Coconut : Fresh grated coconut is recommended for this recipe though we can use desiccated coconut as well when fresh coconut is not available. Some of the coconuts tastes dry and are not tasty while some are moist and tastes very good. I had a habit of tasting the coconuts from various shops at different times and made it now regular to procure vegetables from the shop which had tasty coconuts – Tip to choose your vegetable store.
- Rice : Both Raw and Boiled rice are very good for making Coconut rice. I used Ponni Boiled Rajabhogam rice for this recipe.
- Oil : Use coconut oil for better aroma and flavour. If you do not have coconut oil, you can replace it with the regular cooking oil (refined / groundnut) used at home.
Tried this coconut rice recipe ? Do let me know how you liked it. Also tag us on Instagram @sharmispassions and hash tag it on #sharmispassions.
📖 Recipe Card
Coconut Rice | Thengai Sadam
- 1 heaped cup cooked rice
- 1/3 cup coconut grated
- salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon split urad dal
- 1/2 teaspoon jeera
- 1 no green chilli
- 1 no red chilli
- a sprig of curry leaves
- 1 tablespoon cashews broken
- Heat oil in a pan - add mustard seeds and urad dal.
- Let it splutter then fry till golden. Give a quick saute.
- Add curry leaves, green chilli and red chilli.
- Sauté for 2 mins in low flame.
- Add cashews, fry until golden.
- Add coconut.
- Saute for 2 mins in low flame,do not change its color.
- Finally add cooked rice along with required salt.
- Toss well until nicely combined.
- Serve Coconut Rice hot with potato roast yum!
- Cook rice in the ratio of 1:1.5 (rice : water). I used Ponni Parboiled Rice. Basmati Rice is also a good option. Make sure to cook little grainy so that after mixing with coconut it is perfectly cooked.
- Use fresh grated coconut for the best taste. However you can use frozen coconut after thawing / defrosting it
- Add curry leaves or coriander leaves to add flavour & for garnishing
- Do not miss to add nuts – Cashews, peanuts – as they add taste, flavour and give crunchy feel.
How to make Coconut Rice
1.Heat oil in a pan – add mustard seeds and urad dal.
2.Let it splutter then fry till golden. Give a quick saute.
3.Add curry leaves,green chilli and red chilli.
4.Saute for 2 mins in low flame.
5.Add cashews, fry until golden.
7.Saute for 2 mins in low flame,do not change its color.
8.Finally add cooked rice along with required salt.
9.Toss well until nicely combined.
Serve hot with potato roast yum!
Storing and Serving Suggestions
Coconut Rice will be good for lunch menu at home and as well for lunch box. It could be made even early in the morning and it would be good till evening. Refrigeration is not needed. Since coconut is the main ingredient consume on the same day of cooking.
When served along with other variety rice, 2 ladles of coconut rice serving is apt for the meal. Kalkandu rice, Coconut rice, Tamarind rice, Sambar rice / Curry leaf rice and Curd rice is a perfect menu for Baby shower function.
1.What is Coconut Rice?
Coconut Rice is a popular South Indian variety rice made by tempering spices, sauteing grated coconut then mixing them with cooked rice.
2.How to make Coconut Rice?
a. Heat coconut oil in a pan – add mustard seeds and urad dal let it splutter then fry till golden.
b. Add curry leaves, green chilli and red chilli.
c. Add fresh grated coconut and saute for 2 mins in low flame, do not change its color.
d. Finally add cooked rice along with required salt. Toss well until nicely combined.
3.Can I use grated dessicated coconut as I do not have access to fresh grated coconut?
Yes we can use dessicated coconut only if we could not get the fresh ones. Saute for less than a minute just to heat it and add with rice. However the taste when cooked with dessicated coconut will not be as good as with fresh grated coconut as the processed dried coconut is devoid of the oil/moist of coconut.
4.Can I add peanuts to the Coconut Rice?
Yes – we can add roasted peanuts along with cashews to give a more crunchy flavour. Also we can replace cashews with peanuts.
5.Can we use Basmati rice instead of raw / boiled rice?
Yes basmati rice could also be used and it blends well with coconut.
6.What side dish we can make for Coconut rice?
Coconut rice goes well with fry (potato, yam, sepankizhangu), papad / appalam, vadagam, pickle and curry. It also can be had with kurma and mild gravy.
7.Can I use left over rice for making coconut rice?
Yes – we can use left over rice for making coconut rice. It will be equally good.
8.Is Coconut rice and Coconut milk rice different ?
No they are different even though the primary ingredient is Coconut. Coconut rice is made by tempering the spices with grated coconut and then mixing it with cooked rice. Coconut milk rice is a one post dish made by extracting coconut milk and then cooking it along with rice. Coconut rice is more of a South Indian Version and Coconut milk rice is more of Burmese, Thailand and Malaysia version of Coconut rice.