The Best Creamy Coconut Rice

Whip up a versatile side dish for any meal with a 25-minute recipe for The Best Creamy Coconut Rice made with just three ingredients.

A bowl containing the best creamy coconut rice garnished with white sesame seeds

One of the most common questions I get about our many entrée recipes is, “What do you serve it with?”

The search is over! This recipe for The Best Creamy Coconut Rice is the ultimate in versatility and ease of preparation. Most importantly, it’s the ideal recipe for multitaskers because the rice cooks while you’re prepping the main event, whether that’s Quick Black Pepper Pork, Baked Orange Chicken, Sweet and Sour Shrimp, or my personal favorite, Baked Salmon with Honey-Garlic Glaze.

A hand holds a measuring cup filled with uncooked rice over a pot of water

How to Keep Rice from Getting Mushy

Years ago I learned a simple trick from a chef friend to keep rice from getting mushy. Ever since I started using the towel trick, my rice has been perfectly fluffy, moist and mush-free. Here’s the setup:

  • Combine the rice and water (or other cooking liquid) in a pot
  • Wrap the pot lid with a towel and tie it securely around the top so that the edges can’t drop down near the stove flame
  • Bring the rice to a boil, reduce it to a simmer and cover the pot
  • Cook the rice until all of the liquid has absorbed, about 15 minutes
A medium pot covered with a towel-wrapped lid on a gas stovetop

The towel soaks up all of the steam as the rice cooks, so rather than trapping the moisture in the pot (read: too much moisture = mushy rice!), it gets absorbed. The result is perfectly fluffy rice every single time!

How to Fluff Rice

In addition to using the towel trick, it’s important to properly aerate your rice after it’s done cooking. Using a spoon or spatula works, but a fork is really best because it doesn’t compress the rice. To properly fluff rice, quickly move a fork around in the pan, turning it up and over itself to help loosen the grains.

A hand holds a fork with cooked white rice over a pot containing cooked rice

Now your coconut rice is ready to star as the perfect accompaniment to your main dish. The coconut taste is subtle and a great blank canvas for taking on the other flavors of your entrée. It’s also very moist, which makes it all the better at soaking up any sauce or glazes. We can’t ask for much more from this humble grain!

Creamy Coconut Rice piled high in a serving bowl next to chopsticks

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Prep Time 5 mins

Cook Time 20 mins

Total Time 25 mins

  • In a medium sauce pot, whisk together the coconut milk, water, sugar and salt. 

  • Stir in the rice and bring it to a boil. Cover the sauce pot, reduce the heat and simmer the rice until tender and all of the liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes. 

  • Fluff the rice with a fork then serve.

  • ★ Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!

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