This easy coconut rice recipe is a reminder of my childhood memories. My grandma would cook up a batch of coconut rice whenever a coconut fell from the tree in our backyard. It is such a fond memory because I don’t remember a lot from my childhood, but this one sticks with me like gum.

In fact, I remember how I would watch her break the coconut ever so gently so that she could maintain its integrity – the coconut water. She would shell the coconut and use its water as a starting point for her Tapioca recipes.

She saved the flesh for her spicy coconut rice and candied coconuts. Oh, how I wish I could figure out how she made all her delicious recipes. Everything that woman touched was destined for greatness, and I relish every moment I spent with her. Fortunately, I learned very few of her recipes such as this Baked Ratatouille recipe and now I try several different methods to replicate her dishes.

I have not always liked cooking coconut rice.  It took some time for me to get the recipe right. I made several mistakes and threw out several cups of rice to get to this point. The good news is that you don’t have to be like me. I have since perfected this easy coconut rice recipe that even the worst cook can manage to pull off.

You can save some time by buying canned coconut milk and using a rice cooker in lieu of a pan.  If you do choose to use a pan, there is a simple rule: use a heavy bottom pan. Do keep in mind though that this coconut rice recipe requires precision and patients. Do not open the pot unnecessarily or stir the rice willy-nilly.

Easy Coconut Rice Recipe

Of course, what is coconut rice without any accompaniment? To maximize the potential of this easy coconut rice recipe, serve with my Rosemary Chicken Breast and my Non-Alcoholic Sangria

This recipe uses long grain rice but you can use brown rice or jasmine rice.

5 from 1 vote
Easy Coconut Rice Recipe
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
35 mins
A delicious alternative to plain boiled rice. Brown rice or white rice will both work well.
Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: African, Spanish, Thai
Servings: 6
Calories: 260 kcal
  • 2 cups long grain rice
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • Fresh shredded coconut to garnish
  1. Wash the rice in cold water until it runs clear. Place the water, coconut milk, salt and sugar in a heavy pan or flameproof casserole.
  2. Add the rice, cover and bring to a boil. 
  3. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for hour 15-20 minutes or until the rice is tender to the bite and cooked through.
  4. Turn off the heat and allow the rice to rest in the pan for a further 5-10 minutes.
Recipe Notes

Coconut milk is available in cans, but if you cannot find it, use creamed coconut mixed with water according to the packet instructions.

Substitute jasmine rice for a Thai version of this recipe.