No summer meal is complete without a heaping side of this tropical coconut-lime rice! Made with caramelized coconut cream, this tender, fluffy Jasmine rice boasts summer's best flavors and makes the perfect side dish for any grill-out.
For summer side dishes when entertaining, we can all agree something simple but flavorful is the way to go. Patio cocktails are waiting for us after all. We don't want to waste too much time fussing over a side dish.
And that's why I love this coconut-lime rice -- it delivers plenty of tropical flavors without demanding too much of our attention. While this recipe does take some time to cook on the stove like any rice, it requires little hands-on work, making it perfect for summer entertaining.
For this coconut-lime rice recipe, here's everything we need.
- Jasmine rice
- Coconut cream
- Fresh lime
- White sugar
- Cilantro if desired
I recommend jasmine rice over long-grain white rice. Not only is jasmine rice the more traditional ingredient but it also boasts a lovely fragrance that matches nicely to our coconut and lime.
If you've never cooked with coconut cream, you can find it in the Asian section of the grocery store. Coconut cream comes in a can just like coconut milk.
Before opening coconut cream, I like to give it a good shake. Usually, I do this until I hear the liquid start to swish, but even with a lot of shaking, it may still be separated when you open the can. No worries. Simply pour the entire contents of the can into a small bowl and stir until it comes together.
How to Make
Now let's start on our tropical coconut-lime rice. We begin by giving our rice a good rinse. This helps ensure our finished rice isn't overly sticky.
Once we rinse our rice, we add it to a medium pot with coconut cream, sugar and salt.
Traditionally, this is when we'd add our water, but to get a nice caramelization, I like to cook the rice without it first. For a light caramelization, 20 minutes of cooking works just fine, but you can caramelize the rice for up to 40 minutes if you'd like a deeper color. I've done both with great results. More caramelization means more crisp bits, so it comes down to personal preference.
After the rice caramelizes, we add our water, bring to a boil, put on the top and let the rice simmer at low heat until it's soft and fluffy. From here, we add in more coconut cream for an extra decadent touch and a generous squeeze of fresh lime juice to add the perfect brightness.
And that's it! We're ready to dig into a big pile of tropical coconut-lime rice.
What to Serve With
Oh, we have so many options here! This coconut rice was made for serving with lots of my favorite recipes here on Burrata and Bubbles. Here are a few suggestions.
- Jamaican jerk chicken
- Jamaican jerk pork shoulder
- Mexican meatballs with avocado-crema sauce
- Braised sriracha short ribs
- Beer-braised Mexican shredded beef
- Roasted chicken-butternut squash tostadas
- Jerk chicken enchiladas with habanero-sour cream sauce
Along with these recipes, this tropical rice makes a great base for a poke or burrito bowl. I have no doubt you'll find so many uses for this delicious rice.
Of course, the exact pairing depends on the rest of the meal, but I have a feeling that you plan on enjoying this tropical coconut-lime rice on the patio with your favorite summer entrée. With that in mind, I recommend only the most refreshing beers. A gose with its salty and sour qualities is a tasty match. You also can't go wrong with a wheat ale, Kolsch or pilsner.
In the mood for a glass of wine? I like a crisp sauvignon blanc with this rice. Sauvignon blanc shows off lively citrus and lemongrass notes that pair perfectly with our coconut. Plus, sauvignon blanc comes with a bright acidity to contrast the rich coconut cream.
For the perfect summer side dish, I hope you try this tropical coconut-lime rice. Please let me know how you enjoyed this recipe in the comment section and don’t forget to sign up for my newsletter. You can also catch me on Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter.
Looking for More Summer Side Dishes?
- Herbed bacon macaroni salad
- Truffle egg salad
- Burrata-blackened salmon panzanella salad
- Herbed roasted potato salad
- Hawaiian potato salad
Tropical Coconut-Lime Rice
- Medium saucepan with lid
- 2 cups jasmine rice
- 1 (15)-ounce coconut cream can shaken and stirred into one cohesive mixture before using, divided
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 ½ cups water
- 1 lime juiced
- Fresh chopped cilantro for garnish, optional
- Place rice in a fine-mesh sieve and run cold water over it. Allow to drain.
- Add rice to a medium-size pot lightly sprayed with cooking spray with 1 cup coconut cream, sugar and salt. Bring just to a boil, stirring every so often to help dissolve the sugar. Turn heat to low, put on the lid and cook until the rice caramelizes on the bottom, about 20 minutes, though you can cook for up to 40 minutes if you want more caramelization. Using a wooden spoon, scrape up the caramelized bits.
- Add the water and bring to a boil again over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low, place the top on and cook until the rice absorbs the water and is soft and fluffy, about 15-20 minutes. Stir in remaining coconut cream and lime juice. Fluff with a fork. If desired, garnish with fresh cilantro. Enjoy!
- For full tips, please see blog post.
- Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.