Seasoned Rice is a homemade version of the flavoured boxed rices like Rice-A-Roni and Uncle Ben’s! A quick way to add flavour to white rice to make it super tasty, this is a rice side that’s economical, simple to make, and goes with literally everything.
Make a big batch and refrigerate 4 days or freeze 3 months.
Buttery Seasoned Rice
I tell my friends this is the rice version of Potato Salad – you make a big batch, stash it in the fridge and bring it out night after night to serve with everything.
Except unlike Potato Salad, this rice recipe can also be frozen. Whip it out of the freezer, pop it in the microwave for a couple of minutes. Anyone for a 2 minute instant side – that didn’t come from a box??!!
Rice Side Dish for everything!
So how do you make plain white rice so tasty, you will want to eat a meals’ worth straight out of the pot?? Cook it with stock powder/bouillon, some spices and add a good wack of butter!
Flavourings and spices for seasoned rice
Here’s what goes in this seasoned rice. You can make this with any white rice other than speciality rices like risotto, paella and sushi rice. Also see the recipe notes for how to adjust this for brown rice.
Don’t worry if you don’t have all the spices, there are plenty of alternatives! See below the photo for a list.
Substitution for spices
You could skip one of the spices and it will still taste similar. Or you can substitute as follows:
Garlic powder – melt 1 tbsp (15g) butter and cook 2 finely chopped garlic cloves until golden, then add rice, water and all other ingredients and cook per recipe;
Onion powder – add extra 1/2 tsp garlic powder instead;
Paprika – just skip it, adds a touch of warm earthy flavour and a bit of colour, not critical;
Thyme – not critical. Best sub is dried oregano, followed by basil. 1/4 tsp sage powder is SO GOOD as well.
Parsley – optional, this is more for visual, to get the little green specks in the rice. Sub with basil, or stir through 1 cup finely sliced green onion, or 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley or chives.
How to make rice taste better!
Here’s how to make this flavoured rice which comes out beautifully fluffy – with the added bonus of no scorched pot base too!
Place rice, water and all the seasonings into a large saucepan or small pot and give it a good stir;
Bring to a simmer over medium high heat until there’s bubbles around the edges and the entire surface is rippling, and it foams a bit (you’ll see in the video);
Place a tight fitting lid on, then turn down to medium low – or low for strong stoves. You want the water to still be simmering – if the heat is too low, then the rice just sits there in hot water, bloating, rather than absorbing. Too high, and it will bubble over and out the sides of the pot. NO PEEKING – the lid needs to stay on to trap the steam inside – this will ensure your rice cooks evenly;
After 13 minutes, remove from the stove and let it rest for 10 minutes – the rice will finish cooking during this time (if you try the rice as soon as it comes off the stove, you’ll find the surface of the grain is wet and the inside is still uncooked);
Add butter and fluff up the rice with a rubber spatula – the residual heat will melt the butter. I recommend using at least 3 tbsp (50g) for a lovely buttery rice, but you can reduce to 2 tbsp (30g) if you want. Or sub with extra virgin olive oil, or just skip the butter – it will still be very tasty rice!
Pile onto serving platter, sprinkle with parsley or something green for presentation if you wish. Dig in!
What to serve with Seasoned Rice
It’s tasty enough to eat plain without sauce, quick enough for midweek meals yet so good you’ll want it on the table of grander affairs too! Here’s a few suggestions for mains to serve with this:
It would also be terrific to make a meat-free meal out of things like these:
AND stuff them into BURRITOS!!
Now, kiss those boxed rices goodbye, and make a big batch of this rice and refrigerate for days, or freeze it! – Nagi x
Watch how to make it
Buttery Seasoned Rice
- 2 cups long grain white rice , uncooked (Note 1 for brown rice)
- 3 1/4 cups water (cold tap water)
- 2 tsp chicken powder / granulated bouillon , or 2 cubes dissolved in boiling water (Note 2)
- 1 tsp garlic powder *
- 1 tsp onion powder *
- 1 tsp paprika *
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme *
- 2 tbsp dried parsley *, optional
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 50g / 3 tbsp butter, unsalted (or MORE!)
- Place all Rice ingredients in a large saucepan and give it a stir.
- Bring to simmer over medium high heat (edges bubbling, entire surface rippling), put the lid on and turn stove down to medium low (LOW for strong stoves). It should be simmering gently.
- Cook for 13 minutes - do not lift lid!
- Tilt pot then QUICKLY peek to ensure all water is absorbed.
- Remove from stove, stand 10 minutes with lid on.
- Add butter and fluff rice with a rubber spatula. Serve!
- Storage - please read Note 4.
- Rice cooker - Same ingredients, water and rice ratio. Pop it all in your rice cooker and cook per manufacturer directions, stir through butter at end.
- Garlic powder - melt 1 tbsp (15g) butter and cook 2 finely chopped garlic cloves until golden, then add rice, water and all other ingredients and cook per recipe.
- Onion powder - add extra 1/2 tsp garlic powder instead
- Paprika - just skip it, adds a touch of warm earthy flavour and a bit of colour, not critical
- Thyme - not critical. Best sub is dried oregano, followed by basil. 1/4 tsp sage powder is SO GOOD as well.
- Parsley - optional, this is more for visual, to get the little green specks in the rice. Sub with basil, or stir through 1 cup finely sliced green onion, or 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley or chives.
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