Easy Rice Dishes With Few Ingredients

Rice is a versatile and budget-friendly staple that can be transformed into a variety of mouthwatering dishes with just a few simple ingredients. Whether in a hurry, working with limited pantry supplies, or looking for a quick and satisfying meal, these easy rice dishes with few ingredients are the perfect solution. This guide will explore several recipes that require minimal ingredients but deliver maximum flavour and comfort.

Before we get started, here are some basic ingredients you’ll need for most of these recipes:

Basic Ingredients

  • Rice (white, brown, Basmati, or Jasmine, depending on your preference)
  • Cooking oil (vegetable oil, olive oil, or any oil of your choice)
  • Salt and pepper
  • Water or broth (vegetable or chicken broth for added flavour)
  • Optional: Fresh herbs (parsley, cilantro, or chives), lemon juice, or grated cheese for garnish

Now, let’s dive into these easy and delicious rice dishes.

Recipe 1: Classic Fried Rice

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cooked rice (preferably cold and day-old)
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup frozen mixed vegetables (peas, carrots, corn)
  • 2-3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the beaten eggs and scramble them until they’re just cooked. Remove them from the skillet and set aside.
  3. In the same skillet, add the remaining tablespoon of oil.
  4. Add the frozen mixed vegetables and stir-fry for a few minutes until they’re heated and tender.
  5. Add the cold, cooked rice to the skillet, breaking up any clumps.
  6. Stir-fry the rice and vegetables together, ensuring they’re well mixed.
  7. Pour in the soy sauce and continue to stir-fry for a few more minutes until the rice is heated through and evenly coated with the sauce.
  8. Return the scrambled eggs to the skillet and mix them into the fried rice.
  9. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  10. Garnish with fresh herbs, a squeeze of lemon juice, or grated cheese if desired.

Recipe 2: Spanish-Inspired Tomato Rice

Ingredients

  • 1 cup white rice
  • 2 cups water or vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Rinse the rice under cold water until it runs clear.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
  3. Add the chopped onion and sauté until it becomes translucent.
  4. Stir in the minced garlic and sauté for another minute or until fragrant.
  5. Add the rice to the saucepan and cook, stirring frequently, for 2-3 minutes to lightly toast the rice.
  6. Pour in the diced tomatoes and their juices, along with the paprika.
  7. Stir to combine, then add the water or vegetable broth.
  8. Season with salt and pepper.
  9. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 15-20 minutes, or until the rice is tender and has absorbed the liquid.
  10. Remove the saucepan from heat, fluff the rice with a fork, and let it sit, covered, for an additional 5 minutes before serving.

Recipe 3: Lemon and Herb Rice Pilaf

Ingredients

  • 1 cup long-grain rice (Basmati or Jasmine)
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh herbs (parsley, cilantro, or chives), chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. In a saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
  2. Add the minced garlic and sauté for about 1 minute until fragrant.
  3. Add the rice to the saucepan and cook for 2-3 minutes to toast the rice lightly.
  4. Pour in the chicken or vegetable broth, along with the lemon zest and juice.
  5. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 15-20 minutes, or until the rice is tender and has absorbed the liquid.
  7. Remove the saucepan from heat, fluff the rice with a fork, and stir in the fresh herbs.
  8. Allow the rice to sit, covered, for an additional 5 minutes before serving.

Recipe 4: One-Pot Mexican Rice

Ingredients

  • 1 cup long-grain rice (white or brown)
  • 1 can (14 ounces) diced tomatoes with green chilies (such as Rotel)
  • 1 cup water or chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Combine the rice and diced tomatoes with green chilies (including the liquid), water or chicken broth, chili powder, and cumin in a large saucepan.
  2. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat.
  4. Once it boils, reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 15-20 minutes for white rice or 40-45 minutes for brown rice or until the rice is tender and has absorbed the liquid.
  5. Remove the saucepan from the heat and fluff the rice with a fork.

Recipe 5: Lemon Garlic Butter Rice

Ingredients

  • 1 cup long-grain rice (Basmati or Jasmine)
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. In a saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  2. Add the minced garlic and sauté for about 1 minute until fragrant.
  3. Add the rice to the saucepan and cook for 2-3 minutes to toast the rice lightly.
  4. Pour in the chicken or vegetable broth, lemon zest and juice.
  5. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the rice is tender and has absorbed the liquid.
  7. Remove the saucepan from heat, fluff the rice with a fork, and serve.

Recipe 6: Garlic Butter Parmesan Rice

Ingredients

  • 1 cup long-grain rice (white or brown)
  • 2 cups water or chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. In a saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.
  2. Add the minced garlic and sauté for about 1 minute until fragrant.
  3. Add the rice to the saucepan and cook for 2-3 minutes to toast the rice lightly.
  4. Pour in the water or chicken broth.
  5. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 15-20 minutes for white rice, 40-45 minutes for brown rice, or until the rice is tender and has absorbed the liquid.
  7. Remove the saucepan from heat, stir in the grated Parmesan cheese until it’s melted and well combined with the rice, and serve.

Conclusion

These easy rice dishes with few ingredients prove that you don’t need a long list of items to create delicious and satisfying meals. With just a handful of pantry staples and a little creativity, you can whip up a variety of flavorful rice dishes to enjoy on their own or as side dishes. Whether you’re craving the comforting flavours of fried rice, the zestiness of lemon and herbs, or the simplicity of butter and garlic, these recipes will surely please your palate while saving you time in the kitchen. Experiment with different variations and customize them to suit your taste preferences. Happy cooking!

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