This Lemon Rice is packed with flavor to give you the tastiest side dish and pairs well with just about any meat, chicken, or vegetable main dish. It's the perfect summer dish that makes everything else taste even better. The bright citrus flavor shines through each bite.
This recipe combines the aromatic flavors of onion, garlic, and cumin with the freshness of mint, parsley, and lemon, creating a truly mouthwatering and refreshing dish. Long-grain white rice provides the perfect texture while adding beef or chicken bouillon enhances its savory taste.
The generous amount of lemon juice adds bright, and zesty flavor. This lemon rice recipe is the perfect way to jazz up any meal and will impress your friends and family! It tastes a lot like the stuffing of grape leaves, an Arabian dish called Waraq Enab.
❤️ WHY YOU’LL LOVE THIS RECIPE
Versatile: Lemon rice is a versatile dish that can be served by itself or as a side dish. It goes especially well with all kinds of meat like fish, chicken, and beef.
Easy to make: This recipe is easy to make and requires only a few simple steps! It is a great dish for beginners or anyone who is short on time but still wants to enjoy a flavorful and satisfying meal.
Flavorful: Even though it's easy to make, this recipe is bursting with flavor! The unique blend of herbs pairs with the zestiness of the lemon juice to create a unique taste profile.
All you need are some incredibly simple, pantry staple ingredients to make the tastiest lemon rice you've ever had! Let's look at some of the main ingredients.
You can scroll down to the recipe card for further details and instructions.
Rice: I've found that long-grain parboiled white rice works the best. However, you can use short-grain or Basmati.
Herbs and aromatics: Much of the flavor in this rice comes from the unique blend of herbs and aromatics. We'll need some mint, parsley, garlic, and onion.
Lemon: It wouldn't be lemon rice without a generous amount of lemon juice! I recommend using freshly-squeezed lemons.
Butter: To add a nice rich flavor with a bit of creaminess we will use butter.
🔪 HOW TO MAKE IT
Making lemon rice is incredibly easy and quick too, and will give you a delicious side dish.
The full instructions are in the recipe card below, but let's look at the main first.
In a pan, add the butter and one tablespoon of olive oil. Add the onion and cook until translucent. Then add the garlic and stir for a minute on medium heat.
Next, add the rice to the pot and stir for another minute.
Add mint and parsley, and cook for 2 minutes.
Pour the boiling water, and when it comes to a boil again, add the black pepper, cumin, lemon juice, bouillon, and ½ tablespoon olive oil. Stir then taste and add salt if needed.
Cover and cook for 25 minutes on the lowest heat. You can serve lemon rice as a side dish, but it also tastes great on its own.
👩🏽🍳 PRO TIPS
Don’t overcook: The key to perfect lemon rice is not overcooking it. Overcooking can cause the rice to become mushy and unappetizing.
Rinse the rice: Rinse the rice thoroughly with cold water before cooking to remove any excess starch and impurities. This will prevent the rice from clumping together and ensure that it cooks evenly.
Fluff the rice: Once the lemon rice is cooked, let it sit for a few minutes before fluffing it with a fork. This will help to separate the grains and create a light and fluffy texture.
🍽️ HOW TO SERVE IT
This lemon rice recipe is delicious as a standalone dish, but it also pairs really well with a variety of main dishes. Lemon rice with lamb shanks is one of my favorites, and it's scrumptious with just about any chicken recipe!
It's also a great rice for stuffing vegetables with. In the middle east, a very popular choice for this is stuffed grape leaves. Other veggies like zucchini, potatoes, and bell peppers work great also! Lemon rice can also be eaten at room temperature, making it a great choice for outdoor picnics.
Lemon rice is one of those dishes that can be easily adapted to suit any palette. Here are some delicious variations you can try:
Add lemon zest: To give it an even more citrusy, lemon flavor, you can add the zest of half a lemon to your delicious rice minutes before it's done and give it a quick stir.
Add veggies: You can easily saute some vegetables like mushrooms and bell peppers, and then add it to this rice dish to make it a healthy vegetarian meal.
Nuts: Adding chopped nuts such as almonds or cashews is a great way to add some Mediterranean touch.
Leftover lemon rice can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to four days. To reheat, place the desired amount of rice in a covered bowl and microwave for 1 minute or until hot. You can also place the leftover lemon rice in a skillet over low heat and stir occasionally until heated through.
To freeze, allow it to cool down to room temperature and then transfer it to freeze-safe bags and press lightly to remove as much air as possible before sealing them. You can also freeze it in an airtight container. Freeze them for up to three months! When you're ready to have it, allow it to thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating as per the instructions above.
📣 MORE RICE RECIPES
- ½ cup Parboiled white rice
- 1 medium onion finely chopped
- ¼ cup chopped mint leaves
- ¼ cup chopped parsley leaves
- 3 garlic cloves thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 cube beef or chicken bouillon low sodium
- 2 teaspoons butter
- 1 ½ tablespoon olive oil
- Salt to taste
- ¼ teaspoon Black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon cumin powder
- 1 ⅓ cup boiling water
- In a pan, add the butter and one tablespoon of olive oil. Add the onion and saute until translucent. Add the garlic and stir for a minute on medium heat.
- Add the rice and stir for another minute.
- Add the mint and parsley, and cook for 2 minutes.
- Pour the boiling water, and when it comes to a boil again, add the black pepper, cumin, lemon juice, bouillon, and ½ tablespoon olive oil, stir then taste if it needs salt. Cover and cook for 17 minutes on lowest heat.
- Turn off the heat and keep the pan covered for 10 to 15 minutes. Fluff the rice and serve.
- Do not overcook the rice or add more water; it will turn mushy.
- If you are using regular long-grain or short-grain rice, the water should be one cup instead of 1 ⅓.
- This post was originally posted in 2014.