Indian Style Basmati Rice


This savory Indian rice recipe is flavored with whole spices and fried onions. Soaking the basmati rice before cooking makes all the difference. Serve this Indian-style rice with your favorite Indian curry or dal (lentils). Make sure you warn people not to bite into the whole spices!

Cook Time:
35 mins
Additional Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
50 mins


  • 1 ½ cups basmati rice

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 1 (2 inch) piece cinnamon stick

  • 2 pods green cardamom

  • 2 whole cloves

  • 1 tablespoon cumin seed

  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced

  • 2 ½ cups water

  • 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste


  1. Place rice into a bowl with enough water to cover. Set aside to soak for 20 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, in the last 10 minutes of soaking, heat oil in a large pot or saucepan over medium heat. Add cinnamon stick, cardamom pods, and cloves, then stir in cumin seed. Cook and stir until fragrant and toasted, about a minute, then add onion to the pot. Saute onion until the color is a rich golden brown, about 10 minutes.

  3. Drain water from rice, and stir into the pot. Cook and stir rice until lightly toasted, about 3 minutes. Add water and salt, and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to low.

  4. Simmer for about 15 minutes, or until all the water has been absorbed. Let stand for 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork before serving.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

216 Calories
5g Fat
39g Carbs
4g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 216
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 5g 7%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Sodium 394mg 17%
Total Carbohydrate 39g 14%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Total Sugars 1g
Protein 4g
Vitamin C 1mg 6%
Calcium 26mg 2%
Iron 1mg 6%
Potassium 39mg 1%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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