September 28, 2023Review Recipe
Table of Contents
Lemon rice is an incredibly simple dish that packs a big punch of flavor. From its creamy texture to its citrusy aroma, everything about lemon rice makes it the perfect side dish or main course for any occasion – from weeknight dinners to weekend lunches.
Lemon Rice Ingredients
The tart and tangy flavor of the lemon juice adds a unique dimension to the dish. The rice itself is perfectly cooked and fluffy, with a slightly nutty taste that complements the sourness of the lemon.
- 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
- 1 cup of jasmine rice
- 2 cups of low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon of fresh lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon of fresh thyme leaves (plus additional for garnish)
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- ¼ teaspoon of black pepper
If you use full-sodium chicken broth, you may want to omit the added salt. I like using low-sodium and adding my own salt because some brands are much saltier than others.
Substitutions And Additions
RICE: Basmati rice will work as a great substitute for the jasmine rice in this easy recipe. These options cook up quickly and are not sticky like standard long-grain rice. If the long grain rice is all you have, it will work, but the texture of the rice will not be much stickier from the starches that are given off as the rice cooks. You will also need to adjust the amount of liquid used when cooking the standard long-grain rice as it may vary from the jasmine. Follow the package instructions.
FRESH HERBS: You can substitute fresh parsley or fresh chopped basil for the fresh thyme leaves in this easy lemon rice recipe. They all will blend beautifully with the lemon.
How to Make This Lemon Rice Recipe
This delicious side dish will come together easily in a pan on your stove. The rice simmers away with the chicken broth, lemon juice, and seasonings, producing flavorful results.
STEP ONE: In a medium saucepan, on medium-high heat, add the unsalted butter and allow it to melt before adding the jasmine rice. Gently toss the rice in the melted butter and let the rice lightly toast for 1 to 2 minutes.
OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS
Keep an eye when toasting the rice as you don’t want to brown it too much, or it will alter the flavor of this dish.
STEP TWO: Add the low-sodium chicken broth, fresh lemon juice, lemon zest, fresh thyme leaves, salt, and black pepper to the saucepan. Bring the rice and chicken broth to a boil, stirring as needed to prevent the rice from clumping.
Be sure to rinse your lemons under cool water to remove any film on the lemon skin before zesting them. You will also want to zest your lemons before squeezing them for the juice. It is very tricky to zest an already squeezed lemon.
STEP THREE: Once the chicken broth comes to a boil, cover the saucepan with a tight-fitting lid and reduce the heat to low heat.
STEP FOUR: Simmer the lemon rice for 20 to 22 minutes, without opening the lid during that time, until the jasmine rice has absorbed all the liquids.
STEP FIVE: Remove the saucepan from the heat, and gently fluff the cooked rice with a fork.
STEP SIX: Garnish the lemon rice with an additional sprinkle of fresh thyme leaves. This lemon rice should be served warm.
How To Serve
This delicious rice is incredibly versatile and the perfect side dish for so many meals. Serve it with dishes such as grilled salmon or grilled tilapia and a side of sauteed vegetables or roasted broccoli.
Let’s explore the different ways you can store your lemon rice.
MAKE AHEAD: If you’d like to prepare this dish in advance, you can do so by cooking the rice and mixing in the lemony goodness. Once the rice has cooled to room temperature, transfer it to an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator. It’s best to make the lemon rice no more than a day ahead to maintain its freshness and vibrant flavors.
IN THE FRIDGE: To store your leftover rice in the fridge, allow it to cool completely before transferring it to an airtight container or a sealable plastic bag. Refrigerate the rice promptly to ensure food safety.
Properly stored, lemon rice can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. Before consuming the leftovers, make sure to give the rice a good stir to redistribute the flavors.
IN THE FREEZER: If you have more lemon rice than you can enjoy within a few days, freezing it is a great option. First, allow the rice to cool completely. Portion it into individual serving sizes or divide it into meal-sized portions according to your needs.
Place the portions in freezer-safe containers or freezer bags, removing as much air as possible to prevent freezer burn. Properly stored, lemon rice can be frozen for up to 2 months.
REHEATING: When it’s time to reheat your stored lemon rice, there are a few methods you can choose from. If you prefer to use the microwave, transfer a portion of the rice to a microwave-safe dish and cover it with a damp paper towel to retain moisture. Microwave on medium heat in 1-minute intervals, stirring in between, until the rice is heated through.
Alternatively, you can reheat the rice on the stovetop. Add a small amount of oil or water to a non-stick skillet or pan and heat it over medium heat. Add the lemon rice and stir occasionally until it reaches the desired temperature.
With fragrant and zingy flavors of freshly squeezed lemons combined with fluffy jasmine rice, this lemon rice will become a quick family favorite. A one-pot dish made with simple ingredients, you’ll have a delicious side dish in no time.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
The chicken broth in the dish means it isn’t vegetarian, but you can easily substitute vegetable broth for a veggie version.
While bottled lemon juice would be fine, you will find that it does not have quite as vibrant a lemon flavor as fresh lemon juice.
Basmati or jasmine rice are good choices because they are light and fluffy. This type of rice will absorb the flavors of the other ingredients in the dish without becoming too mushy.
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- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup jasmine rice
- 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, plus additional for garnish
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- In a medium saucepan, on medium-high heat, add the unsalted butter and allow it to melt before adding the jasmine rice. Gently toss the rice in the melted butter and allow the rice to lightly toast for 1 to 2 minutes. You are not looking to brown the rice.
- To the saucepan, add the low-sodium chicken broth, freshly squeezed lemon juice, lemon zest, fresh thyme leaves, salt, and black pepper. Bring the rice and chicken broth to a boil, stirring as needed to prevent the rice from clumping.
- Once the chicken broth comes to a boil, cover the saucepan with a tight-fitting lid and reduce the heat to low.
- Simmer the lemon rice for 20 to 22 minutes, without opening the lid during that time, until all the liquids have been absorbed by the jasmine rice.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat, and gently fluff the cooked rice with a fork.
- Garnish the lemon rice with an additional sprinkle of fresh thyme leaves.
- If you use full-sodium chicken broth, you may want to omit the added salt. I like using low-sodium and adding my own salt because some brands are much saltier than others.
- Keep an eye when toasting the rice as you don’t want to brown it too much, or it will alter the flavor of this dish.
- Be sure to rinse your lemons under cool water to remove any film on the lemon skin before zesting them. You will also want to zest your lemons before squeezing them for the juice. It is very tricky to zest an already squeezed lemon.