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Tomato Coconut Rice

An easy and simple recipe for Kerala style flavored tomato coconut rice with video instructions .This is a mild South Indian rice recipe with tomatoes and coconut and few spices to add aroma and flavor. Trust me, this recipe is good to have in your repertoire if you are a busy cook. If you have cooked rice ready, this stovetop meal comes together in about 15-20 minutes.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 2 -3


  • 1 tbsp Coconut oil
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1 inch Cinnamon
  • 2 Green Cardamom
  • 2 Cloves
  • 45 gms ½ cup Grated Coconut[If you like coconut, you can use up to ¾ cup]
  • 10 gms Ginger
  • 10 gms Garlic
  • 2-3 Green chilles; slit lengthwise
  • 1 Sprig Curry leaves
  • 1 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 125 gms 1 cup Tomato; roughly chopped
  • 5 cups Cooked & cooled rice
  • Salt to taste


  • Heat a skillet/wok on medium heat.
  • Add coconut oil followed by whole spices - bay leaf, gently crushed green cardamom and cloves and cinnamon. Fry for a few seconds or until aromatic.
  • Add grated coconut and fry until aromatic (approx. 2-3 minutes). Don't brown the coconut, just lightly roasted.
  • Using a mortar & pestle, crush the ginger and garlic and add it to the skillet. Cook off the raw smell. It took me about 2-3 minutes.
  • Mix the turmeric powder.
  • Add the roughly chopped tomatoes and cook to your liking. [Note: I don't like tomatoes mushy, so I cook them only for 3-4 minutes.]
  • Add the rice to the skillet and mix well to combine. [Note: If you have not added salt while cooking the rice, add it now and mix well to combine. But for best results, season with salt while cooking the rice.]
  • Serve hot.



  • 1 cup = 250 ml. Typical US cups are 240 ml. You can use US cups for measurements without any drastic difference in the recipe.
  • Grams to cups measurements – we strive to provide these conversions as accurately as possible. There might be some slight variations depending on the brand, weighing scale etc.
  • Use rice that was cooked ahead of time and cooled completely for best results. Break the lumps in the rice before adding to the skillet/wok. I cook the rice with salt, so I have not added any additional salt while preparing the dish.
  • Serving size - I usually serve this as a main meal. If that is the case, then this measurement serves as a heavy meal for ~ 2-3 people. If you are serving as side, it will make a few more servings. Always adjust the serving size to suit your dietary needs.
  • The cook time assumes rice is already cooked and cooled.