Brown Coconut Rice with Cilantro

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Coconut milk, brown rice, coconut flakes, fresh ginger and cilantro are combined to create this simple side dish, perfect to accompany many Thai dishes.

Coconut milk, brown rice, coconut flakes, fresh ginger and cilantro are combined to create this simple side dish, perfect to accompany many Thai dishes.Brown Coconut Rice with Cilantro

The flavor of the coconut milk is subtle, and pairs perfectly with Sweet and Fiery Pork Tenderloin with Mango Salsa, Tilapia with Coconut Curry Sauce, Thai green coconut curry shrimp, to name a few. The photo above is the rice topped with the mango salsa from the Sweet and Fiery Pork.

You can also make this with white rice, which is usually my husband’s preference. For a healthier option, stick with brown rice. I’ve played around with several brown rice varieties and Jasmine works best (I was out so I used short grain). If using white, reduce the water to 1 cup and reduce the cooking time. If you wish, you can add a touch of sesame oil which I often like to do. The flaked coconut is optional but I like the subtle sweetness it adds to the dish.

Coconut milk, brown rice, coconut flakes, fresh ginger and cilantro are combined to create this simple side dish, perfect to accompany many Thai dishes.
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4.67 from 3 votes
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Brown Coconut Rice with Cilantro

206 Cals 3.1 Protein 35.1 Carbs 5.4 Fats
Cook Time: 45 mins
Total Time: 55 mins
Yield: 4 servings
COURSE: Side Dish
CUISINE: Chinese, Japanese
Coconut milk, brown rice, coconut flakes, fresh ginger and cilantro are combined to create this simple side dish, perfect to accompany many Thai dishes.


  • 1 cup uncooked brown rice, brown jasmine, basmati or short grain works well
  • 1 cup lite coconut milk, Thai Kitchen
  • 1 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1/4 tsp salt, or more to taste
  • 2 tbsp sweetened grated coconut
  • 3 tbsp cilantro


  • In a medium sized heavy pot, add coconut milk, rice, water, ginger, garlic, salt and coconut; bring to a bowl over medium heat.
  • Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until all liquid evaporates, about 40-45 minutes.
  • Remove from heat, keep covered for 10 more minutes.
  • Fluff with a fork; toss with cilantro.


Serving: 1/4th, Calories: 206kcal, Carbohydrates: 35.1g, Protein: 3.1g, Fat: 5.4g, Saturated Fat: 3.2g, Sodium: 154.3mg, Fiber: 1.8g, Sugar: 1.3g
WW Points Plus: 5
Keywords: Brown Coconut Rice with Cilantro, coconut brown rice, coconut rice, how to cook basmati rice, how to cook brown rice

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  1. I have extra-long grain brown rice; will that be a problem? Should I start the rice off with the water for 10 min before adding the other ingredients? I usually cook this type of brown rice in the rice cooker with a 2:1 ratio water to rice and it comes out perfectly.

    BTW I LOVE the site and the cookbooks! What a find.

  2. Thai delight! The recipe was AMAZING!! We used regular coconut milk (what we had on hand) and it was sublime. Cheers! 

  3. Thai delight.. This recipe was AMAZING!! We used regular coconut milk (on hand) and it turned out luscious and paired perfectly with our pineapple salsa Mahi Mahi!  Cheers! 

  4. I’m deathly allergic to cilantro! Tastes like sweatshops smell. Tossed with scallion greens instead.

    One star off because of the noxious weed!

  5. So, on your recipes, are Smart points the same as freestyle points? Or how do we convert them? I apologize in advance if this has been answered multiple times elsewhere. I can’t find the answer.

  6. Can this be made in the instant pot?

  7. Hi, Gina! Thinking of making this for a dinner party tonight. Have you ever done it in the Instant Pot? Was just wondering if it would take the same amount of time as regular brown rice or whether having the coconut milk in there changing the timing somehow (I am relatively new to the IP and still figuring those timing issues out)? Thank you!

  8. Pingback: Chicken Curry | The Pantry Portfolio

  9. Mine is cooking right now and I can't wait! I added a handful of dried currents instead of the flaked coconut.

  10. Made this tonight and it it's wonderful! It's very aromatic and has a wonderful texture. I added a dash of ground cardamom before cooking, because I serverd it with your Skinny Chicken Tikka Masala. My can of Lite Coconut Milk contained 1-3/4 Cups. I increased the Brown Basamati Rice to 1-1/4 cups and also increased the Coconut milk to 1 1/4 cups. That left me with 1/2 cup coconut milk to use in the Tikka Masala in place of the cow's milk. I just did that to use the remainder of the coconut milk. Try both recipes – they are a delight and your house will smell wonderful!

  11. I'm making this tonight with the pork and the mango salsa, but when I put it in the WW recipe builder (I do that to save the recipes so I can find them easily later) I get 7 Points Plus per serving? Why is that? 18 PP for the brown rice (4.5 per serving), 4 for the lite coconut milk (1 per serving) and 5 PP for the shredded coconut (1.25 per serving). That gives 6.75 PP per serving which the recipe builder rounds up to 7. Am I missing something or did you omit an ingredient when you were calculating the PP values in the recipe builder? Even if I leave out the shredded coconut, it's still 6 PP's per serving…

  12. The flavor of this was delicious but my rice came out mushy 🙁 I make rice all the time and have never had this problem…I even tried cooking for an extra 10ish minutes to let all liquid absorb and it was still like mush…the fiery pork was amazing though 🙂 any suggestions as to what i could have done wrong?

  13. Made this tonight with your Blackened Salmon and Mango Salsa. I made it with quinoa instead. To answer the other posts on tips for using quinoa, I reduced the water to 1 c. instead of 1 1/4 c. because in my experience, quinoa tends to get a little mushy if you have too much water. It was still a very thick concoction, the quinoa wasn't as fluffy as when you make it with just water, but we all liked it.

  14. I made this last night and it was such a hit! I'm making it again for some friends tonight. Thank you for sharing!

  15. Do you cook this differently if you use quinoa instead?