Seasoned Basmati Rice

Spices are tied in a bouquet garni so they're easy to remove after cooking. And the cheesecloth-wrapped bouquets, bundled in food-safe cellophane, are also good stocking stuffers on their own. Include these directions with each package of rice: Bring 3 cups water to a boil; add bouquet garni and 1 1/2 cups rice mixture, and cook 18 minutes or until rice and lentils are tender. Discard bouquet garni; stir 1/2 teaspoon salt into rice mixture.

Yield: About 6 cups uncooked rice mixture (serving size: cooked: 1/2 cup)
Recipe from Cooking Light

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Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 118
  • Calories from fat: 3%
  • Fat: 0.4g
  • Saturated fat: 0.1g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 0.1g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 0.2g
  • Protein: 3.7g
  • Carbohydrate: 25.3g
  • Fiber: 2.1g
  • Cholesterol: 0.0mg
  • Iron: 0.8mg
  • Sodium: 150mg
  • Calcium: 9mg


  • Bouquet garni:
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom pods, toasted
  • 16 whole cloves
  • 8 black peppercorns
  • 2 (3-inch) cinnamon sticks, halved
  • Remaining ingredients:
  • 4 cups uncooked basmati rice, divided
  • 1 cup lentils, divided
  • 1/4 cup minced crystallized ginger, divided
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds, toasted and divided
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper, divided


  1. To prepare bouquet garni, combine first 4 ingredients in a small bowl. Divide mixture evenly among 4 packages of a double layer of (4-inch-square) cheesecloth. Gather edges of cheesecloth together; tie securely with kitchen twine.
  2. Place 1 bouquet garni, 1 cup rice, 1/4 cup lentils, 1 tablespoon ginger, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, and 1/4 teaspoon white pepper in each of 4 containers. Seal tightly.
  3. Note: Nutritional analysis includes 1/2 teaspoon salt added for cooking.
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