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Sweet Rice Recipe | Kesariya Bhat

Sweet Rice is a very easy dish that goes well with some spicy food. This is because it balances the taste and a great sweet spicy experience. Most often it is served with Biryani and Peas Pulao (Matar Pulao).
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Sweet Rice is a simple delicious dish that takes less than 30 mins to cook. It is also known as Kesariya Bhat. In many parts of India the dish is served along with Biryani or Peas Pulao (Matar Pulao). This brings an awesome and interesting blend of sweet and spicy flavor to the meal. The dish is also well served with curry dish because of the same blend of sweet-spicy taste. Many people also prefer to eat it on it own as it pretty much a dish on it own just like Biryani or Pulao. Since it is all sweet and not everybody is a sweet tooth it acts more as a side dish for most people.

As we mentioned earlier it is also called as Kesariya Bhat. The word Kesariya means Saffron colour and the dish derives its name from the colour used while cooking the dish. In India, the dish is especially prepared during certain festivals like Basant Panchami. On this day it is considered good to cook this food at home.

Sweet Rice Recipe | Kesariya Bhat

Sweet Rice (Kesariya Bhat)

Sweet Rice is a very easy dish that goes well with some spicy food. This is because it balances the taste and a great sweet spicy experience. Most often it is served with Biryani and Peas Pulao (Matar Pulao). In many places Peas pulao is also called as Namkeen Chawal. Since Peas are mostly available during winters (forget about frozen options) in many places both Sweet Rice and Namkeen Chawal are prepared as a combo dish for meal.

Ingredients to make Sweet Rice

While the main ingredients of Sweet Rice is obviously Rice, Sugar and Clarified Butter, dry fruits and other ingredients mentioned here basically enhances the flavour. Just adding Sugar to Rice and frying it in Clarified butter won’t make you a great dish.

Ingredients to make Sweet Rice
Ingredients to make Sweet Rice

Mostly the ingredients mentioned in this dish are available in local stores especially if you are living outside India. You may find some difficulty getting Saffron threads but without it as well you can cook this dish.

Clarified Butter

Clarified Butter is one of the important ingredients for this dish. It is also known as Ghee in Hindi and is a well known ingredient for cooking. If you are in India we recommend using Amul Ghee for great taste. Now-a-days, in most countries you can easily find Clarified butter though it is slightly different from Pure Ghee. This is because most food companies add a small percentage of vegetable oil to make it fluent and spreadable. If you are living outside India and cannot find Clarified butter you can add butter (preferably unsalted) though the taste may be slightly different (in a good way).

Spices

Most of the spices used in the dish are easily available in local store. These are also easily available in major stores outside India and you should not face any difficulty getting them. The only ingredient you may struggle a bit is Saffron threads but if that is the case you can make dish without it. You won’t miss anything major if you do not add Saffron to the dish.

Basmati Rice

Basmati is a variety of long, slender and aromatic rice. It is traditionally grown in Indian subcontinent and neighbouring regions. Basmati Rice is best fit to make this dish as it gives great texture and aroma to the dish. If possible you should use aged Basmati Rice to make fluffy rice. While you can use any variety of Rice, we prefer Basmati Rice to make this dish because of these reasons.

Preparation Steps to make Sweet Rice

There are few preparation steps to make Sweet Rice(Kesariya Bhat). To make Sweet Rice choose good quality Basmati rice in a large bowl and wash it thoroughly with water. Try washing rice only twice so that you don’t loose on nutrients.

Washed Basmati Rice to make Sweet Rice
Washed Basmati Rice to make Sweet Rice

We mentioned good quality Basmati rice because of two reasons –

  • First, Rice is the main ingredient for this dish
  • There are many type of Basmati Rice available in the market and not all of it is quite nice and tasty.

We are not too fussed about using only Basmati Rice and if you have any other personal favourite we recommend to use it instead.

Now, chop Almond and Cashew nuts in large pieces, possibly just in 2 pieces. Also, break the cardamom pods partially as it will be used later while frying. If you do not have access to cardamom pods, you can also use Cardamom powder while making Sweet Rice.

To give it a colourful appearance we use food colour. Food colour is added for aesthetics and makes dish look colourful and beautiful. Take a pinch of food colour powder in a bowl and add 2 tbsp milk to it. Mix it well and keep it aside. We will use it later once we fry rice.

Make food colour by mixing pinch of food colour powder in a bowl and add 2 tbsp milk to it.
Make food colour by mixing pinch of food colour powder in a bowl and add 2 tbsp milk to it.

In case you do not have good colour but have turmeric at home, you can use a pinch of turmeric to make the food colour.

How to make Sweet Rice (Kesariya Bhat)

To make Sweet Rice, first you need to cook steamed rice separately. We use Microwave method to cook steamed rice for this dish however you can also use other methods to cook Steamed rice.

So let us start with the microwave method to cook Steamed rice.

Cook Rice

To make steamed rice, take rice in a bowl and wash it thoroughly with running water. Do not wash rice more than twice. This is because though you are washing the rice you are also loosing on nutritions. Therefore, to retain as much nutrients as possible it is better not to wash rice too much.

Once you have washed rice, remove access water and put them in a deep microwave pot or glass bowl. Add 2 cups of water to it and keep it in the microwave to cook for 15 Mins. Depending on your Microwave setting and the amount of water used your time to cook Steamed rice may vary. The amount of water required to cook rice also depends on quality of rice and if it has been aged.

Steamed Rice cooked in Microwave
Steamed Rice cooked in Microwave

For Sweet Rice you must remember not to evaporate all the water from rice. Ensure it has very little water to keep it wet. This is required so you can mix other ingredients to cook Sweet Rice as mentioned in next section.

Once Rice is boiled you are now ready to add sugar in it. Add Sugar and mix it well.

Mix Sugar in Steamed Rice
Mix Sugar in Steamed Rice

If you have used fine granular Sugar then the Sugar should mix easily else you would see Sugar grains in Rice at this stage. If this is the case for you then no need to worry as we will be cooking Sweet rice in next steps. The Sugar will mix properly in next step along with other ingredients.

Sugar mixed rice ready to cook Sweet Rice
Sugar mixed rice ready to cook Sweet Rice

Cooking Sweet Rice

Now take a frying pan and put it on high flame. Once frying pan is hot, take Clarified butter and add to it. Once Clarified butter starts melting add Cloves, Saffron threads, Nutmeg powder, Cardamom Pods, Chopped Almonds and Cashews to it.

Add Cloves, Saffron threads, Nutmeg powder, Cardamom Pods, Chopped Almonds and Cashews to Clarified butter
Add Cloves, Saffron threads, Nutmeg powder, Cardamom Pods, Chopped Almonds and Cashews to Clarified butter

Now saute them using spatula for a min or two. If the pan is too hot, reduce the flame to medium so that the ingredients don’t start burning. Burnt ingredients may spoil the taste and hence you need to regulate the flame to properly make this dish.

Saute ingredients to make Sweet Rice
Saute ingredients to make Sweet Rice

Now is the time to mix sugar-mixed boiled rice to the frying pan.

Add Sugar Mixed rice to fried ingredients
Add Sugar Mixed rice to fried ingredients to make Kesariya Bhat

Mix them properly and let it cook for a minute.

Sugar Mixed rice is mixed well with other fried ingredients
Sugar Mixed rice is mixed well with other fried ingredients

Also, it is time to make our rice colourful. Therefore, add food colour to rice.

Add food colour to fried sweet rice
Add food colour to fried sweet rice

This is the same food colour that we prepared earlier and kept for later use.

Mix all the ingredients properly for 5 – 7 mins and allow the water to evaporate while the Clarified butter and other ingredients mix properly.

Mix all sweet rice ingredients properly and cook for few minutes
Mix all sweet rice ingredients properly and cook for few minutes

Now turn off the flame as the dish is ready to be served.

Tasty Sweet Rice is ready
Tasty Sweet Rice is ready

How to serve Sweet Rice

Sweet Rice or Kesariya Bhat is a complete dish on its own however most people love to eat it with something spicy. Mostly Sweet Rice is served along with Biryani or Peas Pulao. This combo of sweet and spicy is quite well known and loved for the sweet-spicy flavour.

Sweet Rice is also served on its own
Sweet Rice is also served on its own

You can also serve Sweet rice as a side with curry dish.

Chef Recommendations for Sweet Rice

  • Do not fry dry fruits and other ingredients on high flame as they may easily burn and spoil the taste.
  • Once you add sugar mixed rice to fry, do not run it continuously with spatula else the rice will just get mash and split. In such case you won’t get fluffy Sweet Rice.
  • Food colour is only for texture. If you do not have food colour but have some turmeric at home, you can use that for food colour.
  • You can use Cardamom powder instead of whole Cardamom pods.
  • Nutmeg is optional. You can also be creative and add more dry fruits or ingredients of your choice to give this recipe your personal touch. 

Users Ask

Are Sweet Rice and Sticky Rice same?

No. Sweet and Sticky Rice are different dishes. Sweet Rice is prepared by frying sugar mixed boiled rice in Clarified butter with other ingredients. Preferably Basmati Rice is used to make Sweet Rice. Sticky Rice is mostly prepared using different quality of rice. It comes in market as Sticky Rice. You can also make Sticky Rice using Rice which is not aged. Usually new rice or un-aged rice is used in making Sticky Rice.

Is Sweet Rice good for you?

Yes, sweet rice is a tasty dish that goes well with curry, Biryani and Peas Pulao. You can also eat Sweet Rice on its own and it is ~450 calories per serving. Though the dish is moderate from calories point of view eating Sweet Rice regularly is not recommended. This is due to the amount of Sugar you get from this dish as per adult daily reference intake. Therefore, enjoy the dish in moderate quantity and occasionally as there are plenty of tasty healthy options to try.

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Sweet Rice best served with spicy dish

Sweet Rice Recipe

Sweet Rice is a very easy dish that goes well with some spicy food. This is because it balances the taste and a great sweet spicy experience. Most often it is served with Biryani and Peas Pulao (Matar Pulao).
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Course: Bread, Paratha & Rice, Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 2
Calories: 489kcal
Author: Meenu

Ingredients

Main Ingredients for Sweet Rice

  • cup Basmati Rice Basmati Chawal
  • 4 tbsp Sugar As per taste
  • 10 g Almond Badam
  • 15 g Cashew nuts Kaju
  • 10 Cloves Laung
  • 7 Cardamom Ilaichi
  • 4 Saffron Threads
  • Pinch Saffron food colour
  • 1 tbsp Clarified Butter Ghee
  • 2 tbsp Milk for mixing the food colour

Optional Ingredients for Sweet Rice

  • ¼ tsp Nutmeg

Instructions

Preparation Steps to make Sweet Rice

  • Take Basmati rice in a large bowl and wash it thoroughly with water. Try washing rice only twice so that you don't loose on nutrients.
    ⅔ cup Basmati Rice
  • Chop Almond and Cashew nuts in large pieces, possibly just in 2 pieces. Also, break the cardamom pods partially as it will be used later while frying.
    10 g Almond, 15 g Cashew nuts, 7 Cardamom
  • Take a pinch of food colour in a bowl and add 2 tbsp milk to it. Mix it well. We will use it later once we fry rice.
    Pinch Saffron food colour, 2 tbsp Milk

How to make Sweet Rice

  • Now take washed rice in a deep cooking pot and add 2 cup of water to it. Keep it in microwave to cook for 15 Mins
    ⅔ cup Basmati Rice
  • Once Rice is boiled add sugar in it and mix it well and keep it aside
    4 tbsp Sugar
  • Now take a frying pan and put it on high flame.
  • Once frying pan is hot, take Clarified butter in it.
    1 tbsp Clarified Butter
  • Once Clarified butter melts add Cloves, Saffron threads, Nutmeg powder, Cardamom Pods, Chopped Almonds and Cashews to it and run it using spatula for a min or two. You can also lower down the flame in case Clarified butter is too hot else it will burn the ingredients.
    10 g Almond, 10 Cloves, 7 Cardamom, 4 Saffron Threads, ¼ tsp Nutmeg, 15 g Cashew nuts
  • Now is the time to mix sugar-mixed boiled rice to the frying pan. Now add food colour to rice. Run it for 5 – 7 mins so the water evaporates while the Clarified butter and other ingredients mix properly.
  • Turn off the flame as sweet rice is ready to be served.

Notes

  • Do not fry dry fruits and other ingredients on high flame as they may easily burn and spoil the taste.
  • Once you add sugar mixed rice to fry, do not run it continuously with spatula else the rice will just get mash and split. In such case you won’t get fluffy Sweet Rice.
  • Food colour is only for texture. If you do not have food colour but have some turmeric at home, you can use that for food colour.
  • You can use Cardamom powder instead of whole Cardamom pods.
  • Nutmeg is optional. You can also be creative and add more dry fruits or ingredients of your choice to give this recipe your personal touch. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1Serving | Calories: 489kcal (24%) | Carbohydrates: 83g (28%) | Protein: 8g (16%) | Fat: 15g (23%) | Saturated Fat: 6g (38%) | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 21mg (7%) | Sodium: 15mg (1%) | Potassium: 267mg (8%) | Fiber: 4g (17%) | Sugar: 26g (29%) | Vitamin A: 27IU (1%) | Vitamin C: 2mg (2%) | Calcium: 84mg (8%) | Iron: 2mg (11%)
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