Rice Side Dishes are never a bad idea for supporting your main dish! Rice is simple enough for any beginner to make and since it has such a simple flavor profile, it can go well with so many different types of cuisines.
Whether you like white, brown, or any other type of rice there is a side dish perfect for incorporating rice into your meal.
It is enjoyed throughout the world, in all types of cultures and cooking, so no matter what style of food you decide to prepare, rice is guaranteed to add even more taste to a delicious meal!
They can be added to soups, salads, or casseroles and will take on the flavor of everything added in.
Or they can be prepared in a much simpler way like Japanese Sticky Rice or simple Oven-Baked Brown Rice so you can ensure it lets the other flavors in your meal shine.
Fiesta Rice and Garlic Butter Parmesan Rice are another couple of methods of preparing rice that adds flavor without taking away from everything else on the dinner table.
Here are 25 rice side dishes for adding to your dinner table that taste so good, you may want to enjoy just a plate piled high with them!
1. Creamy Rice
We all love rice as is, but sometimes we need something a little different to bring to the dinner table and that’s where this Creamy Rice recipe can help.
French fried onions give this a completely new flavor and make it so much more savory and delicious than it would have been in the rice was served plain.
Some butter, chicken stock, and cream of chicken soup are also add on to the rice and add the creamy texture but the onions are the special ingredient that deserves a place on this side!
All of your favorite vegetables can be added to this pilaf to make it perfect for your personal tastes.
There’s a hidden layer of nuttiness that comes out as the rice is added to your almonds that go well with the slight sweetness from the cinnamon, cranberries, orange, and zest.
Despite how easy this is to prepare, everyone who has a bite will be impressed!
You may see the word salad and be tempted to skip over this, but this is not like other salads that are full of lettuce and dressing.
This has some shallots and chicken broth mixed into your favorite long grain rice with some cilantro and red pepper added in for color!
The dash of lemon zest and lemon juice adds the right amount of tang without overwhelming your taste buds.
This creamy casserole-type dish can complement nearly everything at a potluck or large dinner gathering.
All you need is some French onion soup, beef broth, and unsalted butter to transform your white rice from basic to amazing!
If you prefer other flavors, you can experiment with other flavors of broth like chicken or veggie.
Even the pickiest eaters will love this version of a rice side dish!
Garlic and Parmesan cheese are the stars of this side dish but the broth, milk, and butter help make a creamy and flavorful side.
This classic casserole is the perfect side dish for special family dinners.
Children love it from the bubbly and golden cheese and won’t even mind that they are eating broccoli!
Even if you use leftover rice for this dish, you will end up with a delicious side that is sure to go quickly the next time you prepare it for dinner!
7. Coconut Rice
Want to take your Thai dinner up a notch?
Pair your favorite Thai meal with this Coconut Rice with pineapple added in.
You can use either a rice cooker or prepare this on your stovetop as long as you remember to include canned coconut milk for the best flavor!
This “salad” is full of spice, sweetness, and crunchy nuttiness!
Feel free to prepare the ingredients a day ahead and assemble them right before you are ready to serve to make it a stress-free process.
The bright colors in this dish make it so appetizing but once you get a taste, you will be in love with this Asian-American-style rice dish!
If spice and heat aren’t your cups of tea, rest assured that there isn’t too much heat in this casserole.
If you want to avoid spices, you can use Monterey Jack cheese rather than Pepper Jack and your favorite mild green chiles.
Like many casseroles, you can prepare this in advance or even freeze it so go ahead and make enough to last the next couple of months!
After one taste you will thank yourself for making a bulk batch!
Cheese and bacon are guaranteed to make any savory dish better, as this recipe will prove!
It is almost like a risotto without all of the stirring involved.
You can even use any type of rice you want!
Even leftover rice can be used for this cheesy rice dish.
11. Fiesta Rice
The name of this says enough about it.
This rice dish can turn any meal into a fiesta!
There are tons of colors, flavors, and textures from all of the veggies added in including black beans, corn, carrots, and tomatoes.
While Jasmine rice is recommended for this recipe, you can use your favorite type of rice.
Even though this is a side dish, this wild rice pilaf is going to be everyone’s favorite part of the meal!
There is nothing plain about this, from the dried herbs added in, the touch of sweetness from the diced sweet potato and cranberries, and the nuttiness from the chopped pecans.
This is both a beautifully colored and appetizing dish that is perfect for family dinners around the holidays.
Yes, there is a bit of stirring involved with making risotto but one taste of this Wild Mushroom Risotto and it will all be worth it!
It is an easy process to make this rich and flavorful dish and since it pairs well with so many meals, you will want to make it as often as you can.
Even if you shy away from mushrooms, you will find yourself switching over to becoming a mushroom lover after tasting this dish!
Spicing up tacos, burritos, or any border-style food is easily done with the right Cilantro Lime Rice recipe.
Basmati rice is best for this and guarantees a good result every time but other long-grain rice or Jasmine rice can work well too.
There are a few simple tweaks in this recipe from how you would normally prepare basmati rice but they do a great job of elevating a simple side of rice to a side dish that will accentuate all the other flavors it is paired with.
This Japanese Sticky Rice recipe is simple enough for any beginner to make!
It is fool-proof and pairs well with so many different types of dishes so consider this a new staple for your rice preparation.
Try this rice out for yourself then compare it to what you get at your favorite restaurant.
You will love the fruits of your labor so much more than what you would order elsewhere!
16. Arancini Di Riso
This Italian side dish is a deep-fried ball of rice coated in breadcrumbs.
Typically, these are made by forming risotto into round balls with mozzarella, peas, or tomato sauce hidden away inside.
These crispy rice balls are a Sicilian treat and will give you a little taste of Italy in your own kitchen.
Although this soup could easily be made into an entire meal in itself, it is a perfect side dish for a hearty dinner during the cold weather season.
You get all of the comforts that you grew up on from chicken soup with the addition of some brown rice and a bit of creaminess from some evaporated milk added in.
If you are working on cleaning out the leftovers in your fridge, go ahead and use some cooked chicken or cooked rice.
You will still end up with a delicious and comforting soup!
In about ten minutes you can have a delicious bean and rice salad to add to your summertime barbecues!
Although this recipe calls for black, kidney, and cannellini beans you can use whatever three types you like best!
Make your own dressing from this recipe for an added touch of tang and let it all chill before serving for an extra refreshing side dish!
Try this Rice & Fruit Salad too—lightly sweet and goes great with fish!
The good thing about this rice dish is that it is a guaranteed winner on your dinner table and it pairs well with so many different dishes.
The bad part is that it will taste so good, that no one will pay attention to anything else you serve it with.
This Toasted Brown Rice recipe will be the best part of your meal, hands down!
Brown rice will never be the same once you try your hand at this toasted rice recipe.
The great thing about rice is you can easily revamp rice you have already cooked into a new and tasty dish without anyone assuming you used leftover rice.
The right mixture of seasonings and veggies added in can make your day-old rice taste brand new!
This Mexican Fried Rice in particular uses corn, green chiles, and chopped tomatoes to refresh cooked rice into a hot and hearty side dish.
Here are some helpful tips for reheating fried rice.
Cooking with black rice may be an intimidating thought if you are new to it but this recipe does a great job of walking you through how to make the perfect black rice salad!
There is a slight sweetness present in this salad from the maple syrup, honey, fruit, and cinnamon but it all comes together with the black rice for a delicious and beautiful side salad.
Whether you like to prepare your soup on a stovetop or with an Instant Pot or Crock-Pot this soup can be made with whatever method you like!
There are tons of fall vegetables in this soup along with greens, wild rice, and a creamy sauce made from coconut milk.
Even though this is an autumn season soup, you will want to enjoy it year-round!
Fluffy and flavorful, you will love everything about this side of rice!
It only takes about ten minutes of preparation before you put it in the oven to bake, meaning less time in the kitchen and more time being spent eating!
Even as a simple side of rice, there is a ton of flavor making it perfect for your chicken or fish-based meals.
With lots of foods, it can be hard to find a balance between feeling good while eating them and feeling good after eating them.
Luckily, with this salad, you get tons of veggies with your brown rice so you can check off eating some vegetables without feeling like you are forcing yourself to down your greens.
The Italian herbs mixed in add a slight kick and tons of flavor
You may like the store-bought packages of Rice-A-Roni but after you try this homemade recipe, you will never turn back to the boxed version again!
This is much easier to make than you may suspect and it will feel good knowing everything that has gone into your dish while leaving out all of the unpronounceable ingredients.
When you have leftover white rice, here are some rice recipes to make the next day!
The bottom line
There are lots of ways to use this economical grain, and it’s easier than you might think to get it to come out perfectly.
There is rarely ever a meal that is not made better with the right rice side dishes!
No matter your taste or experience level with cooking, there is a way for you to cook rice and include it with your meals without it tasting bland or boring!
- Creamy Rice
- Moroccan Rice Pilaf
- Lemon Rice Salad
- Stick Of Butter Rice
- Garlic Butter Parmesan Rice
- Broccoli Rice & Cheese Casserole
- Coconut Rice
- Curried Rice Salad With Apples & Raisins
- Cheesy Green Chile Rice Casserole
- Cheesy Bacon Rice
- Fiesta Rice
- Cranberry Pecan Sweet Potato Wild Rice Pilaf
- Wild Mushroom Risotto
- Cilantro Lime Rice
- Japanese Sticky Rice
- Arancini Di Riso
- Chicken Rice Soup
- 3-Bean Salad With Rice
- Toasted Brown Rice With Mushrooms & Thyme
- Mexican Fried Rice
- Jeweled Black Rice Salad
- Autumn Wild Rice Soup
- Oven-Baked Brown Rice
- Brown Rice Salad With Garden Vegetables
- Homemade Rice-A-Roni
- Scroll for your favorite recipe from our list of Rice Side Dishes.
- Pick out the ingredients needed for the dish.
- Cook then enjoy immediately!