With the elegance and luxurious flavors that saffron rice presents, you may now be wondering what to serve with saffron rice at your next meal! And we have some delicious ideas for you here.
You no longer need to question that because we present to you, 16 options for foods to serve alongside your saffron rice!
This style of rice is very popular in Southern and Western Asia as well as throughout the Middle East so you are sure to get some cultural flavors mixed in when you decide on what you want to serve alongside your rice.
A little bit of saffron goes a long way with your rice so be sure to be careful when adding it in so you can enjoy all of the flavors present in your meal without overshadowing it with the saffron flavor.
When looking for sides for saffron rice, some delicious options include Heydari, a Turkish yogurt dip, or some Vegetarian Arancini.
There are tons of choices for your protein of choice including Butter Chicken, or Chicken Korma.
Once you get familiar with the complex flavors that saffron can add to your rice, you have worlds of options in foods to serve alongside it, but this list is a great starting point to incorporating it into your meals.
1. Saffron Rice
Any good saffron rice dish needs to start with a solid foundation of fluffy and fragrant rice!
Fortunately, this process of making saffron rice is not difficult if you know how to prepare traditional variations of rice.
This can even be made in an instant pot with the sauteed spices added in directly.
Making saffron rice is a simple way to add some earthy and spiced flavors to your dish without making any flavor too overwhelming.
2. Lamb Kabobs
Although this recipe for lamb kabobs features an extensive list of spices, that is what makes this an amazing choice for what to eat with saffron rice.
There is nothing unfamiliar in the list of spices so you are likely to have this already in your pantry ready to go!
The preparation and cooking of these kabobs takes no time as long as they have been able to marinate for a few hours.
This will be the star of your meal, with your saffron rice being an honorable mention for the tastiest aspect.
Although this is a curry, it is similar to a casserole, so some adjustments may be needed to make it more fitting for a casserole dish.
Using a slow cooker for this curry really brings out the bright flavors in the dish, as well as making it easier to prepare.
It is super easy to adjust the level of heat in this dish.
Just be sure to check out the label for the curry paste you use depending on your preference for spiciness.
This Afghan style chutney is a fantastic dip that pairs well with so many dishes, including saffron rice!
It is a quick process to blend the ingredients together making it both easy to make and easy to use.
This can be made into a creamier sauce by adding in yogurt but the original recipe still gives you a versatile dip that you will want to include in many of your upcoming meals.
If you are new to korma, imagine a creamy dish full of meat and vegetables.
The sauce thickens and absorbs so much flavor as it cooks.
If you are looking for some extra heat in your korma, feel free to include some chili peppers or chili flakes, but even following the recipe as is, you will fall in love with the Indian flavors present in this dish.
This chicken is full of the right mixture of seasonings to give you not only a beautiful color to pair with your saffron rice, but also a delicious and flavorful method of getting dinner on the table in about half an hour!
The smoked paprika, chilies, and green olives are key to getting the right zing out of every bite of your chicken.
Remember to use smoked paprika for this dish rather than sweet paprika, which isn’t the best substitute.
Full of Greek herbs and a creamy yogurt sauce, this salmon is going to become one of your new favorite sides for saffron rice!
Despite the boldness you will taste and various textures featured, this salmon takes only 15 minutes to prepare making it an exceptional choice for quick dishes to prepare to pair with your saffron rice.
If you’re missing some of the ingredients in this recipe, rest assured, there are a lot of variations that can be made to fit what you have at home along with what you are currently craving.
This recipe is perfect for cleaning out ingredients that have been sitting in your kitchen for a while.
The coconut milk adds a slight sweetness while adding a smooth texture to the curry which is one of the best parts of this dish.
A side of naan with your rice and curry makes this so filling and delicious!
Adding some asparagus to your saffron rice turns it into a bright stir fry dish.
Toasted almonds and some lemon zest bring out some nutty and tart flavors.
While this is a vegetarian dish, adding in some type of meat makes it filling and hearty while keeping it light and fresh.
10. Persian Chicken
The marinade used for this Persian chicken recipe is excellent for how well it balances some sweet and salty flavors together.
This dish has a mild heat level so the entire family can enjoy it!
Once the chicken has marinated for up to 24 hours, it can be cooked in about ten minutes making it an easy yet savory addition to your dinner.
11. Lentil Daal
Rather than venturing out to your favorite Indian restaurant, this lentil daal recipe is terrific for satisfying your cravings for Indian food.
This is vegetarian and dairy free so you can rest easy if you have to accommodate certain dietary restrictions.
The use of lentils give you a nice boost of protein and when paired with saffron rice, you can ensure that you and your family will be happily satisfied after dinner!
12. Homemade Naan
Soft and chewy naan that is freshly baked is an excellent saffron rice side dish since it goes well with nearly everything!
Your naan can be made with either a stand mixer or by hand, so feel free to use whichever you are more comfortable with.
A solid piece of bread is a staple for most meals, so including naan in your Indian, West Asian, or Middle Eastern meals is never a bad choice!
This light salad leaves out dressing and cheese but still leaves you with a refreshing salad to pair with heavier and richer dishes.
The ingredients in this salad are simple and don’t need a lot of help to bring out the natural earthy flavors present in them.
What makes this Afghan style salad so special is the texture from chopping your vegetables into small pieces to make it beautiful and easy to eat!
14. Butter Chicken
Butter chicken is a very popular dish among Indians, Pakistanis, and Afghans.
There is a nice balance of spiciness and creaminess from the sauce.
This recipe in particular is great for beginners since it is very straightforward and only uses one pan but doesn’t skimp on authentic flavors.
Traditionally, it is served with a side of Basmati rice but saffron rice is a perfect way to elevate the flavors of your rice.
Often referred to as a meze, this dip is a fantastic way to start your Turkish or Mediterranean dinner off with.
There are a ton of Mediterranean flavors from the Greek yogurt, fresh dill, and dried mint in this dip.
Since this yogurt dip is cool and refreshing, it pairs well with grilled or baked foods, as well as fresh saffron rice!
Wondering what goes with saffron rice?
How about saffron rice balls?
There is no such thing as too much rice!
These Italian rice balls are vegetarian and play on the saffron flavors of the rice with a dash of saffron included.
Instead of deep frying these balls in butter which is more traditional, this recipe oven bakes the arancini with tons of vegetables to make it a lighter option.
These taste great both hot and cold and are perfect when serving a vegetarian friend!
The bottom line
Saffron rice is a nice way to add some earthiness and sweetness to your dishes but it can be intimidating if you are not familiar with the flavors.
These 16 recipes on what to serve with saffron rice help to take the trouble out of deciding what to pair with your rice.
Many of these recipes play on Indian, West Asian, and Middle Eastern flavors where saffron reigns in popularity!
A small dash of saffron added to your rice makes it a much more special and flavorful dish so it is important to pick the right sides to complement it!
- Saffron Rice
- Lamb Kabobs
- Slow Cooked Chicken Curry
- Cilantro Chutney
- Chicken Korma
- Spicy Basque Chicken
- Baked Mediterranean Salmon
- Coconut Potato And Chickpea Curry
- Lemony Minted Asparagus
- Persian Chicken
- Lentil Daal
- Homemade Naan
- Butter Chicken
- Haydari Yogurt Dip
- Vegetarian Arancini With Aubergines And Chickpeas
- Take a look at our What To Serve With Saffron Rice list!
- Bring the ingredients to create a new favorite dish.
- Woohoo! You created a home-cooked meal!
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