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5-Ingredient Saffron Rice

5-Ingredient Saffron Rice

This 5-ingredient saffron rice recipe is an easy way to upgrade a regular rice side dish. Just a pinch of saffron, bloomed in hot water and added to toasted rice, magically transforms plain rice into beautiful golden colored rice with delicate floral notes.

Read on for more tips and step by step photos below the recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1/8 teaspoon saffron threads (Note 1)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup basmati rice (Note 2)
  • 1 ½ cups chicken or vegetable stock without salt
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Directions:

  1. To bloom the saffron, put saffron threads in a small bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of boiling water and let it steep for 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, melt butter in a medium saucepan with a lid over medium-high heat.
  3. Add rice and cook it for 3-5 minutes, stirring constantly.
  4. Add stock, salt, and saffron with its water.
  5. Cover and bring it to a boil.
  6. Reduce the heat to low and continue to cook until all the liquid is absorbed and rice is fully cooked for about 15 minutes. Don’t open the lid while rice is cooking.
  7. Carefully fluff it with a wooden spoon and serve.

Recipe Notes:

Note 1: Use high-quality saffron threads, which has a deep red color, without many yellow styles. I like this Afghan saffron and this Spanish one. I don’t recommend saffron powder.

Note 2: While basmati rice work great for this recipe, you can use jasmine rice too.

Nutrition Information

Yield: 4 servings, Serving Size: 3/4 cup

  • Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories: 203 Calories
  • Total Fat: 7g
  • Cholesterol: 18mg
  • Sodium: 424.5mg
  • Carbohydrates: 30.6g
  • Sugar: 1.7g
  • Protein: 4.2g
Disclaimer: Nutritional information is estimate only. Read full disclosure here.
All images and text © for Busy Cooks
Scroll down to read more tips and story behind the recipe

This 5 ingredient saffron rice recipe is an easy way to upgrade a regular rice side dish. Just a pinch of saffron bloomed in hot water and added to toasted rice, magically transforms plain rice into beautiful golden colored rice with delicate floral notes.

Having the same rice, week in and week out, can be boring, but not with this saffron-infused rice!

Saffron is a magical spice that transforms your rice into something delicious and healthy. Read on for more details on this great spice!

WHAT IS SAFFRON AND IS IT HEALTHY?

Saffron is the world’s most expensive spice. The reason it’s SO expensive is due to the labor intensiveness of the crop. 

I’d recommend, the following two products if you’re looking at buying a good quality saffron:

A word of caution! There’re a lot of fake products out there, so if the price is too good to be true, ensure you do a taste test, look at it and smell it. And, I would not recommend saffron powder as it’s just so difficult to judge the quality.

Saffron rice has incredible health benefits. It’s high in antioxidants, improves your mood, enhanced weight loss and more!

WHAT DOES SAFFRON TASTE LIKE AND WHAT ELSE CAN I USE IT FOR?

Saffron has a subtle flavor and aroma, I like its floral undertones, but some mention honey and others say it is pungent. So you decide!

But you have to give it a try for yourself as it is definitely a magical spice. You can have it in your tea, risottos, pilafs, and paellas even in most desserts that call for vanilla, not to be missed in custards and cookies. 

HOW TO COOK SAFFRON RICE:

  • Step 1. Bloom the saffron in hot water to wake its sweet floral aroma and vibrant color.
  • Step 2. Toast the rice in melted butter for 3-5 minutes. Then add remaining ingredients, cover and bring it to a boil.
  • Step 3. Reduce heat to low and cook for about 15 minutes until all the liquid is absorbed and rice is soft.
  • Step 4. Fluff the rice with a wooden spoon and serve!

Step by Step Saffron Rice

WHAT CAN I SERVE WITH SAFFRON RICE?

Due to its distinct flavor, you want to pair it right with some of these suggested dishes:

Saffron rice - an easy way to upgrade regular rice side dish. Just a pinch of saffron magically transforms plain rice into beautiful golden colored rice.

OTHER RECIPES WITH RICE:

So change it up each week with some of these great rice sides and main dishes:

Sides

Main dishes

If you tried this recipe, I’d love to read your feedback. Please leave your comment and rating below, or share on Instagram with #busycooks and tag us @busy_cooks. Thank you!!

This post was originally published on February 28, 2018, and last updated on April 23, 2020.

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Hi, I’m Shinee

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