Brazilian Style White Rice

As promised, today I’m sharing the Brazilian Rice that goes with the Black Beans I posted on Wednesday.  I’m pretty sure rice is one of the foods that is eaten regularly in every culture on earth.  And it seems every place has a different standard way of cooking it.  We ate rice a lot when I was growing up and my Mom always stirred in a couple big pats of butter right when it was done.  To this day, one of my favorite comfort foods is a bowl of hot rice with liberal amounts of butter and lemon pepper.  I made rice a while back for some Hawaiian friends and they thought it was the weirdest thing that I dumped butter in there!  But really, it’s amazing, you should try it.

Brazilian Rice

It Brazil, it’s not complicated, but a few extra ingredients make it so flavorful.  I actually use this method whenever I cook white rice for anything.  Once you make it this way, you’ll have a hard time going back to plain white, bland rice.  This is how most Brazilians make rice, every day.

You’ll need some white rice, oil (I’m using our Garlic Olive Oil), onion, and garlic.

Brazilian Rice Ingredients

Saute the onion and garlic in the pan with the oil until it’s all tender and fragrant.

Brazilian Rice Ingredients

Then dump in the dry rice.  I know a lot of people actually rinse their rice until the water runs clear and then lay it out to dry but sorry, ‘aint nobody got time for that.  I actually just use it straight out of the bag without rinsing, but rinse if you like and pat dry.  You’re going to saute the dry rice in the pan for a few minutes and it starts to toast.

Brazilian Rice

Then add a little salt and pour in boiling water (I just have a tea kettle going while I’m sauteing the onions and stuff, so it’s already hot when I need it) and cover the pot and cook as normal. The result is fluffy white rice with the added flavor of the garlic and onions.  And using garlic olive oil makes a big difference, too.

Brazilian Rice

Top this rice with my Brazilian Black Beans, or any thing else you like (butter anyone?)

Brazilian Style Rice

In Brazil, rice is made with a slightly different method, sautéing the dry rice with garlic and onion before cooking with water. It results in tender, fluffy white rice with amazing flavor!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • 1 tablespoon oil I use garlic olive oil, canola works fine, too
  • 1 small-medium onion or 1/2 large onion
  • 3-4 large cloves garlic finely minced or pressed
  • 1 cup jasmine or basmati rice
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt


  • Place water (a little more than 2 cups) in a tea kettle or bot on the stove and heat to boiling.
  • In the meantime, heat a separate pot to medium heat and add oil and onions. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until tender and fragrant and stir in garlic. Stir for about 20-30 seconds. Add rice and continue to stir often for about 3-5 minutes.
  • Add 2 cups boiling water, and salt and stir. When mixture comes to a boil, cover pot and reduce heat to simmer. Cook for 20 minutes and remove from heat. Fluff with fork and serve.
  • Yields about 4 cups of rice.
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Meet The Author

Sara Wells

Sara Wells co-founded Our Best Bites in 2008. She is the author of three Bestselling Cook Books, Best Bites: 150 Family Favorite RecipesSavoring the Seasons with Our Best Bites, and 400 Calories or Less from Our Best Bites. Sara’s work has been featured in many local and national news outlets and publications such as Parenting MagazineBetter Homes & GardensFine CookingThe Rachel Ray Show and the New York Times.

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Questions & Reviews

  1. Making this for a freezer meal, have you tried freezing the rice?
    I make Brazilian beans for my husband who served a mission Curitiba 95-97. I’ve been touted by several women who are amazing cooks. One woman put a cut up orange in the instant pot- Just another version that tastes amazing.

    1. I’ve never tried freezing the rice, though in general that often works. Make sure it’s as airtight as possible. Let me know if you try it, I’d love to know how it works as a freezer meal!

  2. I have multiple containers for my Instapot. Is there anyway I can cook this recipe along with the black beans at the same to save time?

    1. I’m not sure- I’ve never done that. However since you are sautéing onion and garlic for the rice, I really don’t think the instant pot saves you very much time by the time it comes up to pressure.

  3. I’m so glad I found your blog! My husband also served in the Curitiba mission! I’ve learned a couple times to make beans but have never had a recipe to follow, only visual instructions. I also recently got an instant pot, I’m really excited to use your method! Thanks again!

  4. Thanks for this simple recipe. It turned out perfectly fragrant and delicious. I used finely minced Mayan sweet onion and Basmati rice. I also added a squeeze of lime juice and 2 tablespoons of chopped cilantro after fluffing with a fork. Will become a regular to our dinner menu!!

  5. um, YUM! not only does this recipe look amazing, but so do all the comments! i am going on a rice binge pronto! ☺

  6. How funny, I’m from an Asian background, and my mother and grandmother used to mix butter with white Jasmine rice and chicken stock/bouillon powder. It is still the only thing I want to eat when I feel lousy! Or we would fry the rice in butter with soy sauce. This Brazilian rice looks delicious! I love your blog!

  7. Can I use long grain white rice in this if I’m out of jasmine rice? Seems like it should be fine. Famous last words, maybe….

  8. I’v learned from your blog that Brazil has many dishes with lime and coconut. Do you have a coconut rice recipe to share??

  9. Yum! My husband’s college roommate married a girl from Barzil, so we love trying braza recipes all the time, we’ll have to make this rice, and those beans you showed earlier this week really soon!


  10. I do this too. I usually add a heaping TB of caldo de tomate (pretty much chicken bullion w/ tomato flavoring) after adding the water. Sprinkle cilantro in there too- to your taste. My kids call it orange rice because it’s, you know, orange.

  11. Yup, grew up with those pats of butter going into the rice, sometimes at the end but usually in the cooking water. Yummy!