Spicy Sesame Coconut Rice

spicy sesame coconut rice

Rice is cooked with coconut milk then mixed with ripe bell peppers and spicy garlic chili paste to make spicy sesame coconut rice a flavorful treat.

I try lots of new recipes. Most are good, some are extraordinary, and some recipes get deleted right after we eat it. It happens! I tried this rice recipe a while ago. Sweet and sour meatballs were on the menu and I wanted something other than plain white rice to serve along with those yummy, saucy meatballs.

Caribbean rice was my first foray into coconut rice and has been a huge hit in our house. The coconut milk sweetens and fluffs up with rice and adds wonderful flavor.

It was so good! My plate turned out so pretty I needed to get a picture.

Sweet & sour meatballs, spicy sesame coconut rice and asparagus.
Sweet & Sour meatballs, spicy sesame coconut rice and roasted asparagus.

Time went on, and this recipe got lost in the shuffle. That was until I saw this picture. Once I got this rice back on the menu I made this exact same meal again. It was just as good as I remembered!


Rice: Our standard rice is long grain white rice. I love brown rice, but I haven’t tried it with this recipe.

Coconut milk: I used canned light coconut milk.

Sesame Oil: I use sesame oil in all my Asian-inspired recipes for great, authentic flavor. You could also use olive oil or whatever oil you could normally use to sauté. Sesame oil is especially nice in this recipe to up the sesame flavor.

Ripe Bell Pepper: I had yellow bell pepper on hand, orange and red are also great, colorful options. I am not a green pepper fan but if you are, by all means use it.

Garlic: Another flavor staple in my Asian main dishes and, honestly, most of my main dishes!

Garlic chili paste: This particular variety is awesome. It is thick, garlicky, and spicy. I love the little bits of chili paste infused throughout the rice.

Sesame seeds: Scattered thorough the rice and sprinkled on top. It’s sesame rice after all!

Lemon zest: Adds great tang and brightness to the dish. The zest looks so pretty scattered through the finished rice.

Salt & Pepper: Add according to taste.

Spicy sesame coconut rice in a sauté pan.


Start by cooking your rice with the coconut milk. Simply add your rice to your rice cooker or saucepan. Add a half can of coconut milk. Add enough water to have the amount of liquid you typically use to cook your rice. In my rice cooker, I need a few tablespoons of water.

When the rice is nearly finished cooking, heat up the oil. Sauté the peppers until they are starting to soften. Add the garlic and the garlic chili paste and stir for one minute.

Once the rice is cooked add to your sauté pan and combine with the pepper mixture. Add sesame seeds, lemon zest, salt and pepper and stir to combine.

Serve immediately.

This spicy sesame coconut rice is a great alternative to plain white rice. Serve as a standalone side or with your favorite Asian-inspired main dish.

Spicy Sesame Coconut Rice

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Thai


  • ½ cup uncooked rice
  • ½ can light coconut milk
  • water
  • 1 Tbsp sesame oil
  • ½ cup ripe bell pepper chopped
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 2 tsp garlic chile paste or to taste
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds
  • zest of half a lemon
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Add rice, coconut milk and enough water to the fill line of a rice cooker and cook the rice as usual. Alternatively you can add ingredients to a sauce pan and cook until rice is tender.
  • Add the sesame oil to a large sauté pan. Add the peppers, stir and sauté until the peppers are starting to get tender. Add garlic and chili paste and stir for one minute. Add cooked coconut rice, sesame seeds, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
  • Serve immediately.
Keyword Savory, Spicy, Starch

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating