Curd Rice

Comforting Curd Rice is a popular dish from South India where soft cooked rice is mixed with yogurt and then tempered with spices.

The curd rice is easy on the stomach and tastes great with a side of pickle and papadum!

south indian style curd rice in a white bowl garnished with pomegranate arils

What is comfort food to you? For some it’s a bowl of noodles or mashed potatoes or chili.

For me it’s dal-chawal, which is basically nothing but rice and lentils. Trust me nothing beats the taste and aroma of rice and dal with some ghee on top.

I’ll take it any day over all the fancy food and that’s why I say we all might like to eat different things but after some time the body craves for that comfort food. Isn’t it?

One such popular comfort food from India is Curd Rice, where  rice is mixed with curd (yogurt) and then seasoned with spices.

I didn’t grew up eating curd rice because this dish is from South India but over the years it has definitely become one of my favorite things to eat.

Whenever I feel like eating something comforting and easy on my stomach, curd rice is my go to option.

This dish is a part of every special occasion in South India, the cool yogurt perfectly balances out all the spicy food.

How to Make Curd Rice

The process of making curd rice is pretty simple and straight forward.

First the rice is cooked with more water than you normally would. Because the rice is cooked with extra water, it’s quite soft and that’s the consistency you want for curd rice.

I have used long grain white rice in this recipe, you may use short grain or basmati. Even brown rice would work.

Once the rice is cooked, you have to let it cool down completely. And then add in the yogurt (I add a lot of it!) and milk.

a large bowl with cooked rice mixed with yogurt and grated carrots, cilantro and green chilies

curd rice served in a white plate with a spatula in the background

Adding milk is optional, but I add it for the consistency and flavor.

Some people also add in butter to their curd rice for that extra creaminess. However I generally keep it simple without the butter.

After the yogurt is mixed with the rice, the next step is so add any veggies that you would like.

I know some people keep is super simple and add nothing at all. So then it’s just plain curd rice with a tempering of mustard seeds and curry leaves.

I have added grated carrots, cilantro and green chilies to my curd rice. You can also add green peppers or cucumber to it.

And like most of the Indian recipes, a tempering in the end is must!

Tempering or tadka refers to the process of adding seasoning to the dish in the end (or the beginning) and is an integral part of Indian cuisine.

For the tadka, I used mustard seeds, curry leaves, urad dal and dried red chilies. I also added some ginger for that extra taste. You may also use chana dal, cumin seeds or asafoetida (hing) in the tempering.

There’s no hard and fast rule so use what you like.

curd rice in a black plate garnished with pomegranate and a bowl of pomegranate arils in the background

How to Serve Curd Rice

Personally, I really like to chill the curd rice before serving.

Firstly, because I think it tastes so much better when it’s chilled. And secondly, those extra hours while it’s chilling it the refrigerator gives the time for the flavors to mix in together.

So it just tastes better overall!

Once the curd rice is chilled and ready to be served, place it in your bowl or plate, garnish with pomegranate seeds or grapes and serve with a side of pickle and papadum.

You may also add in some chopped cilantro on top.

Sarvesh would not eat his curd rice without the pickle ever!

Method

1- Rinse 1 cup of rice and place it in a pressure cooker with 3 cups water and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Pressure cook the rice until very soft- 2 to 3 whistles on high heat then lower the heat and cook for additional 2 to 3 minutes. Let the pressure release on its own.

2- Once the rice is cooked, mash it a little using a masher or back of a spoon or using your hands. You may also leave it as is if you don’t like mashed rice. Transfer rice to a large bowl and let it cool completely.

3- Once the rice has cooled completely, add in the whisked yogurt and milk and mix to combine. I add around 2 cups of whisked yogurt because I like a lot of it, you can adjust to taste and reduce the quantity.

4- Then add in the grated carrot, chopped cilantro and green chili and mix to combine.

step by step process of making curd rice

5- Now for the tempering/tadka, heat oil in a small pan on medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add the mustard seeds and let them pop.

6- Then add the urad dal and cook until it starts changing color. (Tip: if you want dal to be soft and not super crunchy in the tadka, just soak it in water for 10 minutes before using in the recipe).

7- Add the ginger, curry leaves and dried red chilies. Cook until the curry leaves turn crisp.

8- Transfer the tadka to the bowl of curd rice and mix.

step by step process of making curd rice

Cover and refrigerate the curd rice for few hours until chilled. Then top with pomegranate arils (optional) and serve with achar and papadum.

a pair of hand holding a bowl of curd rice

If you’ve tried this Curd Rice Recipe then don’t forget to rate the recipe! You can also follow me on Facebook and Instagram to see what’s latest in my kitchen!

This post has been updated from the recipe archives, first published in 2015.

Curd Rice

South India's ultimate comfort food where soft cooked rice is mixed with yogurt and then seasoned with spices. Tastes best when chilled and with a side of pickle and papadum!

south indian style curd rice in a white bowl garnished with pomegranate arils
Course Sides
Cuisine Indian
Keyword curd rice
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 299 kcal
Author: Manali
5 from 1 vote
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Ingredients

  • 1 cup rice, 200 grams, I used long grain rice
  • 3 cups water, 24 oz
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1.5-2 cups plain yogurt, whisked, I use 2 cups
  • 1/2 cup milk, 4 oz
  • 1/3 cup grate carrots, from 2 medium carrots
  • 1-2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1-2 green chili, finely chopped

To temper

  • 1.5 tablespoons oil, 22 ml, I used avocado oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon urad dal
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger
  • 8-10 curry leaves
  • 2 dried red chilies

pomegranate arils, for serving, optional

    Instructions

    1. Rinse 1 cup of rice and place it in a pressure cooker with 3 cups water and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Pressure cook the rice until very soft- 2 to 3 whistles on high heat then lower the heat and cook for additional 2 to 3 minutes. Let the pressure release on its own.

    2. Once the rice is cooked, mash it a little using a masher or back of a spoon or using your hands. You may also leave it as is if you don't like mashed rice. 

    3. Transfer rice to a large bowl and let it cool completely.

    4. Once the rice has cooled completely, add in the whisked yogurt and milk and mix to combine. I add around 2 cups of whisked yogurt because I like a lot of it, you can adjust to taste and reduce the quantity.

    5. Then add in the grated carrot, chopped cilantro and green chili and mix to combine.

    6. Now for the tempering/tadka, heat oil in a small pan on medium heat. 

    7. Once the oil is hot, add the mustard seeds and let them pop.

    8. Then add the urad dal and cook until it starts changing color. (Tip: if you want dal to be soft and not super crunchy in the tadka, just soak it in water for 10 minutes before using in the recipe).

    9. Add the ginger, curry leaves and dried red chilies. Cook until the curry leaves turn crisp.

    10. Transfer the tadka to the bowl of curd rice and mix.

    11. Cover and refrigerate the curd rice for few hours until chilled. Then top with pomegranate arils (optional) and serve with achar (pickle) and papadum.

    Recipe Notes

    1. You can add fruits & nuts to the curd rice as well. Cashews, peanuts, mangoes, grapes will all taste good here.
    2. Use little butter for a creamier curd rice. I like it simple without the butter.
    Nutrition Facts
    Curd Rice
    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 299 Calories from Fat 81
    % Daily Value*
    Total Fat 9g 14%
    Saturated Fat 2g 10%
    Cholesterol 14mg 5%
    Sodium 396mg 17%
    Potassium 236mg 7%
    Total Carbohydrates 44g 15%
    Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
    Sugars 6g
    Protein 8g 16%
    Vitamin A 5.3%
    Vitamin C 50.7%
    Calcium 17.3%
    Iron 3.2%
    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

     

    24 thoughts on “Curd Rice

    1. Trust me nothing beats the taste and aroma of rice and dal with some ghee (clarified butter) on top.

      ^^ yes yes yes that’s my favoriteee comfort food!! I am sad that I didn’t bring lentils to school with me, haha because it’s just the best.

      This curd rice sounds amazing! I remember we used to always get it from the temple and it was delicious!

    2. I love rice and have been eating a lot of it lately! This rice dish looks delicious! Love the addition of butter! With all the spices on top it is something I would definitely try soon!

    3. I love curd rice! (Or thayir sadam as we call it in my Tamil house). It’s the number one thing I miss being a vegan. At our local temple they serve the best curd rice: slightly runny, salty, and refreshing, paired with the tangiest pickle ever. Yours looks great! 🙂

    4. Hi Manali,

      You have not shared much with us about tofu recipes. It would be nice to know a few of them. Thank you.


    5. Thank you Manali for this wonderful recipe, my family loved it! It’s our go to comfort food. I also made your Upma recipe, so amazingggg!

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