Lemon Rice Recipe

Lemon Rice Recipe

Posted on Mar 21, 2024

Brighten Up Your Meal Delicious and Quick Lemon Rice Recipe

Lemon rice isn't just a dish—it's a burst of sunshine on your plate, turning any ordinary day into a special occasion. This vibrant delicacy from southern India is not only simple to prepare but also versatile, wholesome, and nutritious. Whether enjoyed as a main course or a side dish, lemon rice offers a tangy, uplifting flavour that can be customized to suit your preferences.

Do you want to make lemon rice at home? The process is easy breezy. All you need to do is sauté cooked rice with mustard seeds, curry leaves, peanuts, and a blend of spices. Finish off with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and a sprinkle of coriander leaves, and voila! Your zesty masterpiece is ready to be devoured.

The magical combination of lemon juice and turmeric not only enhances the flavour but also lends a vibrant hue to the dish. Whether you're whipping up this tangy delight for a casual lunch, a family gathering, or a festive celebration, our simplified recipe has got you covered. So, let's brighten up your day with the irresistible flavours of homemade lemon rice!

How to Make Lemon Rice at Home?

Lemon rice has two variations: Gojju and Chitrachana! The ingredients and recipe for both variations are discussed below!

Ingredients for Lemon Rice Recipe

• 1.5 cups of basmati rice
• 4 tablespoons of peanuts
• 2-3 tablespoons of cooking oil
• ¾ teaspoon of mustard
• 1 tablespoon of urad dal
• 1 ½ tablespoon chana dal
• ½ grated ginger
• 8-10 curry leaves
• 2 slur or chopped green chillies
• 1 pinch hing
• ½ teaspoon of turmeric
• ½ teaspoon of salt
• Lemon juice

Lemon Rice Recipe: Gojju Variation

So, how to make lemon rice? You can use any kind of non-sticky or pre-cooked rice to make this dish. Follow the below steps to make the tangy and flavorful lemon rice at home:-

Step 1: Rice Preparation   

Wash and soak 1.5 cups of rice in a bowl for approximately 15 minutes. Although washing rice before cooking is essential, you can skip the washing part and cook rice directly if running short of time. When cooking rice in a pot, put it on a low flame, cover it with a lid, and cook rice with a 1:2 ratio of water and rice. 

Pour one cup of water and keep a trivet when cooking in a pressure cooker. Place the rice and water bowl in the cooker and cook rice for two to three whistles. If you cook rice directly in a pressure cooker, cook for one whistle.
Let the rice be cooked until it is grainy. After the rice is cooked properly, let it cool down and fluff the grains.

Step 2: Make Tempering

Take a deep-bottomed pan and put it on a medium flame. Pour half a tablespoon of oil into the pan, or use an air fryer to roast peanuts. Remove once it turns golden brown and crunchy.

Pour another 1.5 teaspoons of oil into the same pan. Next, add mustard seeds, urad, and chana dal. Fry them on a medium flame until they turn light golden.
Add curry leaves, chopped ginger, and green chillies. Fry them for approximately thirty seconds till the aroma of ginger and curry leaves fills your kitchen space.

Now, throw a pinch of hing, turmeric, and salt (as per taste). Stir this mixture well, and add two to three tablespoons of water.

Pouring water will make the mixture aromatic, allowing chana and urad dals to turn soft inside and crunchy outside. 

Switch off the gas stove.

Step 3: Time to Mix! 

Mix the cooled cooked rice in the tempering. Add lemon juice by squeezing half a piece of lemon and stir the rice properly.

Take a spoonful of lemon rice and taste it. You can add more salt and lemon juice and stir well if required.

Place lemon rice on a plate. Garnish with coriander or mint leaves and crunchy peanuts. Your flavourful and tangy lemon rice is ready to be served! You can serve the dish with raita, pickle, curd, or papad!

Best Lemon Rice Recipe: Chitranna Variation

Karnataka-style Chitranna recipe sounds almost similar to the g0jju variation. The only difference is that the Chitranna variation consists of chopped onions mixed properly in the pan with other lemon rice ingredients. So, everyone has their own way of preparing lemon rice. Prepare your version and enjoy it with your friends and family. 


Lemon rice is a tasty food item that can brighten any meal with its tanginess and savoury flavours. It is an excellent way to utilise any leftover rice and make the simple dish more mouthwatering. It is a peppy dish with dynamic hues and tanginess, which turns a simple meal into a festive one. Every rice grain is infused with lemon’s golden aroma and takes on an adventurous and exciting culinary journey. When you savour the last spoonful, allow the citrusy notes to remind you that the simplest ingredients can create cherishable experiences.


1. Can you prepare lemon rice in advance?

Yes, lemon rice can be prepared in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. When ready to serve, gently reheat it in a microwave or on the stovetop with a splash of water to prevent it from drying out, then fluff and enjoy!

2. What can be paired with this tangy and aromatic dish?

Lemon rice pairs well with a variety of side dishes. Try it with yoghurt or mint-raita for a cooling contrast, pickles for added tanginess, or roasted vegetables for a nutritious boost. It also complements lentil dishes or is enjoyed simply with papads or crunchy fried snacks.

3. Is lemon rice a healthy dish?

Lemon rice can be healthy with minimal oil and whole grains like brown rice. It is a good source of energy, vitamin C, and antioxidants. Besides, its healthiness depends on portion size and accompanying dishes. So, balance is key to a nutritious diet.

4. Can a diabetic person have lemon rice?

Diabetic individuals can enjoy lemon rice in moderation. Using whole grains like brown rice and limiting portion sizes can help manage blood sugar levels. Additionally, you can pair it with protein-rich and non-starchy vegetables. However, it is recommended to consult a healthcare professional. 

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