Yellow rice, also known as arroz amarillo in Spanish, is a flavorful dish commonly found in various cuisines, particularly in Latin American, Caribbean, and Spanish cuisine. It gets its vibrant yellow color from the addition of spices, most notably turmeric or saffron, which also imparts a distinct flavor.

The basic preparation of yellow rice involves cooking rice with various ingredients such as onions, garlic, and the yellow coloring agent (turmeric or saffron). Depending on the regional variations and personal preferences, other ingredients such as bell peppers, tomatoes, peas, or herbs may also be added to enhance the flavor and texture.

Yellow Rice

Recipe by Nitdb


Prep time


Cooking time



Yellow rice can be served as a side dish accompanying various meat, poultry, or seafood dishes, or it can be enjoyed as a main dish by adding proteins like chicken, shrimp, or sausage directly into the rice during cooking.
Overall, yellow rice is known for its aromatic flavor, vibrant color, and versatility in various culinary traditions.


  • 1 cup long-grain white rice

  • 1 3/4 cups water or chicken broth (for extra flavor)

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or butter

  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric or a pinch of saffron threads

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika

  • Salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

  • Chopped fresh cilantro or parsley for garnish (optional)


  • Rinse the rice under cold water until the water runs clear. Drain well.
  • In a medium-sized saucepan, heat the olive oil or butter over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and cook until softened, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the minced garlic to the saucepan and cook for another 1-2 minutes until fragrant, being careful not to let it burn.
  • Stir in the ground turmeric (or saffron threads), ground cumin, and paprika, coating the onions and garlic evenly with the spices.
  • Add the rinsed rice to the saucepan and stir well to coat the rice with the onion and spice mixture.
  • Pour in the water or chicken broth and season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring the mixture to a boil.
  • Once boiling, reduce the heat to low, cover the saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, and let the rice simmer for about 15-20 minutes, or until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender.
  • Remove the saucepan from the heat and let it sit, covered, for an additional 5 minutes to allow the rice to steam.
  • Fluff the rice with a fork and transfer it to a serving dish. Garnish with chopped fresh cilantro or parsley if desired.

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