Two of the more popular varieties include basmati and jasmine rice. They look similar and one is often confused for the other. However, after reading this article you’d be able to tell the difference, know exactly how to cook them, and have a few recipes to try out at home.
Rice is usually the go-to starch option for most of our meals. According to the USA Rice Federation, there are over 120,000 varieties of rice in the world. With that many options to choose from, it helps to know the characteristics and nutrition facts of common varieties.
What is Basmati Rice?
Basmati rice is a long-grain, aromatic rice originating from the foothills of the Himalayas in India and is a popular option in Indian, Pakistani and Mediterranean cuisine. The flavor is described as nutty.
What is Jasmine Rice?
Jasmine rice is a long-grain, aromatic rice originating from Thailand and is widely used in Taiwanese cooking. This rice variety is also grown in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. The flavor is described as slightly sweet yet nutty.
What are the Similarities Between Basmati and Jasmine Rice?
What basmati and jasmine rice have in common is that they both originate from the Asian continent. Additionally, they are both considered long-grain rice belonging to the aromatic variety due to their exotic aromas when cooked.
Can I Substitute Jasmine Rice for Basmati?
Although both varieties have a similar taste, they vary greatly in texture which means you can’t always use one for the other. It all comes down to the type of dish you’re making. In most cases, recipes will indicate exactly which variety of rice to use and whether white or brown rice is best.
If the recipe doesn’t specify then as a general rule, stick with basmati rice for Indian, Pakistani, Mediterranean or similar cuisine while jasmine rice is best for Taiwanese or similar recipes.
Differences Between Basmati Rice and Jasmine Rice
|Size and Shape||long grain with sharp, slender ends a 3:1-4:1 length to width ratio||long grain with rounded ends and a 3:1 length to width ratio|
|Flavors||Nutty||Slightly sweet and nutty|
|Price||more costly than other common varieites||more costly than other common varieites|
|Calories||1 cup (cooked) has 191 calories||1 cup (cooked) has 238 calories|
|Nutrition||low in fat and cholesterol, higher in vitamin A, iron and potassium||low in fat and cholesterol, contains more calcium|
|Cooking Time||Approximately 15 minutes||Approximately 15 minutes|
How Do You Cook Basmati Rice?
Before cooking basmati rice let it soak in water for at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours. The grains absorb some of the water which allows it to cook evenly. Drain the water and fill the pot with 1.5 cups of water for every 1 cup of rice and boil over medium heat.
Once boiling, reduce the heat, cover, and cook for approximately 15 minutes. After all the water has been absorbed and the rice is cooked, remove from the heat and let rest for 5 minutes. Use a fork to gently fluff the rice and it’s ready to be served!
You’d notice that basmati rice keeps its slim shape but doubles in length once cooked and the grains don’t stick together. If using a rice cooker, start by adding less water than you regularly would.
How Do You Cook Jasmine Rice?
One important step when cooking jasmine rice is to rinse it thoroughly before cooking. Use a mesh strainer with holes that are small enough for water to pass through easily but not so big that rice grains will escape. Rinse until the water runs clear.
As jasmine rice contains a lot of starch, it clumps together once cooked. Adding this step at the beginning helps to eliminate the majority of starch on the surface so it doesn’t stick together as much.
Jasmine rice is not strained, rather the water is absorbed and the rice streams in the pot. The trick to nailing this method without getting rice that’s undercooked or too soft is to add just the right amount of water.
For every 1 cup of rice, add 1.5 cups of water to the pot. Stir, cover, and let it cook over low heat for approximately 15 minutes. If the rice is still too hard, add just a few tablespoons of water at a time until it’s cooked. If you have a rice coker feel free to use that as well!
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How to Make Basmati Rice and Jasmine Rice Recipe
- 1 cup Basmati rice
- 1 ½ cups water
- 1 cup Jasmine rice
- 1 ½ cups water
- In a pot, soak the rice in water for at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours.
- Drain the water from the pot, and fill it 1.5 cups of water for every 1 cup of rice you had soaking in it.
- Place the pot with rice and water over a stovetop, and bring to a boil over medium heat.
- Once it is boiling, reduce the heat and cook for another 15 minutes until all the water is absorbed.
- Remove the stove from the heat and allow it to rest for 5 minutes.
- Fluff the rice with a fork before serving. Enjoy!
- Thoroughly rinse the jasmine rice under running water until it runs clear to remove most of the starch before cooking.
- In a pot, add the rice and water.
- Stir, cover the pot, and let it cook over low heat for approximately 15 minutes.
- If the rice is still under cooked, add a few tablespoons of water at a time until it is cooked.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!