Lemon Rice is a delicious South Indian style lemon-flavored fried rice. It is the best way to use leftover cooked rice sitting in the fridge. Ready in 20 minutes, lemon rice is a fabulous gluten-free, vegan, one-pot meal.
About Lemon Rice
Lemon Rice is a popular South Indian rice recipe. It is also known as chitranna or elumichai sadam.
Stupid easy and bursting with the flavors of lemon, this chitranna makes all your one-pot meal dreams come true.
It has the nuttiness of peanuts, the spiciness of chilies, and the bursting tartness of lemon. And all the flavors are absorbed by the rice. It is purely delicious.
Needless, to say we were introduced to this delicious fried rice recipe during our stay in South India. And ever since then, it is a regular repeat in our weekly meal menu and for husband’s office lunchbox.
Reasons to Bookmark Lemon Rice Recipe
vegan and gluten-free
easy to pack and reheat
fuss-free and one-pot dish
requires only 20 minutes
meal-prep and lunchbox friendly
My Tried & True Tips
The leftover cooked rice sitting in the fridge works best for this fried rice recipe.
Any medium-short grain white rice is perfect for making lemon rice.
Many chitranna recipes suggest adding the lemon juice in the beginning. I prefer stirring the lemon juice towards the end once the rice is ready to serve.
Talking, about the cooking oil used in the making of chitranna. Try to use either ghee, sesame oil, coconut oil, or the traditional gingelly oil. It requires strong, flavorsome oil to enhance the flavor of the ingredients.
Chitranna cooked in either sesame oil is my personal favorite.
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Lemon Rice Recipe
- Heavy Bottom Kadhai
- 2 Cup cooked white rice
- 1/4 Cup lemon juice
- Salt to taste
- 2 teaspoon black mustard seeds (rai)
- 1 teaspoon dhuli urad dal
- 2 tablespoon peanuts
- 1 tablespoon cashew nuts, sliced
- 1/4 teaspoon asafoetida (hing)
- 2 green chilies, slit
- 1 sprig of curry leaves
- Salt to taste
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 2 tablespoon mustard oil/sesame oil/coconut oil
- Heat oil in a kadhai over a high flame. Once the oil starts fuming, reduce the heat to low.
- Add mustard seeds and allow to splutter. Next, add urad dal and hing. Fry till dal turn light golden in color.
- Add peanuts, cashews, curry leaves, and green chilies. Fry till cashews turn golden in color. Add turmeric powder, mix and turn off the heat.
- Now add rice, salt, and lemon. Stir to combine. Rice should get coated with the seasoning nicely.
- Cover the pan with the lid and allow the rice to absorb the flavors for 5 – 10 minutes.
- Serve lemon rice warm with chilled raita and roasted potato.
- The leftover cooked rice sitting in the fridge works best for this fried rice recipe.
- Lemon Rice requires strong, flavorsome oil to enhance the flavor of the ingredients.
- You can store lemon rice for a week in the refrigerator. Reheat in a microwave or stir-fry pan before serving.