Home Side Dish What to Serve with Coconut Rice (23 Easy Side Dishes)

What to Serve with Coconut Rice (23 Easy Side Dishes)

There is no shortage of tempting dishes to serve with coconut rice! Some of the best sides include curries, salmon, shrimp, chicken, and tofu.

Coconut rice is a light and refreshing dish. It serves as the perfect backdrop for soaking up complementing flavors in recipes.

Homemade Coconut Rice with Chicken Curry
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Honestly, the creamy, tropical goodness of coconut rice is a culinary delight all on its own. But when paired with other dishes full of savory goodness, it becomes a true masterpiece.

Let’s explore the incredible possibilities of what to serve with coconut rice!

1. Chicken Curry

The richness and depth of flavor in this chicken curry are perfectly balanced by the subtle sweetness of coconut rice. It’s like a culinary yin and yang. 

Plus, the creamy texture of the rice is the perfect accompaniment to the tender chunks of chicken in the curry. 

It’s a comforting dish and feels like taking a virtual tropical vacation anytime you make it.

2. Barbacoa

Barbacoa and coconut rice go together like two peas in a pod! In this dish, tropical creaminess meets savory goodness. This pairing is so delicious, you’ll want to savor every bite. 

Barbacoa is delicious when served over coconut rice. But you can also stuff it into tacos with the rice on the side. Either way, it’ll be a guaranteed hit!

3. Miso Salmon

Miso salmon is a delicious traditional Japanese recipe. It combines the rich flavor of miso and the savory taste of salmon. 

The coconut rice pairs perfectly with this dish. It adds a sweetness and creamy texture to accent the flavors of the salmon. 

Coconut rice also helps to temper the salty nature of miso, allowing for a well-rounded experience.

4. 10-Minute Honey Garlic Shrimp

This combination of honey-garlic shrimp and coconut rice is excellent! The sweetness from the honey in the shrimp perfectly balances out the nutty flavor of the coconut rice. 

The shrimp also adds a nice crunch, while the rice provides texture and depth to the meal. Together, they create a delicious and satisfying dish.

5. Easy Vegan Curry

Many vegan curries are made with coconut milk. So the combination with coconut rice is the perfect pairing.

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Coconut rice also provides balance to the spiciness of the curry. It helps to counterbalance the intense flavors and is such a great contrast.

The best thing about coconut rice served with curry is its versatility. Any version of curry goes hand in hand with it.

6. 3-Ingredient Orange Chicken

This 3-ingredient orange chicken is perfect for busy weeknights! And when served with coconut rice, it’s a meal sure to impress.

The sweetness of the orange juice is balanced by the savoriness of the soy sauce. Coconut rice brings out the sweetness while offering a light flavor.

7. Pan-Seared Chilean Sea Bass

Chilean sea bass is a delicious, succulent fish with an incredibly flavorful texture. The mild saltiness of the sea bass contrasts nicely with the creamy sweetness of coconut rice. 

The rich umami flavors of the fish work well with coconut rice’s tropical notes. You’d expect to find this dish on a tropical island. But it’s so easy to create right in your own kitchen!

8. Jerk Pork

Jerk pork is a traditional Jamaican dish and pairs well with coconut rice. The spicy and fragrant mix of ingredients has a warm flavor profile. When served with coconut rice, it’s highlighted even more.

Together, they provide a delicious medley of sweet and spicy flavors for an enjoyable meal.

9. Cashew Chicken

Cashew chicken is one of the most popular Chinese dishes. Its savory blend of ingredients makes it a perfect partner for coconut rice. 

This chicken is a delicious combination of crispy chicken bites, crunchy cashews, and a flavorful sauce. Combining it with coconut rice creates the perfect balance. You’ll put this one on repeat!

10. Korean Miso and Honey-Glazed Cod

The combination of honey glaze, miso, and creamy coconut rice creates a unique blend of flavors in this recipe. The glaze helps to caramelize the fish and add a hint of sweetness. And the miso gives it an umami punch. 

The coconut rice helps to round out the flavors with its fragrant aroma and slightly sweet flavor. These two are a match made in heaven.

11. Thai Red Curry with Vegetables

Red curry paste gives this dish a bold and slightly sweet flavor. The vegetables add a wonderful crunch, texture, and source of nutrition. 

Coconut rice is the perfect accompaniment for Thai red curry with vegetables. It balances out the spiciness of the curry. Plus, it adds a hint of sweetness.

12. Pineapple Chicken

Pineapple chicken and coconut rice are a classic pair for a delicious, tropical-flavored meal. The sweetness of the pineapple goes perfectly with the creamy richness of the coconut rice. It’s truly an unforgettable flavor combination.

This recipe is extremely easy to prepare and can be enjoyed as a healthy weeknight dinner.

13. Teriyaki Shrimp

Teriyaki shrimp is a sweet and savory dish, so pairing it with a light side like coconut rice is always a win.

The combination of sweet teriyaki sauce and the nutty flavor of coconut rice creates a delicious balance. 

This is the perfect meal to make when you’re craving takeout but don’t want to leave the house. Honestly, it tastes even better made at home!

14. Thai Fish Curry

Thai fish curry is an incredibly flavorful dish. It combines the richness of coconut milk with a variety of spices. 

The flavors pair perfectly with coconut rice, which provides a subtle sweetness. This recipe is another prime example of how coconut rice and curry are the perfect match.

In addition to the delicious taste, the tempting aroma of this dish is enough to make you weep!

15. Hawaiian Chicken

Hawaiian chicken and coconut rice are like having a tropical luau on a plate.

The combination of these two dishes creates a balanced meal. It’s a great source of protein, fiber, and other essential nutrients. 

The coconut rice also helps to balance out the bold flavor of the chicken. Get out your hula skirt and serve this one up tonight!

16. Grilled Mahi Mahi

Grilled mahi mahi is a healthy and flavorful fish to enjoy. Its meaty texture and mild flavor make it an excellent choice for an easy dinner. 

Serving it with coconut rice is a fantastic way to boost the nutritional value of your meal. Plus, it adds a tasty tropical twist no one can resist.

17. Spicy Grilled Shrimp

Spicy grilled shrimp pairs deliciously with coconut rice. It’s such a dynamic combination of sweet and savory flavors. 

The sweetness of the rice provides the perfect backdrop for the spicy shrimp. It cuts through its heat and adds a layer of complexity to every bite. 

By combining these two dishes, you get a delicious and balanced meal sure to please everyone.

18. Chicken Satay

Chicken satay and coconut rice were practically made for each other! This might be the best pairing on this list.  

The creaminess of the rice softens the heat from the satay. And the intense flavor of the peanut sauce adds an extra dimension. 

It’s a perfect meal to serve for any dinner occasion, especially when you need to impress guests.

19. Blackened Salmon

Spicy blackened salmon is an ideal choice to serve with coconut rice.

The sweetness of the coconut rice accents the spicy salmon. It creates a unique flavor balance everyone at the table will love.

Both dishes are relatively quick and easy to prepare. It’s an ideal combo for busy weeknights or simple entertaining.

20. Teriyaki Tofu

Teriyaki tofu is a delicious and healthy way to enjoy plant-based protein. 

The tofu soaks up the savory flavor of the teriyaki sauce. Together, they offer the perfect contrast to the light, mild flavor of coconut rice. 

This combination is wonderful for anyone following a plant-based or dairy-free diet.

21. Lemon Garlic Butter Baked Fish

Lemon garlic butter baked fish is practically begging to be served on top of creamy coconut rice.

The buttery taste paired with the sweetness of the rice takes this dish to a new level. The mild flavor of the fish is enhanced by the butter, while the lemon gives it a zesty flavor. 

The coconut rice is light and fluffy, making it an ideal accompaniment to the baked fish.

22. Creamy Parmesan Garlic Mushroom Chicken

Mushrooms, Parmesan, and garlic make for one seriously irresistible combination. Coconut rice is the perfect base for this delicious dish. It’ll soak up all of that irresistible sauce so you don’t miss a bite.

Once you try this combination, you’ll put it in your weekly rotation for sure.

23. Vegetable Stir-Fry

A classic vegetable stir-fry is an ideal side to serve with coconut rice. The combination of the two provides a complete and balanced meal. 

The vegetables have essential vitamins and minerals as well as fiber to keep you feeling full for longer. Coconut rice offers a sweet and creamy flavor to offset the savory flavors of the vegetable stir-fry.

Your family will adore this dish!

What to Serve with Coconut Rice (23 Easy Side Dishes)

Coconut rice is best served with vegetables, curries, fish, shrimp, and chicken. It’s also wonderful with seasoned tofu!


  • Chicken Curry

  • Barbacoa

  • Miso Salmon

  • 10 -Minute Honey Garlic Shrimp

  • Easy Vegan Curry

  • 3 -Ingredient Orange Chicken

  • Pan-Seared Chilean Sea Bass

  • Jerk Pork

  • Cashew Chicken

  • Korean Miso and Honey-Glazed Cod

  • Thai Red Curry with Vegetables

  • Pineapple Chicken

  • Teriyaki Shrimp

  • Thai Fish Curry

  • Hawaiian Chicken

  • Grilled Mahi Mahi

  • Spicy Grilled Shrimp

  • Chicken Satay

  • Blackened Salmon

  • Teriyaki Tofu

  • Lemon Garlic Butter Baked Fish

  • Creamy Parmesan Garlic Mushroom Chicken

  • Vegetable Stir-Fry


  • Select your favorite recipe.
  • Organize all the required ingredients.
  • Prep a side for coconut rice in 30 minutes or less!
What to Serve with Coconut Rice

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author avatar
Kim - InsanelyGood
Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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