Fennel Basmati Rice

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This is a very simple aromatic, nutty and earthy flavored basmati rice. Its appearance is plain and brownish but the taste will leave you wanting more. The fennel seeds is used as the dominant spice; the sweetness of fennel coupled with the nuttiness of a bit of cumin and the earthiness of caraway seeds worked so well together. The onions in the dish was cooked until the edges were slightly brown to bring out some of the sweetness you get from caramelized onions. When cooking the onions, you want to make sure there is enough oil so that the onion bits looks like they are bubbling – this allows them to get the brownish edges.

Basmati rice in it self is nutty and floral in taste so the spices truly complimented it really well. Not only do I love the texture of Basmati rice, but I love that it cooks perfectly every time. I always use less liquid than the package directions and once it comes to a boil, I reduce to a simmer. Works for every recipe, once you get the heat correct – so pay attention to the flame.

I used this recipe as a side dish and there was no leftovers. I hope you will try this recipe and enjoy it as much as we do. Happy Cooking!

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5 from 1 vote

Fennel Basmati Rice

An easy, simple and magnificantly flavored basmati rice.

Course Dinner, Side Dish
Cuisine Easy
Keyword Basmati Rice, Caraway Seeds, Cumin Powder, Cumin Recipe, Fennel recipe, Fennel Seeds, Indian Rice, Rice Pilaf
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Resting Time: 15 minutes
Servings 4 Servings
Calories 321 kcal
Author Yasmin Jackson


  • 1 1/4 cups basmati rice rinsed thoroughly (4 to 5 rinses until water runs clear)
  • 2 1/4 cups chicken bone broth (or chicken broth or vegetable broth)
  • 1/2 small onion finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic finely minced or crushed
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt


  1. Heat the olive oil in a medium pot, over medium heat.

    Note: Try not to skimp on the oil. I used the full 3 tablespoons. But you can certainly do 2 tablespoons. The oil amount will determine how well the onions cook/brown.

  2. Add the onions. Cook 6 to 7 minutes until the onions are softened and lightly brown around the edges. Stir the onions occassionally.

    Note: If the onions are browning too quickly, reduce the heat. You don't want to burn or brown them too much.

  3. Add the fennel and caraway seeds. Stir. Cook 1 to 2 minutes until fragrant.

  4. Add the garlic, black pepper and cumin. Stir. Cook 30 seconds to 1 minute.

  5. Add the rice. Stir. Add the salt. Turn up the heat to medium high. Stir and allow to cook 2 minutes until you hear crackling sounds.

  6. Add the chicken broth (or vegetable broth). Stir. Bring to a boil. Cover. Lower the heat and simmer 14 minutes until all liquid is absorbed.

  7. Turn off the heat. Use a spoon or fork to fluff. Cover and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes.

  8. Fluff the rice again. Transfer to a serving dish. Garnish with herbs if desired. Serve with your favorite entree. Enjoy.

Recipe Notes

Don’t be tempted to add more liquid than recommended. The level of liquid in the recipe coupled with making sure the simmering temperature is correct cooks the rice perfectly in 14 minutes with no liquid remaining.

Additionally, allowing the rice to sit for 10 to 15 minutes , covered, will continue to cook the rice without making it soft.

Also, do not be tempted to Rush the cooking process for the onions and spices – it is what makes the flavor of the rice nutty and delicious.

Nutrition Facts
Fennel Basmati Rice
Amount Per Serving
Calories 321 Calories from Fat 99
% Daily Value*
Fat 11g17%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Sodium 925mg40%
Potassium 185mg5%
Carbohydrates 49g16%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin C 10mg12%
Calcium 33mg3%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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