7 Quick, Easy And Yummy Rice Dishes For Your Kid’s Tiffin Box
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This article is a part of Slurrp’s Back To School series, where we provide all the tips, recipes and guidance parents need to ensure that children resuming school this year get all the food and nutrition they need and deserve.  

Ask any parents, especially mothers, and you will know that sorting kids’ tiffin boxes for school is one of the most critical tasks for a family. A kid’s tiffin box has to be nutritious and cover all possible nutritional categories. The same tiffin box also must have interesting and delicious dishes that ensure that the food will be eaten by the child and not brought back home. Moreover, the tiffin box contents must also be easy to eat and not create a mess or spoil too quickly during India’s scorching summers. 

Checking all of these boxes for the perfect kids’ tiffin box is essential, and parents as well as guardians know it. And there itself lies the biggest challenge, because ticking off all of these boxes every day is a mountain of a task. But worry not, because we have just what you need to make this daily task much easier. One of the easiest ways to do this is by utilizing that basic ingredient all Indians have at home—rice. The rice you use may be white, red, brown, Basmati or any variety, but every household in India does stock it. 

Why rice for your kid’s tiffin box? Apart from the fact that rice is an essential carbohydrate that can provide kids with plenty of energy—something they need at school—rice also have plenty of fibre, vitamins and minerals. Add other healthy ingredients to this, and you have easy, one-pot rice dishes that are very nutritious. What’s more, most Indian one-pot rice dishes are not only easy to cook but also very easy to eat—all your kid needs is a spoon or spork to scoop it all up! 

The best bit is that Indian cuisine is very vast and rich, and there is no dearth of one-pot rice dishes that can be cooked up quickly. These rice dishes rely on regional flavours that can bring a freshness to daily tiffin boxes like no other class of recipes can. Plus, because they can be made with the very basic ingredients we have at home, they are also pocket-friendly. Here are some of these quick Indian rice dishes you can whip up for your kid’s tiffin box. 

Video Credit: YouTube/Chef Ranveer Brar


More popularly known as tamarind rice, this Karnataka-style one-pot rice dish sings with the sour notes of tamarind. Short grain rice is usually used to make Puliyogare, and a Puliyogare Gojju or spice blend is made with chana dal, urad dal, cumin, coriander, mustard, fenugreek, sesame and coconut. Tamarind pulp is soaked with jaggery in water, and the concentrated paste is later used to flavour and balance the rice. The rice dish is tempered with mustard seeds, curry leaves and dry red chillies. 

Soya Pulao

This one is more typical of North India, but kids across the nation can enjoy Soya Pulao because it packs both a protein and a flavour punch. The easiest way to make this Soya Pulao is to temper some ghee with whole spices like bay leaves, cinnamon sticks and cardamom, add soaked soya chunks and a few select spices, add soaked rice, water and cook until done. You could also experiment with different spice blends and add plenty of veggies to make this one outstanding. 


Also known as Nei Choru, this Kerala-style rice dish is traditionally cooked with kaima rice—but you can also try it with other white rice varieties. Neychoru is a superb, amped up version of ghee rice, which means you can easily make it with the simplest ingredients. To make Neychoru, ghee is tempered with whole spices, then onions, cashews and other dry fruits and nuts are added. The soaked rice is added last and cooked on dum with water. You can also experiment with dried apricots, prunes and cranberries for this dish. 

Chicken Fried Rice

A true symbol of Indo-Chinese cuisine, Chicken Fried Rice can be easily made with leftover rice and chicken. You can use leftover shredded or chopped chicken, or even use fresh minced or chopped chicken for this quick dish. Apart from using veggies like onions and carrots, you can also load up on green veggies like beans, capsicum and spring onions. Adding soy sauce, vinegar and some brown sugar—all of which are easily available—will add an authentic taste to the Chicken Fried Rice.  

Curd Rice 

Also known as Thayir Sadam, this South Indian rice dish is perfectly suited for summers—a season when kids need to stay as cool and hydrated as adults. While the soft and mushy texture of the dish can make it off-putting for kids, you can always add more of the tempering—which is made of mustard seeds, curry leaves and dry red chillies—and toppings like cashews, peanuts, pomegranate seeds, etc. Make sure the curd you use isn’t too sour, as it is more likely to spoil. 

Thakkali Sadam

Known more popularly as tomato rice, this Tamil-style rice dish sings with the flavours of tomatoes and a simple tempering. Usually, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, chana dal, urad dal, cashews or peanuts, green chillies and curry leaves are tempered in oil before chopped tomatoes and mild spices are added. Once the tomatoes are fully cooked and mushy, precooked rice is mixed with it and served with coriander leaves. 

Basanti Pulao

This yellow-coloured Bengali-style rice dish is slightly sweet, making it a perfect change from all the savoury rice dishes on this list. Usually, the fragrant, short-grained Gobindobhog rice is used to make Basanti Pulao. To make this dish, ghee is tempered with whole spices, then cashew nuts, raisins, turmeric and salt are added along with the soaked rice. Many people also add green chillies to this one, and it tastes great a day later—which means you can just as easily make it the night before for your kid’s tiffin box!