Tomato Rice: A Tangy Dish Rich With flavours
Image Credit: Picture credit - Tomato rice can be paired with curd | image: Instagram - @malathy.ajay

Weekends are all about relaxation and chill time. It’s usually spent watching a show or a movie on OTT platforms and eating chips or ordering something from outside. Many of us don’t want to cook for hours on a weekend unless it’s a hobby. But waiting for an hour to get a meal delivered is too much. Instead, you can make an easy-peasy South Indian dish, tomato rice which can be cooked within a few minutes.

It is a must-try recipe for those who love tangy and flavourful one-pot meals. The amalgam of tomato with rice is directly from the heavens and you can easily cook it at home. It is a  popular South Indian rice recipe which can be prepared with tomatoes, leftover rice and a bunch of spices.

The dish is traditionally known as thakkali sadam. In the Tamil language, ‘thakkali‘ means tomato and ‘sadam‘ means rice. Tomato rice is one of the comforting meals that you can have any time of the day. It is loaded with flavours and is fulfilling to the core.

Picture credit : Instagram - @foodiesfood_court


The dish tastes well with onion or boondi raita. You can also pair this mouth-watering rice recipe with papad. The dish is loved for its simplicity and balanced flavours. Let’s dig into its preparation now.

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Serving: 4



  • Basmati Rice – 2 cups (soaked in water for 1 hour & drained)
  • Coconut milk – 1 cup (first press)
  • Cardamom – 5 nos
  • Cinnamon – 2 inches
  • Bay leaves – 2 nos
  • Coriander powder – 1 tsp
  • Red chilly powder – ½ tsp
  • Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp
  • Onion (sliced) – 1 no
  • Tomatoes (pureed) – 3 nos
  • Chopped coriander leaves – 2 tbsp
  • Chopped mint leaves – 2 tbsp
  • Green chillies – 3 nos (slit)
  • Salt
  • Ghee – 2 tsp
  • Oil – 2 tsp
  • Water – 3 cups


1. Heat oil in a pan. Once the oil is hot add spices – Cardamom, cinnamon, and bay leaves and mix it well

2. Now add the sliced onions and mix them well. Cover the mixture and cook until soft

3. Add green chillies slit and cook again

4. Now add tomato puree and salt. Cook it till the raw smell fades

5. Now put the spice powders – turmeric, red chilly and coriander powders and fold in the mixture

6. Cover it and cook till oil gets separated and floats on the to

7. Now turn off the stove and pour the tomato gravy into the vessel which also contains the    drained rice

8. Pour coconut milk and water (1 cup coconut milk and 2 cups water). Mix them well

9. Add salt as per your taste

10. Cook in a rice cooker till the dish is ready to serve

11. If using a pressure cooker, cook for 2 whistles and put it on a low flame for 10 minutes after the whistles

The amazing thing about this dish is that you can always add your twist of flavours to this conventional South Indian recipe. Tomato rice can be easily carried for a road trip as well. It is a comfort dish that you can enjoy every season. 

Happy Cooking!