Pita Inn Rice Recipe: Authentic Flavors, Simple Steps

Pita Inn Rice Recipe: Authentic Flavors, Simple Steps

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The Pita Inn Rice recipe, a mainstay of my homemade Middle Eastern cuisine, is a flavorful dish easily recognized for its aromatic blend of spices and fluffy rice texture. This dish commonly features basmati rice, known for its long grains and distinctive fragrance, combined with a medley of herbs, vegetables, and sometimes meats.

Pita Inn Rice Cover Image

It’s a versatile recipe that can stand as a hearty base for a variety of meals, accommodating different dietary preferences and occasions. It is a great balance for your taste buds and a great side dish for your planned main dish.

Essentials of Pita Inn Rice

To recreate the flavorsome Pita Inn rice recipe, it’s important to procure the right ingredients and consider the type of rice ideal for achieving its signature texture.

Varieties of Rice Suitable for the Recipe

Let’s face it, rice is the key ingredient here! Here are a few suggestions:

  • Long Grain: Basmati or Jasmine rice are preferred for their fluffy, separate grains and aromatic presence.
  • Medium Grain: Although less traditional, medium-grain rice can also be used for a slightly stickier texture but still acceptable results.

Ingredients Needed

Pita Inn Rice Ingredients

These basic ingredients come together to create a fragrant and flavorful rice dish that pairs well with various Mediterranean and Middle Eastern-inspired dishes.

3 tablespoons butter: Unsalted butter adds a rich and creamy flavor to the rice. It also helps prevent the rice from sticking to the pot during cooking. You could use a good olive oil here instead.

1 cup rice: Use long-grain plain white rice for this recipe. Rice is the main ingredient, absorbing all the flavors from the seasonings and broth.

1 teaspoon minced garlic: Minced garlic contributes a savory and aromatic element to the rice, enhancing its overall taste. In a pinch, you can use garlic powder.

1 teaspoon dry onion: Dry onion, often in the form of onion powder or granulated onion, adds a subtle onion flavor to the rice without the texture of fresh onions.

1 teaspoon turmeric: Turmeric is a vibrant yellow spice that provides a beautiful color to the rice and adds a warm, earthy flavor with a hint of bitterness.

2 cups chicken broth: Chicken broth is the liquid used to cook the rice. It infuses the rice with savory notes and ensures a flavorful and moist result. You could use chicken stock instead.

Salt & pepper to taste: Salt enhances the dish’s overall taste, while pepper adds a touch of mild spiciness. Adjust the amounts to suit your personal preferences. I tend to use kosher salt.

For garnish, Chopped cilantro is used as a fresh and vibrant garnish. It adds a burst of herbal flavor and a pop of green color to the finished dish.

Step-by-Step Recipe

These simple steps will have you enjoying a staple of Middle Eastern dishes in no time.

melt the butter

Melt the Butter: In a skillet or large saucepan on your stove top, melt the 3 tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat. Allow it to heat until it becomes fragrant and begins to sizzle.

toast the rice

Toast the Rice: Add the 1 cup of rice to the melted butter in the skillet. Stir the rice continuously, cooking it until it turns a golden brown color. This toasting step enhances the flavor and texture of the rice, giving it a nutty aroma.

add in seasonings

Add the Seasonings: Stir in 1 teaspoon of minced garlic, 1 teaspoon of dry onion, and 1 teaspoon of turmeric. Continue to stir and cook for another minute or until the seasonings are well incorporated and fragrant.

pour in chicken broth

Pour in the Chicken Broth: Gradually pour in the 2 cups of chicken broth, stirring as you do so. The chicken broth will sizzle as it meets the hot skillet. Continue to stir to combine all the ingredients evenly.

Bring to a Boil and Simmer: Increase the heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, reduce the heat to low and cover the skillet with a lid. Allow the rice to simmer on low heat for about 15-20 minutes, or until the rice is tender and has absorbed the liquid. Keep the lid on during this cooking process to trap steam and cook the rice evenly.

fluff and garnish the Pita Inn Rice

Fluff and Garnish: Remove the skillet from heat once the rice is tender and all the liquid has been absorbed. Use a fork to fluff the rice, separating the grains and ensuring a light and fluffy texture.

Garnish and Serve: Sprinkle the freshly chopped cilantro over the cooked rice for a burst of freshness and color. Your Pita Inn-style rice is now ready to be served.

Enjoy: Serve your flavorful rice as a delicious side dish to complement your Mediterranean or Middle Eastern-inspired meals. The combination of buttery, seasoned rice with the aromatic cilantro garnish makes for a delightful treat.

Enjoy your Pita Inn Rice Recipe with its vibrant flavors and enticing aroma!

Finishing Touches and Plating

Once the rice is cooked, fluff it with a fork to separate the grains gently.

  • Transfer the rice to a serving dish, shaping it into a mound if desired.
  • Before serving, consider garnishing with fresh herbs or toasted nuts for added flavor and texture.
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Serving Suggestions

Pita Inn rice pairs well with a variety of dishes and flavors. To maximize your enjoyment, consider these serving suggestions.


How to create a main course out of it:

  • Grilled Meats: Your Pita Inn rice will go splendidly with grilled lamb, chicken, or beef. The smoky flavors complement the rice. I love it with chicken shawarma or my knock off Pita Inn falafel.  It doesn’t pair the best with ground beef.
  • Vegetarian Options: Pair it with grilled vegetables or a mixed salad for a lighter meal.
  • Sauces: Dress your Pita Inn rice with tzatziki sauce or a light vinaigrette to add a fresh taste.

Garnishing Tips

  • Fresh Herbs: Garnish with chopped parsley or cilantro for a burst of color and freshness.
  • Nuts: Toasted pine nuts or slivered almonds provide a contrasting texture.
  • Lemon: A squeeze of lemon juice brightens the dish right before serving.
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Storage and Reheating Instructions

When you have leftover Pita Inn rice, storing it properly is essential to maintain its flavor and texture for future meals.

To Store Rice:

  • Allow the rice to cool to room temperature. Do not leave it out for more than two hours to prevent bacteria growth.
  • Transfer the rice to an airtight container. This helps prevent moisture loss and keeps the rice from absorbing flavors from other foods in your refrigerator.
  • Label the container with the current date. Refrigerated rice is best consumed within three to four days.

To Freeze Rice:

  • If you need to store the rice for a longer period, you can freeze it.
  • Use freezer-safe bags or containers.
  • Press out all the air from the bag to prevent freezer burn or divide the rice into portion sizes in containers for easy reheating later.
  • Frozen rice can last up to two months.

To Reheat Rice:

  • For best results, reheat only the portion you plan to eat.
  • Add a tablespoon of water per cup of rice to reintroduce moisture.
  • Cover the rice to trap the steam, which will help restore the texture.


  • Heat for about 1-2 minutes per cup, stirring halfway through to distribute the heat evenly.


  • Use a non-stick pan over low-medium heat.
  • Stir occasionally until the rice is heated through, roughly 3-5 minutes.

Remember not to reheat rice more than once as the quality degrades with each reheating. Enjoy your Pita Inn rice as if it were freshly made with these simple storage and reheating methods.

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Frequently Asked Questions About the Pita Inn Rice Recipe

Exploring the art of creating Mediterranean yellow rice, you’ll find the answers to enhance your culinary prowess and achieve that authentic taste.

How can I make an authentic Mediterranean yellow rice recipe at home?

To make authentic Mediterranean recipes for yellow rice, you must start with a suitable variety of rice and use specific seasonings like turmeric or saffron for that signature bright yellow color. Sautéing the rice with onions and spices before simmering in a broth increases the depth of flavor.

What spices are essential to add flavor to Mediterranean rice?

Essential spices for a Mediterranean rice recipe include cumin, coriander, cinnamon, and a touch of turmeric or saffron to achieve the golden color. Fresh herbs like parsley and mint may be added at the end for freshness.

What is the traditional way to prepare a Mediterranean rice pilaf?

A traditional Mediterranean rice pilaf involves toasting the rice in olive oil, then cooking it with aromatic vegetables like onion and garlic, and adding spices before simmering in a flavorful broth until tender and fluffy.

Which type of rice is best suited for a Mediterranean-style dish?

Medium-grain rice like Calrose or Arborio and long-grain varieties such as Basmati and Jasmine rice are best suited for Mediterranean-style dishes due to their ability to absorb flavors and achieve the desired texture.

How does the Mediterranean diet influence rice preparation methods?

The Mediterranean diet favors whole grains, lean proteins, and the use of olive oil, guiding the preparation methods of rice dishes towards healthier options, often incorporating vegetables and legumes along with minimalistic seasoning for natural tastes.

What are some common variations of Middle Eastern rice recipes?

Common variations include the addition of nuts like pine nuts or slivered almonds, legumes such as lentils or chickpeas, and proteins like lamb or chicken. Each region may include unique spices, dried fruits, or a combination of these to create distinct flavors.

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Yield: 4 - 5 servings

Pita Inn Rice Recipe: Authentic Flavors, Simple Steps

Pita Inn Rice

The Pita Inn Rice recipe, a mainstay of my homemade Middle Eastern cuisine, is a flavorful dish easily recognized for its aromatic blend of spices and fluffy rice texture.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes


  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 1 cup rice
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp dry onion
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • salt & pepper, to taste
  • chopped cilantro, for garnish


  1. In a skillet over medium heat melt the butter.
  2. Stir in the rice and cook until golden brown.
  3. Stir in the seasonings and chicken broth.
  4. Bring to a boil and simmer until rice is tender.
  5. Fluff, garnish with chopped cilantro, serve, and enjoy!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 140Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 25mgSodium: 605mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 2g
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