This creamy Garlic Butter Parmesan Rice has so much flavor and cooks up in a single pot! The garlic and Parmesan combo will have your mouth watering. It’s kid approved and the perfect side with chicken, steak, or seafood.
My Kid’s Favorite One-Skillet Rice!
Before I had kids, I swore I would never become a short order cook. We all did, right? In their super picky toddler phases, I was definitely -THAT MOM- serving one kid a plate of chicken nuggets with a side of goldfish while the other got a PB&J cut into perfect triangles (not squares – God forbid).
Please tell me I’m not the only one that’s guilty of just making whatever I know my kids will eat. It’s almost laughable now, “They’ll eat what I make them” – yea right!
Luckily, as my girls have gotten older, they’ve branched out a bit from the traditional kiddie fare. So, when I find a favorite recipe that’s easy, quick AND both of my kids love it – it goes into heavy rotation on the dinner menu.
This garlic butter Parmesan rice is one of those favorites. My kids love it because it’s creamy and full of flavor. I love it because it cooks up in one pot and it’s not mac & cheese. It’s the little things that make this mama happy.
We’ve got so many good, wholesome ingredients in this fabulous, kid friendly one-skillet dish.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- long grain rice
- water, chicken broth, or vegetable broth
- salt and fresh ground pepper
- grated Parmesan cheese
- fresh baby spinach (optional)
- chopped fresh parsley
How to Make Garlic Parmesan Rice
- Melt: Set a dutch oven or a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat and melt the butter.
- Stir: Stir in the garlic and cook it in the butter for 3 to 4 minutes. Stir frequently and be careful not to burn the garlic.
- Add: Add rice and stir it around to evenly coat it with the melted butter.
- Add: Stir in the milk, water, salt, and pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil.
- Cook: Cover and reduce the heat to low. Cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Stir in: Remove the cover and stir in the parmesan cheese, baby spinach, and 1 tablespoon parsley.
- Let Stand: Remove the pot from the heat. Cover it and let it stand for 3 minutes.
- Serve: Garnish the rice with the remaining parsley and serve.
Tips for the Best Garlic Parmesan Rice
If you’re looking for a next level rice side dish that the kids will love, you’ve found it. Follow these tips to make sure it’s great:
- You can opt to use water or broth. Chicken broth or vegetable broth both work well. I’d recommend using low sodium versions or adjust the amount of salt you add if you do use broth instead of water.
- Don’t skip the milk! The milk is what gives this dish the creamy, risotto like texture.
- This recipe calls for long grain rice. Short grain rice will be too dense and won’t get as tender as you’re going to want. I prefer Basmati rice, but Jasmine rice also works really well.
I like to use this rice dish in place of any plain rice side. Think of it like plain rice on steroids or a non-potato alternative to a garlic mash. I’m thinking on the side of a nice piece of steak, a sauteed chicken, or broiled salmon.
If you opt not to include the spinach, you may want to serve a veggie along with this, too. A buttered green bean would be great!
It also makes for a simpler risotto substitute. You could throw the veggies and protein you were planning to use in your favorite risotto recipe in this dish instead for a similar texture without all the stirring.
How to Store Leftover Rice
- First, let your leftovers come to room temperature. Then place them in an airtight container.
- Place the container in the refrigerator for about 3 days. I wouldn’t recommend serving it past 3 days since it does contain milk.
Garlic Butter Parmesan Rice
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup uncooked long grain rice
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup water, you can also use chicken broth or vegetable broth
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- ½ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
- 4 cups fresh baby spinach, optional
- 2 tablespoons fresh chopped fresh parsley, divided
- Set a dutch oven or a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat and melt the butter.
- Stir in garlic and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring frequently. Do not burn the garlic.
- Add rice and stir around to evenly coat with the melted butter.
- Stir in milk, water, salt, and pepper; bring mixture to a boil.
- Cover and reduce heat to low; cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Remove cover and stir in Parmesan cheese, baby spinach, and 1 tablespoon parsley.
- Remove from heat; cover and let stand 3 minutes.
- Garnish with remaining parsley and serve.