The Ultimate Armenian Rice Pilaf Recipe for Your Taste Buds

Welcome to my Armenian Rice Pilaf recipe! This flavorful and aromatic dish is a staple in Armenian cuisine, but it’s also a favorite among food enthusiasts all over the world. The combination of rice, orzo pasta, and vermicelli noodles cooked in chicken broth with rich flavors of butter and olive oil creates a mouth-watering side dish that perfectly complements meats, stews, or grilled dishes.

But what makes this dish so special compared to other pilaf recipes? It’s all about the technique and ingredients used. The long-grain Uncle Ben’s converted brand rice used in this recipe gives each grain a distinct texture and nutty flavor when cooked. And let’s not forget the addition of aromatic spices like black pepper and salt that create depth in taste and aroma.

Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a beginner in the kitchen, my easy-to-follow instructions will help you create an authentic Armenian-Rice Pilaf that tastes as if it was prepared at Susan’s cooking school in Yerevan. So put on your apron and let’s get started with this delicious armenian pilaf recipe that you’ll want to make it over and over again!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Armenian Rice Pilaf
Armenian Rice Pilaf

Welcome to my kitchen, where I will share with you the secret recipe of the Armenian Rice Pilaf. If you’re looking for a side dish that packs both flavour and nutrition, this is the perfect recipe for you. Here’s why I’m confident that you’ll absolutely love it:

Firstly, this rice pilaf recipe has a perfect balance of flavours that will leave your taste buds wanting more. The combination of succulent chicken broth, creamy butter and aromatic olive oil creates a base for the rice that is both rich and delicious. The addition of orzo pasta cooked to golden perfection adds some texture to the dish.

Secondly, the long grain Uncle Ben’s converted brand rice used in this recipe is well known for its quality and consistency. The high-quality long-grain white rice cooks up fluffy and tender, making it perfect for absorbing all the flavours in the dish. Whether cooked alone or used in a myriad of recipes like fried rice or stuffed grape leaves, this rice will deliver outstanding results every time.

Thirdly, this recipe is incredibly versatile! You can easily substitute the chicken broth with vegetable broth or beef broth if preferred, and even add vermicelli noodles instead of orzo for an even richer flavour. If you’re feeling adventurous, toss in some raisins to make a pilaf with raisins or brown rice instead of white rice for healthier option.

Finally, this armenian rice pilaf makes an excellent accompaniment to many main dishes. It pairs perfectly with shish kebabs, grilled chicken or lamb chops, enhancing their delicious flavour profile. Also adding variety to a meal that would otherwise be mundane.

In conclusion, this easy to make armenian style Rice Pilaf thanks to its rich, filling ingredients and versatile nature will add dimension to any meal while remaining simple enough to make at home. Trust me, once you try this recipe it’ll become a staple in your household too!

Ingredient List

 One look at this Armenian Rice Pilaf and you'll be hooked!
One look at this Armenian Rice Pilaf and you’ll be hooked!

Here are the ingredients you will need to make this savory Armenian Rice Pilaf recipe:

  • 2 cups Uncle Ben’s converted brand long-grain white rice
  • 1 cup orzo pasta
  • 1 ½ cups chicken broth
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • Salt to taste

Note: You can also use basmati rice instead of Uncle Ben’s converted brand rice, and vermicelli noodles instead of orzo. Raisins can also be added to make pilaf with raisins.

The Recipe How-To

 Perfectly seasoned and fluffy, it's a dish that impresses.
Perfectly seasoned and fluffy, it’s a dish that impresses.

Now that we have gathered all of our ingredients, it is time to start cooking this scrumptious Armenian Rice Pilaf Recipe. Follow these detailed instructions to make the perfect pilaf every time.

Step 1: Prepare the Rice: Rinse the 2 cups of long-grain white rice thoroughly in cold water until the water runs clear. Then, drain any excess water.

Step 2: Brown the Vermicelli: Heat a heavy-bottomed, non-reactive saucepan over medium heat. Melt 1 tablespoon of butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a saucepan. Add 1/2 cup of broken vermicelli noodles (or thin pasta if you prefer) and cook until golden brown for roughly 4-5 minutes.

Step 3: Cook the Rice and Vermicelli Together: Next, add the rinsed rice into the pan with the toasted vermicelli noodles. Stir it around gently while cooking for about 3-4 minutes until all grains are coated evenly with butter and slightly toasted.

Step 4: Add Chicken Broth: Pour 2 cups of chicken broth into the pot along with salt and pepper to taste. Bring everything to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to low as soon as it begins boiling. Cover your saucepan with a tight-fitting lid and let simmer on low for approximately 20-25 minutes or until all liquid has been absorbed.

Step 5: Fluff Rice and Serve: After around 20-25 minutes once all liquid has been absorbed, fluff up rice using a fork or spatula. Finally, transfer it to a serving bowl and top off with additional herbs (optional). Enjoy your delicious Armenian Rice Pilaf Recipe!

Note: To increase your pilaf recipe’s richness, you may substitute water in step 4 for extra chicken broth.

Substitutions and Variations

 Rice lovers unite; you don't want to miss out on this beauty.
Rice lovers unite; you don’t want to miss out on this beauty.

When it comes to armenian rice pilaf, there are a few substitutions and variations you can make to suit your taste. Firstly, instead of using Uncle Ben’s converted brand rice, you can opt for long-grain white rice or basmati rice. Both of these types of rice work well in this dish, and the choice is really up to you.

If you want to switch things up, you can try using orzo pasta instead of vermicelli noodles. Orzo adds a unique texture and flavor to this dish that complements the chicken broth and black pepper nicely. You could also try adding raisins to your rice pilaf for a sweet twist on the classic recipe.

For a vegetarian option, you can make armenian pilaf without the chicken broth and replace it with vegetable broth instead. This substitution still provides enough flavor and depth to the dish while being animal-free.

You could also stuff grape leaves with armenian style rice pilaf for an adventurous culinary experience. This variation is perfect for those that are looking to experiment with different flavors and textures.

Regardless of what substitutions or variations you choose to make, be sure to keep the same ingredients’ quantities and follow the recipe instructions to get perfect results every time. With the right substitutions, armenian style rice pilaf can be customized to meet anyone’s individual preferences and dietary requirements while still being deliciously satisfying.

Serving and Pairing

 A wholesome meal that will remind you of grandma's cooking.
A wholesome meal that will remind you of grandma’s cooking.

As a side dish, Armenian rice pilaf works great with any main dish. Whether you’re having shish kebabs, roasted chicken or grilled fish, armenian rice pilaf can complement the flavors of those dishes. The nutty flavor and fluffy texture of the rice pilaf can also balance out the spiciness of a savory entree.

You can also try serving it alongside stuffed grape leaves or other Middle Eastern mezze dishes to create a flavor-packed spread. For an adventurous twist, you can stuff the boiled armenian-style pilaf into grape leaves and bake them in a casserole dish to make delicious pilaf-stuffed grape leaves.

If you’re looking for a vegetarian main dish, consider adding some steamed vegetables like green beans, carrots, or broccoli as well as chickpeas or lentils to the rice for added protein. The sweet and chewy raisins can also be added to make armenian rice pilaf with raisins, which is deliciously sweet and nutty.

For wine pairings, a light-bodied red wine such as pinot noir or medium-bodied white such as Chardonnay work best with the bold flavors of armenian rice pilaf. You can also serve it alongside a cool and refreshing tzatziki sauce for maximum taste experience.

No matter how you choose to serve it, Armenian Rice Pilaf is sure to be the star of your table. A versatile and delectable addition to any meal, this classic recipe is perfect for impressing guests at dinner parties or sharing a home-cooked meal with loved ones.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 The aroma alone is enough to make your mouth water.
The aroma alone is enough to make your mouth water.

After making a delicious Armenian Rice Pilaf, it’s time to think about storage and reheating. This dish can certainly be made ahead of time, but there are certain steps you need to follow before storing it.

If you plan on making this delightful dish a day or two before serving it, make sure the rice pilaf has cooled down completely first. Place it in an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Reheating this rice pilaf dish is easy and convenient. You may use a microwave or stove-top for reheating without compromising its original taste and quality.

For the microwave, simply transfer the rice pilaf into a microwavable bowl or dish and heat, covered with a damp paper towel. Microwave it for 2-3 minutes and stir occasionally to distribute the heat evenly.

If you prefer to reheat on the stove, transfer the rice pilaf into a saucepan over low heat. Add some butter or olive oil to keep it moist while heating. Slowly stir and cook until heated through

It is essential to mention that reheating should only be done once; repeated heating may lead to overcooked rice which affects its overall texture and taste.

That said, enjoy serving this incredible dish with ease even after preparing it in advance; just remember these simple storage and reheating instructions!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Simple yet satisfying, it's a crowd-pleaser for a reason.
Simple yet satisfying, it’s a crowd-pleaser for a reason.

To achieve the perfect Armenian rice pilaf, it is important to pay attention to every detail, from the ingredients to the cooking process. Here are some tips that I have learned throughout my culinary career that can help you take your rice pilaf to the next level.

First of all, selecting the right type of rice is crucial. Uncle Ben’s converted brand rice is the best option for Armenian style rice pilaf. This type of long grain white rice tends to separate nicely, resulting in a fluffy and flavorful pilaf.

Next, I highly recommend using chicken broth instead of water to give your pilaf recipe an extra depth of flavor. I also suggest reducing the sodium content of your chicken broth by opting for a reduced-sodium version.

When it comes to cooking the rice and orzo pasta, make sure to pay careful attention to the timing. Cooking the pasta and grains for exactly 4 minutes on medium-low heat in butter and olive oil will ensure a golden brown color without burning. Additionally, it is important not to overcook the rice; after adding the chicken broth and bringing it to a boil, turn down the heat to low and cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid for 20-25 minutes. Resist the urge to peek during this time as opening the lid will release steam that is needed for perfectly cooked rice.

For those who prefer their pilaf with raisins or vermicelli noodles, soak them in hot water for at least 30 minutes before adding them into the pot. For added flavor and texture, you can also add fried onions or mushrooms during step 3 of the cooking process.

Finally, when it comes to serving your Armenian rice pilaf, consider pairing it with shish kebabs or stuffed grape leaves for an authentic Armenian meal. Alternatively, you can add slices of lamb or chicken directly into your pilaf during cooking for a complete one-pot meal.

By following these tips carefully, you can easily create an amazing Armenian-style Rice Pilaf that will be a hit even among your most discerning eaters.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, whether you’re looking for a delicious side dish to accompany your shish kebabs or just looking for a new recipe to try, this Armenian Rice Pilaf recipe is a must-try! With its fluffy long grain rice, the nuttiness of the orzo pasta, and the richness of the buttery chicken broth, this pilaf is sure to become a favorite in your household.

And with so many variation options, such as adding raisins and vermicelli noodles or swapping out the rice type for basmati, there’s no end to the possibilities when it comes to making this dish your own.

So next time you’re craving some Armenian food or are feeling adventurous in the kitchen, give this pilaf recipe a chance. Trust me, your taste buds won’t regret it!

Armenian Rice Pilaf

Armenian Rice Pilaf Recipe

Very simple but delicious rice dish. You can add currants or nuts to make it fancy. If using canned chicken broth, use one can plus water to make the two cups.
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Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Armenian
Calories 184.2 kcal


  • 1 cup Uncle Ben's converted brand rice
  • 2 tablespoons orzo pasta or 2 tablespoons skinny noodles
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • black pepper
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter


  • Heat oil and brown orzo.
  • Add rice and stir, coating rice with oil so grains will be fluffy when cooked.
  • Add chicken broth, salt and pepper. Broth should taste a little salty.
  • Cover and cook slowly for 20 minutes or until all broth is absorbed. Add currants and nuts if desired.
  • Add butter and stir.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 160gCalories: 184.2kcalCarbohydrates: 23.9gProtein: 5gFat: 7.2gSaturated Fat: 2.5gCholesterol: 7.6mgSodium: 986.1mgFiber: 0.6gSugar: 0.5g
Keyword < 30 Mins, Long-Grain Rice, Low Cholesterol, Rice
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