More than 120,000 varieties of rice are available throughout the world. With this, picking one is not a walk in the park.
Among others, two of the most popular options are basmati and jasmine rice. They both go well with different dishes, including stir-fried Thai favorites and classic Indian curries. Nonetheless, while they are both types of rice, they are different in many ways.
What is Basmati Rice?
Basmati rice is one of the many types of white rice. It is a common rice grown in the Himalayas, Pakistan, and India. Up to 2/3 of the world’s supply of basmati rice is from India. No wonder, it is common in Indian cuisine, such as in curry side dishes and pilafs.
How to Cook Basmati Rice Perfectly | Tips for non sticky basmati rice for biryani and fried rice.
What is Jasmine Rice?
Meanwhile, jasmine rice is a long grain rice. It is a variety of Oryza sativa or Asian rice. It is common in many Asian countries, including Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. This rice is also exported around the world.
How to Make the Perfect Jasmine Rice
Comparing Basmati vs Jasmine Rice
Can’t decide if you should go for basmati or jasmine rice? If you need help, below are some of the differences between the two.
As we have earlier noted, basmati rice is primarily from India. The latter is the primary global supplier, which also makes it understandable why this type of rice most commonly go with Indian cuisine.
On the other hand, jasmine rice is from southeast Asian countries. It is common to see this rice go with Asian specialties, especially Thai cuisine. Even so, it can also be found in India, just like basmati rice.
Looking a basmati and jasmine rice is one of the easiest ways to tell the differences between the two. When it is uncooked, jasmine rice is a bit clearer and the tips are slightly rounded. Meanwhile, basmati rice has sharper ends and slender.
The two are both long-grain types of rice. However, jasmine is shorter and rounder. On the other hand, basmati is one of the longest types of rice available.
Once the rice is cooked, there is a noticeable difference between the two when it comes to texture. It is easier to differentiate the two when they are cooked as against when it is uncooked. However, the texture can vary depending on cooking methods.
In general, jasmine rice is soft, chewy, and plump. The grains will clump together once it is cooked. On the other hand, basmati rice is fluffy and dry. They will not clump.
4. Aroma and Flavor
If you are looking for fragrant rice, then you cannot go wrong with jasmine. It is aromatic with a slight sweetness, which will perfectly complement savory dishes. It is also nutty with hints of pandan leaves and popcorn.
Basmati rice is also slightly nutty and fragrant. It is not a surprise since basmati is a Hindi word that means aromatic, so you will already have a clear idea of what the rice will smell and taste like.
Rice has a bad reputation because of its carbohydrate contents. Nonetheless, just like with anything else, the key is to consume rice in moderation. When done right, it can be a staple in a healthy diet.
First, let us compare the two in terms of their calories. On average, basmati rice has 230 calories in one cup. Meanwhile, one cup of jasmine rice has about 180 calories. With this, basmati rice is a better option if you are counting calories.
The glycemic index is also different. It measures the speed at which your body absorbs sugar in carbohydrates. A higher glycemic index raises blood sugar faster. Between the two, jasmine rice has a slightly higher glycemic index.
When it comes to factors like fiber, vitamins, proteins, and fat, the two types of rice have almost no difference.
Basmati vs Jasmine Rice: How to choose the best for fried rice, curry, paella & instant pot!
How to Cook Basmati Rice
Unless you are Asian, you might not have the best idea on how to cook rice, including basmati. It is easy! Here’s a quick step-by-step guide on how you can do so.
- Measure the ingredients. For this short recipe, we will use one cup of basmati rice and 1.5 cups of cold water.
- Wash the rice a few times until the water is clear. Place it in a container and fill with water. Drain and repeat. Washing rice will get rid of the starch from the surface of the grains, so it will not be sticky. Instead, your rice will be fluffy.
- Boil water and rice in a pot. Start without the lid and at high heat. As it boils, turn the heat to low and cover the pot.
- Allow the rice to simmer. Use a timer and wait at least 12 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the heat but do not eat it just yet. Give your basmati rice ten minutes to rest. Fluff the rice using spoon or fork before serving.
How to Cook Jasmine Rice
Like with basmati rice, cooking jasmine rice is a straightforward process that will only take a few minutes. Here’s how you can cook jasmine rice perfectly.
- Start by rinsing jasmine rice in water and draining. Repeat until the water is running clear.
- In a medium saucepan, add 1.5 cups of jasmine rice, 2-3/4 cups of water, and a pinch of salt. Cover the saucepan and wait for a few minutes until it boils. After boiling, turn down the heat.
- Let rice simmer up to ten minutes. This will give enough time for the grains to absorb water.
- Check the rice, making sure that it is already tender. If it still looks hard, drizzle water on the top and let it cook for a few minutes.
- Serve and enjoy!
So, Which One Should You Choose?
Now that we had a quick comparison of basmati vs jasmine rice, it is time to decide. There is no wrong or right choice.
At the end of the day, it depends on what you will be cooking or pairing rice with. We recommend basmati if you want the grains to separate. Because of its origin, it is best for Indian and Pakistani dishes.
On the other hand, if you want the rice to clump, then you should choose jasmine rice. It is best for Thai and Vietnamese dishes, as well as in stews and dishes with gravy. It is also perfect for grilled or stir-fried dishes.