Nasi lemak is known as the national dish of Malaysia and is served with ikan bilis, roasted peanuts, hard-boiled eggs and spicy sambals. Delicious and fragrant, nasi lemak is a perfect accompaniment to beef rendang. I never cook plain old rice any more after learning this recipe! You can cook this in a rice cooker if you have one.






Skill level

Average: 3 (327 votes)


  • 3 cups long-grain rice 
  • 200 ml coconut milk
  • 200 ml water
  • 2 cm piece of ginger, bruised
  • 1 pandan leaf, split and tied in a knot
  • ¾ tsp salt

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Rice cooker method
Place rice, coconut milk and water into a rice cooker.  Add ginger, knotted pandan leaf and salt and cook until done.


Stovetop method
Rinse the rice twice and drain. Put in a saucepan with the remaining ingredients, cover with a lid and bring to the boil. Simmer gently until the liquid is absorbed (about 15 minutes). Remove from the heat and leave covered for another 5 minutes before serving.