Recipe: Mangoes and Sticky Rice

Mangoes and sticky rice - oh how my heart swoons!  After a heated meal of Thai food – heightened by the bright flavors of kaffir lime, lemongrass and painfully hot chili peppers – nothing soothes the palate quite like a warm bowl of gently sweet and slightly salty mangoes and sticky rice. I like to serve this dish after a meal of coconut shrimp soup with chilies and lime or even on its own as a breakfast.  It satisfies like little else, and like many of the desserts featured at Nourished Kitchen, it is only mildly sweetened with natural and unrefined sweeteners.

Mangoes and sticky rice is classically served with polished, refined white rice, but the dish’s nutrient profile can be improved by using sprouted or soaked brown rice without compromising the ultimate flavor or texture of the dish.  Like all grains, brown rice contains antinutrients which bind up minerals preventing their full absorption and the simple act of soaking or sprouting rice can improve the body’s ability to better absorb grain’s full complement of minerals – particularly zinc and iron. You can read more about soaking grain or learn the benefits of sprouted grain.  This recipe for mangoes and sticky rice is also rich in coconut oil – a remarkable and wholesome fat that’s rich in lauric acid – a fatty acid known for its antimicrobial activities and that is thought to boost the immune system.

mangoes and sticky rice

By Jenny Published: May 27, 2010

  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
  • Prep: 40 mins
  • Cook: 40 mins
  • Ready In: 1 hr 20 mins

Faintly sweet and slightly salty, mangoes and sticky rice is a classic Thai dessert – often served as a special treat at the end of the meal. This beautiful combination of sweet-salty coconut milk and ripe mangoes nourishes the body and satisfies the tastebuds. The sweet-salt flavor is essential to the true and classic flavors of this dish. Don’t forget, if you like this and other recipes from Nourished Kitchen, please consider signing up for How to Cook Real Food – our new online cooking class.


  • 1 cup short grain brown rice
  • 1 tbsp lime juice (coconut kefir or other acidic medium)
  • 14 oz full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 tsp unrefined sea salt
  • up to 2 tbsp unrefined whole cane sugar OR coconut palm sugar
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 ripe mango (sliced thin)
  • zest of 1 lime


  1. Rinse the short grain brown rice under flowing water until the water runs clear, then place the rinsed brown rice in a bowl and cover it with warm water.
  2. Gently stir 1 tablespoon lime juice, coconut kefir or other acidic medium into the mixture of warm water and brown rice. Allow the rice to soak in this slightly acidic water for eight to twelve hours or overnight.
  3. Once the rice has sufficiently soaked for a period of up to twelve hours, drain the rice and rinse it again before cooking it either on the stove top or in a rice cooker as you normally would.
  4. While the rice cooks, pour 14 ounces full-fat coconut milk into a saucepan over medium-low heat and gently stir 1 teaspoon unrefined sea salt and up to two tablespoons unrefined whole cane sugar or coconut palm sugar into the milk until the sugar and salt fully dissolves.
  5. Separate the coconut milk mixture in two halves, then pour one half of the mixture over the cooked rice.
  6. Then stir 1/4 cup coconut oil into the mixture of coconut milk and rice – allowing the rice to soak up the coconut milk and oil for about fifteen to twenty minutes.
  7. Portion the rice into individual bowls and then gently spoon the remaining coconut milk mixture over the rice, layering thinly sliced mango over the rice and garnishing with the zest of one lime.
  8. Serve warm as a dessert or even for breakfast.