Japanese
Green Tea Rice

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Light and abundant, green tea rice is a Japanese comfort food made with steamed rice and savory tea. It's quick, healthy, and pairs well with many appetizers – perfect as a comforting meal after a busy day!

Green tea rice topped with sesame seeds, served in a bowl.

Green tea rice

A bowl full of green tea rice or ochazuke it's one of the simplest Japanese dishes you can make at home. Hearty, refreshing and filling, it's something you can make when you're feeling a little down or craving a delicious meal after a long day.

This rice tea recipe is healthy, low in calories and extremely easy to prepare. It sounds really simple, but the clean, toasty flavor of green tea paired with rice and various seasonings makes for a satisfying and comforting meal.

Want to try another classic Japanese comfort food? Check out my Asari Miso Soup recipe!


What is Ochazuke

Easy green tea rice in a bowl with a pair of chopsticks.Easy green tea rice in a bowl with a pair of chopsticks.

Ochazuke is a simple Japanese rice dish sprinkled with tasty hot green tea and optionally seasoned with various ingredients. In Japanese, ocha means “tea” and You means “to dip,” which describes this dish perfectly.

It is commonly eaten as a quick meal, but is also usually served at the end of a large meal in Japanese restaurants. The hot tea is poured over rice and sometimes topped with flaked fish, pickled vegetables, or seaweed.

In Japan, this dish is typically eaten using chopsticks with leftover rice and green tea drunk as a soup. Of course, you can also use a spoon if that's more convenient for you. Make sure to mix the bowl well to fully incorporate all the flavors before eating!


What kind of green tea to use

In general, any type of green tea can be used, but the best are those called Shincha leaves. It's technically the first spring harvest of Sencha tea of ​​the year, so it's sold out before it's even harvested.

It is celebrated for its fresh, lively aroma, naturally sweet finish and smooth umami flavor, which constitute the qualities of a premium green tea.

For this green tea rice recipe, you can steep tea leaves to make the tea that will be poured over the cooked rice. Check out other alternatives you can explore in the Ingredients section!


Benefits and nutrition of green tea

Easy tea with rice served in a bowl. Easy tea with rice served in a bowl.

Fresh Shincha leaves are distinct from the latter harvested green tea called Sencha. Compared to Sencha it has a discreet sweetness, which can be attributed to a higher L-theanine content and a lower caffeine content.

The rich, vibrant tea leaves are also more fragrant and fresher tasting. And the best part? It has more vitamin C and antioxidants than regular green teas!


Ingredients for Japanese Green Tea Rice

Ingredients for green tea rice. Ingredients for green tea rice.
  • Steamed rice – I like to use white rice like jasmine and short grain sushi. But you can easily use leftover rice from your refrigerator!
  • Green tea leaves In this recipe I opt for Shincha, sometimes called Sencha, for a complex but balanced flavor. You can use other types of green tea like Houjicha and Genmaicha for a different flavor profile.
  • Condiments I wanted this green tea rice recipe to be simple, so I only used thinly sliced ​​scallions and black and white sesame seeds.

See the recipe card for full ingredient information.


How to make tea with rice

The Japanese really know how to prepare comfort food, which is both tasty and healthy. But what I love most about this rice tea recipe is how convenient it is to make!

A simple green tea rice is one of my favorite dishes for a light meal. But you can also add some Japanese dashi to the rice to liven up the flavor. Or explore other nontraditional toppings like grilled chicken and mushrooms for variety.

Step 1. Bring the water to the boil in a saucepan, add the green tea leaves, salt and turn off the heat. Set aside for 10 minutes. Drain and filter the tea. Discard the green leaves.

Tip: Increase the flavor of your green tea rice by using more tea leaves for a stronger brew. Use Japanese dashi instead of salt for more umami flavor.

Step 2. Take a large, shallow bowl, place the steamed rice, and add the shallots and sesame seeds on top of the rice. Pour the green tea over the rice and serve immediately.


Frequent questions

Is green tea rice healthy?

YES! Tea is known to have various health benefits and antioxidant effects, while rice is an excellent source of carbohydrates. Seasonings like fish and seaweed also add protein to the dish.

Can I use matcha in this recipe?

I do not recommend using powdered green tea or matcha green tea to make this recipe.

How much caffeine is in green tea rice?

Compared to black tea and coffee, green tea has a lower caffeine content. A cup of green tea contains approximately 22-40 mg of caffeine.

Can I use brown rice in this recipe?

Yes, of course you can. While traditional green tea rice is made with white rice, you can easily replace it with brown rice. It also contains more fiber, making this dish even healthier.

Is ochazuke salty?

The saltiness of ochazuke depends on the seasonings and additional seasonings you add. Furikake, for example, is a common topping for this dish and is quite salty. The same goes for dashi which is usually added to green tea rice.

How many calories per serving?

This green tea rice recipe has only 124 calories per serving.

Japanese green tea rice served in a bowl with a pair of chopsticks. Japanese green tea rice served in a bowl with a pair of chopsticks.

What to serve with this recipe

Serve this dish with other Japanese dishes (such as agedashi tofu, teriyaki chicken, and teriyaki salmon). For an easy and healthy dinner during the week, I recommend the following recipes:

I hope you enjoy this post as much as I do. If you try my recipe, please share your photo in the Comments section and consider giving it a 5-star rating. I can't wait to see your creations! Want more easy and delicious recipes? Subscribe to my newsletter and follow me Facebook, PinterestAND Instagram for new updates.

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Green tea rice

Light and abundant, green tea rice is a Japanese comfort food made with steamed rice and savory tea. It's quick, healthy, and pairs well with many appetizers – perfect as a comforting meal after a busy day!

Product 2 people

Preparation 5 minutes

Cooked 10 minutes

Total 15 minutes

Instructions

  • Bring the water to the boil in a saucepan, add the green tea leaves, salt and turn off the heat. Set aside for 10 minutes. Drain and filter the tea. Discard the green leaves.

  • Take a large, shallow bowl, place the steamed rice, and add the shallots and sesame seeds on top of the rice. Pour the green tea over the rice and serve immediately.

Notes

  • In general, any type of green tea can be used, but the best are those called Shincha leaves.
  • I do not recommend using powdered green tea or matcha green tea to make this recipe.

Nutrition

Serving: 2people, Calories: 124kcal (6%), Carbohydrates: 27G (9%), Protein: 2G (4%), Fat: 1G (2%), Saturated fats: 1G (6%), Sodium: 297mg (13%)

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