Depending on where in the world you are, there are several takes on coconut rice. From Asian to Jamaican, I can strongly argue that my dad’s Latin touch makes it the best one out there. Traditionally served with fish and plantains, this sweet and salty recipe will make you feel like you’re in a tropical paradise.

Growing up, Almond Joys made up about 50% of my diet. If I’m being honest, they still do. I find this coconut and almond chocolate-covered candy bar to be the greatest comfort food in times of stress. My favorite teacher used to store some for me at all times just in case of an emergency (Bobby T, you’re the real MVP).

In order to expand my culinary taste buds, my dad took the coconutty love for my favorite candy bar as inspiration for now one my favorite dishes, and now I present his creation to your table.

coconut rice

Photo by Daniela Rico

This article goes out to my dad. Thanks for letting me share your recipe with the rest of the world, but most importantly for always pushing me to try new and strange foods. Although my facial expressions may not always show it, I do enjoy it.

Coconut Rice with Shredded Almonds

  • Prep Time:15 minutes
  • Cook Time:45 minutes
  • Total Time:60 minutes
  • Servings:4-6
  • Medium


  • 1 1/2 cup white rice
  • 1 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 2 cup Coke (or any dark colored soda)
  • 4 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 3/4 cup coconut palm sugar
Photo by Daniela Rico
  • Step 1

    Heat 2 tablespoons of coconut oil in a pan over medium heat and add 1 1/2 cups of white rice. Stir until rice is lightly toasted.

    Photo by Daniela Rico
  • Step 2

    Add the coconut milk, 1 1/2 cups of Coke, and salt to the rice.

    The Coke gives the rice sweetness as well as a nice brown color.

    Photo by Daniela Rico
  • Step 3

    Keep the rice over medium heat until all the liquid is absorbed. Then, turn down the heat to low and cover the pan.

    Photo by Daniela Rico
  • Step 4

    Add 2 tablespoons of coconut oil and 1/2 cup of sliced almonds in a separate pan over medium heat. Lightly toast the almonds.

    #SpoonTip: Make sure to constantly stir the almonds, as they burn easily.

  • Step 5

    Add 1 cup of shredded unsweetened coconut to the almond mixture and toast lightly.

  • Step 6

    Add coconut palm sugar and 1/2 cup of Coke to the almonds and coconut. Stir and keep over medium heat until the soda has thicken into a syrup.

    Photo by Daniela Rico
  • Step 7

    Place the rice into a serving dish, while slowly mixing in the almond and coconut mixture until all of the ingredients are fully incorporated.

    Photo by Daniela Rico