Change the way you serve rice with this easy and convenient one-pot taro rice recipe. It is packed with meaty and umami flavors of taro, pork belly, shiitake mushrooms, sausages, and carrots, among other things. Pair this traditional rice dish with a meaty or veggie dish such as Scrumptious Garlic Bok Choy, Sweet and Sour Pork, or Crispy Salt And Pepper Ribs.
What Is Taro Rice (Yam Rice)?
Taro rice is also known as yam rice or 芋头饭 in Chinese cuisine. If you love my rice dishes such as shrimp fried rice (din tai fung style) and yang chow fried rice, you should definitely try this easy one-pot recipe as well. It is a traditional rice dish that can be eaten alone or with entrees or side dishes.
The cooked rice takes its flavor from the added meat and vegetable ingredients. In this recipe, I stir-fry the chopped pork belly, diced onions, sliced mushrooms, diced carrots, slices of sausages, and taro cubes. These are mixed with uncooked rice, along with several seasonings like salt, light soy sauce, and oyster sauce.
The next part requires a rice cooker to cook the rice with the rest of the ingredients. This makes this recipe a lot easier than cooking it the old-fashioned way using a pot and stove. The rice absorbs up all the flavors of the ingredients, giving an incredible taste in every bite!
Getting To Know Taro
What makes this rice dish extra special is the taro ingredient. Taro is a starchy root vegetable similar to a regular potato, sweet potato, or yam. This plant is also known as Colocasia Esculenta of the Araceae plant family.
You can easily differentiate taro from other starchy vegetables with its brown to gray skin and white flesh with tiny purple specks. Its skin has a ring pattern similar to the bark of a tree. When it comes to taste, it is starchy, naturally sweet, and nutty.
Because taro contains high amounts of oxalate crystals, it should be handled with caution. Because of this, raw taro is toxic to eat, and touching it without kitchen gloves can cause skin irritation. However, if you prepare taro correctly and handle it safely, it provides you with many health benefits, including high fiber content for better digestion, blood sugar control, and heart health.
How To Customize The Ingredients Of Taro Rice (Yam Rice)
There are no rules in this dish! Add as many ingredients as you want and choose your desired meat, vegetables, and seasonings! Just don’t leave the taro out since this is taro rice (芋头饭) after all.
- Taro: I suggest peeled taro to lessen the preparation time and chopping steps. However, you can go for fresh whole taro or pre-sliced in the market. When selecting fresh taro, make sure to get the ones that are firm without blemishes or soft patches. Canned or frozen taro is also usable for this recipe. You can usually buy taro at Asian stores and in grocery stores with an international section. If you have leftover taro, I recommend making my taro recipes, including taro bunwith taro paste, taro sago dessert soup, taro cake and taro balls. Learn more about taro by reading Taro Vs Sweet Potato Vs Yam Vs Yuca.
- Pork belly: Use chopped pork belly or other pork slices if you prefer. You can also add other meat types such as chicken or beef. If you have the time, marinating the pork belly with seasonings first will help create a deeper flavor for the rice. Before pan-frying the meat, marinate it with seasonings like soy sauce, Shaoxing wine, sesame oil, or Chinese five spice powder. Alternatively, using pork meat from my recipes like air fryer pork belly, pork belly char siew, or easy air fryer char siu pork is an excellent match to the rice.
- Chinese sausage: Make it authentic by using Chinese-style sausage. The sausage is made from pork and pork fat and is also known as lap cheong or lap chong (腊肠). This incorporates sweet and smoky flavors into the rice. Aside from Chinese sausage, you can also use Chinese cured pork belly or la rou (腊肉) and dried shrimp.
- Vegetables: Apart from the meat ingredients, I add healthy vegetables for a more nutritious bowl of rice. Make it hearty with shallots, shiitake mushrooms, and carrots. You can also add green onions, ginger, garlic, and Chinese mustard greens. If using mushrooms, I recommend dried shiitake mushrooms for a stronger umami, smoky, and “meaty” kick. You can opt for a vegetarian or vegan taro rice bowl using all-veggie ingredients and omitting the meat ingredients. Then, load it with cubes of fried extra firm tofu for a protein-packed rice bowl.
- Seasonings: The seasonings are added during the stir-fry step with the combined meat and soaked rice. I season the rice with salt, light soy sauce, and oyster sauce. Additionally, other seasonings to enhance the flavor are kecap manis, white pepper powder, sugar, sesame oil, and Chinese five spice powder.
- Rice: Medium or long-grain white rice works well for this recipe. You can use jasmine rice, basmati rice, or japonica rice. In this recipe, I soak the rice first before adding it to the stir-fry step. Soaking the rice with water before cooking allows it to absorb more water and make it plump. It helps to ensure evenly cooked rice as it is boiled with the other ingredients in the rice cooker. You can soak the rice for 30 minutes or more.
- Cooking method: As I have mentioned, you will need a rice cooker to make it more convenient for you since you will just wait for it to cook without having to keep an eye on it. However, if you don’t have a rice cooker, you can cook it the traditional way. Simply let the rice with water come to a boil on medium-high heat. Then, reduce the heat to low while covered and cook for 10 to 15 minutes until soft.
Ingredients To Make Taro Rice (Yam Rice)
First, prepare a non-stick pan for stir-frying and a rice cooker. If you don’t have a rice cooker, use a pot with a lid. If you think you will have skin irritation when handling taro, I suggest using kitchen gloves to prevent this.
Here are the ingredients you need to prepare.
- 50g of pork belly
- 20g of shallots
- 20g of shiitake mushrooms
- 20g of carrots
- 20g of sausages
- 50g of taro
- 200g of soaked rice
- 1 tbsp of salt
- 2 tbsp of light soy sauce
- 1 tbsp of oyster sauce
- Garnish (green onions, fried shallots in oil, or crispy fried garlic)
Instructions To Make Taro Rice (Yam Rice)
To quickly explain the steps, the recipe entails stir-frying the meat and vegetables, mixing in the soaked rice and seasonings, and cooking everything with water in a rice cooker. As an additional optional step, you can garnish the cooked taro rice with green onions, coriander leaves, fried shallots in oil, or crispy fried garlic. Watch how I did it with my 30-second tutorial video on Instagram or TikTok and don’t forget to leave a comment!
Soak the rice in a bowl of water. Let it soak for 30 minutes or more.
In a non-stick pan, stir-fry the pork belly with or without oil. It‘s okay not to add oil anymore since the fat from the pork belly will melt and come out as it heats up.
Then, add the chopped shallots, sliced shiitake mushrooms, diced carrots, sliced sausages, and diced taro to the pan. Combine them with pork belly and fry them thoroughly.
Next, add the soaked rice to the pan.
Season it with salt, light soy sauce, and oyster sauce. Make sure everything is well mixed.
Transfer everything to the rice cooker pot.
Add water to the rice cooker. Generally, it should be 2 parts water and 1 part rice. You can also use the finger trick method by placing your fingertip on top of the rice and adding water up to the first knuckle of your finger.
After adding water, press the ‘cook’ button on the rice cooker and allow it to cook until the rice is done.If cooking via pot and stove, cook on medium-high heat until it boils and then reduce it to low heat while covered to cook for 10 to 15 minutes.
One-Pot Taro Rice (Yam Rice) Recipe
- 100 g of pork belly
- 20 g of shallots
- 20 g of shiitake mushrooms
- 20 g of carrots
- 20 g of sausages
- 50 g of taro
- 200 g of soaked rice
- 1 tbsp of salt
- 2 tbsp of light soy sauce
- 1 tbsp of oyster sauce
- Garnish green onions, fried shallots in oil, or crispy fried garlic
- Soak the rice in a bowl of water. Let it soak for 30 minutes or more.
- In a non-stick pan, stir-fry the pork belly with or without oil. It's okay not to add oil anymore since the fat from the pork belly will melt and come out as it heats up.
- Then, add the chopped shallots, sliced mushrooms, diced carrots, sliced sausages, and diced taro to the pan. Combine them with pork belly and fry them thoroughly.
- Next, add the soaked rice to the pan and season it with salt, light soy sauce, and oyster sauce. Make sure everything is well mixed.
- Transfer everything to the rice cooker pot.
- Add water to the rice cooker. Generally, it should be 2 parts water and 1 part rice. You can also use the finger trick method by placing your fingertip on top of the rice and adding water up to the first knuckle of your finger.
- After adding water, press the 'cook' button on the rice cooker and allow it to cook until the rice is done.If cooking via pot and stove, cook on medium-high heat until it boils and then reduce it to low heat while covered to cook for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Garnish the finished taro rice with chopped green onions, fried shallots in oil, or crispy fried garlic.