Kannada Favorite – Lemon Rice/ Chitranna

Here is a recipe that is made regularly in most Kannada homes. It’s a great way to up-cycle leftover rice. Are you a regular rice eater? you would understand what I mean. Even if rice is part of your diet occasionally, we all tend to have some of it leftover don’t we?

Thus was born the invention of the world-famous Far Eastern concept of the – Fried Rice. Chitranna is our very own South Indian version of this concept. There are a few other variations to this recipe – like Tamarind Rice or Tomato Rice, I’ll share these recipes in my future posts

Don’t be fooled by the name, this recipe uses Indian limes instead of lemons!

Here is the recipe for a lip-smackingly good Lemon Rice/ Chitranna:

This recipe serves 2 adults

Prep Time: 5 mins.                                             Cook time: 10 mins. 


  • 2 cups of cooked white rice
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1 teaspoon of grated ginger
  • a pinch of asafoetida
  • half a teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 1 whole lime
  • salt to taste
  • 2 fresh green chilies
  • 2 tablespoons of cooking oil (any oil except olive oil! The flavor of olive oil does not work in South Indian recipes)
  • 1 sprig of fresh curryleaves
  • half a teaspoon of cumin seeds
  • half a teaspoon of mustard seeds
  • 10-15 peanuts/ groundnuts
  • some fresh coriander (to sprinkle at the very end)

Start by finely chopping chili, red onion, grate ginger.

To a wok on medium heat, add oil, once hot add asafoetida, cumin seeds, mustard seeds and curry leaves. Once the splutter and release aroma, then add grated ginger, peanuts, red onions and sauté till the onion is translucent.

Add turmeric, season with salt and bring the heat down to the lowest possible. Add the rice and mix well. Taste to check if the seasoning is right, make any necessary adjustments.

Add the juice of a whole lime, turn the heat off and sprinkle with chopped fresh coriander. Mix well and serve hot.


Tip: It always helps to use leftover rice for this recipe as it holds its shape well and tastes and presents well too!

6 Comments Add yours

  1. Ankita Dash says:

    Looking so delicious..

    Liked by 1 person

  2. mistimaan says:

    I love lemon rice….will taste it soon 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. My all time favorite !!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you🙏 mine too!

      Liked by 1 person

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