This Forbidden Rice w/ Nectarines and Maple Coconut Cashew Cream has less sugar, and more fiber and antioxidants than traditional mango sticky rice. So nourishing and delicious!

Did you know that about 120,000 rice varieties are known to exist, according to the International Rice Research Institute?
Yes! There actually IS an International Rice Research Institute, which I found out about in one of my favorite cook books, Ancient Grains for Modern Meals, by Maria Speck.

Here are some other interesting rice facts from Ancient Grains for Modern Meals

  • Rice is the staple for about half the world’s population, especially across Asia, but also in Latin America.
  • Rice is a descendent of wild rice and grows best submerged in water.
  • Until recently, it was thought that the Chinese Yangtze River Valley was the birthplace of rice with cultivation dating about 10,000 years back.  However, about 8 years ago, a handful of burned rice grains, dating back 15,000 years ago, was discovered by archeologists in Korea.
  • In the United States there are more than 100 different varieties of rice commercially grown, with California and Arkansas being the top producers.

Let’s talk about rice nutrition

  • As far as rice nutrition is concerned, while white rice varieties definitely have their place in my kitchen {I LOVE arborrio rice for a rich and creamy risotto}, I tend to mostly use both brown rice along with one of my newer favorites, black/purple rice.
  • Both brown and black/purple rice are higher in fiber than white rice {Usually 3 grams of fiber per serving v. 1 respectively} AND black/purple rice is a rich source of anthocyanin antioxidants.  This is the “good stuff” found in blueberries, blackberries, red cabbage, black raspberries, and red/purple grapes, just to name a few.
  •  If you aren’t familiar with anthocyanins, you should be, as they are currently being studied for their potential role in fighting cancer, heart disease, and other health conditions.

But, enough talk about rice history and nutrition…here’s a little background on the recipe I created for the #ricelove bloghop:

My recipe is a take on one of my family’s favorite Thai desserts, Mango with Sticky Rice.  Whenever we order take out for Thai food, the last thing I always ask over the phone before placing my order is “Do you have any mango and sticky rice?
Depending upon the time of the year and the availability of GOOD mangoes, the answer either makes my family joyously happy 🙂 {Yes!}, or seriously sad 🙁 {No, I’m sorry. We only have sticky rice.}
I never order the sticky rice alone, because as delicious as it is, it’s just not the same without the mango!
I tried to lighten up my version by using a little less sugar than is typically used, and I sweetened the rice with orange juice.  In addition, I upped the nutrient profile with added fiber and antioxidants by using a combo of both Forbidden {Purple} rice from Lotus Foods, along with {Black} Japonica and {Mahogany} Rice from Lundberg Family Farms.
Oh, and I used nectarines in place of mango {sadly the mangoes at my market were to hard}…
The rice is not sticky at all…
And I topped it all off with a Cashew Coconut Maple Cream,a dreamy vegan concoction courtesy of my NEW Vitamix!
Come to think of it, my recipe has no resemblance at all to Mango and Sticky Rice, but it sure is delicious! Here’s the recipe…
Forbidden Rice with Nectarines and Maple Cashew Cream

Forbidden Rice w/ Nectarines and Maple Coconut Cashew Cream

This Forbidden Rice w/ Nectarines and Maple Coconut Cashew Cream has less sugar, and more fiber and antioxidants than traditional mango sticky rice. So nourishing and delicious!
5 from 2 votes
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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Servings: 4 servings


Forbidden Rice

  • 1 cup light coconut milk
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup Forbidden rice, or black or purple rice

Maple Cashew Coconut Cream

  • 1/2 cup cashew nuts, raw, unsalted
  • 1/2 cup light coconut milk
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons pure maple syrup, or to taste

To Assemble:

  • Forbidden Rice
  • Maple Cashew Coconut Cream
  • 2 nectarines, pitted and cut into cubes or slices


Make the Forbidden Rice

  • In a large sauce pan, combine coconut milk, OJ, and rice and bring to a boil.  Stir once, then cover with lid, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for approximately 50 minutes, or until done.
  • Add a little more coconut milk or OJ if desired if the rice is too firm.  I left my rice a little “liquidy” so I could enjoy the flavors of the reduced OJ and coconut milk.

Make the Maple Cashew Coconut Cream

  • While the rice is cooking, prepare the Maple Cashew Coconut Cream by combining all the ingredients in a Vitamix or other high speed blender. Blend on high, stopping and scraping sides as needed, until smooth and creamy.

To assemble:

  • Divide cooked Forbidden rice into 4 serving bowls. Top each bowl with approximately 2 tablespoons of Maple Cashew Coconut Cream and chopped/sliced nectarinesServe warm if possible.


Calories: 394kcal | Carbohydrates: 60g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Sodium: 69mg | Potassium: 486mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 360IU | Vitamin C: 35mg | Calcium: 32mg | Iron: 2mg
EA Stewart, RD | Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine American, Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword black rice, sticky rice
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  1. Hi, first time in your blog came through lite bite, you have a lovely space, Rice caught my attention, as this is a staple food for me (i am from south India), I was very interested, post is so informative and the rice dish is very nice, love coconut too :), never used forbidden rice, check out if I can get it here somewhere and give this a try and i would love to participate in this blog hop… visit me whenever u have time

  2. Drooling over here with your maple cashew cream… Thanks so much for all the interesting info too: 120k varieties of rice? Just WOW! I must confess I have appliance envy… dying for a Vitamix over here!

  3. Andrea@WellnessNotes says:

    This looks good! I usually make brown rice, but forbidden rice has been on my “list” for a while. Your forbidden rice dish looks and sounds wonderful! Beautiful colors!

  4. Gina (The Candid RD) says:

    Oh I love new ice cream recipes! The only problem is that coconut and nectarines are two of the foods I cant have on my IBS diet. IF you thought GF diets were hard….try the fodmaps diet! No mango, peach, nectarine, pears, …..or coconut!! It stinks, but it really is worth it.

    I love rice, and like you I normally choose brown rice. I’ve never tried purple rice, nor have I ever seen it. I do like the idea of more anthocycanins (I think)!

  5. Lauren Slayton says:

    I retweeted this yesterday and then realized it was your recipe (figures). I use black rice with coconut milk/cardamom/honey. This “cream” sounds so interesting. Congrats on the Vitamix, good to know I’m not the only one who has watched the video. As for the 2 black rices, how did they compare (I use lotus) and what do you like about each of them?

  6. Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen says:

    Okay, officially jealous. I’ve been eyeing the vitamix for some time now, they seem pretty amazing.

  7. Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. says:

    This looks great! And so creative!

  8. Tami@Nutmeg Notebook says:

    What a great post about rice! I have not tried black or purple-where I have I been? I love short grain brown rice and I usually make it using Alton Browns perfect oven rice method. My mom made a lot of rice pudding when I was a kid and I loved it. Never had forbidden rice but it sounds wonderful. So glad I found your blog!

  9. thehealthyapron says:

    ok, I look everywhere for black rice! PLease email me with where you buy black AND purple?

  10. amy @ fearless homemaker says:

    one of my girlfriends was just telling me about forbidden rice the other day + i’m dying to try it. this looks like an amazing recipe – love it!

  11. Kristen (swanky dietitian) says:

    Wow, this looks just amazing!
    I had a creamy rice dish recently at a thai restaurant that I fell in love with. This reminds me of that. Yum!

  12. Looks awesome! I love black rice. I have been using red rice more often too. Love the color that it adds.

  13. Richa@HobbyandMore says:

    omg.. i love love this creation! the coconut cashew cream..and the nectarines… yummm!
    and such amazing clicks! i am loving this #ricelove bloghop . never tried black rice before.. now i shuld give it a try!

  14. ea, love this post… what a beautiful dish! i haven’t tried black rice, but would happily eat one of these. does it taste any different from the white/brown variation? {my 3 yr old just walked in the room, saw your photos and said “yummy picture”… you have his vote! :)}

    1. EA-The spicy rd says:

      Thanks Gretchen and so happy to have your son’s vote 🙂 The flavor of the black rice tastes similar to white and brown, but has the chewiness/nuttiness of brown rice which I really like!

  15. EA-The spicy rd says:

    Thanks everyone for all your lovely comments! Hope you give the rice a try, or at the very least, the maple cashew coconut cream…I’ve been enjoying little spoonfuls of it all by itself 🙂

  16. Elizabeth of QueensNotebook says:

    What a great post ! Thanks for all the helpful RICE INFO ! And what a great dish…Forbidden Rice.! This is a wonderful blog and I’m glad to have found it through #ricelove… was good to cook along with you on this “rice journey” !

  17. I loove this photo of the nectarine! Like the color, focus… i like everything! And this recipe sounds and look amazing!


  18. Baker Street says:

    I love the combination of rice and coconut. YAY for ricelove

  19. Deb @ knitstamatic says:

    Beautiful, love the flavor combination and um maple cashew cream…wow!

  20. Junia @ Mis Pensamientos says:

    oh my goodness – maple cashew cream??? that sounds like a dream! i love this healthy vegan dessert. and i learned so much about rice! love that you accentuated the words with colors hehehe. i need to try these other types of rice….#ricelove!

  21. Jen (A Girl and Her Carrot) says:

    Hi EA! I actually love sweetening up some rice, why stick with the norm?! This looks so scrumptious and I’ll bet the chewiness factor of the rice and juiciness of the fruit is a perfect combo. Cashew coconut cream? Uh Yeah! I wish the photos could leap off the page.

  22. Nelly Rodriguez says:

    I am not a fan of rice in sweet application but with that said, I’d give this a try! SPECIALLY that coconut cashew cream I am totally making! I’ve fallen head over heels with cashew butter and plan on using it for this! thanks for sharing dear! gorgeous photos!

  23. Easton_Place says:

    I am contemplating going vegetarian again. This post will definitely be on my list of go-tos. I adore rice and I love making it savory and/or sweet, so I will certainly give this recipe a try. The fact that you made it with nectarines is even better for me… I’m not a fan of mango (sorry mango lovers).

    Thank you for another beautiful and tempting post!!

  24. foodwanderings says:

    Love this rice recipe with the coconut milk. Yay for Rice Love. I just adore this collaboration!!

  25. Regan @ The Professional Palate says:

    As always, a beautiful post & a yummy sounding recipe!