Vermicelli Rice, also known as Lebanese Rice, is an extremely popular Middle Eastern side dish that pairs fabulously with all your favorite meals! It combines toasted vermicelli rice with Basmati rice, butter, and olive oil for a rich, savory dish that’s versatile and easy to make. 

a white bowl full of vermicelli rice.
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What Is Vermicelli? 

Vermicelli, pronounced “verm-uh-chell-ee” is a type of long, strand pasta that originates in southern Italy and is used in a wide variety of recipes across the globe. It is made from Durum wheat semolina and eggs. 

In Italy, vermicelli noodles are thicker than spaghetti noodles. However, everywhere else, vermicelli noodles are thinner than spaghetti noodles. 

What Is Vermicelli Rice? 

Also known as Lebanese rice or ruz ma shareeyah, vermicelli rice is a type of rice pilaf that is made with Basmati rice and toasted vermicelli noodles and seasoned with salt. It’s commonly used in soups and stews and is also served as a side dish with a variety of main courses. 

What’s the Difference Between Rice Noodles and Rice Vermicelli? 

The primary difference between the two is what they’re made of. For instance, vermicelli noodles are made from maida flour while rice noodles are made with rice flour. 

In addition, vermicelli noodles are round in shape, similar to spaghetti. Yet, rice noodles are flat.

Is Vermicelli Rice Good for You? 

We wouldn’t exactly quality vermicelli rice as being a healthy recipe, but as far as side dishes go, it’s not bad! Made with a handful of ingredients, it provides some healthy fats and filling carbs.

vermicelli rice in a large pot.

What Is Vermicelli Rice Made Of? 

You might be surprised to learn that such a rich dish can be created with just a handful of ingredients, but it’s true! Just six ingredients are all we use. 

  • Rice – Uncooked long-grain rice like Basmati or Jasmine is best. Just be sure to rinse it under water until the liquid runs clear! 
  • Vermicelli Noodles – Make sure they’re uncooked. 
  • Water – Used to boil the ingredients. 
  • Salted Butter – If preferred, ghee can be used instead. 
  • Olive Oil – Combined with the butter to enhance the flavor and help create a crisp texture. 
  • Sea Salt – Adjust to taste.

How to Prepare Your New Favorite Side Dish in 30 Minutes! 

Vermicelli rice is made in the same way you would cook rice with just a couple extra steps to make it even more delicious! 

  1. Toast. Melt the butter and olive oil together in a pot over medium heat. Then, add the noodles, and let them cook stirring constantly until they’re lightly toasted. Be careful not to let them burn! 
  2. Sauté. Add the rice to the pot, and sauté, stirring continuously. 
  3. Boil. Add the water and salt, and increase the heat to high. Once the water is boiling, reduce the heat to low, and cover the pot. 
  4. Cook. Allow the mixture to simmer until the liquid is absorbed. Fluff the vermicelli rice with a fork, and enjoy warm!
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How to Store and Reheat

Vermicelli rice is a great addition to your meal prep lineup! 

  • To Store: Transfer the mixture to an airtight container, and store it in the fridge for up to one week
  • To Reheat: Add a bit of water to a small saucepan, and heat it up along with the leftover vermicelli rice to freshen it back up. 
  • We don’t recommend freezing this recipe as it’s likely to become a bit mushy once thawed! 
close up image of vermicelli rice.

Serving Suggestions

Vermicelli rice is savory yet fairly neutral in flavor making it the perfect accompaniment to a variety of dishes like stews, soups, and meats. Some of our favorite pairings include: 

Common Questions About This Vermicelli Rice Recipe

Can I use brown rice?

Sure! Toast the brown rice as usual, and adjust the amount of water and cooking time according to the package instructions. 

How do I prevent vermicelli rice from becoming mushy? 

Make sure to rinse off the extra starch! Then, be sure to let the mixture simmer until the liquid has evaporated, and fluff it with a fork or rice paddle. 

Can I add more seasoning? 

Absolutely! Feel free to mix and match and seasonings you like best. The addition of cinnamon sticks, cardamom, bay leaves, or whole cloves makes for a great way to boost the flavor. 

Is vermicelli rice or pasta?

Vermicelli is a type of long strand pasta

Is vermicelli rice gluten-free? 

No, vermicelli rice isn’t gluten-free as it made from wheat-based vermicelli noodles that contain gluten. 

More Rice Recipes

Looking for more rice recipes that are anything but boring? Try out more of our flavorful options below! 

close up image of vermicelli rice.

Vermicelli Rice Recipe

5 from 1 vote
Author: Food Dolls
Servings: 8 servings
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 30 minutes
A delicious savory side dish!


  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter or ghee
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups uncooked vermicelli noodles
  • 3 cups long grain rice rinsed and drained
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt or to taste


  • In a pot over medium heat, melt butter with the olive oil.
    2 Tablespoons unsalted butter or ghee, 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • Add the vermicelli noodles, and cook, stirring constantly just until they begin to brown. Be careful not to let them burn!
    1 ½ cups uncooked vermicelli noodles
  • Add the rice, and sauté for an additional minute, stirring continuously.
    3 cups long grain rice
  • Add the water and salt, and increase the heat to high. Once the water starts to boil, reduce the heat to low, and cover.
    4 cups water, 2 teaspoons sea salt or to taste
  • Cook for 20-25 minutes, or until the rice is tender.
  • Fluff with a fork or rice paddle.
  • Store in an airitght container in the fridge for up to 1 week.



Serving: 1serving | Calories: 478kcal | Carbohydrates: 92g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 672mg | Potassium: 93mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 0.1g | Calcium: 31mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Like this recipe?Please leave a comment!

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Meet Alia & Radwa

Welcome to Food Dolls! We’re so glad you found us. We are Alia and Radwa, sisters who want to share simple and easy recipes with you. We hope you find recipes here that you enjoy making as much as we do! Learn more about us!

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    I don’t cook my rice like this often so when I do it’s like a little treat because of how delicious it is. I could literally just eat spoonfuls as is (and that’s exactly why i don’t make it much haha)

    Followed this recipe and it turned out PERFECT!