recipe to make salsa dourada (Salsa de arroz) with annatto.

You are currently viewing recipe to make salsa dourada (Salsa de arroz) with annatto.

Salsa Dourada (Salsa de arroz)

1.5 cups of annatto powder

1.5 cups of water

2 tablespoons of salt

2 tablespoons of vinegar or lemon juice (optional)

2 teaspoons of pepper

2 cloves of garlic, mashed (optional)

1/4 cup olive oil

Mix the annatto and water in a bowl and stir with a spoon until it turns orange. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well with a spoon. Put it in a jar and store in the refrigerator. This salsa is best when served with rice, fish, chicken or pork. It will last several weeks in the refrigerator if stored properly so that the air can’t get to it. It should not be frozen because it will lose its color.”

Salsa dourada is a versatile Brazilian condiment that is traditionally served with rice, beans, and seafood. It’s bright orange in color, tangy, and has a slightly nutty flavor.

Salsa dourada can be made from scratch but the result is better if you use annatto powder (acha-dourado) as the coloring agent instead of crème fraîche or food coloring.

Tapioca starch can be ordered online at amazon:

To make salsa dourada using annatto powder instead of crème fraîche or food coloring:

1 cup uncooked white rice

2 cups water

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon salt

You can use onion and garlic powder if you cannot find the real thing.**

Salsa dourada is a wonderful Brazilian yellow rice cooked with annatto. It was never one of my favorites, but I can only imagine how much better it is when made with fresh ingredients and the kind of care that comes from someone who truly enjoys cooking.

I’m sure that most Brazilians will ask: “What do you mean by salsa dourada? We don’t have that. What we have is arroz de dourada.”

Salsa dourada is better known as arroz de dourado, which literally means “golden rice”. The word salsa (sauce) refers to the fact that the rice is always served with grated cheese on top. The first time I tried it, I asked a friend why they called it “golden” rice. He answered, “Because it’s yellow.” I did not believe him until I saw for myself.

I used to think that arroz de dourado was just a different way to cook rice and that everyone should have their own way of doing it. Now I know better. It’s hard to describe the taste of this kind of rice – it’s different

Salsa dourada or saffron rice is a traditional Portuguese dish. It is made with rice, milk, sugar and cinnamon, and is served with fish or meat.

Annatto powder can be found in Latin American stores and on the internet. You may substitute paprika for a more reddish color.

Salsa dourada is a traditional Christmas dish in Portugal. It is made with rice, milk, sugar and cinnamon, and is served with fish or meat.

In Latin America it goes by the name of Arroz con leche de coco or Arroz con leche de calabaza (rice with pumpkin or squash milk). It tastes like a combination of rice pudding and flan.

The annatto seeds are not toxic to humans but they are toxic to parrots. Be careful if you have parrots in the house when you make this recipe!

Note: This recipe should be adjusted to the taste of the consumer. It is a little bit spicy, but you can eliminate the pepper if you want.


– 2 tablespoons of annatto powder (commercial or homemade). If you want a more intense color, use 3 or 4 tablespoons.

– 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper.

– 1 1/2 cups of rice for soup. I used rice for this recipe, but in order to get a better color, use yellow rice. If you don’t have it, substitute it with another type of long grain rice.

– 1 quart water (3 cups)

– salt to taste (optional)


1. Wash the rice in cold water until the water runs clear and drain it;

2. Put the rice in a saucepan and add water (enough to cover the rice), salt, pepper and annatto;

3. Cook over medium heat until the water bubbles;

4. Reduce heat to low and continue cooking for 40 minutes or until all the liquid has evaporated; stirring occasionally;

5. Serve in individual plates and enjoy!

Annato is the bixin pigment that gives achiote its characteristic yellow color. Annatto powder is prepared by grinding the dried, ground seeds of the achiote tree, Bixa orellana.

Tropical Salsa

Yield: 4 servings

4 cups cooked white rice

1/3 cup annatto powder

5 tablespoons olive oil

1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro

2 green onions, thinly sliced

2 to 3 tomatoes, diced small

Place rice in a large bowl. Add annatto powder and stir to coat well. Add 2 tablespoons oil and stir well to coat again. Allow rice to sit for about 15 minutes for the annatto to infuse the rice with its color and flavor. Add cilantro and green onion and mix well. Add remaining olive oil and mix again. Toss in tomatoes and mix again until thoroughly combined. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve.

1. In Brazil, annatto is called achiote.

2. You can buy already prepared annatto in Latin markets. I found it in the Hispanic market where I shop. It comes in a small plastic bag inside a larger cardboard box; the bag has a little window so you can see the powder inside (it’s reddish-orange).

3. Annatto is also available on Amazon, ebay and other sites (see below).

4. If you have access to whole seeds, you should roast and grind them before using them; otherwise grind them as described below, as needed for each recipe.

5. There are two kinds of annatto, which are distinguished by color: Achiote comum (achiotillo), whose seeds are orange, and Achiote do Pará (achiotillo del Pará), whose seeds are more red or brownish-red. They are treated differently when used for making food, as evidenced by the color of the food itself, but I don’t know whether either one is better than the other for making lipstick or soap.

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