This Cilantro Basmati Rice Salad is zesty, really FRESH, and compliments almost any meal! It also happens to be one of the simplest recipes in the world. It’s just as easy as those boxes of Rice-a-Roni, but without the nasty additives – and it tastes a million times better too. Even if you are a beginner cook, this is a meal or side dish that will impress your friends and family with very little effort!
I like to use brown basmati rice to make this dish, but you can also use quinoa if you prefer. Brown basmati rice hasn’t been stripped of its bran and germ (like white rice) where most of the nutrients are, and it still has a light and fluffy texture. Brown rice is one of the richest sources of manganese, a trace mineral that fights free radicals in the body.
Basmati rice also has a lower glycemic index than white rice and won’t send your blood sugar surging! Refined carbohydrates (carbs) like white rice, processed grains, and refined sugar can spike blood sugar levels and tax your organs, slowing down healing and robbing the body from other important regulatory functions. Refined carbs can also cause weight gain that you can’t seem to get rid of (especially around the mid section). Since brown basmati rice isn’t refined and has its fiber intact, it is a more nutritious way to eat carbohydrates.
To get started on making this dish, get out a medium sized pot and melt one tablespoon of coconut oil (or butter) over medium heat. Chop up half a cup of onions, mince a couple garlic cloves, and stir them into the pot. Cook until the onions start to turn translucent and the garlic is fragrant. It smells sooo good! Add 1 cup of dry brown basmati rice or quinoa to the pot and stir it around for one minute. Make sure to keep stirring so it doesn’t burn!
Stir in two cups of chicken (or vegetable) stock, turn the heat down to low, cover the pot and allow it to simmer. After 20 minutes, take a peek at the rice and check to see if the liquid has evaporated and if the rice is cooked. It may need to cook for about 5-10 minutes longer. Use this time to chop up half a cup of cilantro and also to juice and zest one lime…
When the rice is cooked, take the pot off of the heat and stir in the chopped cilantro, lime juice, and lime zest. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm and enjoy!
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil or butter
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ onion, diced
- 1 cup brown basmati rice or quinoa
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- ½ cup chopped cilantro, more as desired
- 1 lime, zested and juiced
- sea salt and pepper, to taste
- Heat the oil in a pot over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook 2-3 minutes. Add the dry rice and cook an additional minute, stirring so the rice doesn’t burn.
- Add the stock, cover and turn the heat to a low simmer. Cook until the liquid has evaporated and rice is cooked through, about 25 to 30 minutes.
- Take off the heat and stir in the cilantro, lime zest and juice. Season with salt and pepper. Serve warm. Enjoy!
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If you know anyone who struggles with sugar or their health, please share this post with them. Let’s make this our healthiest year yet!
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3 responses to “Light & Delicious Cilantro Rice (or Quinoa!) Salad”
Love this recipe. Cooking the rice with the onion and garlic is a such a great idea! I’m a huge cilantro fan, so I’ll go for a full cup with this dish. In Miami, we eat white rice with Lime all the time (probably a Cuban thing). Thanks for sharing and Happy New Year.
You bet victoria 🙂
Coriander is amazing, will try this out. Maybe with cauliflower rice or Quinoa as you suggested. Thanks!