Spinach Rice Pilaf Recipe
About the Rice
This recipe can be made with pretty much ay type of rice you might have in the pantry so long as you adjust the cooking time according to package directions. I happened to snatch a bag of quick cook brown rice at Costco so I used that here. It’s ready in 20 minutes but other quick cook varieties can be done in 12 to 15 minutes, so make sure to check the package. For regular brown rice grains you’ll want to give it a good 45 minutes to fully cook and allow to steam an additional 10 or so off the heat.
About the Broth
Basically a savory smoothie made out of coconut milk and baby spinach seasoned with a pinch of salt and pepper. Alternatively you could make a veggie broth to use here but that will completely change the flavor profile of your rice dish.
Recipe Tips + FAQs
- Can I make this dish with white rice ? Sure you can but try not to if possible. White rice has nothing to offer nutritionally so the only health benefits would come from the greens and aromatics. Ideally you’d use a whole grain rice if available.
- What is Pilaf style rice ? A method of cooking rice by sautéing it first with some aromatics in a little oil before simmering in the broth. You can sautee in a little veggie broth to stay WFPB & Plantricious compliant.
- What can i use instead of spinach ? Pretty much any leafy green you love, from kale to chard, collard greens, arugula and even mustard greens would work here. Alternatively you can skip the greens and use 1.5 teaspoons of turmeric and 1 inch of fresh ginger root instead to get a super lovely and flavorful yellow lemon grass turmeric rice.
How to Use Green Rice:
- Burritos: use a spoonful of this goodness to fill up some nutritious burritos this week. Add some black beans and a little salsa then dip in our famous vegan cashew queso.
- Make this pineapple fried rice and replace the plain rice with this green spinach rice instead.
- Serve inside these mushroom lettuce wraps.
- As a side dish to these vegan ribs, vegan chicken, crispy tofu nuggets, vegan chick’n, this air-fried peanut tofu, this mango avocado ceviche, alongside these awesome veggie burgers or as a bed under this mushroom Stroganoff and eggy tofu scramble!
- Mix into this vegetable soup instead of noodles.
- Stuff it into these mango avocado spring rolls.
Arroz Verde Topping Ideas:
- Crispy Fried onions, the store bough king work just fine here.
- Toasted coconut chips: a handful of coconut chips spread on a baking dish and broiled for a minute or two until golden brown to your liking. Adds perfect crunch and divine flavor.
- Hemp or sesame seeds, scallions, chives, dill, cilantro or lemon zest.
How to Make Coconut Spinach Rice Pilaf
Coconut Spinach Rice Pilaf
- 2 cups quick cook brown rice rinsed & drained well
- 4 cups baby spinach
- 2 X 13.5 oz cans coconut milk organic
- 1 yellow onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 stalk lemon grass OPTIONAL
- sea salt + black pepper to taste
- 1 lime or lemon cut into wedges
- Rinse the rice until the water runs clear then drain well.
- Preheat a medium heavy bottom stock pot over low flame and sautee the onion with a pinch of salt in a little drop of oil or veggie stock. (Omit oil for WFPB & Plantricious compliance).
- Stir in the garlic and cook a few seconds just until fragrant then add the rice. Give everything a good stir and allow to cook together for a a couple of minutes while you make the spinach coconut broth.
- To make the broth: add the coconut milk and baby spinach to a powerful blender together with 1.5 teaspoon salt. Blend until smooth then pour over the rice. Bring to a simmer and add the lemon grass if using.
- Turn the heat to low and make sure the rice continues to simmer. Cover with a lid and cook for 20 minutes or adjust timing according to the instructions on the package of rice you are using. After 20 minutes remove from heat but leave the lid on and allow the rice to continue steaming for an extra 10 minutes.
- Remove the lid and fluff with a fork. Discard the lemon grass, taste and adjust seasonings with salt and pepper then hit it with a good squeeze of fresh lime or lemon.
- Serve hot topped with toasted coconut flakes, crispy fried onions, sesame seeds, scallions. chives or your favorite fresh herbs.
- To adapt this recipe you can make a Lemon Grass Turmeric Rice by replacing the spinach with 1.5 teaspoons turmeric and 1 inch of ginger root or ginger powder. Absolutely divine!
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