If you have been reading my food posts at all, you know by now that I love cauliflower rice. It’s such a perfect and versatile side for so many dishes, and it takes so little time to get it going. There are a few different methods out there for making cauliflower rice, but after quite a bit of experimentation, I have some strong opinions about how it should be done!Before we get started, I just want to tell you that pre-prepping cauliflower rice is a great idea, and one of the major time-savers that I use each week. I typically take two or three heads of cauliflower after we bring home our weeks-worth of groceries, and then get them all chopped and ready to use during the week. The recipe below will be for one head of cauliflower, but I recommend a bigger batch, just for the sake of saving time and energy!
Making Cauliflower Rice
What You’ll Need
- 1 head of cauliflower, cut roughly into floretts
- 1 medium yellow onion, cut into quarters
- 1 T cooking fat– coconut oil, beef tallow, ghee, bacon grease– you choose!
- 1 t sea salt
- 1 T fresh lemon juice
- a food processor (seriously recommended, although you could do this with a knife and cutting board)
What to Do
- Put your onion into the food processor and chop it finely.
- Add your roughly chopped cauliflower to the food processor. Process only until uniformly chopped– you don’t want to get it too fine, and may have to remove that one last chunk that doesn’t seem to want to submit to the blades. (Once you have it chopped evenly, you can store it in a glass container or a ziplock bag (these are an eco-friendly option) to use through the week.)
- Heat some oil in a medium pot or cast iron skillet. I like to use coconut oil or beef drippings. Add the cauliflower/ onion mixture, and stir it up. Keep the pan HOT. Make it kind of like a stirfry. (A lot of people steam their cauliflower rice, and this makes me nuts because it gets soggy, and no one likes soggy rice.) Squeeze in some lemon juice and add salt and pepper, stir it around let it keep cooking until it’s tender but still just a little “toothsome.” You can put a lid on it briefly if it doesn’t seem to be getting tender, but keep an eye on it.
- Taste and season. Enjoy!
3 Flavor Options
Cauliflower rice is great just plain, but often I like to add even more presence to my cauliflower rice, and choose a flavor profile that will compliment my main dish.
1. Adding cumin works really well for Indian, Middle Eastern, Latin American and Mediterranean food. Add 1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds to the oil in the pan as it heats and let them sizzle for a minute. When it becomes fragrant, add the rice mixture and cook as usual. I make it this way to go with Chelo Kebab.
2. For extra color, add turmeric. You will get a neon-yellow rice with a slightly earthy flavor. Add 1/2 teaspoon of ground turmeric to the oil in the pan as it heats and let it sizzle for a minute. When it becomes fragrant, add the rice mixture and cook as usual.
3. For Mexican Cauliflower Rice, add the cumin seeds as described in step one, and then add 1/3 C tomato puree with the cauliflower mixture. You probably won’t need to add more acid, but a little lime juice would taste great. Topping with chopped fresh cilantro at the end is perfect.
There are a hundred and one ways that you can customize your cauliflower rice. This is what I love about it– you can make a big bag to keep in your fridge each week, then tweak each batch a little to go with your main dish. And if you need extra reasons to get more cauliflower into your life, check these out. Enjoy!