Last week I mentioned that one of our favorite foods lately is brown rice salad. It’s a great healthy (and gluten free!) alternative to pasta salad. We like to make big batches of it so that my husband can bring it in to work for lunch or we can have it for dinner on days when cooking is not our favorite idea (ok, it’s rarely my favorite idea. But this works perfectly for days when my hubs is getting home late and doesn’t feel like cooking).
Plus, it’s so simple! Here’s what you’ll need:
- 2 cups of water
- 2 bouillon cubes (chicken, vegetable, whatever strikes your fancy)
- 1 heaping cup of rice
- add ins (vegetables, chicken, bacon, mozzarella, chick peas, sliced almonds, anything!). I used a pepper, some cucumber, 2 carrots, chopped onion and sliced almonds.
If you’re satisfied with your rice making skills feel free to skip this paragraph. If you could use a little help in that department, my husband taught me a nice, easy way to make perfect rice every time. First, fill a tea kettle and bring it to a boil. Next, drop two bouillon cubes in the bottom of a big measuring cup before filling it with 2 cups of the boiling water. While the cubes melt, put a big heaping cup of rice in your pot. After whisking the cubes so they’re completely incorporated into the water, pour the water into the pot and set the stove on high until the water starts to boil again. Finally, just move your pot back to another burner, put on the top and let it simmer for forty (uninterrupted) minutes.
While the rice is cooking you can prepare your add ins. Anything that you would normally put in a pasta salad works perfectly in this salad. We’ve been throwing in peppers, cucumbers and carrots lately. I also like to a chop some red onion to sprinkle on top of mine (I’m a big fan of the stinky stuff). To round it out as a nice balanced meal, add a little protein. Almonds, chickpeas, chicken, whatever you have on hand.
When your rice is done, toss it with all of your add ins and let it chill. It might sound weird at first, but trust me. It is so good cold and just like pasta salad—only healthier!
Just before you’re ready to eat it, dress your salad to make it extra delicious. Lately I’ve been loving homemade pesto on my brown rice salad. Balsamic and Italian dressings are also really good on this little puppy. I’m pretty sure that this will become one of your favorite (easy) go tos once you give it a try!