Transport your taste buds to the vibrant streets of Spain with this herby and spicy Spanish Cauliflower Rice and Beans! 💃🏽 The main star of the dish is the cauliflower, an amazing winter veggie packed with antioxidants and vitamins, that here is transformed into a low-carb, low-calorie “rice”. This is then seasoned with herbs and spices to evoke the typical flavors of Spanish cuisine. The result is a dish that has nothing to envy the original recipe, both in terms of taste, texture, and overall satisfaction!
Cauliflower Rice: A Low-carb alternative to Regular Rice 🍚
Over the last few years, cauliflower rice has been trending, and it’s not hard to see why. On the one hand, it has significantly lower carbohydrate and calorie content than regular rice, making it a great option for those trying to lose weight or following a keto diet. On the other hand, a plate of cauliflower rice has significantly more volume at the same calorie count than one of regular rice, making it a very satiating and satisfying option. In addition, it is naturally gluten-free, cost-effective, and -due to its neutral taste- very versatile. I love seasoning it with herbs and spices, and then creating a balanced dish with steamed or raw veggies, beans or soy chunks (or another plant protein of your choice), and a good source of healthy fats, like roasted peanuts, avocado, or extra-virgin olive oil.
If you don’t want to buy ready-made frozen cauliflower rice (I personally love this Tesco one), you can easily make it yourself. Just grate it using a box grater or pulse it in a food processor until it resembles rice grains, and then add a couple of extra minutes to the cooking time listed below.
Here are the Benefits Of Cauliflower Rice 🥦
- Low in Carbs, High in Fiber: Cauliflower rice is a standout choice for those watching their carbohydrate intake. It’s significantly lower in carbs than traditional rice. Indeed, it provides only 3 grams of net carbs per cup (107 grams), which is around 18 times fewer carbs than the same quantity of rice! At the same time, it provides a decent amount of dietary fiber, promoting a feeling of fullness, aiding in digestion, and boosting gut microbiome diversity.
- Calories in Cauliflower Rice: If you’re looking to manage your calorie intake or maintain a healthy weight, cauliflower rice shines as a lower-calorie alternative to regular rice. With only 28 calories per cup, it allows for a more generous serving without compromising on taste and nutrition!
- Nutrient-Rich Alternative: Cauliflower is a nutrient powerhouse, packing essential vitamins such as vitamin C, vitamin K, and folate, as well as precious antioxidants and dietary fiber. Opting for cauliflower rice means incorporating these nutrients into your diet without the extra calories and carbs found in traditional rice.
- Gluten-Free and Grain-Free: Ideal for those with gluten sensitivities or following a grain-free or keto diet, cauliflower rice provides a delicious solution that aligns with various dietary preferences.
- Versatility in Cooking: Cauliflower rice serves as a versatile canvas for a wide range of flavors. It readily absorbs the seasonings and spices you incorporate, making it an adaptable ingredient in various cuisines and recipes, such as this Spanish cauliflower rice.
- Weight Management Support: As explained above, a plate of cauliflower rice has significantly more volume at the same calorie count than one of regular rice, which makes it a valuable component in weight management or weight loss strategies.
Spanish Cauliflower Rice: How to Make it Taste GOOD! 💯
As explained above, cauliflower is a vegetable with a somewhat neutral flavor. This makes it an excellent base for making tasty and nutritious dishes. Here are some tips I used to get a BOMB Spanish cauliflower rice! 💣
- Seasoning: The recipe features a blend of smoked paprika, cumin, cayenne pepper, and dried oregano. These aromatic spices not only infuse the cauliflower rice with a warm and smoky essence but also contribute to the rich, multidimensional flavor profile of the dish.
- Sautéing: Properly sauteing the cauliflower is key to keeping it tender yet maintaining a satisfying bite and avoiding any undesirable mushiness.
- Add Beans and Veggies: Using the right ingredients will not only help you enhance the overall flavor profile of the cauliflower rice but also increase its nutritional profile and create a more balanced dish. In this case, the black beans help to increase the protein intake of the dish, making it more satisfying, while the bell pepper and tomatoes add a pleasantly sweet note to the mix.
- Cheese or Sauces: While the recipe doesn’t explicitly include cheese or a specific sauce, the option is presented as part of the general guidance. Depending on personal preferences, you can experiment with adding a sprinkle of vegan parmesan or nutritional yeast, or a drizzle of your favorite dressing. I love adding this vegan nacho cheese sauce to my cauliflower rice!
- Fresh Herbs and Citrus: Finally, garnish the “rice” with some fresh parsley or cilantro, or a squeeze of lime or lemon to further boost the flavor profile of the dish and give it your signature final touch!
Before you go…
I hope you will love this recipe as much as I do! If you have tried it, please let me know how you liked it in the comments. And don’t forget to tag my socials (all the links are down below). 💗
Spanish Cauliflower Rice
Transport your taste buds to the vibrant streets of Spain with this enticing Spanish Cauliflower Rice and Beans recipe. Easy to make, low in calories and carbs, and simply delicious!
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Chop the onion, garlic, bell pepper, and green onions if using. Drain and rinse the black beans.
Heat the extra-virgin olive oil in a skillet. Add the onion, garlic, and bell pepper. Cook until the onion is soft (about 4-5 minutes).
Stir in the smoked paprika, cumin, cayenne pepper, and dried oregano. Cook for about a minute.
Add the frozen cauliflower rice. Cook until heated through, for about 5 minutes.
If using raw cauliflower, grate it using a box grater or pulse it in a food processor until it resembles rice grains. Add a couple of minutes to the cooking time, until the “rice” is tender but not mushy.
Mix in the black beans and diced tomatoes. Warm everything for a couple of minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Remove from the heat. Garnish with parsley, cilantro, and optional green onions. Enjoy!