This Indian-style vegetable rice pilaf is a great one-pot meal that’s perfect for a quick and easy weeknight dinner.
This dish is easily adaptable to any kind of vegetables you have available and makes a satisfying plant-based main or a tasty side dish!
This vegetable rice pilaf is another one of those recipes. Basmati rice and a selection of vegetables are simmered together in a mix of fragrant spices then garnished with toasted cashews and fresh cilantro.
Not only is this vegan dish easy to make, it’s also ready in less than 30 minutes!
The Best Vegetable Rice Pilaf Recipe
This Indian-style vegetable rice pilaf is a great one-pot meal that’s perfect for a quick and easy weeknight dinner. This dish is easily adaptable to any kind of vegetables you have available and makes a satisfying plant-based main or a tasty side dish!
- 1 ½ Cups (300 grams) basmati rice
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 green cardamom pods
- 1 small stick of cinnamon
- 3 coves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp minced ginger
- 1 green chili, finely diced
- ½ tsp chili powder or ground cayenne
- ½ tsp turmeric
- ½ tsp garam masala
- 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
- 1 medium carrot, peeled and diced
- 1 ½ cups (150 grams) chopped cauliflower
- 12 green beans, cut into thirds
- ¼ cup (40 grams) frozen peas
- Salt, to taste
- 3 cups (750 ml) water
- 1 lemon
- A small bunch of cilantro
- A handful of cashews, toasted
Wash the rice in fresh water three times. Leave it to soak in a bowl covered with water while you prepare the veggies.
Heat the oil over medium-high heat and add the cumin. When the cumin darkens in colour and is fragrant – about a minute – add the onion. Fry until transparent.
Add the bay, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, garlic, ginger and chili pepper. Fry, stirring, until the garlic and ginger is cooked through – about 30 seconds. Add the chili powder, turmeric and garam masala and continue frying, stirring constantly, for about another 30 seconds to cook out the spices. If it sticks to the pan add a bit more oil.
Add the vegetables, salt and water. Bring to a boil then drain the rice and add it to the pan. Cover and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 8 – 10 minutes until the vegetables are tender and the rice is absorbed. Remove the pan from the heat but don’t uncover it. Leave it to steam for 5 more minutes.
Uncover the pan and squeeze over the juice of half a lemon. Fluff the rice with a fork and remove the cinnamon and bay leaves (and the cloves if you can find them!).
Serve the pilaf garnished with chopped cilantro, toasted cashews and an extra slice of lime on the side.