Dirty Rice

The name of this delicious and healthy dish cracks me up. I saw this recipe on Elanas Pantry and the name  immediately caught my attention. I had never in my life heard of a dish called dirty rice so I did some research. “Dirty rice is a traditional Cajun dish made from white rice cooked with small pieces of chicken liver or giblets, which give it a dark (“dirty”) color and a mild but distinctive flavor.” I turned my Dirty Rice into a vegetarian Paleo side dish, by leaving out the giblets, which while quite nutritious are not my favorite thing. My rice gets its dirty color from an abundance of antioxidant rich spices. For those avoiding starchy high carb foods such as white rice, cauliflower rice is a wonderful alternative that is highly nutritious. By now you should have all realized my love affair with cauliflower. I eat the cauliflower mashed potatoes that are on my blog at least once per week every week. I have never served them to people and gotten a bad response. I have converted countless mashed potato lovers and I was definitely one of them. I made this the other night for a family and they did not belive that I really used cauliflower and not rice. So why use cauliflower? First, cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable. That is a good thing because cruciferous veggies help with the detoxification of the body. Cauliflower is also full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds. Finally, cauliflower is full of vitamin C, vitamin K, Omega 3’s and good fiber. Besides all the amazing benefits this dish has to offer, it is so so good. I served this with a Caribbean Jerk Chicken that I made in the slow cooker (of course). I highly recommend this combination as they went just perfectly together.


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 cup white onion, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 cup green pepper, diced
  • 1 cup red pepper, diced
  • 1 bunch scallions, chopped
  • 3 cups of cauliflower, riced in the food processor
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 cups chicken stick or vegetable stock

Directions: Using the food processor steel blade, pulse the cauliflower until it is in small pieces.Don’t get carried away with the pulsing or you’ll be on your way to cauliflower puree. I’ve made this a few times now and find I prefer a rough chop, with a few pieces that are slightly larger. Once the cauliflower is riced, set it aside for later. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic, onion, celery, peppers and scallions; saute until soft. Stir in riced cauliflower, adding thyme, bay leaf, salt, pepper, chili and cumin. Add in the chicken stock (or vegetable stock). Allow to simmer over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, for 30 minutes or so or until liquid is cooked down.

Little Debbie’s Tip: Be warned, this dish is more work than most of my dishes on here. It is so worth it though. I would advise buying the vegetables pre-cut to save on time.

Credit: Elana’s Pantry (I also used the picture from her blog because my picture didn’t look half as good as her’s did!)