This Indian Cauliflower Rice is loaded with delicious Indian flavors thanks to spices like turmeric, cumin, and cayenne pepper, fresh vegetables like carrots, onions, and peas, and packed with protein from chickpeas. It’s a quick and easy low-carb dish that comes together in just a few minutes. Plus, it’s low-carb, dairy-free, and gluten-free.
Cauliflower rice is one of the best things that has ever happened to society. What’s not to love about this great alternative to rice, pasta, and potatoes?
It’s nutritious, delicious, and versatile. And the best part is it can now be found at any regular grocery store in the produce section. Pair it with your favorite flavorings and ingredients to bring any comfort food a healthy spin.
This easy recipe is just that. It’s a delicious comfort food that is loaded with anti-inflammatory properties. More importantly, the entire dish comes together with just a few easy steps and a couple of minutes.
This Indian Cauliflower Rice recipe has very simple ingredients. A handful of fresh or frozen vegetables, warm spices, and a few healthy protein choices make a delicious, full-flavored meal.
- Extra virgin olive oil - to saute the vegetables
- Cauliflower rice - fresh cauliflower rice is best; I buy mine at Costco or Trader Joe’s; you can use frozen cauliflower rice, but the texture may not be as crispy
- Seasonings - traditional Indian spices like garlic powder, turmeric powder, cumin, and cayenne pepper for a richly flavored dish
- Yellow onion - sliced onion into half rings gives the dish more texture
- carrots - shredded carrots work the best in this recipe as they have better texture and take less time to cook
- Peas - these tasty pearls are often used in Indian food so naturally, they are the perfect addition to this dish; use fresh peas for best flavor and texture, but frozen peas also work
- Chickpeas - another classic in Indian cuisine; if using canned chickpeas it’s best to drain and rinse them before adding them to the pan.
- Chicken - this is optional but a great source of protein and transforms this tasty side dish into a hearty meal
How to Make Indian Cauliflower Rice
This hearty side dish comes together quickly in one pan. The printable recipe is in the recipe card for your convenience.
Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add cauliflower rice, garlic powder, ground cumin, turmeric powder, cayenne pepper, and salt, and cook until tender, stirring for approximately 4-5 minutes.
Remove cauliflower from the pan and add another tablespoon of oil. Add sliced onions and shredded carrots and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring often.
Return cauliflower to the pan and add drained and rinsed chickpeas and regular green peas. Add cooked chicken if using. Toss gently to combine. Adjust salt and spices if necessary.
Serve with crushed peanuts on top and fresh cilantro.
This cauli rice recipe is pretty simple to make. But a few expert tips may be helpful as you make this recipe.
- Using frozen peas? If using frozen peas, give them a few extra minutes in the pan to thaw and for excess liquid to evaporate.
- Keep frozen cauliflower rice on hand: This low-carb alternative is a great replacement for rice, pasta, and white potatoes and will make this recipe super easy.
- Make it a meal: As mentioned above, make this easy side dish a complete meal by adding leftover chicken or another healthy protein into the pan.
Because there are lots of water-rich vegetables in this recipe, this Indian Cauliflower rice is not ideal for leftovers.
However, if you do find yourself having leftover cauliflower rice, store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I make cauliflower rice that’s not mushy?
It’s very easy to overcook cauliflower rice, so keep a close eye on it to avoid mushy riced cauliflower. It’s best to cook cauliflower rice for no longer than 4 minutes if frozen rice and 2-3 minutes if fresh cauliflower rice. Adding a little oil and cooking riced cauliflower on high heat will also help it crisp up and avoid mushiness. Finally, try patting the cauliflower with a paper towel to absorb the excess liquid before cooking.
Does cauliflower rice taste like white rice?
Cauliflower rice is a healthy alternative to white rice, but the flavor is certainly different. It doesn’t have the same neutral flavor as regular rice. However, riced cauliflower does have a mild yet versatile taste that perfectly complements the seasonings in this Cauliflower Indian Rice recipe.
Is cauliflower rice healthier than white rice?
The short answer is cauliflower rice can be a healthier alternative to white rice. It’s lower in calories and carbohydrates and is a good source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. However, it’s important to point out that proper preparation and cooking method will alter the nutrient profile of cauliflower rice.
Add cooked chicken breast to this spiced cauliflower rice for a complete meal. It’s loaded with so many veggies that a salad or side is unnecessary.
Cauliflower is a healthy cruciferous vegetable that comes with many great benefits. At 25 calories per cup, it’s low in calories, high in fiber and choline, is a good source of antioxidants, and may help with weight loss. You can read more about the health benefits of cauliflower on Healthline.
Combine this robust veggie with antioxidant-rich spices like cumin, turmeric, garlic, and cayenne, and you have a superfood meal. A meal you will feel good about serving your family and friends.
Need More Easy Cauliflower Recipes to Get You Through The Week?
- Cauliflower Tabbouleh
- Cauliflower Chicken Fried Rice
- Green Cauliflower Rice Salad
- Roasted Cauliflower Bowl
Indian Cauliflower Rice
- 2 cups cauliflower rice
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 1 onion, sliced
- 1 cup peas
- 1 14 oz can chickpeas
- 1 cooked chicken breast, sliced or shredded (optional)
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add cauliflower rice and all seasonings. Cook for about 4-5 minutes stirring often, until tender.
- Remove cauliflower from pan and add another tablespoon oil. Cook onions and carrots for about 4 minutes, stirring often.
- Return cauliflower to pan and add peas. Add cooked chicken if using. Toss gently and taste. Add more salt and spice if necessary. I added more cumin and salt at the end.
- Serve with peanuts and cilantro.
This recipe is adapted from Veggie-Full.