Dirty ‘Cauliflower’ Rice

8-dirty cauliflower rice

By Micha L. Rieser (Own work) [GFDL, CC-BY-SA-3.0 or CC-BY-SA-2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Time to get dirty!

Taste a bowl of dirty rice and you will find that even dirty stuffs can be fun, especially when they come in the form of food. And this doesn’t mean that the dish is actually filthy. This authentic Cajun dish gets its name from the murky tone of the cooked rice, owing to the chicken giblets and livers in it. Sounds like a promising dish in spite of its somewhat gross name.

But a strict diet won’t allow you to fall prey to the high carbs in rice. Does that mean tasting this dish will remain a dream forever? In comes the cauliflower to the rescue! The riced cauliflower compensates for rice and makes a rice delicacy taste equally enticing. Though you might miss the starchy feel of rice, but the sticky nature of riced cauliflower grains works perfectly to bring out the best in a dish. No wonder, Pale dirty ‘rice’ is a crowd pleaser. Apart from being delicious, it is great for your health too; thanks to the cauliflower again for its anti-oxidant, detoxifying and anti-inflammatory attributes.

This recipe has left out the animal offals yet ensures the dirty look by using spices and herbs. And when spices are involved, an explosion of flavors is evident. You can also add more veggies to make it more wholesome and transform a side dish into a hearty main course. No matter what additions you make to dirty ‘cauliflower’ rice, it will always succeed to please your caveman palate.


Serves: 4-6

  • 3 cups riced cauliflower  ( box grater or food processor will take care of this)
  • 1 cup white onion, chopped
  • 1 cup red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch scallions, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cups low-sodium vegetable stock


  • Drizzle a lashing of oil in a large skillet and heat it over moderate flame until it shimmers.
  • Stir in the minced garlic and rest of the chopped veggies and give them a nice stir to mix well.
  • Sauté for several minutes or until they soften and stir in the cauliflower rice.
  • Sprinkle the chopped thyme, ground spices as well as a dash of seasonings over them and continue to stir fry for a couple of minutes more.
  • Pour in the vegetable stock and bring the mixture to a simmer.
  • Continue to simmer for the next half an hour, over moderately low heat, while stirring from time to time, until all of the cooking liquid is absorbed completely.
  • Spoon it into serving plates and serve warm.