Fried rice is an easy dish to clear out little bits of left over vegetables in your refrigerator. Toss in some cooked rice and protein from egg or left over meat and season with soy sauce and you have a complete meal in one pan!
Of course, I have to UP the veggie content and give it a fully plant-based spin!
Here’s my formula for Fried Rice – remember the goal is one pan complete meal.
Base: Rice, Riced cauliflower
Protein: ground or diced chicken, turkey or pork, scrambled egg, tofu or tempeh
Vegetables: think COLOR – this is your opportunity to bring visual appeal to the dish. Shredded carrot or broccoli, edamame, green peas, sliced snap or snow peas, even green onions.
Feel free to get creative and use what you have and like.
Cauliflower Fried “Rice”
2 cups cauliflower “rice”
2 cups basmati or jasmine rice, cooked
1 T avocado oil
1 cup edamame
1 cup shredded carrot
1/2 cup chopped green onion
1 block Tempeh, diced
1 lb firm tofu, cubed
2 T soy sauce/aminos or soy alternative
2 t toasted sesame oil
Heat avocado oil in a large pan at medium heat. Add tempeh and 1 T soy sauce. Cook stirring frequently to brown.
Add tofu and stir to crumble and combine.
Remove tofu and tempeh mix to a separate bowl.
Add the cauliflower rice and broth to the pan. Stir to combine and cover. Cook to soften, stirring occasionally.
Once cauliflower rice is cooked add the rice and vegetables. Stir to combine. Cover and cook 3-4 minutes.
Add the cooked tofu and tempeh. Add the remaining soy sauce and sesame oil.
Serve with sriracha sauce if you want to heat it up!
I wanted a separate batch for me with out the Basmati rice – but they look and taste the same!
A family member introduced us to this idea a few years ago and while the soup was a HIT! It was made with ground beef and a cheese sauce with heavy cream and grated cheddar, maybe some onions with the ketchup and mustard and that was about it. The high fat content made this soup very rich and though it was decadent, it also sat heavy in the stomach causing a little tummy-trouble.
I came up with a lighter version that is just as tasty, with the same cheese-burgery flavors, but doesn’t weigh you down. I swapped ground turkey for the beef, added vegetables like green pepper and celery and an unbelievably tasty and simple bean-based cheese sauce for the cheddar and heavy cream.
I made the sauce and soup from the same pot and pureed the sauce in the Vitamix so the only dishes were the one pot and blender.
To serve, you can top with shredded cheese, chopped pickles, even shredded lettuce and diced tomato for a full cheeseburger effect! I served mine over a BIG bowl of greens.
If you wanted to make this a Veterarian/Vegan soup, replace the ground turkey with Plant-based meat like Beyond Meat, chopped tempeh, tofu or chickpeas.
You will not need all of this sauce for the Cheeseburger soup, use the extra as topping for vegetables, filling for enchiladas or a cheesy dip!
3 cups cannelloni beans
1 cup onion, chopped
4 T garlic, crushed
1/4 c hemp seeds (or Parmesan cheese)
1 T butter
1 T olive oil
1/2 t salt (to taste)
1/4 t white pepper (to taste)
broth to water to thin consistency
Heat butter and oil and add chopped onion. Saute to soften and add garlic. Saute 2 more minutes.
Add onion mixture and all remaining ingredients to a blender and puree until smooth, adding water or broth slowly to thin the consistency.
2 T olive oil, divided
1 onion, diced
3 stalks celery, diced
1 large green pepper, diced
1 lb ground turkey
1/4 c ketchup
2 T mustard
2 t steak seasoning (like Montreal Steak)
2 c broth
2 c “cheese” sauce
OPTIONAL TOPPINGS: shredded lettuce, diced onion, diced tomato, chopped cucumber, shredded cheese or a GREAT BIG BOWL OF GREENS!
Heat 1 T olive oil in large stock pot. Add onion and saute until beginning to soften. Add celery and green pepper. Saute until vegetables are beginning to soften.
Remove the vegetables from the pot and set aside. Add another 1 T olive oil to the pan and add the ground turkey. Season with steak seasoning.
Cook and crumble the ground turkey.
When the turkey is completely cooked add the vegetables back to the pot. Stir in the ketchup, mustard and broth. Bring to a simmer for 5 minutes and stir in cheese sauce. Stir to combine and cook on medium-low heat for 5 minutes.
This is a variation on my Chicken & Rice Burrito Bowl recipe. Quick and easy to throw together, easy to modify by adding chopped bell peppers or omitting the olives – adding fresh herbs like parsley or more heat with smoked paprika or chili flakes. Top with fresh parsley, Feta or Romano cheese.
To make ahead as a freezer meal toss ALL ingredients EXCEPT for broth into a zip-top freezer bag and freeze until ready to use. Defrost before cooking or add 3 min to Instant Pot cooking time or 1 hour when cooking in a slow cooker on high.
VEGETARIAN/VEGAN option: Swap out 2 cans (3 cups) of rinsed and drained chickpeas for the chicken. Be sure to use vegetable broth.
Greek Chicken & Rice
1 lb chicken (breast or thigh), cubed. OR 2 cans (3 cups) rinsed and drained chickpeas
2 cans of diced tomatoes with juice
1 medium onion diced
3 T crushed garlic
1/2 c olives (whole or chopped)
1 c rice (I used jasmine), uncooked
1 T dried parsley
1/2 T dried oregano
1/2 t smoked paprika
1/4 t chili powder
salt and pepper to taste (olives and tomatoes are usually salty – salt sparingly, I didn’t add any)
2 T olive oil
1 1/2 c broth (chicken or vegetable)
OPTIONAL: chopped bell pepper, chopped green beans, green olives
TOPPINGS: feta cheese, Romano cheese, fresh parsley
In Instant Pot on Saute setting heat olive oil on medium heat and add onion and garlic. Saute until soft and fragrant.
Add seasonings and spices and heat until fragrant.
Add chicken or chickpeas, stir to coat, cook 5 minutes.
Add remaining ingredients, stir to combine. Place lid and set to SEAL setting. Cook on MANUAL for 12 minutes, then Natural Pressure Release for 15 minutes. Vent remaining pressure and serve.
FOR FREEZER MEAL: Dump defrosted bag into instant pot and add broth. Same cooking instructions. OOPS!!! Forgot to defrost! It’s ok – beauty of Instant Pot! Break it up so it fits in the pot. Add the broth, seal the lid and cook for 15 minutes, NPR 15 minutes. Ensure chicken is cooked through prior to serving.
Serve: top with optional toppings listed above. I serve hearty comfort foods with fresh greens – Roasted Asparagus and a chopped salad for us!