Cilantro-Lime Dirty “Rice”

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We all know that rice is not typically paleo, and not to mention the fact that it is hard on the intestines and digestive tract, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get your rice-fix elsewhere. What you have to do is accept the challenge and come up with something similar and even better health wise. That’s why my “rice” today is made from….you guessed it….cauliflower! Don’t gag, I promise it’s good!

As I have mentioned in this previous post, cauliflower is a very bland vegetable, so it can be used in various ways, including “ricing” it in a food processor or blender to chop it into tiny “grains” that resemble white rice. Since standard rice has little flavor and so does cauliflower, the cauliflower makes an easy and much lower carb replacement!

If any of you are unfamiliar with “dirty rice”, it is basically: “a traditional Cajun dish made of white rice cooked with onions, peppers, chicken livers, and various herbs.” Now, for the sake of everyone reading (unless, of course, you like chicken livers), I have replaced the chicken liver traditionally used for some spicy sausage. Also, adding the cilantro and lime in addition to the other Cajun spices brightens the dish up and gives it a little extra flavor and zing! This “rice” makes a great side dish to go along with some fresh, grilled and spiced chicken or fish. Now that I’ve made you hungry, let’s begin!


2 small heads cauliflower

1 yellow onion, diced

2 links Andouille or chorizo sausage, chopped into quarters (cook beforehand if they are not precooked sausages)

½ + 1/3 cup fresh diced cilantro

¼ cup salsa

2 tbsp. chicken stock/broth

1 tsp. paprika

1 tsp. oregano

¼ tsp. cayenne

Juice of 1 lime

Salt and pepper to taste

Coconut oil, for cooking

1. Cut your two heads of cauliflower into florets.

2. Working in a few batches, add your cauliflower florets to a food processor or high speed blender and process/blend until the cauliflower is finely chopped and resembles tiny, rice-like grains.

3. Remove the riced cauliflower into a bowl and zap in the microwave for 2 minutes. This will begin to soften the cauliflower and make the cooking process quicker.

4. Add coconut oil to a large skillet and melt over a medium heat.

5. Add your diced onion to the skillet, along with a small dash of paprika and cayenne. Sautee until onion is translucent.

6. Add your riced cauliflower into the pan, along with your spices, sausage, salsa, lime juice, and ½ cup diced cilantro into the skillet. Sautee for 3 minutes.

7. Add your 2 tbsp. chicken broth to the skillet and continue cooking until the cauliflower is tender. 8. Remove pan from the heat and stir in the final 1/3 cup of your fresh, diced cilantro.

9. Let cool slightly and serve!


Question of the Day: “What is your favorite use for rice or your favorite rice dish?” Give me some of your favorites and maybe I’ll be able to recreate them-paleo style!

2 thoughts on “Cilantro-Lime Dirty “Rice”

    • Great question!
      Just add the cauliflower to the pan with the onion and allow it to soften for about 5 minutes before adding in the rest of the ingredients (salsa, cilantro, spices, etc.) 🙂
      Have a great day and I hope you like the recipe!

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