Why Rice Might Be a Secret Superfood

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Mediterranean Brown Rice Salad

Rice is your typical pantry staple, but it also checks the boxes for healthy food, since it’s a nutrient-dense, complex carb that the body slowly digests so you can stay energized throughout the day.

In fact, rice has more than 15 essential vitamins and minerals including folic acid, B vitamins, potassium, fiber, iron and zinc. Aside from being gluten free, rice is also virtually free of sodium, cholesterol, fat and isn’t genetically modified if you buy rice produced in the U.S.

Even better? Research shows that eating carbohydrates, like rice, increases levels of the feel-good chemical serotonin, which helps boost mood and keeps appetite in check.

Craving rice now? Here’s an easy recipe to try.

Mediterranean Brown Rice Salad

This brown rice salad is nutritious, easy-to-make, and keeps well in the fridge! It also utilizes mostly pantry staples, including U.S.-grown long-grain brown rice. Try swapping in your favourite veg to make it to your taste!

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients

Salad:

  • 1 cup (250 ml) U.S. long-grain brown rice
  • 1 (398 ml) can chickpeas
  • 1 (398 ml) can artichoke hearts
  • 1 cup (250 ml) jarred roasted red peppers, diced
  • 2 cups (500 ml) cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 cups (500 ml) cucumber, quartered and sliced
  • ½ cup (125 ml) kalamata olives
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) parsley, chopped
  • Salt and pepper

Lemon vinaigrette:

  • 4 tbsp (60 ml) lemon juice
  • 1/8 cup (80 ml) olive oil
  • ½ tbsp (7 ml) dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp (15 ml) maple syrup
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions

  1. Cook brown rice according to package instructions.
  2. While the rice cooks, prepare the vegetables. Drain and rinse chickpeas and artichoke hearts. Cut artichoke hearts in half lengthwise.
  3. Chop up the rest of the vegetables and parsley. Set ingredients aside.
  4. Combine all the vinaigrette ingredients, plus a shake of salt and pepper, in a small jar. Tightly screw on the lid and shake vigorously for 30 seconds – 1 minute, until dressing is creamy and cloudy looking.
  5. When rice is done cooking, let it cool to room temperature. Add rice to a large mixing bowl and toss with all the veggies, chickpeas and parsley, plus a generous shake of salt and pepper.
  6. Drizzle 1/8 cup (80 ml) of vinaigrette into the salad and toss to combine. Add more dressing, 1 tablespoon at time, to taste.

Find more rice recipes at riceinfo.com

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