Thursday, May 28, 2009

Brown Rice Salad with Vegetables

This is what I call a clean out the refrigerator salad. What goes in the salad is a function of what I have on hand. There are a few rules I follow when I make these kinds of salad. I normally use a little more cooked grain (brown rice, millet, bulgur, or quinoa) than I do vegetables. I try to vary the color of the vegetables that I add to the salad. I like the dressing to be sharp in these salads so that the final salad is not too bland or requires a lot of salt. I also think the salad need a little heat from the crushed red peppers or harissa.

All the ingredients in this salad are healthy. The variety of vegetables serves to increase the variety of vitamins and minerals this salad contains. I like knowing that this salad is good for me and helps to protect me from chronic disease.

Brown Rice and Vegetable Salad
Makes 7 – 1 cup servings of salad


4 cups of cooked brown rice, cooled
½ cup red bell pepper, finely diced
4 inch piece of cucumber, finely diced
¼ of a red onion, finely diced
3 stalks of celery, finely diced
½ cup of finely sliced green onion tops
1 lemon (juice and zest)
1 tablespoon of sherry vinegar
2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon of harissa, or crushed red peppers
1/2 tablespoon of thyme, dried
salt and pepper to taste


Combine rice and vegetables in a large container with a lid. Whisk the dressing ingredients, lemon through thyme, until thoroughly combined. Add dressing to the rice and veggies and toss everything together. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as desired. Refrigerate salad until ready to serve.

Nutritional Information:

Amount Per Serving
Calories - 176.77
Calories From Fat (24%) - 43.19

Total Fat - 4.95g
Saturated Fat - 0.75g
Cholesterol - 0mg
Sodium - 10.9mg
Potassium - 188.79mg
Total Carbohydrates - 30.51g
Fiber - 3.34g
Sugar - 0.99g
Protein- 3.23g


I make brown rice salads a few times a month. The salads are different depending on what I have on hand. These types of salad improve as the rice has time to absorb the flavors of the dressing. Chickpeas would be a good addition to this rice salad. When I have olives on hand, I sometimes dice those and add them to the salads as well.

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