With Thanksgiving right around the corner and many people entertaining this time of year or just enjoying dinners together as a family at night I decided to play with more side options. With so many different dietary restrictions out there I wanted to come up with a few dishes that would be great to serve that everyone can enjoy. Whole food side dishes that are full of flavor and healthier alternative to some traditional side dishes while still using the same flavors. One day I played with a couple having a few flavor profiles and ideas in my mind and making a couple options trying to decide which components I like best with each. In this dish I had thought about using fresh cranberries but with the tart flavor that not everyone is a fan of unless sugar is added and the fact that when cooked they would turn the rice pink I opted for dried cranberries. This rice dish doesn’t have any dressings, it does have oil or ghee while cooking to prevent the rice from sticking and the flavor comes from all the whole food fresh additions. Apple, dried cranberries, leek, pecans or walnuts, and sea salt and pepper to taste. Not only does it have a lot of flavor but it is also colorful! If you want a little something extra try adding a pinch of cinnamon, but just a pinch as you don’t want to overpower the dish and just want to add a hint of flavor. Gluten free and vegan this is a healthy side that everyone can enjoy at your next holiday get together. You don’t have to wait for a holiday though you can make this for dinner as it is quick and easy, preparing everything in a fraction of the time it tasks the rice to cook to enjoy along with whatever protein you may be making.
Cranberry Apple Rice
Makes 4 servings, 10 for holiday entertaining side size
1c rice (used brown rice)
1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil or ghee
1 apple, crisp apple such as Honeycrisp, Gala, Fuji just not a Red Delicious, Golden Apple, or soft variety
1/3-1/2c dried cranberries
1/3c chopped raw unsalted pecans or walnuts (used pecans)
sea salt and pepper to taste
pinch of cinnamon, optional for another flavor profile
Cook rice according to package instructions adding in oil/ghee to the water. While the rice is cooking core and chip apple and trim and slice leek. Being careful not to overcook or you will have mushy clumped together rice, let rice sit for a coupe minutes. Fluff rice with a fork and place in a large bowl. Toss with leek, apple, cranberries, and nuts. Season with salt and pepper, and optional pinch cinnamon if desired. Enjoy!
Cranberry Apple Rice, enjoy it now and for Thanksgiving! #glutenfree #wholefood #SweatPink #Meatless Monday #vegan Click To Tweet