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Low carb Pesto Broccoli Rice

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Want a change from cauliflower rice? Try broccoli rice! It is quick, easy, nutritious and a fantastic way to incorporate more vegetables into your diet. For those a little unsure, why not mix some vegetable rice in with traditional starchy rice?

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Broccoli rice is simply broccoli blitzed in a food processor or blender to resemble rice-like grains. You can simply sauté these ‘grains’ in a little oil with perhaps garlic and seasoning and use as a substitute for traditional rice.

To celebrate the vibrant verdant colour and freshness of broccoli rice, I decided to mix it in with homemade pesto broccoli rice (you can use shop-bought if you prefer!). This is also very quick & easy to make…all you need is a food processor or blender.

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Needless, to say, this dish is gluten-free and by selecting certain ingredients, this low-carb broccoli rice can be kept vegan (details supplied below). As an optional extra, you can further enrich this by adding protein powder (I use soya bean or pea varieties), milled chia seeds or tofu.

Serves: 2

Preparation time: 12-15 mins (excludes soaking time for the cashews)

Cooking time: 8 mins


For the rice:

  • 1 large head of broccoli (approx. 300-350g), roughly chopped into florets
  • 1/2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

For the pesto:

  • 30g raw cashews soaked for at least 20 mins or overnight in 2 tbsp water
  • 75g fresh basil
  • 30g spinach
  • 2 tbsp nutritive yeast (for vegans) or parmesan
  • 1 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
  • ½ tsp salt
  • black pepper to taste
  • 4 tbsp extra –virgin olive oil
  • Optional: 30g tofu or 1 tbsp protein powder (I use soya bean or pea) or chia seeds.


Place the broccoli in a food processor or blender. Pulse briefly to make into grain-like crumbs.

For the pesto: Add all ingredients together in a food processor or blender and blitz to form a paste. If required, add 1/3 tbsp more lemon juice or olive oil.

In a frying pan, melt some coconut oil. Add crushed garlic and sauté for 1 minute before adding the broccoli rice. Sauté for 3-4 mins to cook through. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Then stir in the pesto and warm through. Serve.

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If you want to make the rice look prettier, you can always spoon some into a mould (I used a large teacup), compact the rice down with the back of a spoon and then invert onto the serving plate.

Broccoli rice with salmon

Don’t forget you can find my favourite recipes in my FREE eBook here.

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broccoli 15 low res

7 replies »

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