This recipe is a fully plant-based take on a Creole classic. The only meat you’ll find in this modern revamp is in the form of nutmeat. Minced walnuts add a hearty dose of protein and richness, complementing a bold palate of spices. Cauliflower stands in for rice, further lightening the dish. Filled with aromatics and herbs like onion, pepper, celery, garlic, chili powder, paprika, and thyme, this savory, flavor-filled dish makes a great healthy side for stewed black beans or grilled vegan sausage.

Dirty Cauliflower Rice [Vegan]

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  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 pound (454 g) riced cauliflower
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) soy sauce
  • 1 cup (150 g) minced, toasted walnuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced (optional)


  1. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, and celery, and sauté until lightly browned, 6 to 7 minutes.
  2. Add the garlic and continue cooking until the whole mixture is highly aromatic, another 5 minutes.
  3. Sprinkle in the chili powder, paprika, and thyme; add the riced cauliflower and stir.
  4. Drizzle with the soy sauce, scraping the bottom of the pan thoroughly with your spatula to make sure all those delicious caramelized vegetables are incorporated.
  5. Cook until the cauliflower is tender, 5 to 8 minutes longer.
  6. Stir in the chopped walnuts; season with salt and pepper. Top with the scallions, if using, and serve immediately.


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