Instant Pot Spanish Rice with Chicken is an easy one-pot meal. Make it ahead of time for meal prep or whip it up on any weeknight.
Creamy Mushroom Risotto is an amazingly flavorful side dish perfect for any special dinner. This post includes instructions for preparing risotto on the stove top and in the Instant Pot.
Instant Pot Hamburger Helper With Rice – a dairy-free, healthier version of classic Hamburger Helper for an amazingly filling dinner.
When I was a kid, I had the metabolism of a wolverine. Protein, carb and fat-rich meals that stick to your ribcage like Lasagna, Tuna Noodle Casserole, and Hamburger Helper were some of my favorites because I was guaranteed to feel full after those dinners – a rare occasion indeed.
And Hamburger Helper? The relationship was fiery.
There’s something very nostalgic about a childhood meal and most of us begin craving comfort foods in the fall and winter when the weather gets chilly.
Or in my case, all the time. Girl loves to feel FULL!
Enter: Homemade Hamburger Helper.
What is Hamburger Helper?:
Most of you are already very familiar, but in case you’ve never tried it, Hamburger Helper is a beefy noodle dish in a creamy seasoned sauce, resulting in a dinner that just sticks straight to your ribcage. It is DELICIOUS.
In order to make iconic Hamburger Helper at home using ingredients that sit well with me, I took many liberties so that I could create a meal I felt good serving both myself and others. This is how it goes..
How This Recipe Differs From Traditional Hamburger Helper:
- First and foremost, there is no pasta involved. I swapped it out for rice.
- The recipe is entirely dairy-free, but you can easily use milk/cream and/or cheese (see Recipe Adaptations) section below.
- Made in an Instant Pot! Traditionally, my parents made hamburger helper on the stove top, and sometimes finished it off in the oven with more cheese. This recipe requires almost zero effort, hovering, minimal cleanup, and is so QUICK and easy!
Now that you have some background information and know how we’re firing out Version 2.0, lets dive into more details..
Instant pot chicken and rice with broccoli, lemon zest and rosemary comes together quickly and makes for a one-pot meal with minimal cleanup.
One-pot Aromatic Saffron Chicken and Coconut Rice with turmeric, coconut milk, peas, raisins and saffron threads – A flavorful, unique fusion dinner recipe that is amazing for sharing or meal prepping.
While this recipe comes off as a dish that has a rich cultural background, its origin is simply my imagination.
Aromatic saffron chicken with coconut rice was simply born out of my craving for something big in flavor, with a counterbalance of salt, sweet, and cream.
You could say it is a magical amalgamation of Indian, Middle Eastern and Thai faire. A fusion recipe, if you will.
I hadn’t thought about my “style” of cooking until recently, but I have come to realize it is exactly meals such as this. Fresh, flavorful dishes that combine big aromatic flavors and often can’t be pinned to any one type of cuisine but rather several.
While I absolutely LOVE authentic anything (Thai, Indian, Mexican, Chinese, you name it), I also enjoy me-ifying meals by swapping out ingredients that are difficult to find, figuring out ways of cutting down prep time without sacrificing flavor, and always injecting nutrients whenever possible.
So without further adieu, let’s dive right into this amazing meal, which was nearly impossible for me to name but will surely make your taste buds swoon!
It’s easy, m’kay!
Fresh and flavorful basil fried rice with coconut milk, carrot, broccoli, peas, and more! This easy fried rice recipe is healthful with a twist!
Whenever I find myself disgruntled and ask myself what I can do to make myself feel less cremudginy, the answer is often (always) the same: carbs.
Specifically of the fried rice varietal.
Don’t fret…you can still enjoy a pile of fried rice on the days you don’t feel like throwing yourself on the ground like a rag doll and tantruming it out. The true fact is, fried rice simply makes everything better.
And that is a fact of life upon which you can quote me 😉
Oh hey, how do you feel about basil in your fried rice?
Quite frankly, I feel grrrrrrrrrrreat about it!
This fried rice recipe comes together quickly and is ultra unique if I do say so myself. First, it includes a plethora of fresh vegetables, like carrots, broccoli, onion, and peas in addition to fresh basil.
Not to mention, everything is cooked in coconut milk instead of oil. CAN YOU EVEN IMAGINE?!
How do you feel about coconut milk in your fried rice?
Stay with me!
Quick and easy Thai Curry for One person! This simple small batch curry recipe comes together in 15 minutes and can be made as red, green, or yellow curry with any animal protein and any vegetables! Tons of options for customizing your curry for one! First things first: what is your favorite type of Thai …
Did anyone else here grow up on boxed Spanish rice? My hand just shot through the roof.
My parents were all about convenience, so we grew up on boxed rice pilaf and Spanish rice. While I have zero hesitation to continue eating the boxed version, I find that there is just never enough!
I prefer my carbs (particularly rice) in excess, so I make a big batch of this rice (sometimes I double the recipe!) every time I have the hankering.
Homemade Spanish Rice is super simple to make! It requires hardly any additional effort than making regular white rice, and results in a mouth-watering rice that the whole family will love. I’m willing to bet you already have everything you need on hand.
One of my brothers and his wife makes Spanish rice for their kids regularly, and often for family dinners. I requested they fork over the recipe so that I could give it a whirl in my own home. This recipe is an adaptation of what they do!
How to cook rice and potatoes for optimal digestion. Preparing rice (and other grains), potatoes, legumes, nuts and seeds properly unlocks the nutrients and ensures they aid rather than hinder digestion.
There continues to be debate in the health community as to whether or not rice and potatoes are considered “healthy.” Are they pro-inflammatory and raise blood sugar? Do they irritate the gut lining? Are they too full of “empty” carbs?
The paleo community has long debated whether or not either or both are permissible, because while both have been a part of the human diet for over 3,500 years, both contain lectins, which can cause gastrointestinal issues or autoimmune flairs when they aren’t properly prepared.
I wrote an article titled Is Rice Paleo?, where I go into detail about the downsides of various types of rice (white, brown, wild, forbidden, etc), versus the potential health benefits. Check out the article if you want a deep dive into rice and why it could both be considered potentially harmful or healthful.
The heated debate on rice and potatoes goes back to lectins (which are bad) and resistant starch (which is good). Fortunately, the way we prepare rice and potatoes can largely destroy active lectins and also make the resistant starch easier to digest, improving gut health and promoting regular bowel movements.
First, let’s discuss lectins and resistant starch.
What are Lectins?:
Lectins are proteins that bind to carbohydrate and serve as anti-nutrients. The purpose of lectins is to protect the plant from digestion so that if an animal were to eat it, the plant can survive the digestive process and still germinate after defecation.
Lectins are found in grains, potatoes, legumes, nuts, and seeds.
When consumed raw or undercooked, lectins in their active state can cause interfere with the absorption of minerals, especially calcium, iron, phosphorus, and zinc. Phytohaemagglutinin, a type of lectin found in undercooked kidney beans, cause red blood cells to clump together. It can also produce nausea, vomiting, stomach upset, diarrhea, bloating and gas.
Lectins can bind to cells lining the GI tract, which may disrupt the breakdown and absorption of nutrients. It can also affect the growth of intestinal flora. Because lectin proteins bind to cells for long periods of time, they can potentially cause an autoimmune response and inflammatory conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and type 1 diabetes.
The good news is, boiling lectin-containing foods deactivates the lectins, thereby removing the anti-nutrient property from them. The kicker is, they must be properly boiled or cooked, lest some of the lectins remain.
What is Resistant Starch?
Resistant starch plays an important role in digestion. Resistant starch is called such because it is resistant to digestion. It moves along your digestive system and arrives in your colon intact.
Resistant starch may help prevent colon cancer (due to its ability to bind food together to help it move through your body), improves your insulin resistance, makes you feel full and helps you sleep at night. We need both digestible and indigestible foods in order to keep our bowel movements regular and well-formed.
Now that we’ve covered the cons (lectins) and the pros (resistant starch and easy-to-digest carbohydrate), let’s discuss how to cook rice and potatoes for optimal digestion.