This Cauliflower Rice Paella is packed with vegetables! This recipe is made with riced cauliflower instead of regular rice. I love making this recipe because it tastes so flavorful and also contains a variety of different vegetables. Eating a variety of vegetables is important because different vegetables contain different vitamins, minerals, and other nonessential nutrients. This recipe is rich in nutrients and also grain free, gluten free, dairy free, paleo, and whole 30.
I have a smaller paella pan so the ingredients are proportional to my pan size, if you have a bigger pan, the portion size may vary.
If you’re looking for more grain-free paella recipes, checkout my Vegetarian Cauliflower Rice Paella recipe.
Why Cauliflower Rice?
Cauliflower is an incredibly popular vegetable right now. It is a great, grain-free substitute in many recipes. Substituting with cauliflower rice is an easy way to add more vegetables to your plate. Cauliflower is an excellent source of fiber and contains vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin B6, folate, potassium, and magnesium. It also contains nonessential nutrients, such as antioxidants, which protect cells from damage1.
What You’ll Need to Make Cauliflower Rice Paella:
Veggies: This recipe contains a ton of veggies. To make this recipe, you will need riced cauliflower, a sweet onion, a red bell pepper, cherry tomatoes, peas, and garlic. I used frozen riced cauliflower and frozen peas for this recipe.
Herbs & Spices: You will need fresh parsley, paprika and saffron spices for this recipe.
Protein: Chicken thighs and chorizo are the source of protein in this recipe.
Oil: You will need avocado oil to make this recipe. I use avocado oil for high temperature cooking because it has a high smoke point.
I hope you enjoy this recipe. If you give it a try, please leave a comment below or tag me on instagram and let me know what you think!
Cauliflower Rice Paella
- Paella Pan
- 3 cups Frozen Riced Cauliflower
- 1/2 Sweet Onion
- 1 Red Bell Pepper
- 6-10 Cherry Tomatoes
- 1/4 cup Frozen Peas
- Fresh Parsley
- Paprika, Saffron
- 2 Garlic Cloves
- 2-3 tbsp Avocado Oil
- 4 Chicken Thighs
- 2 pieces Chorizo
- Allow the frozen riced cauliflower to sit out until it is thawed.
- Cut the chorizo into slices. On a separate cutting board, cut the plum tomatoes into halves or quarters and chop the onion and red bell pepper.
- Add avocado oil to the paella pan and spread across the pan to create a non-stick surface.
- Add the 4 chicken thighs to the pan. Cook for approximately 5 minutes. You do not want to completely cook the chicken thighs. You only want to partially cook them to and allow the oil/fat from the chicken to seep into the pan. Remove the chicken thighs and set aside.
- Add the chopped onion and red bell pepper to the pan. Sauté in the oil until the red bell pepper starts to soften and the onion turns slightly brown. This will take approximately 5 minutes. Add paprika and salt and pepper to taste.
- Add the cut chorizo pieces to the pan. While the chorizo is cooking, cut the chicken thighs into cubes.
- Add 2 minced cloves of garlic to the pan and (if needed) an additional tbsp of avocado oil to cook the garlic in. Allow the garlic to simmer for about 30 seconds.
- Add the cut tomatoes, peas, cubed chicken thighs, and riced cauliflower to the pan. Add approximately 1- 1 1/2 cups of water to the pan. The cauliflower will release some water so you do not want to add as much water as when cooking paella with regular rice. Add a pinch of saffron to the pan. Turn the pan on high and allow to cook until all of the water has evaporated (approximately 20-30 mins).
- Once all of the water evaporated, I allowed my paella to cook a little longer on low heat to allow it to cook and stick to the pan. Allow the paella to cool slightly and top with fresh parsley.
- Elliott, Brianna. “The Top 8 Health Benefits of Cauliflower.” Healthline, Healthline Media, 14 Apr. 2017, http://www.healthline.com/nutrition/benefits-of-cauliflower.