Rice pilaf is a flavorsome dish made with rice and broth. Many people refer to rice pilaf as a dish, but others use the term to describe a specific way of cooking rice. Nevertheless, rice pilaf has spread its Middle Eastern roots to many kitchens around the globe. Delicious, light and nutritious, rice pilaf is the perfect meal to add to any menu.
What is Rice Pilaf Made of?
The basic food is rice pilaf is of course the rice. Many cultures prefer using white rice but you can substitute it with brown rice for health benefits. The rice used is also usually the long-grain variety. Rice is first sautéed and then cooked in broth. Traditionally, a lot of spices are added to rice pilaf to enhance its flavor. In modern culture, it’s the norm to add meat and vegetables as well.
Health Benefits of Rice Pilaf
It is mostly the nutrients from rice that makes this dish healthy. Rice pilaf is fibrous and filled with B vitamins. Fiber makes it a filling meal that can benefit your digestive system at the same time. The B vitamins in rice can increase immunity against disease and speed up the rate at which the body metabolizes food. In other words, B vitamins are energy boosters.
White rice also carries plenty of minerals too. Research has found small amounts of magnesium, manganese, phosphorus and selenium. Increasing your daily intake of these specific minerals can help keep blood pressure normal, repair muscle and regulate thyroid activity for a healthy metabolism.
Those watching their weight should be careful about the portions of rice pilaf they consume. One cup of this dish has 250-280 calories. To reduce calories, you might want to try other forms of rice like brown rice or wild rice.
How to Make Rice Pilaf
- 1 cup rice long-grain
- 1 ½ cups chicken/vegetable broth
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons onions diced
- 1-2 tablespoons butter
- Set the oven to 350 F.
- Pour broth in a pot and heat it up over medium heat. In a separate pan, melt and heat the butter.
- Add onions and garlic to the pan and sauté until slightly brown. Add rice and stir to coat it with butter.
- Pour the chicken or vegetable broth into the pan with the rice. Allow it to come to a boil and then remove from heat.
- Place the pan in the preheated oven and bake the rice until all the water is finished. This should take 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven, sprinkle seasoning and serve. Alternatively, you can leave the rice to boil on the stovetop until it is soft and fluffy.
Rice pilaf is not only a tasty dish, but also a unique way to cook rice. The broth adds wonderful flavor and texture to rice. Season the rice pilaf with your favorite spices like cayenne pepper, turmeric or ground pepper. Serve with meats, seafood or vegetables and enjoy.
Just like rice pilaf, Filipinos have many ways of cooking rice. Feel free to browse our rice recipes archive.