Ginger turmeric cauliflower rice is a healthy side dish that’s not lacking in flavor! Fresh ginger, garlic, and turmeric flavor this easy low-carb and lower-calorie recipe. Serve alongside chicken, fish, tofu, or your favorite protein, and top with the herbs of your choice.
One blog recipe that has been a hit right off the bat is turmeric coconut basmati rice. After getting a few comments from inquiring minds wanting to know if cauliflower could be subbed in for the basmati rice in that recipe, I thought to myself a) that sounds delicious, and b) doing a straight substitution in that recipe would likely yield soggy turmeric cauliflower rice from all the liquid. No good.
So here it is in all its glory: ginger turmeric cauliflower rice. Just as vibrant and flavorful as its inspiration, but low-carb and lower calorie to boot.
Why This Recipe Works
- Despite what some might say, cauliflower rice just isn’t exactly like rice rice. While the resemblance isn’t far off, you will be able to tell that you’re eating a healthier version of rice. However with a few steps, this turmeric cauliflower rice recipe achieves a fluffy texture that isn’t soupy or soggy with a bright flavor (and color) to boot.
- This recipe produces minimal dishes. While yes, the food processor gets involved to break down the cauliflower, the same pan is used to saute both the onion/garlic/ginger and the cauliflower rice components, and then for final assembly.
- Briefly sautéing the cauliflower mellows out the “raw crucifer-y” flavor big time, and is definitely worth the little bit of extra work!
- Cauliflower: This turmeric cauliflower rice recipe uses one whole head of cauliflower, though it can pretty easily be scaled down if you have less. The amount of cauliflower doesn’t have to be super precise, so for convenience, you can use anywhere between a twelve- and sixteen-ounce package of cauliflower florets or riced cauliflower.
- Ginger: Fresh ginger provides a more pungent flavor burst than dried, ground ginger. For convenience I rinse whole ginger root segments, dry well, and then stick them in the freezer. When needed for a recipe, I simply grate as much as is needed right from frozen — no peeling necessary!
- Garlic: Five cloves of garlic certainly lends a noticeable garlic flavor here, though you don’t have to use that much if you’re not head over heels for garlic like I am.
- Start by cutting the cauliflower into florets. Remove the leaves and bottom stem, then cut the head into quadrants. Cut out the thick central stem and cut/separate out the florets. Place the florets in the bowl of a food processor.
- Process until the cauliflower is broken up into tiny bits around the size of rice grains, stopping to scrape down the sides and stir it all up so it pulses evenly. Depending upon the size of your food processor, you may need to do this part in batches.
- Now pour 2 tablespoons of olive oil into a large pan set over medium heat. Once heated, add the onion, minced or pressed garlic, and grated ginger and saute, stirring occasionally, for 5-6 minutes or until the onion is becoming golden. Transfer the onion/garlic/ginger to a plate and place the pan back on the stove over medium heat.
- Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and the riced cauliflower and give it a big stir to coat everything.
- Add the turmeric, salt, and pepper and stir well to be evenly dispersed.
- Cover the pan and saute the turmeric cauliflower rice for 5 minutes, stirring a few times throughout, until the cauliflower has become slightly tender. Stir in the sauteed onion/garlic/ginger.
- At this point take a taste and adjust the seasonings to your taste. Garnish with sliced green onions, sriracha or whatever, really, and it’s all ready to serve.
- If you don’t have a food processor, you can grate the whole cauliflower using a box grater.
- When pulsing the cauliflower, use short bursts and stop frequently to scrape down the sides and move the cauliflower pieces from the bottom to the top. This way you don’t get over-processed, mushy areas while larger pieces remain.
- This turmeric cauliflower rice recipe is very versatile. The sky’s the limit as far as toppings and extra flavors. A drizzle of sriracha will make it spicy, and you can top it with whatever herbs you like – parsley, mint, basil, etc. All would be compatible flavors.
Be sure to saute the riced cauliflower for 5 minutes or so, or until it becomes just slightly tender. Cooking it for too long or using too much oil can cause it to become too wet and soft.
This cauliflower rice will keep refrigerated for 3-4 days.
If you’ve enjoyed this recipe, I’d love for you to leave a star rating in the recipe card and/or a comment review below!
Ginger Turmeric Cauliflower Rice
- 1 head cauliflower
- 3 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 1 medium onion diced
- 5 cloves garlic minced or pressed
- 1 ½ tablespoons freshly grated ginger
- 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground pepper
- Slice the cauliflower head into four quadrants, and then cut out the central stem in the middle. Break or slice the florets into smaller pieces and place them in the bowl of food processor.
- Pulse until the cauliflower florets are broken up into tiny pieces similar in size to rice, stopping frequently to scrape down the sides and stir up the florets until all are evenly sized. Depending on the size of your food processor you may need to repeat this process more than once until all of the cauliflower is processed. Set aside.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add onion, garlic, and grated ginger and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-6 minutes or until the onion is golden. Once done, remove everything to a plate and set the skillet back on the stove.
- Heat remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil in the skillet, set back over medium heat. Add riced cauliflower to the skillet and stir. Add turmeric, salt, and pepper and stir to combine evenly. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cauliflower pieces have become slightly tender and a little bit softened.
- Add sauteed onion/garlic/ginger to the skillet with the cauliflower rice and stir to evenly combine. You may wish to keep the skillet over medium heat for a few minutes to reheat the onion mixture. Serve with parsley, green onions, or your favorite herbs for garnish.
- Cauliflower: The amount of cauliflower doesn’t have to be exact. One head that’s not extremely small or large will work, as will bagged/packaged cauliflower florets or riced cauliflower between 12-16 ounces.
- Ginger: Freezing rinsed and dried whole ginger root and grating it frozen (peel included) right into the recipe makes this prep step easy.
- Garlic: If you’re not a big fan of garlic, feel free to reduce the number of cloves used.
- If you’re without a food processor, you can use a box grater to break up the cauliflower into small pieces.
- Use short bursts when processing the cauliflower and scrape down the sides to prevent portions of it from becoming overly-processed and mushy.
- Store leftover portions for 3-4 days in the refrigerator.
Nutritional information is provided as an estimate. As it can vary due to many factors (brands used, quantities, etc.), we cannot guarantee its accuracy.