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Simple Veggie Rice Pilaf - Even my kids LOVE this vegetable rice pilaf. (gluten free, vegan)

Simple Veggie Rice Pilaf

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

5 from 6 reviews

  • Author: Emily
  • Yield: 8 1x


  • 1 1/2 cups Basmati rice (or other long-grain rice)
  • 1 zucchini, grated
  • 2 medium carrots, grated
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil (or butter/ghee)
  • 3 1/4 cups vegetable broth (or chicken, if not vegan)
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • Optional: 1-2 Tbsp fresh herbs (like dill, cilantro, parsley, or basil)


Rinse the rice in a fine mesh sieve to wash away some of the starch.
Add your oil/butter to a saucepan and melt over medium heat.
Add zucchini, carrot, and rice and stir to coat.
Add broth and a pinch of salt and pepper to the saucepan and cover.
Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce heat to low for 15 minutes or until the water has all been absorbed and the rice is tender. Fluff rice with a fork and add additional salt and pepper, as desired, along with fresh herbs (if using).


Family Size – This recipe makes a hefty family-sized batch of rice, which is plenty for us to have two nights’ worth or more. If you’re feeding a smaller crowd, feel free to halve the recipe. (It’s not too tricky!)

Mix it Up. There are SO many ways you can add to or adjust this veggie rice. For example…

1. Try adding onion or celery in with the rice. Both onion and celery are BIG in flavor, so they’ll really add to and wake up the flavors going on. The zucchini and carrot are pretty mild, so if you’ve got super tasters on your hands, you may want to try a mild version first.

2. Stir in some frozen peas right before serving.

3. Mix in a flavor booster–a clove of garlic, a squeeze of lemon juice, or a pinch of curry powder or ground turmeric will add another layer of flavor.

4. Sprinkle on some herbs. I’m a big fan of fresh herbs, and love that I can play with the flavor of this rice a lot simply by swapping my herbs. Try a little fresh dill and a tiny squeeze of lemon juice, or a little fresh parsley or cilantro. Add a bell pepper to the veggie blend and try a sprinkle of fresh basil.


  • Calories: 184kcal
  • Sugar: 1g
  • Sodium: 401mg
  • Fat: 5g
  • Saturated Fat: 1g
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 30g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Protein: 3g
  • Cholesterol: 0