Rice as part of a weight loss diet, really?

Rice is nice!  Rice can be part of healthy diet, just remember to keep your portions under wraps (aim for 1 cup cooked or less per serve) and remember to add plenty of vegetables and a lean protein.


Mexican Red Rice                                                            Serves 8 as a side dish

1 medium onion, finely chopped

1 cup basmati rice

1 tsp ground cumin

½ cup hot chilli sauce

1 tsp smoked paprika

2 cups low salt chicken stock

200g green beans, trimmed and cut into 2cm pieces

400g can corn kernels, drained

1 red capsicum, finely chopped

½ cup finely chopped coriander

Lime wedges to serve


  1. Heat a saucepan over medium heat and spray with oil.  Add onion, rice and cumin.  Continue stirring rice mixture for 2-3 mins.  Add sauce and paprika, cook for a further minute.
  2. Add stock and ½ cup water.  Bring to the boil.  Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered for 15 mins or until rice is tender.  Set aside covered for 5 mins.  Use a fork to separate grains.
  3. Meanwhile, cook beans in the microwave in a small amount of water for 2 mins.  Drain and refresh under cold water.  Drain.
  4. Add corn, beans, capsicum and coriander to the rice mixture.  Stir to combine.  Serve with lime wedges.


Almond rice pilaf with grilled lamb                        Serves 4

1 brown onion, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, crushed

Pinch saffron threads

2.5 cups salt reduced chicken stock

1 cinnamon stick

1 1/3 cups basmati rice

¼ cup flaked almonds

200g mushrooms, thinly sliced

600g lamb backstrap

1 bunch asparagus, woody ends trimmed, cut into 2cm pieces

150g frozen peas

2 ripe tomatoes, coarsely chopped

¼ cup chopped flat leaf parsley


  1. Heat saucepan with a spray of olive oil over medium heat.  Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally for 4 mins or until onion softens.
  2. Meanwhile steep saffron in 1 tblsp hot water.  Also place the stock and cinnamon in a saucepan over medium heat to simmer.
  3. Add rice to onion mixture.  Cook, stirring for 2 minutes.  Add the saffron mixture and the stock.  Bring to a simmer.  Reduce heat to low and cover.  Cook for 12 mins without stirring.
  4. Meanwhile, toast almonds to golden brown and remove.  Spray pan with oil and cook mushrooms until tender.  Add the lamb and cook for 3 mins per side or until cooked to your liking.  Set aside to rest.
  5. Add asparagus, peas and tomato to rice.  Set aside for 5 mins, covered.
  6. Thinly sliced lamb across the grain.  Arrange rice on a serving platter, scatter with almonds, mushroom and parsley.  Season to taste.  Arrange lamb on the top and serve.
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