Brown Rice Salad with Cumin and Lime Vinaigrette

Brown Rice Salad with Cumin Lime Vinaigrette

This is a quick lunch I threw together from what I could find in my fridge and pantry today.  I wanted something to go with the leftover grilled steak and chicken I brought home from a family barbecue the other night and this delicious brown rice salad really fit the bill.

The salad works well as either a side dish or a light vegetarian main course for lunch.  Top with thinly sliced grilled chicken, steak, or tempeh and you have a hearty and delicious summer meal.  Feel free to play with ingredient amounts to suit your own taste.  I think it would be great topped with some sliced avocado and roasted pepitas.

Brown Rice Salad with Cumin and Lime Vinaigrette

1 small clove garlic, peeled and smashed
generous pinch of kosher salt
zest and juice of one lime (about 2 tablespoons of juice)
1 teaspoon ground cumin*
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 cups cooked brown rice, cooled
1 cup canned garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
3 T. chopped green chiles (I used canned)
1/2 cup halved grape tomatoes
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Put garlic clove and salt in a small bowl and mash them together with a fork to form a paste.  Add lime juice, zest, and cumin.  Whisk lime juice mixture together then slowly whisk in the olive oil.  Taste, adjust salt as needed; set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine brown rice, garbanzo beans, chopped green chiles, tomatoes, and cilantro.  Add dressing and toss gently to combine.  Can be served immediately.  If made ahead and refrigerated, allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.

Recipe notes: *Cumin is much more flavorful if you start with whole seeds, toast them, then grind them yourself.  I toasted one teaspoon of whole cumin seeds in a dry skillet just until fragrant then ground them into a powder using a clean coffee grinder.  If I would have had some on hand, I would have tossed a handful of roasted pepitas into the salad.

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14 Comments
  1. Kalyn

    Love the sound of this! (You had me at cumin + lime!)

    2:11 pm  May 25th, 2010
  2. SusanV

    I’m with Kalyn–cumin and lime sound like the perfect seasoning for this salad!

    3:28 pm  May 25th, 2010
  3. Jon

    You’ve made my rice salad creativity wheels turn with this one! Ingredients like black forbidden rice, cranberry beans, cucumber, serrano peppers, perfect fresh nectarines, bay scallops… not all together of course, but each could provide a yummy riff on your theme.

    Thank you!

    5:41 pm  May 25th, 2010
  4. Phoo-D

    Cumin and lime belong together. This sounds like the perfect lunchtime salad. I’ve been on a serious lunch salad kick and can’t wait to give this a try!

    7:59 pm  May 25th, 2010
  5. DessertForTwo

    This is my perfect lunch! I always bring a little side of brown rice to work with my raw veggies for lunch, but this looks much more interesting! Thanks for sharing my new favorite lunch!

    8:56 pm  May 25th, 2010
  6. Charles Thompson

    I love all those ingredients. Sounds so good!

    9:45 pm  May 25th, 2010
  7. Michelle's Kitchen

    This looks amazing! I love these kinds of salads. I’m making this today and plan to share on my blog this week. Thanks!

    10:30 am  May 27th, 2010
  8. papawow

    Looks and sounds delicious. I’ve been trying to eat less meat and this just might be able to suffice for an entrée in our house. Thanks!

    9:39 pm  May 27th, 2010
  9. shirley

    This salad sounds amazing, I’m going to switch up my buttermilk dressing from this version for lime juice! http://www.servedraw.com/2010/02/oscar-night-a-swanked-out-farro-salad/

    12:19 pm  Jun 19th, 2010
  10. Kate

    I just finished making this salad and it is delicious! I forgot to pick up green chiles so I added a touch of cayenne pepper and chopped up some red onion to break up the flavor a little bit! It’s chilling in the fridge right now but think I might cut up some avacado to add to it as well! This might end up being a work lunch staple for me! Thanks for sharing!

    4:14 pm  Aug 22nd, 2010
  11. Luciana

    I’ve already done this twice since you posted it! It was tasty and healthy! Couldn’t find chiles so i used green & yellow peppers. It was beautiful! Thanks!

    3:33 pm  Sep 15th, 2010
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