Spicy rice pilaf with lentils

Rice pilaf used to be one of our favorite dishes in the king household.  Granted I used to put some pretty weird things in there – hot dogs (no, not while I was pregnant) and other variety of things.

Since the baby I haven’t made a whole lot of rice pilaf and today I am fixing that.

Rice Pilaf

This rice dish has a bit of a mexican twist to it with beans, lentils, and spices.

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I love all the texture and the spices, as well as the fact that it’s a healthier version.

Which brings me to two different points.

1.  The kidney beans.  I decided to buy a bag of dry kidney beans to save dollars and avoid some canned food.  The back of the package said to soak them in hot water for 1 to 6 hours and I did just that.

Not a huge fan.  Next time I think I’ll try to soak them in water overnight to see if that makes a difference.

2.  The brown rice.  What. a. pain.  I swear it’s out to get me.  But don’t worry – I prevailed.

Back to the rice pilaf.

This recipe is especially great because it only takes you a couple of minutes to put together and then you just let it cook for a while.  Just what the doctor ordered for this mom of a super mischievous little toddler.

Spicy rice pilaf with lentils
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Healthy dinner that takes a couple of minutes to put together and cooks while you're free to do whatever you need.
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4
  • ½ yellow onion
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 cup brown rice, uncooked
  • ¼ cup lentils, uncooked
  • 1 can of kidney beans or about ½ cup of dry kidney beans, presoaked
  • 1 cup chicken broth (or vegetable broth), low sodium
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup chunky salsa
  • a dash of chili powder
  • a dash of red pepper flakes
  • a dash of garlic powder
  • (the above depend on how spicy you like things)
  • Kielbasa goes super well in this, if you'd like to add a little meat to your dish
  1. Cook the onion in the oil for a couple of minutes.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients, bring to a boil and then lower the temperature and cook for about an hour, or until rice and lentils taste like they're cooked.