Simple & Spicy Spanish Rice

Zest Nutrition is gearing up for Whole Grains Month. Yup, September is about honoring all of the metabolism boosting B-vitamins, anti-aging antioxidants, filling fiber, powerbuilding protein and deliciousness that whole grains give us, and we're ready to celebrate! 

As the first chills of fall kiss our cheeks, it's time to get in the kitchen and experiment with new grains. There's nothing to be scared of - the worst that could happen is a pot of mush. The more likely scenario, is that you end up with a new favorite food. If you're up for the challenge, here is the Zest Guide to Batch Cooking Whole Grains. There is a huge variety to choose from, sprouting from all across the globe. 

As much as I love adventures in the kitchen, sometimes quick & simple is what the doctor ordered. Simple, however, does not have to mean bland and boring.

On that note, I decided to kick-off Whole Grains Month with this recipe because it has amazing amounts of flavor, uses 7 simple ingredients and lasts all week for healthy satisfaction on-the-go. 


  • 6  cups brown rice, cooked
  • 1 cup pitted black olives, quartered or sliced into rings (I used black olives from a can purchased from Trader Joe's for less than $3. #DontMindIfIDo)
  • 1 tsp salt (I like my food saltier than most, so to be frank, I used closer to a tablespoon. I recommend tasting as you go to get the salt level right for you. I definitely encourage experimenting with salt - when you get it right, it's an amazing culinary tool for bringing out other flavors)
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 large red onion, very finely chopped
  • 1 large bunch of fresh parsley, coarsely chopped
  • 3 tbsp smoked paprika (yeah, sounds like a lot - that's how I like it. You can always start with less and add more as desired. Paprika is what really gives this dish a distinct smoky & spicy flavor). 
  • 1 tsp cayenne (I promised only 7 ingredients and this is the 8th, so I'll make it optional for those who like it spicy)


Once rice is cooked and cooled, mix all ingredients together in a large bowl and dig in. That's it- sweet and simple.

Let us know what new whole grains you discover this month - we like to hear success stories and fun failures - we live and learn!