Pumpkin Rice

Jump to Recipe

Pumpkin is such a versatile ingredient that can be added to nearly any dish, and rice is no exception. This Pumpkin Rice is a perfect side for wintry weather.

Pumpkin Rice

Pumpkin is such a versatile ingredient that can be added to nearly any dish, and rice is no exception. The addition of pumpkin and coconut milk to brown rice make this Pumpkin Rice a perfect side for wintry weather.

Rice can get boring fairly quickly, so I love to make a variety of vegan rice dishes. A few of my favorites are my Jollof RiceTurmeric Coconut RiceVegan Dirty RiceInstant Pot Mexican Rice, and Jamaican Rice and Peas.

Pumpkin Rice

Jamaican pumpkin rice is especially popular in the Rastafarian religious community, who are primarily vegan because of their beliefs (except for those who eat fish). They refer to their diet as “Ital”, and they value natural, additive-free, fresh ingredients.

Rastafarian restaurants, cafes, and smoothie bars are found very easily all over Jamaica. In fact, many Jamaicans, perhaps even tourists, have sampled Rastafarian dishes and drinks. My family and I love to stop and get fresh fruit juices and smoothies made with only exotic fruits and coconut milk.

As veganism and vegetarianism are picking up popularity across the world, these recipes they have been cooking for generations come quite in handy. I love to incorporate these dishes into my diet, as seen by my Ital Stew and Gungo Peas Soup, so this vegan pumpkin rice is no exception.

pumpkin rice ingredients

Health Benefits of Pumpkin?

Pumpkin is full of fiber while being low-calorie, making it a perfect addition to rice to keep you full longer. It also has many essential vitamins and minerals that can improve your daily life.

The compound that gives pumpkin its color, beta-carotene, converts into vitamin A. Beta carotene and vitamin A have a variety of benefits. These include improving your immunity (along with vitamin C), keeping your skin healthy, supporting your vision (especially in age-related cases), and preventing free radical damage.

Coconut Milk Nutrition

Coconut milk is made from the inner meat of mature coconuts. It is a delicious milk substitute that is used traditionally in many cultures, especially in the Caribbean, Asia, and South America.

Coconut milk has quite a high but healthy fat content, making it perfect for adding to spicy dishes to mellow the flavor and as a base for desserts. Coconut milk is also full of various minerals and vitamins, antioxidants, and even some fiber and protein.

Note that people with allergies to tree nuts can consume coconut because botanically coconut is not a nut, it is a fruit. However, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has classified it as a nut. Coconut milk contains medium-chain fatty acids, these fatty acids are found to be good for cardiovascular healthRead More here.

Pumpkin rice with rice and vegetables in a saucepan

Coconut Cream vs Coconut Milk

Coconut milk is made with coconut meat and water and is a similar consistency to cow’s milk and similar non-dairy milk substitutes. It works great in smoothies, desserts, and curries.

Coconut cream is made from skimming the top protein and fat layer from simmered coconut milk. As such, it is obviously creamier and thicker and is used as a whipped cream substitute, also in desserts, and any recipe where you require this thicker consistency and higher fat content. Read More Here.

What Is In Pumpkin Rice?

  • Pumpkin Chunks
  • Brown Rice
  • Pink Himalayan Salt
  • Pimento Berries
  • Onion
  • Thyme
  • Garlic
  • Coconut Milk
  • Vegetable Broth
  • Coconut Oil

pouring rice with pumpkin and vegetables in a saucepan

How To Make Pumpkin Rice?

  1. In a medium pot, heat the coconut oil on medium heat.
  2. Once the oil is heated, sauté chopped garlic, diced onion, pumpkin chunks, diced carrots, salt, and pimento berries for about 2 minutes. 
  3. Once the vegetables are soft and fragrant, add rinsed brown rice and stir to combine. 
  4.  Pour in the water and coconut milk, and stir to combine. Allow the rice to simmer for 30 minutes on medium heat, stirring occasionally.
  5. After 30 minutes, reduce to low heat and cover. Cover by placing a piece of parchment paper on the pot and cover with a lid. Read More Here.
  6. Leave the lid on and cook for 30 more minutes, until rice is steamed and fluffed. Remove thyme stems before serving.

Chef’s Tips

  • If you don’t have fresh pumpkin, you can use any other squash (kabocha, butternut, etc.)
  • You can also use frozen chunks in place of fresh pumpkin or squash.
  • My favorite variety of rice to use in this and most recipes is brown jasmine or basmati rice.
  • Pimento berries are whole allspice, most will only know the ground version. If this is not in your local supermarket, check a Latin, Asian, or other ethnic grocery stores.
  • You can also use water + bouillon cube instead of vegetable broth.
  • When the rice is done cooking, the pimento should be at the top. Scoop them out, especially if you are feeding young children.
  • Canned coconut milk can separate into coconut butter and water, just scoop it all out if this happens.

Jamaican pumpkin rice in saucepan with seasoned coconut milk

Can Dogs Eat Pumpkin?

Yes! In fact, it is a very popular remedy for pups with digestive issues. I like to add a tablespoon or two to my dog’s food if I notice his number twos aren’t quite right. Dogs can also eat rice, which is found in many dog food formulas. 

I would caution against feeding your dog large amounts of pumpkin rice since too much of a good thing is really bad. As always, consult your veterinarian before changing your dog’s diet, but if he steals a bite, have no worries.

What To Serve With Rice?

Vegan pumpkin rice in a white bowl with a spoon and pot on a white background with a white napkin

If you enjoyed this post and would love to see more, join me on YoutubeInstagramFacebook & Twitter!

Get discounted copies of my cookbook here.

Also please leave a star rating ;-)

Need some encouragement on your Healthier Steps journey?

Join our Facebook groups, sharing lots of delicious vegan and gluten-free recipes, health tips, etc., from our members. Please join us and invite your friends to Gluten-Free and Vegan For Beginners and Vegan Recipes With Love.

 

Categories

Nutrition

(Per serving)
  • Energy: 441 kcal / 1843 kJ
  • Fat: 27 g
  • Protein: 8 g
  • Carbs: 46 g

Cooking Time

  • Preparation: 30 min
  • Cooking: 1 h 5 min
  • Ready in: 1 h 35 min
  • For:
  • 4 Servings

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. In a medium pot, heat the coconut oil on medium heat.
  2. Once the oil is heated, sauté chopped garlic, diced onion, pumpkin chunks, diced carrots, salt, and pimento berries for about 2 minutes.
  3. Once the vegetables are soft and fragrant, add rinsed brown rice and stir to combine.
  4. Pour in the water and coconut milk, and stir to combine. Allow it to simmer for 30 minutes on medium heat, stirring occasionally.
  5. After 30 minutes, reduce to low heat and cover. Cover by placing a piece of parchment paper on the pot and cover with the lid.
  6. Leave lid on and cook for 30 more minutes, until rice is steamed and fluffed. Remove thyme stems before serving.
Recipe author's Gravatar image

Chef Marsha

I am Marsha Lee, Chef, Owner and Operator of Eat With Your Eyes LLC, located in Mount Vernon, New York.

My passion for food began at an early age, while still a child in St. Andrew, Jamaica. I began playing with simple breakfast and fried food recipes I would see, until I mastered them, based on my critics.

Please Leave a Comment and a Rating

Rate this recipe

2 Comments
  1. Mirlene
    February 2, 2021

    Michelle! I have got to make this. I have never had rice like this before what an amazing way to cook rice. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe.