Mediterranean Brown Rice Bowl

Brown Rice Bowl
My Mediterranean Bowl is filling and healthy. Packed with brown rice, lentils, tahini, & roasted tomatoes, it's the perfect one bowl meal.

I usually prefer white rice to brown rice.

I know white rice isn’t nearly as healthy.  But I can’t help it.

Despite my white rice preference, I’ve got a few recipes where white rice just doesn’t cut it. 

This Mediterranean bowl is one of them.

Mediterranean Bowl

Mediterranean Bowl Ingredients

In this bowl, brown rice is mixed with lentils and a tahini-based sauce.  The resulting texture and flavor are amazing.

Add the other ingredients of my recipe—parsley, pine nuts, chickpeas, and roasted tomatoes—and this becomes an incredibly filling bowl with a distinct Mediterranean vibe.

Mediterranean Bowl

The Magic Ingredient

The magic ingredient in this bowl is the roasted tomatoes.

Have you roasted tomatoes before?

Roasted Tomatoes

You need to. 

Slightly sweet, soft on the inside and crisp on the outside, roasted tomatoes are a unique ingredient; the perfect complement to everything else in this bowl.

Brown rice and lentils

Make this Mediterranean Bowl!

This bowl is gluten-free and vegan.  It becomes vegetarian if you garnish with feta before serving, which I recommend if you’re not vegan.  But the bowl does stand alone without it.

If you’re looking for a filling and flavorful one bowl meal, this is it.  Make my Mediterranean Brown Rice Bowl once, and watch it become a spring/summer favorite.

Mediterranean Bowl

One Thing!

Smoked paprika is an important ingredient in the tahini sauce.  You can find good smoked paprika at Trader Joe’s.  But my favorite smoked paprika is from Simply Organic. 

You can find Simply Organic’s smoked paprika here [aff. link], or in my Amazon store here.

Mamma Mia Here We Go Again
We're talking about Mediterranean flavors. So it's a great excuse to include a pic from one of my favorite movies.
Mediterranean Bowl
5 from 4 votes

Mediterranean Brown Rice Bowl

My Mediterranean Bowl is filling and healthy.  Packed with brown rice, lentils, tahini, & roasted tomatoes, it's the perfect one bowl meal.
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time45 mins
Servings: 5
Print Recipe

Ingredients

For the rice:

  • 4 cups brown rice, cooked

For the lentils:

  • ½ cup dry lentils, rinsed
  • 1 cup water
  • ¼ tsp sea salt

For the Smoky Sweet Tahini Sauce:

  • ¼ cup + 3 Tbsp tahini
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 1 dash pepper
  • ¼ tsp smoked paprika
  • 2 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice, or more to taste
  • 1 tsp maple syrup

For the tomatoes:

  • 10 oz cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil

Everything else

  • 1 15 oz can chickpeas, drained
  • cup pine nuts
  • cup parsley, minced
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • fresh feta cheese, for garnish, optional

Instructions

Cook the brown rice

  • Cook the brown rice by your preferred method. You need 4 cups of cooked brown rice for this recipe.
  • Note: I prefer using my rice cooker. 1 ½ cups dry brown rice and 3 cups water in my rice cooker gives me about 4 cups of perfectly cooked brown rice.

Cook the lentils

  • While the rice cooks, rinse and drain the lentils. Add the lentils to a small sauce pan, and pour the 1 cup of water over the top. Bring the lentils to a boil.
  • Once boiling, bring the heat down to low, and simmer the lentils uncovered until most of the water is absorbed, about 25 minutes.
  • Now turn off the heat, and stir ¼ tsp salt into the lentils. They'll be a little salty at this point. This is good, it will help the lentils retain and bring flavor when we mix all the bowl ingredients together.

Roast the tomatoes

  • While the lentils and rice cook, you can roast your tomatoes. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  • Line a cookie sheet with foil, and put the halved cherry tomatoes, sea salt, and olive oil on top. Now toss them together with your hands.
  • After the olive oil and sea salt evenly coat each tomato half, arrange each tomato so that they are all membrane side up, skin side down. If the membrane side of the tomato is down while baking, the tomatoes will stick to the foil while roasting and be difficult to get off the cooking sheet.
  • Roast the tomatoes for 20 minutes, until they've shriveling up, released juices, and the skin has bronwed on the bottom. Tomatoes are done, set aside.

Make the tahini sauce

  • While the tomatoes roast, make the tahini sauce. Simply add all the sauce ingredients to a small bowl. Whisk it all together until everything is incorporated and mostly smooth. Sauce is done.

Bring it all together

  • At this point, your rice, lentils, and tomatoes should all be cooked and ready to mix together.
  • Start by adding the brown rice and lentils to a large mixing bowl. Add ½ tsp salt, and mix the salt, brown rice, and lentils together. Now add the chickpeas, pin nuts, and parsley. Stir to incorporate.
  • Now add the tahini sauce to the bowl. I usually use the full amount of sauce from the recipe, but start with about half the sauce and add more, if desired.
  • Last, carefully add the tomatoes to the bowl. Fold them in very gently so the tomatoes maintain their shape somewhat. Set a few aside to garnish on each serving, if desired.

Serve and enjoy!

  • Serve this Mediterranean bowl as a meal by itself, or with my Crisp Greek Salad.
  • This dish is great at any temperature, and makes excellent leftovers for lunch the next day.

Notes

This dish is vegetarian.
This dish is gluten-free. 
This dish is vegan if you don't garnish with feta.

© Copyright 2022 Vanguard of Hollywood

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Stacy

    5 stars
    I loved the Greek flavors here. The tomatoes were so good. I made this without feta and it was great.

    1. Shannon

      So happy to hear Stacy, thanks for commenting!

  2. Katie

    5 stars
    This was delicious! I don’t love brown rice, but i loved it here!

    1. Shannon

      That’s great to hear, thanks Katie!

  3. Justine

    5 stars
    Wonderful recipe! Really unique flavor and texture, my family loved it.

    1. Shannon

      So good to hear, thanks Justine!

  4. Judee

    5 stars
    This recipe sounds hearty and delicious! I too prefer and usually eat white rice despite knowing it’s not as healthy as brown rice. I’ll have to try this recipe with the brown rice!

    1. Shannon

      Thanks Judee! It’s such a great way to enjoy brown rice.

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