Enjoy this classic Spanish dish with a grain-free makeover using cauliflower rice! This Cauliflower Rice Paella is packed with flavor and spices, and yet, so simple to make for a busy weeknight! Paleo, Gluten-Free, grain free, with a Whole30 option.
You know the moment when you meet a new friend in your adulthood and instantly just click? You want to hug him/her and say, “where have you been all of my life?” That’s kind of how I felt about Paella the first time I tried it in Spain several years ago. She’s like my sister from another mister. How did I not know about this dish growing up?
Clearly, once I tasted a bite of this pure delicious cuisine, I became obsessed with trying it at every Spanish restaurant. And maybe trying every Spanish restaurant I could find. I love that traveling ignites this passion for food and possibilities. Plus, I kind of became a fan of sangria. Sangria + Paella might be the perfect meal.
So I made some Paella, with cauliflower rice. It just seemed right, you know? It cooks faster than rice, and is so much better for the gut than starchy white rice. All of my Paleo friends will be sure to love it.
My favorite kind of Paella is not one with shrimp. I like the chicken/chorizo. But in an effort to change up my normal recipes, I made some shrimp for you guys. If you wanted to omit the shrimp, swap it out for some chicken! Don’t take out the sausage though, it’s kind of necessary.
One of my friends recently had a major surgery, so she was my lucky test taster for this recipe. Before I went ahead and posted, she gave me the big thumbs up that the whole family loved it. Her daughter is a one of my daughter’s best friends and when she was over last weekend she told me, “that dinner you made us was delicious!”
She’s 10. Let’s take her word for it.
Enjoy my friends!
Cauliflower Rice Paella
- 1 large head cauliflower*
- 2 tbsp olive oil or avocado oil
- 1 med yellow onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 red bell pepper diced
- 1 cup roma tomato diced
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp saffron threads
- 1 tsp salt
- 8 oz chorizo sausage**
- 12 oz raw shrimp peeled and deveined
- 1/2 cup chicken stock
- 1/2 cup white wine***
- 4 tbsp lemon juice divided
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 3 tbsp fresh parsley chopped
Place cauliflower florets into a food processor or blender. Pulse for about 10-20 seconds until cauliflower resembles a rice texture. Do not over pulse, or it will become mushy. Set aside.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add 1 tbsp oil, then saute garlic and onion for 3-4 minutes. If using raw chorizo, add it here and cook for 4-5 minutes. Now add bell pepper and cauliflower rice. Continue to saute for 5-6 minutes, consistently stirring.
Now add tomatoes, paprika, saffron, salt, and chorizo. If using precooked sausage, slice into bite size pieces and toss into the mixture. Now add the shrimp.
Place chicken stock, white wine, lemon juice, and tomato paste into the skillet. Increase heat to medium high and bring to a quick boil. Now reduce the heat to a simmer, and let the flavors meld while the shrimp cooks. Continue to stir and cook for another 8-10 minutes.
Add the last 2 tbsp lemon juice and parsley (if using) for garnish. Serve warm.
*You will want about 4 cups cauliflower florets, or about 3-4 cups cauliflower rice
**You can use pre-cooked spicy sausage or chicken sausage (I use the Aidells brand)
***You can omit the white wine (Whole30 option) and use another 1/2 cup chicken stock instead, for 1 cup total.