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Parsnip “Rice” with Fresh Thyme & Sage

in Recipes, Sides

Parsnip “Rice” with Fresh Thyme & Sage is a nutty, flavorful substitute to rice.  Serve with your favorite protein and additional sides for a cozy fall dinner or a holiday meal.

parsnip_rice 5 graphicMove over cauliflower rice.  Parsnip “rice” is coming for ya!  It is about to give you a run for your money, too.

parsnip_rice 7Ever since cauliflower “rice” became a thing, I have been on board the train.  And while I think cauli rice is delicious in cauliflower pizza crust or served in place of a bed of rice, I’ve gotta be honest.  I really don’t care for cauliflower rice on its own.

Plain cauliflower rice does nothing for me.  I think it has very little flavor, and whenever I try to properly season it, I end up with a soggy and mushy mess.  I don’t know about you, but I am not a fan of mushy rice.  Mashed cauliflower instead of mashed potatoes?  Sure!  But I am going to have to pass on mushy cauliflower rice.

parsnip_riceLuckily, there is a new rice in town.

And while I may be biased, I think parsnip rice makes cauliflower rice seem like the unpopular, dismal younger sibling of rice.  In fact, if I could get everyone to think the way I think and taste the way I taste, I would make plain cauliflower rice go extinct.  Should it stick around for pizza crust?  You bet!  But served alone as a side?  No thank you.  That is what parsnip rice is for!

parsnip_rice 4You are going to fall in love with this parsnip rice for so many reasons.  It is:

sturdy (not mushy!)
has the texture of rice
is absolutely perfect for the fall and winter seasons and the holidays

parsnip_rice 6Are you ready to try parsnip rice yet?  Let’s get to ricing!

parsnip_rice 3Parsnip “Rice” with Fresh Thyme & Sage
AIP, Whole 30, Paleo, Vegan, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Nightshade-Free, Nut-Free


4 large parsnips*
1-2 heaping TB of unrefined coconut oil
10 leaves of fresh sage, minced
5 sprigs of fresh thyme
1-inch piece of fresh ginger, grated
fine sea salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste

*I highly recommend that you only use large parsnips.  Small parsnips are very difficult to spiralize.


1. Start by washing, peeling, and spiralizing your parsnips.

2. Place the spiralized parsnips in a large food processor and pulse for 15 to 20 seconds, or until it resembles the look of rice.  You will likely need to do this in several batches.

3. In a large skillet, heat coconut oil over medium-high heat.  Once hot, lower to medium heat and add parsnip “rice.”  Cover and saute for approximately 5 minutes.  Stir frequently.

4. Turn the heat down to low.  Add sage, thyme, sea salt, and black pepper.  Stir until well-combined.  Cook for an additional 10 minutes, stirring frequently.  Adjust seasonings, as desired.

parsnip_rice 8Parsnip rice has me all giddy for the Thanksgiving holiday already!  I mean seriously, how perfect would this be served alongside turkey and your favorite sides?

parsnip_rice 2Rice made from parsnips and fresh herbs is perfect for fall and the holidays! #paleo #glutenfree Click To Tweet

Have you ever made parsnip “rice?”
What is your favorite rice substitute?

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{ 19 comments… add one }
  • Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine October 15, 2015, 9:48 am
    Haha, see I like caulirice better :P The taste of parsnips can be to awkwardly "sweet" for me (I just have ot be int he mood for them). But still, looks yum! Love the wintery sage and thyme!
    • ClnEatingVegGrl October 15, 2015, 8:49 pm
      Haha, too funny! Isn't it interesting how everyone's taste buds are so different? I bet some cauli rice would be good with sage and thyme, too!
  • Erin October 15, 2015, 10:18 am
    This would never have occurred to me and now it's all I can think about. Apparently I'm stopping at Hy-Vee on the way home from work so I can do this immediately.
    • ClnEatingVegGrl October 15, 2015, 8:50 pm
      I'm so glad you tried it! It is definitely one of my new favorite things :D
  • Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious October 15, 2015, 10:30 am
    I love parsnips and have not made them yet this fall. Parsnip rice is an awesome idea. I'll have to try this! Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious recently posted...3 Ways To Make Your Food Photography Stand Out: Part 1My Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl October 15, 2015, 8:51 pm
      If you love parsnips then you HAVE to try them like this. I think this is my favorite way to eat them!
  • Alyssa @ Renaissancerunnergirl October 15, 2015, 11:00 am
    Awesome idea! I have to say I think no veggie "subs" do it for me if I expect them to taste like the real thing, but an open mind about what they can be if you take them for what they are means I've become a fan of spaghetti squash and other goodies. Alyssa @ Renaissancerunnergirl recently posted...Learning As I Blog AlongMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl October 15, 2015, 8:52 pm
      Yes! They definitely do not taste exactly like the "real deal," so thinking of them as really tasty veggies is the way to go!
  • Dani @ Dani California Cooks October 15, 2015, 2:41 pm
    I've made parsnip purees before but never "rice"! I am always looking for new rice substitutes. Currently still loving cauli-rice.. Dani @ Dani California Cooks recently posted...Curried Chickpea and Cauliflower Salad (vegan, gluten free)My Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl October 15, 2015, 8:53 pm
      I really NEED to try mashed parsnips. I honestly can't believe I haven't done it yet. I'll have to add that to my "to make" list for the fall!
  • Erin @ Her Heartland Soul October 15, 2015, 11:47 pm
    This looks so good! Is that towel from Target? I have one just like it but blue, grey, and white! Erin @ Her Heartland Soul recently posted...My Handbag Lust ListMy Profile
    • ClnEatingVegGrl October 17, 2015, 12:35 pm
      Yes!! Joanna actually bought it for me as part of my "going away/apartment-warming" present. I love it!
  • Emily January 9, 2016, 9:47 am
    I agree about cauliflower rice, especially that it easily gets mushy. Quick question, is there a reason you spiralize then pulse in a food processer? I would think that a grater attachment in a food processer would work as well and be quicker (unless you don't have one).
    • ClnEatingVegGrl January 9, 2016, 10:53 am
      Yes! A grater attachment for the food processor should definitely work... I just can't seem to locate mine ;) I blame it on having way too many kitchen appliances/utensils!
  • Rachel April 17, 2018, 10:50 am
    I'm definitely trying this tonight! I find it interesting that most people say their cauliflower rice turns mushy, I make it all the time and I've never had this problem! We love it! I like that bit of crunch and it tastes so good with butter, salt,and pepper.
    • ClnEatingVegGrl April 17, 2018, 12:58 pm
      If you like cauli rice, I bet you will love this! I think the texture of parsnips made into rice is just delicious.

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