This post for Vegan Roasted Butternut Squash, Apple, and Cranberry Rice Pilaf is sponsored by Royal® Basmati Rice. As always, all opinions and recipe are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that support Shared Appetite!
Your family will never think rice is boring again with this Vegan Roasted Butternut Squash, Apple, and Cranberry Rice Pilaf! It’s a perfect fall side dish!
This past weekend, we enjoyed some ridiculously fantastic weather here in NY. The getting dark at 4:30pm… we didn’t enjoy that as much. But it’s normally starting to get pretty cold at this point, so Asheley and I made sure to get baby girl out for a couple long walks around the neighborhood to soak in the last bit of warmth for awhile. Olivia loved looking at all the colorful trees… she literally just stared at them the entire walk.
Back in the kitchen, I’m all about these fall flavors. Squash. Apples. Rosemary. Sage. Give me all of it. In large quantities Except pumpkin… bleh. Pumpkin and I are not friends.
So I have to admit. Growing up, rice was always an after thought. It was pretty much what my mom threw on the table when she was at a loss of what else to cook up as a side. Boring, plain, uninspiring rice. Not my idea of a creative rice side dish that I wanted to devour. But with a little help from my big, bold fall flavored friends, I’m totally pumped to dig into a huge bowl of this… Vegan Roasted Butternut Squash, Apple, and Cranberry Rice Pilaf.
These flavors are so on point. Roasted butternut squash. Dried cranberries. Walnuts. Pepitas. And apples sauteed with some shallots and fresh rosemary + sage. Oh, and the rice… it’s cooked in apple cider and vegetable stock. Heck YES.
Boring rice of my childhood? Heck NO.
You can feel free to pair this creative rice pilaf however you see fit. Me? I served it up with some roast chicken the other night and Asheley was all about it.
Need one last Thanksgiving side dish? Something different? Uhm, hello. The answer is right in front of you. And added bonus… your vegan friends can happily chow down on this deliciousness.
Let’s talk about this rice. Royal® Basmati Rice. It’s grown in the foothills of the Himalayas, which by the way, is the only place authentic Basmati rice can come from. Obvi.
No, seriously, I had no clue about that. But it’s a cool tidbit of random knowledge you can store away to impress people when you cook up this Vegan Roasted Butternut Squash, Apple, and Cranberry Rice Pilaf. Ohhh, hey everyone… by the way, did you know that Basmati rice is only authentic if it’s grown in the foothills of the Himalayas? See. You would sound super smart.
And thankfully, this Royal® Basmati Rice is the legit, real deal. It’s grown under the careful attention of India’s most expert farmers, and is aged for at least 12 months after being harvested, which results in a more fragrant flavor and non-sticky texture. And get this…Royal® is actually the best-selling Basmati rice in all of the USA. #nowyouknow
It’s also completely vegan, gluten free, kosher, and non-GMO certified. Besides cooking up this recipe (duh), Basmati rice is perfect with curries and mixed in with stir-fries and salads!
- 2 cups Royal® Basmati Rice
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 1½ cups apple cider
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 small butternut squash, peeled and finely diced
- 2 shallots, minced
- 1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and finely diced
- 2 teaspoons chopped rosemary
- 2 teaspoons chopped sage
- Kosher salt
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- ¼ cup pepitas
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Spread butternut squash out in an even, single layer on an aluminum foil lined baking sheet. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil and season generously with Kosher salt. Toss to coat. Roast squash in oven for approximately 25 minutes, until tender and easily pierced with a fork.
- Meanwhile, rinse rice 1-2 times to remove extra starch then drain. Place rice, vegetable stock, and apple cider in an uncovered saucepan and cook over high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, and continue to boil until liquid is reduced slightly below the rice level. Lower heat, top with lid, and let simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until all water absorbed and rice is tender.
- Meanwhile, heat remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a small skillet. Cook shallot, stirring occasionally, for 2 minutes. Stir in apple, rosemary, and sage, and season generously with Kosher salt. Cook for about 5 to 7 minutes, until apple is softened.
- Combine rice with roasted butternut squash, apple mixture, dried cranberries, walnuts, and pepitas. Serve and devour.