Pineapple Rice Recipe

A nice platter of greens and brown rice doused in a spicy-salty-sweet pineapple dressing flecked with seitan. It's good hot or at room temperature.

Pineapple Rice

I've been to Hawaii two times. Once when I was sixteen, and again when I was twenty. Once to Maui, once to Kona. I remember it being lush and vibrant, achingly beautiful. The more miles you put between yourself and the resort areas, the better it got. I think I'd like to go back at some point, so when I realized there was an Edible Hawaiian Islands publication I subscribed to it with the hope that I'd discover farms, producers, markets and restaurants to seek out when we finally get around to going. The latest issue arrived in the mail the other night, and while flipping through it, I came across a recipe for a pineapple rice salad. I rarely cook with Hawaiian flavor profiles, but this looked too good to pass up. I had a good number of the ingredients on-hand, and ended up building on the basic concept to make a meal of it. No canned water chestnuts or peas, but I had a single can of organic canned pineapple at the back of one of my cupboards - I must have bought it with some baking endeavor in mind? Not sure. Anyhow, I'm glad I had it. In the end I had a nice platter of spicy greens and brown rice doused in a spicy-salty-sweet pineapple dressing flecked with seitan. It's good hot or at room temperature.

I used canned pineapple here along with the juice from the can, if you have access to good, fresh pineapple I encourage you to use that in the dressing. Like all fruit, pineapples have varying degrees of sweetness, so keep that in mind as you are making the dressing. Tweak it a bit here and there until it is to your liking. I like dressings for starchy salads to have a bit of strength and assertiveness - they get absorbed, and you don't want their flavors to get lost in the rice (or say, pasta).

If you're looking for alternate ways to play with these ingredients, I should also mention I did an egg-fried rice version of this with the leftovers that really hit the spot. Whipped up an extra thin two-egg omelette, chopped and added it to the skillet of pineapple rice that was re-heating. My kind of lunch.

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Pineapple Rice Recipe

You can use extra-virgin coconut oil in the dressing instead of the macadamia, olive or sunflower oils if you like. In fact, it's a great choice, particularly if you'll be serving the rice hot. It solidifies at room temperature. Follow the same instructions, just don't be alarmed by the white flecks in the dressing after you puree it. They will disappear upon heating.

1/3 cup macadamia oil, olive oil, or sunflower oil
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
1/4 cup (fresh or canned) all-natural 100% pineapple juice
1 garlic clove
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons soy sauce (or shoyu)
1 cup pineapple, cut into chunks
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt

4 handfuls of mizuna, watercress, or arugula

2 1/2 cups cooked brown rice, room temperature
4 green onions, thinly sliced
3 shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
1 cup cashews, roasted/toasted and chopped
1/2 small serrano chile, seeded and deveined, and minced (optional)
4 ounces seitan, cut into little bits and pan-fried (optional)

Start by making the dressing. Combine the oil, sesame oil, pineapple juice, garlic, red pepper flakes, soy sauce, fresh pineapple, ginger, and salt in a blender or food processor. Puree until smooth. Transfer to a small saucepan, and gently warm just before serving, don't simmer or boil.

In an extra-large bowl toss the mizuna with a generous splash of the dressing. Arrange it on a platter (as a bed for the rice)

You can serve the rice portion of this recipe room temperature or hot - Wayne really loved the hot version, and so did I. In the same bowl you used to toss the greens, or in an extra large skillet over medium heat, combine the rice, most of the onions, shallots, cashews and serrano chile, and seitan. Add about half of the dressing and toss well. If you are serving the rice hot, saute it in the pan until it is heated throughout. Taste, and adjust with more dressing if needed. Spoon the rice over the greens and finish with any remaining onions, shallots, cashews, and seitan.

Serves 2- 4, main vs. side.

Inspired by and (heavily) adapted from a recipe in the Summer 2009 Edible Hawaiian Islands publication.

Prep time: 15 minutes - Cook time: 5 minutes

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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This rice looks delicious! I was in Hawaii a couple of years ago and visited a lot of great local farms. I went to the Hawaiian Vanilla Company, Hawaiian Chocolate Plantation and the Blue Sky Kona Coffee Estate. It was great and I even enjoyed a fantastic vanilla themed meal...delicious:)

Nutmeg Nanny

yes Alice, but what is it please?


I love pineapple with rice, and rice with any kind of fruit in general. The seitan option is great!


What's seitan?


I can't wait to try this recipe. Please contact me if you do decide to go back to Hawaii. We did a 6 day trip to the Big Island and have a great itinerary of seeing some amazing spots and tasting some great food on the island.


This sounds very flavorful! For those not vegetarian, I think that shredded rotisserie chicken or pork roast added to the rice would work well.

The Faithful Foodie

Oh, this looks like a fantastic version of Pineapple Rice! I'll have to try it for sure. However, I think I'm most in love with the actual plate this is served on! How beautiful!

Kimberly @ Poor Girl Eats Well

I love Pineapple rice. I've had a few meals in Asia where they serve the rice in the scooped out pineapple that always looks so impressive. Have to admit I've never really considered rice with a salad, but this looks great! Thanks


I really love this dish. Simple but full of flavor. I made a vegetarian pineapple fried rice recently, adding an egg like you did, and it was great. I'll have to save this one to try.

lisa (dandysugar)

So I've just moved to Budapest, but thankfully there is this fantastic produce market--imagine an enormous building the size of a railway station filled to the brim with fresh produce at ridiculously reasonable prices, fresh meat (not my thing) and fish (occasionally)--3 blocks from my place. In the basement is an Asian market with spices, produce, and canned goods that I have had a hard time finding in most European countries--fresh cilantro, lemon grass, tofu, seitan, sriracha, etc. Am just getting settled in, but have guests coming this weekend and can't wait to make this. How do you feel about seasonal cooking? It's very hard in the winter to find anything other than root-vegetables in the more Central/Eastern European countries. Anyway, thank you for all you do. I love your recipes and your cookbook is my new staple birthday gift for my friends!


Strangely enough, I just made a very similar dish on my trip to Mozambique. The basic criteria was to include some fruits/vegetables without using anything that didn't have a peel. Result was rice with onions, pineapple, and cashews. Yum!


A friend of mine recently made Pineapple Rice -- I'll have to send her your take on it!


I was on Maui in July and can highly recommend O'O Farm. It is an organic farm which supplies the Pacific'O and I'O restaurants in Lahaina. We toured the farm and had a wonderful lunch. The farm is in the upcountry Maui on the way to Haleakala. Here is their website: HS: Thanks for the recommendation Patricia!

Patricia E

Great recipe. I love pineapple. I made up the double broccoli pesto quinoa dish, and it was really good. I especially loved the garlic flavor in the pesto and popping quinoa grains as I gobbled it down. The red pepper oil was yummy on it, too. I'm wondering if I want to experiment with different greens in this recipe...


Looks and sounds great. I love anything with salty and sweet components. And, I think I have that platter, too ... thanks!


Well it's lunchtime and I'm reading your post. This looks lovely--nice flavor combinations and textures. Now...time for a lunch break!

Megan Gordon

this is such a refreshing sounding recipe. I can't wait to try these flavors together. thanks as always!

dana joy altman

I love these flavors. This would be a great lunch dish.

The Italian Dish

The sweet and spicy is what we love. That's always one of those invigorating combos.

The Duo Dishes

Love the way you've combined these flavors. They sound delicious! I could eat a huge bowl of this for lunch.


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