Black rice salad with balsamic beets

Some things are just better together, like beetroot and butternut. This dramatic black rice salad includes both, salty feta and some toasted pumpkin seeds for texture and crunch. The honey and red wine vinegar dressing is fresh and herby. It’s one of my most loved salad recipes. So delicious!

More reasons to make this salad……

– Nutrient powerhouse

– Vibrant colours

– Insane flavour

– Meat-free, Happy Monday supporter!

– Black rice and black beans

– Salty and sweet

– Vamped-up herb dressing

– Lunch box potential  (one job, double reward)

Black rice salad with balsamic beets and butternut

If you haven’t yet tried black rice, give it a go. With high levels of iron,vitamin E and antioxidants, it’s the new grain on the block. The flavour is mildly nutty, the black outer shell turning purplish when cooked. Black rice is also good for risottos and chocolate rice puddings – nero style.

Serve it with marinated rib-eye steak or this paprika roast chicken. Any leftovers can be packed for take to work lunches. Remember to bring it up to room temperature before serving. Fridge cold rice salad is so not worth it.

Black rice salad with balsamic beets

Black rice salad with balsamic beets and butternut


Black rice salad with balsamic beets and butternut

Serves 4

  • 1/2 cup black rice
  • 400g tinned black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small butternut, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 5-6 raw beets
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic glaze (not the vinegar)
  • 100g feta, crumbled
  • 1/4 cup toasted pumpkin seeds

For the dressing

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • black pepper
  • a large handful of each, flat leaf parsley and basil, finely chopped
  1. Rinse the rise and drain. Place in a saucepan and cover with 2 cups of water and a pinch of salt. Boil for 20 minutes. Check that the rice is tender and then rinse under cold water. Drain well.
  2. Preheat the oven to 200º C. Place the butternut on a large, lined baking sheet and drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Season well with salt and black pepper. Roast for 45 minutes until tender and  nicely coloured.
  3. If you’re using fresh beetroot, wash to remove grit. Place in a saucepan, cover with water and simmer for 45 minutes until tender. Drain, cool and peel. Quarter the beets and toss in the balsamic glaze. Set aside.
  4. For the dressing, place all the ingredients in a jam jar and shake together.
  5. To assemble the salad, mix together the rice and black beans. Pour half the dressing over and toss to coat. Lay the beetroot and butternut on the rice, crumble over the feta and scatter with the pumpkin seeds. Drizzle the remaining dressing over and finish with black pepper.


More rice recipes to love that tick the delicious box:

Saffron risotto stuffed tomatoes

Fried rice with five-spice chicken


6 Comments. Leave new

  • I will eat this , get into a phone booth and change into superman..!

  • This is a great salad black rice & beetroot, I also add pomegranate seeds and pistachios for a bit of crunch, just delicious!

  • I love the black rice and beetroot salad, so died my family it’s a favourite, I add pomegranate and pistachios for some extra crunch. Delicious

  • Gosh that sounds delicious. I can imagine it would add great texture and pops of colour too. Thanks for sharing!

  • Loved this! I picked up black rice without knowing what to use it for. I had all the other ingredients lying around luckily, so this came together perfectly. I threw the beets and butternut squash into the over together then tossed them both in the balsamic to make things easier. Omitted the feta to make it vegan – will definitely make again!

  • Dianne Bibby
    2 April 2021 3:04 pm

    It sounds perfect, Taylor. My favourite recipes are those unexpected ones, using whatever the kitchen offers up. Hopefully you’ll find a few more uses for the black rice. The snazzy colour and deeply nutty taste are rather fabulous.

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