Lemony Rice Salad with Cannellini Beans and Hemp Hearts

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This Mediterranean-inspired rice salad with creamy cannellini beans and Hemp Hearts can be served warm or chilled and makes a lovely vegetarian main or a flavorful side. Over 15 grams of plant-based protein per serving.

The weather is cooling down a bit and I know many people gravitate away from salads at this point in the year, but there’s still plenty of salad action happening over here. I’ve been sticking with the #saladeveryday movement, but adding some fall flavors in the mix like cinnamon roasted sweet potato croutons, fresh local apples, roasted pecans and more. It’s been delightful.

Another way I like to transition salads into the fall and winter months is to serve them warm. I have a few examples here on the blog (including this sautéed mediterranean lentil salad) and I’m adding another with this lemony rice salad.

This salad starts with a base of warm white rice and it’s loaded with nutrient-dense ingredients like cannellini beans, green peas and Hemp Hearts. The lemony dressing is rich and flavorful with just the right amount of zest while an extra boost of flavor comes from the raisins, fresh parsley and scallions.

This Mediterranean-inspired rice salad with creamy cannellini beans and Hemp Hearts can be served warm or chilled and makes a lovely vegetarian main or a flavorful side.

What Are Hemp Hearts?

Hemp hearts, also known as hemp seeds, have a slightly nutty flavor and are packed with nutrients. Here’s why they’re great:

  • They’re loaded with protein, omega-3 fatty acids and fiber.
  • Hemp seeds are also raw, vegan, grain-free and gluten-free… an awesome substitute for grain salads.
This Mediterranean-inspired rice salad with creamy cannellini beans and Hemp Hearts can be served warm or chilled and makes a lovely vegetarian main or a flavorful side.

Ingredients in Lemony Rice Salad

  • peas – we’re using frozen peas for this recipe.
  • long-grain white rice – white rice only takes about 15 minutes to cook so tossing this rice salad together doesn’t take much time at all!
  • cannellini beans – make sure you drain and rinse them.
  • hemp hearts – I’m a huge fan of Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts. They add a nice nutty flavor and have loads of plant-based protein.
  • olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, sea salt, ground pepper – instead of an elaborate dressing, we’re using these five items to add a light and refreshing flavor to the salad.
  • golden raisins – adds a little sweetness.
  • scallions and parsley – to enhance all of the flavors.
This Mediterranean-inspired rice salad with creamy cannellini beans and Hemp Hearts can be served warm or chilled and makes a lovely vegetarian main or a flavorful side.

Notes and Substitutions

Protein – The hemp hearts and beans add a good amount of plant-based protein, each serving has over 15 grams! If you’re looking for more protein you could add in some chopped grilled chicken. This grilled rosemary chicken

Avocado

Rice Salad with Cannellini Beans

How to Serve Lemony Rice Salad

This lemony rice salad is lovely served as a vegetarian main (perfect for Meatless Mondays) or as a side dish with your protein of choice. 

To store leftovers: The recipe makes a large batch of rice salad so you can easily serve it warm the first time you make it and enjoy it cold thereafter (or reheat it). Just store any leftovers in an airtight container for 3-4 days in the refrigerator.

More Rice Recipes to Try:

More Vegetarian Recipes to Try:

f you try this lemony rice salad be sure to come back and leave a comment and star rating letting us know how it turned out. Your feedback is super helpful for the EBF team and other EBF readers.

If you enjoyed this recipe, please consider leaving a ⭐ star rating and let me know how it went in the 📝 comments below.

5 from 1 vote

Lemony Rice Salad with Cannellini Beans and Hemp Hearts

This salad can be served warm or chilled and makes a lovely vegetarian main or a flavorful side. Over 15 grams of plant-based protein per serving.
Servings: 4

Ingredients  

  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 cup dry long-grain white rice
  • 1 15 oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup Manitoba Harvest Hemp Hearts
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice + 1 Tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
  • 1/3 cup golden raisins
  • 4 scallions, chopped
  • 1/3 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped

Instructions 

  • Cook peas: Add about 4 cups of water to a large pot and bring to a boil. Add the frozen peas and cook until just tender, this should take about 3 minutes. Use a slotted spoon or a strainer to remove peas and transfer them into a large bowl.
  • Cook rice: Using the same boiling water, add rice and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain rice, return to the pot, and cover to keep warm.
  • Make dressing: In a small bowl whisk together the lemon juice, oil, salt and pepper.
  • Combine ingredients: Add the Hemp Hearts, cooked rice, beans, raisins, scallions, parsley, lemon zest, and dressing to the large bowl and stir gently to mix.
  • Serve: Serve warm or cold with extra scallions, parsley and Hemp Hearts as a garnish.

Notes

Protein – The hemp hearts and beans add a good amount of plant based protein, each serving has over 15 grams! If you’re looking for more protein you could add in some chopped grilled chicken. This grilled rosemary chicken
Avocado

Nutrition

Serving: 1/4 of recipe | Calories: 575kcal | Carbohydrates: 77g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 24g | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 12g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Did you make this recipe?Mention @eatingbirdfood and tag #eatingbirdfood!
Rice salad

This post is sponsored by Manitoba Harvest. As always, opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make EBF possible. 

About Brittany

Hey there, I’m Brittany, the creator of Eating Bird Food, cookbook author, health coach and mama of two littles. Here you’ll find quick and easy recipes that make healthy fun and enjoyable for you and your family!

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16 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Another favorite! My family loves this salad! Light! Refreshing! The golden raiders are a lovely addition. I love serving this with lemon rosemary chicken and a green veg. SO GOOD!!!

    1. Ahh!! Thank you so much Lynn. I so appreciate the feedback, comment and star rating! This is a favorite of mine too.

  2. Oh YUM! In my blue apron meal last night I made a farro salad that had a garlic and lemon sauce. This looks tasty too!!

  3. Maria, this salad everyday is genius—and this is a perfect fall salad. Although, I am really in love with sweet potato croutons!!

  4. This sounds perfect for Matt and me! We *love* hemp hearts, and I think I get my obsession with any and all things lemon from my grandfather. 🙂 Can’t wait to make it!