Coconut Rice Bowl with Cumin Broccoli Slaw and Quick Pickles

This coconut rice bowl with cumin broccoli slaw and quick pickles is the kind of lunch that makes you happy to have a bowl full of vegetables. #lunchideas #ricebowl #quickpickles #tofu #vegetables

hello there. it feels like it’s been a while since i’ve been around in the blogosphere, as i haven’t touched this space in a few weeks. i was off wandering in countries 8-9 hrs ahead of my normal time zone, eating all the things and trying to not be that much of a trashy american tourist. and this coconut rice bowl with cumin broccoli slaw and quick pickles feels appropriate- i’ve been craving asian food something fierce (which may or may not have led to my particular appreciation for dishoom, or maybe it’s a great restaurant period).

the name for this one was hard. calling it an asian mediterranean bowl sounds weird and also kind of vague. there’s a bunch of little things that would make the title impossible to remember or use if i referenced all of them, and i was also kind of drawn to calling it the, “i like lots of mini salads” bowl, but couldn’t get behind that either. the og inspiration was the (too) plainly named “veggie bowl” from laughing planet cafe, which i’m not sure how i stumbled across because none of their locations are in california. most of them are in oregon, which I’ve spent a collective three days in throughout my life, including that time i was stuck in sloppy, muddy astoria during a cruise stop. and tbh, i ended up drifting a good distance away from their veggie bowl anyways, at least by listing of the components.

now that i’ve rambled enough about how this coconut rice bowl with cumin broccoli slaw came about, let me ramble further. the rice is a little creamy and a little coconut-y, making it almost decadent. there’s so much crunchy veg that you won’t get bored even as you’re nearing the last bite of the bowl. there’s sweet/sour quick pickles, savory/lemon-y/cumin-y broccoli that’s so addictive i could eat it straight even though i am normally staunchly anti-raw broccoli, and a sesame-y/lime-y cabbage slaw. GIVE ME ALL THE SALAD. the tofu is crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside, and did i mention that serving this with a generous amount of chili garlic sauce is a fantastic idea? happy lunching.

There's so many goodies in this coconut rice bowl with cumin broccoli slaw and quick pickles that you can't even see the creamy bed of rice cooked in coconut milk. #lunchideas #ricebowl #quickpickles #tofu #vegetables

1 year ago: spam musubi | week 10 adventures
2 years ago: anaheim 2016 | baba ghanoush
3 years ago: caramelized veggie and cheddar frittata | creamy curried carrot salad with walnuts and sesame
4 years ago: thomas keller’s chocolate chip cookies | chicken dijon

5 from 2 votes
This coconut rice bowl with cumin broccoli slaw and quick pickles is the kind of lunch that makes you happy to have a bowl full of vegetables. #lunchideas #ricebowl #quickpickles #tofu #vegetables
Coconut Rice Bowl with Cumin Broccoli Slaw and Quick Pickles
Prep Time
30 mins
Cook Time
50 mins
Total Time
1 hr 20 mins
This coconut rice bowl with cumin broccoli slaw and quick pickles is a hearty rice bowl with tons of mini salads, hearty enough even for dinner.
Course: Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: American, Asian
Keyword: broccoli, brown rice, cabbage, carrots, cilantro, coconut, coconut milk, cumin, dairy-free, dinner, egg-free, garlic, lemon, lunch, nut-free, pickles, quick pickles, rice bowl, salad, sesame oil, sesame seeds, slaw, tofu, vegetables
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 635 kcal
Coconut Rice
  • 2 cups brown rice
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
Cumin Broccoli Slaw
  • 3/4 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 head broccoli cut into bite-size florets
  • 2 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
Carrot Quick Pickles
  • 2 medium carrots peeled and julienned
  • 1 tsp granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
Cilantro-Lime Cabbage Slaw
  • 10 oz cabbage shredded
  • 1 bell pepper thinly julienned
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 2 T soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup cilantro chopped
  • 1 T sesame seeds
  • 1 T sesame oil
  • 2 T rice wine vinegar
Pan-Fried Tofu
  • 2 14 oz blocks firm tofu drained as much as possible
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes toasted
Coconut Rice
  1. Cook the brown rice with the coconut milk, salt and 3 cups water using your preferred method (team rice cooker over here).
Cumin Broccoli Slaw
  1. In a large bowl, mix the vinegar and salt. Add the broccoli and toss.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the oil, garlic and cumin. Microwave for 1 minute; it should be fragrant. Stir in the sesame oil. Alternatively, you can do this on the stovetop, but why?
  3. Pour the oil over the broccoli and toss well. Let marinate for at least 1 hour.
Carrot Quick Pickles
  1. Combine everything in a small bowl. Let marinate for 10-15 minutes.
Cilantro-Lime Cabbage Slaw
  1. Combine everything.
Pan-Fried Tofu
  1. Cut the tofu in half crosswise, then cut the tofu into 1/2" thick slices. Salt both sides of the tofu lightly.
  2. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat some oil. Add the tofu and cook in batches until golden-brown on both sides.
  1. Divide the rice, cumin broccoli slaw, pan-fried tofu, quick pickles and cilantro-lime cabbage slaw between 4 bowls. Sprinkle with the coconut. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Recipe Notes

Broccoli slaw from Melissa Clark, bowl overall inspired by Laughing Planet Cafe.

This recipe is a bit of a beast in terms of how many components there are, but they're more time intensive than hard. You can make some things in advance, or scale back on how many vegetable sides you'd like.

You can omit the fish sauce in the cilantro-lime cabbage slaw if you want to keep this vegan. You may need to add more soy sauce or salt.

more rice bowls

This isn't any old pan-fried tofu; these pieces are marinated in a spicy, garlicky, gingery marinade. #tofu #ricebowl #kimchi #eggs

spicy pan-fried tofu rice bowl

These beef rice bowls with sesame cabbage slaw are even better when garnished with roasted peanuts, green onions and furikake. #beef #ricebowl #cabbageslaw #dinnerideas

beef rice bowls with sesame cabbage slaw

This coconut rice bowl with cumin broccoli slaw and quick pickles also has pan-fried tofu and a quick cabbage slaw. #lunchideas #ricebowl #quickpickles #tofu #vegetables

26 Replies to “Coconut Rice Bowl with Cumin Broccoli Slaw and Quick Pickles”

  1. This looks mouth-watering to me!! I could eat many bowlfuls of this!! YUM!!!!! Pinning for later for sure!!5 stars

    1. thanks, kim! i stopped eating bowlfuls and would just sneak into the fridge to pluck a piece of broccoli out for snacking lol.

  2. Wow!! Sounds like you have been having some fun adventures! This bowl of salads looks yummy! So many different flavors and textures!

    1. i can’t stand salad that’s all greens, so i make sure to put a ton of other things in my salads (;

  3. Im in love with every element of this bowl! This is my kind of meal.

    1. thanks, patrick! i know what you mean- i crave crispy, flavorful veggies all the time (:

  4. yum this looks so tasty and fresh. i love broccoli, raw or otherwise. that panfried tofu looks the bomb (even tho i thought it was halloumi at first) :=) cheers sherry x

    1. thanks! and ooooh halloumi would be awesome. i feel like it has a similar texture to tofu, but it’s so flavorful and wonderfully salty, that it’d be a great sub.

  5. I want to be wondering in countries too!! I hope you are having a blast! This rice bowl is so full of flavors and textures. I can eat it again and again without getting tired of it!

    1. i’m back home now and thoroughly jetlagged (; only been up since 4am today! the travelling was fun though.

  6. Just seen this on instagram and it looks so good! Where were you travelling?

    1. thanks tandy! i was in europe- bath, london and paris (:

  7. I’ve been off on vacation too and slowly trying to get back to blogging regularly. Where did you go travelling? Anyway, this rice bowl is jammed packed with flavour. I love coconut rice!

    1. i’m sure we’re not the only ones on temporary summer blog hiatus (; i was in bath, london and paris! and i’m convinced that i should just cook every pot of rice with a bit of coconut milk now (:

  8. Coconut rice is pretty much the only kind of rice I want to eat 😉 This bowl looks so good, Heather!

    1. sameeeee (: coconut rice all day everyday!

  9. I feel like if I made this with cauliflower rice, it would be equally as delicious!!!5 stars

    1. oooh yes it would!!! hope you do (;

  10. It’s pretty cool that you’ve been traveling! Hope you’re enjoying your time out there.

    This coconut rice bowl looks delicious! Love that it’s veggie-based and on the healthier side!

    Nancy ♥

    1. travelling was fun, but it was also good to come home and just be able to chill (:

  11. This looks so so gooood! I love that it has tofu. Very healthy and I’m sure delicious!

    1. thanks, radi! definitely delicious (:

  12. Dishoom is a favourite of mine. This rice bowl sounds delicious. I always think of coconut rice as being a treat but really, it should be a staple.

    1. i’d heard dishoom was good, but dang, it exceeded my expectations (: and coconut rice is so easy + not *that* unhealthy, so i agree that it needs to be made a staple (:

  13. WOW! This is fun. I could eat it every day!!!

    1. thanks, mimi! (:

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