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Brown Rice Salad with Basil Walnut Pesto and Spring Vegetables

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  • Author: Nicole Criss
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 4 1x


A hearty salad to pack for lunch in the office or a picnic in the park, filled with good things and flavors.


  • 1 cup short grain brown rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 bunch asparagus
  • 2 cups grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 cups basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup or more additional chopped walnuts


  1. Bring 2 cups of water to a boil and add one cup of brown rice.
  2. Cover, lower the heat and simmer for about 50 minutes.
  3. While the rice cooks, wash and cut the ends off the asparagus.
  4. Steam the asparagus for several minutes (they should still be bright green.)
  5. Cool them, then cut into pieces about an inch and a half long.
  6. Wash the tomatoes and slice them in half.
  7. To prepare the pesto, place the basil, walnuts, and garlic in the food processor and process for about a minute until finely chopped.
  8. Scrape the contents into a bowl, then stir in the olive oil, parmesan and salt and pepper to taste.
  9. When the rice is finished, allow it to cool, then stir in the pesto.
  10. In a large bowl, combine the rice with the vegetables and stir.
  11. Finally, stir in about 1/4 cup or more if desired chopped walnuts and serve.
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 50 mins
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