Paleo Mangalorean Sweet Pulao [aka Wedding Rice]

Mangalorean Cauliflower Rice Pulao via Worthy Pause

I probably eat cauliflower rice, uh, about once a... day.  Honestly, I think I like it more than regular rice since I figured out that you should always, alwaysbake it in the oven. Because it's such a staple, I try to get creative with it so it's not just plain ol' cauli-rice again and again (even though that's totally delicious too). This recipe is inspired by a simple South Indian dish that my family makes — I know it as pulao, but a lot of different regions (from Iran to North Africa and plenty of others) have some kind of version of this stuff. My aunt always calls it "wedding rice" because it's often served at Mangalorean Catholic weddings, so — even as a heathen — I insisted on having it at my own wedding last year.

In between weddings, this cauliflower version will suffice.

Mangalorean Cauliflower Rice Pulao via Worthy Pause


Gluten-free, Paleo, Whole30


  • 2 yellow onions, thinly sliced

  • 2 large heads cauliflower, riced in a food processor

  • 1/2 cup raisins

  • 1/2 cup toasted cashews

  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves

  • 1/4 tsp ground cardamom

  • melted ghee (or coconut oil)

  • salt, to taste

  • honey, to taste (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

  2. Caramelize the onions and set aside (this will be the longest step), so you can pretty much do all the other prep while you're stirring the onions.

  3. Drizzle a bit of melted ghee or coconut oil on the riced cauliflower and spread it in thin layers onto lined baking sheets (you'll likely need two). Sprinkle with salt and bake for about 20-30 minutes (until it starts to toast — the toasty bits are the best). Stir once during baking.

  4. While the cauliflower is in the oven, use a large pan to fry the raisins on medium heat until plumped and add the cashews.

  5. When the rice is done, add it to the pan with the raisins, cashews, caramelized onions, spices and honey (optional). Drizzle a little more ghee if needed.

  6. Salt to taste and serve.


Normally this dish would be done with whole spices cooking right along with the rice so it really infuses the dish. Because we're using the roasted cauliflower, ground spices are going to work much better. Also, if you follow this blog, you know my spices are often just an estimate since I like to freestyle it. Definitely add more or less if you like!