This easy to make Vegetarian Paella is a simplified version of an extravagant dish you love! This is a satisfying vegetarian one-dish meal that is perfect for a weeknight family meal. It doesn't get much more nourishing than this!
Every now and then, I love making a really extravagant recipe that takes all afternoon. This is usually when not much else is going on, and I feel like spending time in the kitchen making someone else's recipe for a change.
Truth be told, that doesn't happen often.
A few weeks back, I had the urge to make Paella. It isn't something I make often and it could have been a candidate for one of my all afternoon cooking sessions.But sadly, this is most certainly not one of those times in my life when I don't have much going on.
Luckily, just because Paella can be fussy and involved doesn't mean it has to be!
This Vegetable Paella has all of the yumminess without requiring that you sacrifice your afternoon. In fact, this quick and easy paella comes together in about 45 minutes. And much of that is hands-off cooking time.
A key ingredient in this Vegetable Paella is Saffron. Saffron is a traditional flavoring in many European dishes.
In addition to finding it in Spanish Paella, you will also see it in French Bouillabaisse, and Milanese Risotto.
It is also used quite extensively in Middle Eastern cooking. It doesn't take much - just a pinch will color and flavor a pound of rice.
Tools for Making the Vegetarian Paella Recipe
- Paella Pan or Oven-Safe Skillet with a Lid
- Lemon Squeezer (optional)
- Garlic Mincer
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil
- 1 large yellow onion diced
- 2 red peppers sliced
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 pinch saffron threads
- 1 ½ teaspoons smoked paprika
- 2 bay leaves
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- 8 ounces Vegetarian Yellow Rice or white rice + 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 2 ¼ cups water or vegetable broth
- 1 ½ cups frozen peas thawed
- 14 ounces artichoke chopped
- ⅓ cup green olives chopped
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- Lemon Wedges and parsley for garnish
- Heat avocado oil in a large shallow skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, red pepper, garlic, saffron, smoked paprika, and bay leaves. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Cook, occasionally stirring, until the onion is tender, about 8 minutes.
- Stir in rice mix and 2 ¼ cup of water or broth. Bring to a simmer. Cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook 18 minutes.
- Add the peas, artichoke hearts, and olives to the pan. Cook, without stirring, until the rice is al dente and forms a crust at the bottom of the pan, about 5 more minutes.
- Stir in lemon juice and garnish with lemon wedges and parsley.
SERVING SUGGESTIONS FOR THE VEGETARIAN PAELLA RECIPE
- Use leftovers to stuff peppers! Hollow out the peppers and stuff. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes at 425 degrees, until the peppers start to blister.
VARIATIONS FOR THIS VEGETARIAN PAELLA RECIPE
- Add 1 ½ cups cooked chickpeas, drained and rinsed when you add the peas.
- Add 8 ounces sliced mushrooms with the onion.