Lebanese Brown Rice Salad

Ellie, one of the dieticians who used to work with us at Mission Nutrition, brought this salad to one of our 'bring and share' lunches and I have been making it ever since. I just love it!

Serves 4-6 as a main or 8-10 as a side


  • 1/4 pumpkin, peeled and cut into cubes (approx. 600g)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar (optional)
  • 2-3 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 4 cups cooked and cooled brown rice
  • 1 punnet cherry tomatoes, cut in half (approx. 200g)
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 red onion, very finely sliced
  • 1 handful coriander or parsley, chopped
  • 1 avocado, cut into chunks


  • Juice of 2 large juicy lemons
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil


Preheat oven to 180°C. Line a baking tray with baking paper.

Lay out the chopped pumpkin on the tray and sprinkle with olive oil, brown sugar (if using), cumin and crushed garlic.

Roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes or until soft (the time will depend on the size of your pumpkin pieces). When it is cooked, remove from the oven and cool.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, place the brown rice, tomatoes, seeds, red onion and herbs. Mix together and put to one side.

To make the dressin, simply place the lemon juice and olive oil in a clean jam jar and shake.

Add the cooled pumpkin to the brown rice mix and stir through. Finally, add the chopped avocado and pour over the dressing.

Serve with plain green salad. For extra protein, add a boiled or poached egg, shredded chicken or fish.

Adapt it

  • You can use cooked quinoa, buckwheat or bulgar wheat as an alternative to brown rice, if you prefer.
  • Add extra lemon juice, if you like.

Nutrition information per serve

kJ = 2392   Carbs = 35g   Protein = 10g   Fibre = 5g