Okra is a classic late summer favorite that tastes even better after tossing it into a bold and savory, cayenne-infused rice pilaf. Topped with a sweet and smoky homemade coconut bacon, this hearty meal is ready in 30 minutes, making it perfect for late-summer outdoor dinners. Our advice? Serve this dish with a crisp white wine.
What you need:
For the pilaf:
1 cup basmati rice
1½ cup vegan chicken broth
½ cup coconut milk
2 tablespoons olive oil
⅓ cup yellow onion, finely diced
½ cup green bell pepper, diced
2 cups fresh okra, cut into ½-inch pieces
1 teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
What you do:
1. For the coconut bacon, preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2. Into a small bowl, add unsweetened coconut, tamari, liquid smoke, and maple syrup. Toss well to coat. Spread mixture evenly on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake 7 minutes, and remove from oven to cool.
3. For the pilaf, into a medium-sized pot, add basmati rice, vegan chicken broth, and coconut milk. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for approximately 12 minutes, until liquid is absorbed and rice is cooked through. Fluff with a fork and set aside.
4. While the rice is cooking, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and bell pepper. Cook, stirring frequently for 3 minutes, until vegetables are softened and fragrant. Add okra, salt, and cayenne. Cook 5 minutes, or until okra is heated through.
5. Stir okra into cooked rice and top with coconut bacon. Serve warm.
Photo courtesy of Holly V. Gray
Love vegan food and cooking
Get the BEST, editor-tested recipes inside every issue of