I will walk you through the simple steps on how to make dirty rice with ground beef aka “Cajun rice”-from cooking the rice from scratch to serving it up as a main dish or side dish. So, if you’re looking for an easy and tasty Cajun rice dish, look no further than this easy dirty rice recipe.
Dirty rice is a staple of Louisiana cuisine that has been around for centuries in the Southern United States. This dish is easy to make and loaded with flavor just like this easy Spanish rice recipe. It is made with white rice, chicken liver, gizzard, ground beef or pork, and vegetables. This rice dish gets its name from the fact that the rice is “dirty” or stained from the meat and spices used in flavoring it.
Related: What to serve with dirty rice
This delicious rice dish rice can be served as a side dish or as a main course, and it is often accompanied by other Cajun favorites like gumbo or jambalaya. If you’ve ever wanted to learn how to make dirty rice, now’s your chance! I will list out the basic ingredients that go into the rice and how to make it step by step. So grab your ingredients and let’s get started!
What are the ingredients of dirty rice?
- 1 1/2 cups uncooked medium-grained white rice
- 1 lb. ground beef or pork
- 1/2 lb chicken liver, chopped
- 1/2 cup diced onions
- 1/3 cup diced celery
- 1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 tbsp vegetable oil or bacon drippings
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp adobo seasoning
- 1 tbsp cajun spice seasoning
- 3 and 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1/2 tsp salt or more to taste
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
Steps on how to make dirty rice with ground beef
Below are the easy steps on how to make dirty rice with ground beef. It’s a great way to use up your leftover rice or leftover ground meat. So, if you have some leftover rice from dinner, don’t throw it out – put it to good use and make quick and delicious rice at home.
Total Time: 45 minutes
Rinsing the rice
First, rinse the rice under a running tap to get rid of any excess starch. This will help ensure that your final dish isn’t gummy.
Make sure you rinse the rice 2 to 3 times or until the water turns clear; this prevents your dirty rice from sticking or becoming mushy.
I like to use medium-grain white rice for this dish, but you can use whatever type of rice you prefer.
Cooking the rice
Add the rice to a soup pot, and top it up with 3 cups of chicken stock, along with 2 bay leaves. Cover, and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and simmer the rice for 20-25 minutes or until it is fully cooked and tender.
Using chicken or beef stock to cook the rice, adds an extra flavor and taste to the finished meal.
Browning of ground beef
While the rice is cooking, add 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil to a cast iron skillet, add the ground beef, and brown it for 5 minutes while stirring. You can try breaking it up into smaller chunks so that it cooks evenly.
Cooking ground beef for Cajun dirty rice recipe.
Cooking of the holy trinity
Once the meat is no longer pink, push it to one side of the skillet, add the chopped onions, green bell peppers, and diced celery sticks, and saute for 4 minutes on medium heat while stirring occasionally until fragrant. Mix them to combine with the meat once they start to smell nice.
Add the holy trinity which comprises onion, green bell pepper, and celery to the meat and cook for a richer flavor.
Seasoning of the ground beef
Add minced garlic and also season the meat with thyme, adobo seasoning, paprika, ground allspice, oregano, cayenne pepper, and salt. Stir to combine nicely. This is where you can customize the flavor of your dish.
You can also use any of your favorite Cajun seasoning mix for this dirty rice recipe.
Add the minced liver together with the ground beef
Go in with minced or chopped liver, and stir together until well coated. Cook it for about 3 minutes on medium heat and finally season it with 1 tablespoon of Cajun seasoning.
Chicken liver adds a rich, earthy flavor to the dish and helps to bind all of the ingredients together.
Add the remaining stock
Add the remaining 1/2 cup of chicken stock to the meat mixture, cover, and cook it for 5 minutes until it is completely cooked.
Combine the cooked rice with the ground beef mixture
Remove the meat mixture and gently turn it over into the cooked rice after taking out the bay leaves. Carefully stir the mixture to come together nicely. Garnish with freshly chopped green onions.
Garnish and cook for 3 minutes
Place a lid over and simmer for another 3 minutes on medium heat until it is heated through. Serve your homemade dirty rice while it is warm.
You can garnish your rice with green onions for a pop of color.
Your easy dirty rice is ready
Your quick and easy dirty rice is ready.
How long can you keep dirty rice?
Cooked dirty rice can last for about 5 to 6 days in the fridge. That means you can make a big batch and enjoy it all week long. If you keep it longer than that, the rice will start to spoil and develop bacteria that can make you sick. If you want to keep it longer, you can place it in an airtight container and freeze it. This can stay frozen for up to 3 months. Freezing cooked rice is a great way to have it on hand for quick meals.
How do you reheat frozen dirty rice?
You can reheat frozen dirty rice in 3 ways; by using a microwave, a stove, or an oven. To use a microwave, simply place the desired amount of rice in a microwave-safe dish and heat on high for 2 to 3 minutes, or until heated through. For a stove, place the rice in a skillet on the stove over medium heat. Just add a little oil or butter to the pan and reheat it until warmed through. Lastly, using an oven involves preheating your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and placing the frozen dirty rice in an oven-safe dish. Cover with foil and heat for 10 to 15 minutes, or until warmed through. You may need to add a little bit of water or broth to the rice when reheating and remember to stir it occasionally. This will help moisten the rice and prevent it from drying out.
How do you defrost dirty rice?
To defrost your frozen rice, simply remove it from the freezer and place it in the refrigerator overnight to thaw. Another way is to place the frozen rice in a large bowl of hot water. Let the rice sit in the water for 30 minutes until the ice has melted. You can then reheat it in a saucepan on the stove, or the microwave until heated through.
Making dirty rice with ground beef is a simple process that only requires a few ingredients and a bit of time. The final result is a flavorful, hearty dish that can be enjoyed as is or used as a base for other recipes. So, if you’re looking to meal prep ahead of time, this rice recipe is a great option for you.
You can make a big batch and portion it out into individual containers so that you have lunch or dinner ready to go all week long.