Paleo Spanakorizo (Spinach and Cauli Rice) with Tandoori Style Chicken [Gluten free, Grain free]

Combining two of my favourites and making it one delicious meal. The tandoori-style chicken is spicy, succulent and full of flavour, and the paleo-friendly cauli rice and spinach (inspired by the Greek spanakorizo dish) balances it all out perfectly. Give it a try!

Living in a Greek/Indian home, I tend to draw inspiration from both cultures in my cooking. This is one such time. Spanakorizo is one of our favourites and if it means my kids are eating spinach, I will continue to cook it! However, for REBOOT and living a Paleo-lifestyle, going grain free means I make this with cauliflower now. I do add a knob of butter at the end which really gives it some of the authentic flavour and you forget that you’re eating cauli rice! 

The spicy, tandoori-style chicken turned out great. It smelled amazing as it cooked in the oven. The spice combination makes for a really flavourful dish, and not just burning your mouth into submission with chilli. You can control the heat of course by adding more (or less) chilli to your marinade mix.  


Recipe for Paleo Spanakorizo and Tandoori-Style Chicken

Yield: 4 servings 

Prep time: 15 minutes (plus 2-3 hours for marinade)

Cooking time: 45 – 60 minutes 

What you need

For the rice 

1 large head of cauliflower 

250g spinach 

Small knob butter 

Salt and pepper to taste 

For the chicken

10 pieces of chicken (or 1 whole chicken)

2 tblspn chilli powder 

1 tblspn dried red chilli flakes 

1 tspn cumin powder (jeera)

1 tspn coriander powder (dhania)

1/2 tspn turmeric

1/4 tspn cinnamon powder 

1 tspn caraway seeds (whole) 

3 cloves, whole

2 tblspns ginger & garlic paste 

1/3 cup olive oil

4 tblspns lemon juice 

Salt to taste 

What you need to do

1. Start with the marinade. Mix all the spices, olive oil, lemon, and ginger and garlic paste in a small bowl (or mug) until well combined. Lay your chicken on a baking dish, and spread generously over all the pieces (or entire chicken), making sure to rub the spice mix in thoroughly on all sides. Cover with foil and allow to marinate in the fridge for 2-3 hours. Remove from fridge half an hour before cooking.  

chicken in marinade

2. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Put the chicken (still covered in foil) into the oven for 30-35 minutes. Then remove foil, and place uncovered for a further 15-20 minutes. (Please adjust times to suit the size of the chicken if using a whole chicken.) Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly. 

3. Whilst the chicken cools, prepare the rice. Grate the cauliflower to make cauli rice. In a frying pan, add washed spinach. Once the spinach had wilted and most of the water evaporates, add the cauli rice. Stir fry together for about 3 minutes. Add the butter and seasoning to taste. Fry for a further minute or two, and done! 

Making spanakorizo with cauli rice

The meal is now ready to serve. A side salad works well, or if you allow for it, tzatziki works a treat too. 

Serving suggestion


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