Easy Veggie Paella
This is my go-to paella recipe, it’s simple, delicious and incredibly satisfying. I usually fill it with whatever vegetables I have leftover in my fridge, and swap out saffron for turmeric to achieve the brilliant golden colour. So my recipe is quite far away from the traditional Spanish paella but it is a great option if you want to save time and money!
Every paella recipe does require a bit of prep to chop up all the veggies, but once that’s done it’s smooth sailing from there! If you would like you can add some protein (prawns, mussels, scallops, chorizo, pancetta for example) but I’ve made my recipe vegetarian.
This week I’ve challenged myself to create healthy, delicious and inexpensive meals under $10, and must serve at least 4 people. My Easy Veggie Paella comes in at $9.85 and serves 6 people. For the price breakdown please see the notes below.
6 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
1 large brown onion
1 large carrot
3 garlic cloves
1 red capsicum
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 lemon, cut into wedges
2 teaspoons of ground turmeric
2 teaspoons of Italian herbs
2 teaspoons smoky paprika
2 teaspoons chilli flakes
3 cups of short grain rice
1 can of crushed tomatoes
1/2 frozen peas
6 cups of water (or vegetable stock)
freshly cracked black pepper
1/4 bunch of parsley
Wash and finely dice onion, carrot, and capsicum. Heat oil in a shallow cast iron or paella pan on medium - high heat. Add the vegetables and cook for 7 minutes until the onion is translucent and fragrant. Add the spices, garlic, chilli flakes and dried herbs and cook, stirring frequently for another 2 minutes.
Add the red wine vinegar to the pan, then the rice and cook, stirring occasionally, until rice is coated and starting to turn translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the water, canned tomatoes, then season generously with salt and pepper. Simmer until the rice is tender, around 15 minutes. Add the frozen peas to the pan, cover, then cook on a low heat for a further 5 minutes.
To serve; sprinkle over torn parsley leaves and squeeze lemon juice over the top. Place remaining lemon wedges around the sides of the paella and enjoy!
6 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil - $1.90 ($9 for 1L)
1 large brown onion - $0.54
1 large carrot - $0.37
3 garlic cloves - $0.45 (1 bulb is $1.50)
1 red capsicum - $1.78 each
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar $0.40 ($2.80 per 500ml bottle)
1 lemon, cut into wedges - $0.90
2 teaspoons of ground turmeric - $0.45 (1 jar $1.90)
2 teaspoons of Italian herbs - $0.30 (1 jar $1.98)
2 teaspoons smoky paprika - $0.30 (1 jar $2.50)
2 teaspoons chilli flakes - $0.53 (1 jar $2.20)
3 cups of short grain rice - $1.80 ($3.00 for 1 kg)
1 can of tomatoes $0.90
1/2 frozen peas $0.50 ($2.00 per 1kg)
1/4bunch of parsley $0.50 ($3.00 per large bunch)
Pantry staples: water, salt, pepper
Total Price: $9.85
*all prices are in $AU, and averages based on availability at time of recipe development and geographical region (Sydney, Australia)
Notes: If you would like to add ancetra or chorizo do it at the stage you add the onions to the pan. If you would like to add scallops or mussels do it at the stage you add the frozen peas.