Rice Salad with Pineapple, Cucumbers, and Pecans

Rice salad is one of the most versatile, delicious foods. Not only is it great for entertaining, but it’s easy to pack up and bring to a potluck or on vacation.

This rice salad recipe tastes super fresh. It’s packed full of fresh pineapple, cucumber, green onions, mint, pecans, and delicate, nutty Jasmine rice.

Rice Salad with Pineapples Close Up
I serve Rice Salad with Pineapple, Cucumber, and Pecans at picnics, at barbecues, and anytime I am grilling fish, chicken, or skirt steak.

What is Jasmine Rice?

Jasmine rice is a long-grain rice that has the aroma of flowers and buttered popcorn. It pairs well with just about everything. In the case of this rice salad, pairing it with pineapple and other fresh vegetables creates the perfect room-temperature salad for just about any occasion.

The color of the rice is the color of the jasmine flower, hence its name. Jasmine rice is distinct from other varieties it is long grain and healthier than many other types of white and brown rice. This is not a sticky rice, but rather a nice delicate rice that is very light.

Where is Jasmine Rice Grown?

This Jasmine rice is grown right here in the United States. I am using Ralston Family Farms Jasmine Rice grown on a 5,000-acre multi-generational farm.

Where to Buy Jasmine Rice

You can find Ralston Family Farms Jasmine Rice at Kroger, Earthfare, Publix, Whole Foods, Sprouts, Fresh Market, and Fresh Thyme stores. You can also buy it online here.

Rice Salad Ingredients

Fresh ingredients pair beautifully with this delicate rice. In this recipe, pineapple, cucumber, green onion and mint give this dish its fresh, light flavor and texture, making it the perfect side dish.

Prepared dish with pecans and pineapple with mint leaves on white background in green dish
Pineapple, cucumber, green onion and mint give this dish its fresh, light flavor and texture making it the perfect side dish.

Who doesn’t love toasted nuts in their salad? The toasted pecans give a touch more of nutty flavor to the rice and a needed crunch to the salad.

The bacon adds that bit of saltiness to the dish. If you choose to add cheese, it will give you just enough salt to balance out all the sweet and sour notes. My preference of cheese is goat cheese, but parmesan works well, too.

If you want a light side dish, leave out the cheese. It’s a little heavier with the cheese, which is great with dark meat, but if you are having fish or chicken, I prefer it to taste as fresh and light as possible. 

This dish hits all the taste buds: sweet, salty, and sour.

The Pineapple Lime Dressing

This is a unique tangy-yet-sweet dressing. I think it’s perfect for a summertime salad. A little lime juice gives it just enough acidity to balance out the sweet pineapple and honey: a perfect marriage of flavors.

Jasmine Rice Dish in Green Serving Platter on white background with red cloth
With a little lime juice giving it just enough acidity to balance out the sweet pineapple and honey, you have a perfect marriage of flavors.

Rice Salad for Summer and Barbecue

I like to serve this rice salad at picnics and barbecues. It’s also great anytime I am grilling fish, chicken, or skirt steak.

Rice Salad Recipe with Pineapple, Cucumbers, Pecans, and Bacon in green with red decorative bowl
This rice salad recipe tastes super fresh. It’s packed full of fresh pineapple, cucumber, green onions, mint, pecans, and delicate, nutty Jasmine rice.

Variations

By adding different herbs, vegetables, or meats, you can completely change this dish.

Citrus Rice Salad: You can substitute oranges, tangerines, grapefruit, and even lemons to create a citrus salad that is out of this world! Of course you can interchange the pecans for almonds or walnuts.

Pineapple Lime Grilled Chicken Rice Salad: with the addition of marinated chicken, shrimp, or skirt steak, you’ve transformed this salad into a meal. Make a double portion of the dressing and marinate the meat in it for several hours in the refrigerator. Grill the meat and incorporate it into the rice salad.

Tips for Preparing Rice Salad

When preparing the rice, make sure not to overcook it or over saturate it with liquid. You want the rice to remain nice and delicate and not mushy at all.

The ratio for making rice for this salad is 1 cup of rice to 1 1/2 cups of water. Remember this ratio, and you will have the best rice for your salad.

Truly it is one of my favorite picnic and cookout recipes!!

Also try my Wild Rice and Butternut Squash Salad!

Rice Salad Recipe with Pineapple, Cucumbers, Pecans, and Bacon in green with red decorative bowl

Rice Salad with Pineapple, Cucumbers, and Pecans

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Course Side Dish
Cuisine American

Ingredients
  

The Rice

  • 1 cup long grain rice 3 cups cooked
  • 1 1/4 cups of cold water
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt

The Lime Dressing

  • 3 tablespoons pineapple juice
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • zest of 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • pinch Kosher salt
  • pinch freshly ground black pepper

The Salad

  • 1 cup pineapple chunks
  • 1/2 cup pecans chopped and toasted
  • 1/2 cup green onions
  • 1/2 cup cucumber diced
  • 1/2 cup mint leaves reserve a few for garnish
  • 1 cup goat cheese crumbled (optional)
  • 1/4 cup cranberries
  • 6 slices cooked bacon chopped
  • pineapple lime vinaigrette

Instructions
 

For the Rice

  • In a medium pan, bring rice and water to a boil. Once it reaches a boil, turn down to a simmer and place the lid on for about 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, turn the heat off and leave the lid on for another 10 minutes. Remove rice to a bowl and place in the refrigerator to cool a bit before adding the rest of the salad ingredients.

For the Pineapple Lime Dressing

  • In a Mason Jar, add all dressing ingredients and shake vigorously together until well incorporated.

For the Salad

  • In a large mixing bowl, add rice and salad ingredients. Pour the dressing over the ingredients and mix it all together.
  • Serve room temperature in large serving platter or bowl and garnish with more mint leaves and toasted pecans.
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2 Comments

  1. Jan Armstrong says:

    I would love to make this salad, but I need to know if you are using fresh pineapple or canned pineapple chunks. I doubt it makes much difference, but I would like to know which one you used. Thank you and thanks for the great recipes.

    1. You can certainly use either for this recipe. I used canned in this one, but tonight I am going to use fresh!

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