Rustic Vegan Paella with Global Spices

Hello Substantial Living!

As we experience cold weather from coast to coast, what better way to warm our hearts than a rustic vegan paella?  Paella is a one pot dish and much easier than we often think of it, and always tasty.  Here’s my version of a vegan paella with the addition of Harissa and Turkish chili called Urfa Biber.


  • 6 TBS Olive oil
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper cut into 1/4 inch strips
  • 1 cup caned fire-roasted tomatoes or 1 medium tomato
  • 1 TBS Harissa powder
  • 1 can artichoke hearts
  • 6 cups of vegetable broth
  • 3 cups of Arborio rice
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp urfa biber
  • 1/4 tsp ground saffron
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn
  • Garnish: fresh cilantro leaves, lemon wedges, red onion or scallion
  1. Preheat oven to 400F
  2. Heat 4 TBS of olive oil in paella pan over medium heat and add onion, tomatoes, garlic, harissa, bell pepper.  Cook and stir for about 10 minutes.  Lower the heat to medium and continue to cook until mixture turns into a think paste.
  3. In separate pan, heat vegetable broth to boil.
  4. Add to paella pan with tomato paste: paella rice, salt, paprika, urfa briber, and saffron; stir to mix.
  5. Add hot vegetable broth to rice vegetable mixture, and heat until broth is boiling.
  6. Place pan into oven for 15 minutes at 400F.  Do not stir
  7. Sprinkle peas, corn and artichoke heart on top and return to oven for 10 additional minutes; or until the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is no longer crunchy.
  8. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving; garnish with raw onion or chopped scallion, parsley, lemon wedges, and for an non-vegan option  I sometimes sprinkle some pecorino cheese on top!

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