Festive Rice

Total Time

Prep: 20 min. Bake: 30 min.


6 servings

Updated: Apr. 26, 2022
My mom and I transformed plain rice by adding feta, cranberries, pumpkin seeds and cayenne. We wound up with a sweet and spicy crowd-pleaser. —Lisa de Perio, Dallas, Texas


  • 2-1/4 cups water
  • 1/4 cup butter, cubed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 cup uncooked jasmine rice
  • 1/4 cup salted pumpkin seeds or pepitas
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries


  1. Preheat oven to 325°. In a small saucepan, bring first 5 ingredients to a boil. Remove from heat. Pour over rice in a greased 8-in. square baking dish. Bake, covered, until all liquid is absorbed, 30-35 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, cook pumpkin seeds, brown sugar and cayenne pepper, stirring constantly until sugar melts and cayenne coats pumpkin seeds, 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat; transfer to a plate, spreading out seeds to cool.
  3. Sprinkle cooked rice with feta, mint, cranberries and spiced pumpkin seeds.

Nutrition Facts

2/3 cup: 244 calories, 11g fat (6g saturated fat), 23mg cholesterol, 514mg sodium, 32g carbohydrate (5g sugars, 1g fiber), 5g protein.