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Mary Gines and Mom in iIeland
Mom and I in Ireland

There’s nothing quite like Mom’s cooking.

I’ve tried a lot of versions of the same recipes and no one, not even a restaurant has come close to the way my Mom makes Filipino food. Maybe it’s something about Motherly love being poured into the dish like a garnish, but I’ve yet to try someone else’s version of the same dish taste as delicious as when my mom makes it.  Well…maybe with the exception of some my Aunts and Uncles 😉 I think we all have that one dish Mom used to make that we could literally gobble up every day. For me it was  a warm and comforting dish and as simple as it looked, it was full of flavor and very satisfying. Arroz caldo, or rice soup, is a Filipino rice porridge derived from Chinese congee.  It was modified and renamed by the Spaniards when they colonized the Philippines and it’s considered a Filipino comfort food. Once you try it you’ll see why! Since its Winter and cold and flu season,  I’ve been feeling a little under the weather lately.  I wanted something that would help me feel better, that was comforting and heartier than soup, so I transformed my Mom’s dish into an ultra low carb version.

Arroz caldo is kind of like chicken soup on steroids. Here’s why:

  1. Ginger has so many amazing benefits such as cold and flu prevention, pain reduction and inflammation, as well as strengthening immunity. There’s even more benefits of ginger in this article: 11 Benefits of Ginger That You Didn’t Know About
  2. Like ginger, garlic also has a number of benefits including being a powerful anti-oxidant and may help reduce the frequency of cold, which is critical at this time of year. More info on the benefits of garlic can be read on Medical News Today.
  3. Although turmeric isn’t in the traditional recipe, I thought the addition of it would just add to the arsenal of nutrients. It contains curcumin, a substance with powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Never heard of the stuff? Authority Nutrition covers gives us the 10 Proven Health Benefits of Turmeric and Curcumin
  4. There’s a common theme amongst the ingredients of this recipe: Anti-inflammatory. Swapping out the rice for the cauliflower not only keeps any inflammatory response in check, but it also gives this dish an abundance of vitamin C, not to mention keeping it low carb!
Courtesy of

Great Carb Nite dinner option!

Although the cauliflower “rice” makes this a low carb dish, it can easily be a great Carb Nite dinner option with regular rice. Here’s a traditional arroz caldo recipe: You may also swap out the thighs for chicken breast.  Traditionally, arroz caldo is garnished with fried garlic but I thought microwaving a few slices of bacon until it was crunchy would’ve made a better topping, quicker to make and less work 😉 If you like chicken noodle soup, arroz caldo might win your heart and tummy. It has magical healing powers when you’re feeling a little under the weather and I can attest to that!

Arroz Caldo (Cauliflower Rice Soup)

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Additional and optional garnishes - not included in macro data:
Fresh ground pepper, fried garlic, hard boiled egg, lime wedges



Ultra Low Carb (ULC) Arroz Caldo aka Cauliflower Rice Soup

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  1. Heat a large pot over medium high heat.
  2. Add coconut oil to pot; swirl to coat.
  3. Add garlic, ginger, and onion; saute 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add chicken, season with salt and pepper and cook until no longer pink.
  5. When chicken is cooked, add cauliflower "rice" and chicken broth; stir to combine.
  6. Add fish sauce and turmeric; reduce heat to low.
  7. Simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring often until desired consistency is reached. It should begin to thicken as liquid evaporates.
  8. Serve warm and garnish with lime juice, green onion and bacon bits or additional garnish of choice.
Cauliflower "Rice"
  1. Remove leaves and stem from head of cauliflower.
  2. Chop the crown into small pieces, small enough to fit into a food processor.
  3. Pulse cauliflower florets in a food processor until it resembles rice.

Recipe Notes

Nutritional Data for Ultra Low Carb Arroz Caldo (Cauliflower Rice Soup)

Ultra Low Carb Arroz Caldo (Cauliflower Rice Soup) Nutritional Data

Click here for "Understanding the Macronutrient Guide"

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