- Food: Wild Rice
- Writer: Nicolas Wilson
- Content-type: Food Blog
Let’s talk about wild rice for a moment. I can’t get enough of it because it’s nutty and earthy, and it’s delightfully chewy-tender.
What exactly is it? Wild rice is a type of aquatic grass native to North America’s Great Lakes region.
Don’t reserve your wild rice for Thanksgiving stuffing; it’s delicious all year, but especially so in the fall and winter. Wild rice provides texture and heaviness to soups while also providing a warm, hearty component that transforms fresh greens into a complete meal.
Wild rice is also a good source of nutrients. It has 50% more fiber and protein than brown rice, putting it on a level with quinoa in terms of nutrition. It’s a good gluten-free option for farro because the textures are similar.
One unfortunate feature of wild rice is that it is more expensive than many other whole grains. Wild rice requires a lot of effort to harvest, which is why it’s so expensive.
Shop around and keep your rice somewhere cool and dry. Continue reading to learn how to prepare wild rice and how to make the most of it!
Stovetop Wild Rice Cooking Instructions
Unlike most recipes, I prefer to cook my wild rice in a large pot of water, uncovered. It’s easier to keep an eye on this manner, it cooks a little faster (often in just 40 minutes), and, most importantly, it always turns out exactly.
In the Instant Pot, how do you cook wild rice?
In an Instant Pot, wild rice cooks nicely and saves you roughly 10 to 15 minutes of cooking time. The biggest benefit of using the Instant Pot to cook wild rice is that you don’t have to “babysit” it in any way.
- In the bowl of your Instant Pot, combine 1 cup of well-rinsed wild rice and 1 1/4 cups of water.
- Close the lid and turn the steam release valve to the Sealing position. Cook for 22 minutes on high pressure using the Manual/Pressure Cook option.
- Allow the pressure to naturally release for 10 minutes after the cooking cycle is over, then switch the steam release valve to Venting to relieve any remaining pressure.
- Remove the cover and stir the rice when the floating valve drops. Season to taste.
The Wild Rice Pairs Well With…
Want to improvise a wild rice meal? Add one or more of the following:
- Chives, garlic, green onion, red onion, or shallot are examples of alliums.
- Chickpeas and other white beans, in particular.
- Fruit, fresh or dried: Raisins, dried cherries, cranberries, or fresh apple
- Arugula, collard greens, dill, kale, parsley, sage, spinach, tarragon, or thyme are examples of greens or herbs.
- Almonds, hazelnuts, pecans, pepitas, pine nuts, and walnuts are examples of nuts or seeds.
- Black pepper, cinnamon, Dijon mustard, ginger, lemon or orange juice/zest, or vinegar are all good seasonings (apple cider or red wine, or white wine vinegar)
- Feta or goat cheese are soft cheeses.
- Asparagus, beets, bell peppers, cabbage, carrots, celery, mushrooms, pumpkin, and squash are examples of vegetables (acorn, butternut, or kabocha)
PERFECT WILD RICE
|Time to prepare: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 45 minutes
Time spent: 50 minutes
In this straightforward recipe, you’ll learn how to make delicious wild rice. Wild rice is a nutrient-dense and tasty whole grain. It goes well in salads and as a side dish. This recipe can be scaled up or down as needed (just be sure to use plenty of water). Cooked wild rice provides a little over 3 cups from one cup of uncooked wild rice.
- Using at least 6 cups of water per 1 cup of rice, bring a big pot of water to a boil (or see the Instant Pot option provided in the notes). Rinse the rice thoroughly under running water in a fine mesh colander.
- Add the rinsed rice and cook for another 40 to 55 minutes, decreasing heat as needed to maintain an active simmer. It’s done when the rice is soft but still has a slight bite to it. It’s probably done if you notice any grains popping open down the center seam (like a hot dog bun).
- Return the rice to the pot after draining it (off the heat). Season with salt and pepper to taste. Place a tea towel over the pot, cover it, and set aside for 10 minutes if you have the time (this absorbs any excess moisture). Use as you see fit.
- ON THE INSTANT POT: In the Instant Pot, combine 1 cup of well-rinsed wild rice and 1 1/4 cups of water. Close the lid and turn the steam release valve to the Sealing position. Cook for 22 minutes on high pressure using the Manual/Pressure Cook option. Allow the pressure to naturally release for 10 minutes after the cooking cycle is over, then switch the steam release valve to Venting to relieve any remaining pressure. Remove the cover and stir the rice when the floating valve drops. Season to taste. Megan Gilmore’s The Fresh & Healthy Instant Pot Cookbook inspired this recipe.
- STORAGE SUGGESTIONS: Covered wild rice can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Alternatively, you can freeze it for several months. Before serving, thaw gently in the microwave.