Is your body and soul screaming for something warming? Or, maybe it’s just raining outside? Even if it’s a regular Saturday afternoon and you’ve run out of ideas, slow cooker rice dishes make fantastic side dish options, especially during the colder months. They’re filling without being heavy, making this Slow Cooker Wild Rice Pilaf the perfect dish to warm up with your family and friends.
Even if it’s July and you want to turn up the air conditioner for twenty minutes just to replicate that cozy feeling, we’re not judging. What’s more, just like our slow cooker Mediterranean Lentil Soup and Sausage, White Bean, and Kale Stew, this pilaf only needs 4 to 6 hours on the heat. Just enough time to turn from raw ingredients into fragrant, herby deliciousness.
Fresh Herbs Take this Pilaf to the Next Level
This slow cooker recipe is loaded with fresh herbs: rosemary, sage, and thyme. They’re robust enough to grow on your windowsill in the winter months, and these herbs are all fast-growing and cold-resistant. Perfect for the green thumbless among us.
Moreover, fresh herbs have a staggering range of health benefits. Sage gets its name from the Latin word Salvere, which means “to save,” and in tea form it was a reliable treatment for the plague! Okay, maybe you aren’t suffering from an acute risk of the plague, but current research indicates that sage is also able to improve brain function and memory. Rosemary deserves a mention, too. It has been used for centuries to prevent indigestion, and it also boasts impressive skin and hair nourishing properties. To make things even better, this pilaf sits at only 156 calories per serving size.
How to Serve Slow Cooker Wild Rice Pilaf
We love this recipe for Slow Cooker Wild Rice Pilaf because of its contrasting textures. You get chewy wild rice and soft, meaty mushrooms. It’s the perfect accompaniment to a main dish, and this pilaf is an ideal candidate for dinner parties or potlucks. I might add, it also tastes amazing when paired with roast chicken or a winter salad.
With the addition of leftover proteins, this pilaf can be easily transformed into a balanced meal. We like adding lentils at the beginning or topping it with a piece of grilled cod. Speaking of leftovers, because this hearty side dish tastes best prepared ahead of time, it’s a great repeat meal on busy weekday nights.
There are only two steps to putting together this reliable favorite. All you need to worry about is remembering to turn off the slow cooker!
Yield: 10 | Serving Size: 1/2 cup - 3/4 cup |Calories: 156 | Total Fat: 2.4 g | Saturated Fat: 0 g | Trans Fat: 0 g | Cholesterol: 0 mg | Sodium: 310 mg | Carbohydrates: 27.3 g | Dietary Fiber: 2.4 g | Sugars: 1.3 g | Protein: 7.5 g | SmartPoints (Freestyle): 4
- 2 cups wild rice blend
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- ¾ cup shallots, finely chopped
- 2 cups sliced mushrooms
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp fresh rosemary
- 1 Tbsp fresh sage
- 1 tsp fresh thyme
- Begin by stirring the olive oil with the rice blend until well coated. Then add the vegetable broth shallots, mushrooms, garlic, and herbs. Stir until well combined.
- Cook on low for 5 hours and rice is tender. Sprinkle with additional rosemary for serving.
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