These colorful Harvest Rice Bowls are made with a nutritious wild rice blend, butternut squash, Brussels sprouts, dried cranberries and pecans. They're delicious and endlessly customizable!
As the the holiday season winds down and we head into the New Year, I’m definitely ready to move away from heavy meals and start focusing on some lighter dishes. I’ve never been one to make specific New Year’s resolutions, but it does seem like a natural shift to start focusing on getting more active and cooking more nutritious meals after a season of overindulgence. Enter my Harvest Rice Bowls. Rice bowls are the perfect vehicle to pack in plenty of nutritious ingredients like whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and nuts all in one easy dish!
I’m so excited to be partnering with Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA)- a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that is devoted to ensuring the health of our nation’s youth by solving the childhood obesity crisis. It’s led by some of our country’s most respected health and childhood obesity advocates, including their honorary chair Michelle Obama. Preventing childhood obesity and the diseases that come along with it. This is definitely a topic that's near and dear to my heart, especially now that I'm a mom.
How To Make Harvest Rice Bowls
My Harvest Rice Bowls start with a base of nutritious wild rice blend and incorporate some of my favorite seasonal ingredients like butternut squash, Brussels sprouts, dried cranberries and pecans. But the great thing is that you can use whatever ingredients you have on hand in your fridge or pantry. In fact, I often use rice bowls as a way of cleaning out my fridge at the end of the week.
For the base of the bowl, I use a wild rice blend, a mixture of wild rice, brown rice, and quinoa. You can use any grain that you like such as barley or farro. I cook the wild rice blend in reduced sodium chicken or vegetable broth to infuse it with flavor. While the grains are cooking, I toss diced butternut squash and shaved Brussels sprouts with olive oil. Then I roast them in the oven until tender. Finally, I toss it all together with some chopped pecans for crunch.
You can this in individual bowls or you can put it in a large casserole dish and serve it alongside an entree. It makes an excellent vegetarian side dish for Thanksgiving.
This is also a great dish to make with your kids. Kids are typically more likely to try new foods if they help prepare them so get them in the kitchen with you! Let them help you prep and chop the ingredients. Pile on the colorful veggies- the more the better! Sienna had a blast tossing the Brussels sprouts on a baking sheet with olive oil.
LOOKING FOR SOME MORE THANKSGIVING RECIPE IDEAS? TRY THESE DISHES:
Harvest Rice Bowls
- 1 tbsp + 4 tsp olive oil divided
- 1 small onion chopped
- 1 sprig thyme + 1 tsp thyme leaves
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 cup wild rice blend
- 2 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- 12 ounces diced butternut squash (about 2 heaping cups)
- 8 ounces shaved Brussels sprouts (about 4 cups)
- Salt and pepper
- ¼ cup chopped pecans
- Preheat oven to 425°F.
- Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat and add the onion. Cook 4-5 minutes until softened. Stir in the sprig of thyme and bay leaf and cook another minute until fragrant. Add the rice and cook, stirring to coat all of the grains with the oil. Pour in the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook until rice is tender, about 40 minutes. Turn the heat off and let the rice steam an additional 10 minutes, then fluff with a fork. Remove the sprig of thyme and bay leaf and stir the dried cranberries into the warm rice.
- Meanwhile, toss the squash on a baking sheet with 2 teaspoons olive oil and 1 teaspoon thyme. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Toss the shaved Brussels sprouts on a second baking sheet with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper.
- Place both baking sheets in the oven and roast until tender (10-12 minutes for the Brussels sprouts and 15-18 minutes for the squash). Remove from oven.
- In a large bowl, combine the rice, squash, Brussels sprouts and pecans and stir to combine. Divide into bowls or if serving as a side dish, transfer to a serving platter.