The absolute easiest way to make brown rice! Baking makes for fluffy, no-mess rice.
If you had to name a food everyone can agree is healthy, you really couldn’t go wrong with brown rice. (Okay, unless you’re one of those people who think all grains are bad…which, for the record, has been disproven time and again.)
Brown rice is packed with fiber (3.5 grams per cup), protein (5 grams per cup), and important micronutrients like magnesium and selenium. It’s got a relatively low glycemic index of 50, meaning it won’t spike your blood sugar. Plus, it’s pretty dang low calorie at about 215 cals per cup. It goes with just about everything, from casseroles to Mexican food to meat dishes.
Only trouble is, well, making it.
Seems like every time I try making brown rice on the stovetop, I end up with a sticky mess that hangs on to the bottom of my saucepan like grim death. I dread cleaning any pot that has touched brown rice.
What I never realized–until recently–is that there’s actually a much better way to get fluffy, chewy brown rice that doesn’t involve scraping burnt grains off the pot for an hour after dinner. How, you ask? By baking it!
I’ll ‘fess up and say I didn’t come up with this bright idea on my own. In fact, my moment of brown rice enlightenment actually came from my kids’ favorite cookbook, America’s Test Kitchen’s Complete Cookbook for Young Chefs. My 11-year-old son decided he wanted to try making baked brown rice, and it turned out to be totally easy enough for a preteen to manage without burning the house down. Essentially, all it takes is boiling some water in a kettle, then pouring it over grains in a baking dish (with a bit of butter, of course!). Cover and bake for an hour and you’re all set.
The beauty of this recipe is not only its simplicity, but the fact that it cooks the rice perfectly evenly–unlike the stovetop method, which can yield wet rice on top and crispy grains on the bottom. And, wonder of wonders, miracle of miracles, it doesn’t stick to the baking pan.
Since learning about this easy method, I’ve been making brown rice like a fiend, and I’m not sorry about it. It’s a versatile, healthy side dish I can always find a use for. I’ll never make brown rice on the stovetop again.
So tell me…am I just late to the game? Have you tried baking brown rice in the oven? Are you as enthused about it as I am?
The Easiest Baked Brown Rice
- 1 1/2 c. brown rice
- 1 Tbsp. butter
- 2 1/3 water
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spread brown rice in an 8 x 8-inch glass baking dish. Cut butter into small pieces and dot over rice.
- In a kettle, bring water to a boil. Carefully pour over rice. Cover tightly with two sheets of aluminum foil.
- Bake for 1 hour, uncover, fluff, and serve.