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This vegetarian wild rice pilaf is an easy to make side dish that’s perfect for Thanksgiving and the holidays. Made with pecans, mushrooms, and cranberries, it’s a flavorful dish that works wonderfully with your roast turkey.

wild rice with mushrooms pilaf recipe in a white bowl

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This festive wild rice pilaf recipe is sure to be a hit this holiday season! Loaded with flavor and texture, it’s an excellent addition to any table, and it’s so easy to make!

It’s perfect to serve alongside Roasted Turkey Breast or Rosemary Peach Pork Tenderloin and all of your favorite potato and veggie sides.

Why you will love this wild rice pilaf!

  • One-pot: Everything for this dish is all cooked in one pot on the stovetop, so you free up your oven and have less clean up!
  • Make ahead: This is a great make-ahead side dish, perfect if you are planning to serve it as part of a big feast, and the leftovers taste amazing!
  • Gluten-free: The perfect side if you or someone in your family has a gluten-intolerance.
close up shot of wild rice with mushrooms recipe

Ingredients for Wild Rice and Mushroom Pilaf

  • Pecans: Pecans add a great crunch texture and nutty flavor to this dish.
  • Butter: I used unsalted butter in this recipe, if you use salted, you may want to reduce the amount of added salt.
  • Vegetables: Mushrooms, garlic, onion, celery
  • Rice: Use a wild rice blend for the best texture. I used wild rice and brown rice blend.
  • Stock: To keep this wild rice pilaf vegetarian, I used vegetable stock.
  • Seasonings: Thyme, salt, and pepper.
  • Cranberries: Dried cranberries add a great burst of sweetness and tang that works so well with the earthy flavors in this recipe. I also love the color they add to the table.
ingredients for wild rice pilaf with mushrooms

How to make wild rice pilaf

  • Toast pecans in a large pot for 1 – 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
  • Melt 2 Tbsp butter in the same pot and add sliced mushrooms. Cook for 6-7 minutes until browned and caramelized. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Transfer to the bowl with pecans and cover to keep warm.
  • Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and add the onion. Cook until tender and translucent. Add celery, rice, thyme, salt, and black pepper. Stir together and cook for 1 minute, toasting the rice. Add in 1/2 cup of stock and scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add remaining broth and bring rice & stock up to a simmer. Turn heat to low, cover, and cook for 45 – 50 minutes without opening the lid or stirring the rice. (time will vary depending on the type of rice you are using. Check rice package instructions)
  • Remove pot from heat and let stand for 10 minutes without opening the lid. After 10 minutes, fluff rice with a fork, and stir in mushrooms, toasted pecans, and dried cranberries. Taste and adjust seasoning. Sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley or green onions.
how to make wild rice pilaf with mushrooms for thanksgiving - step by step pictures

Recipe Variations

This wild rice pilaf recipe is delicious as it is, but there are a few easy swaps and additions you can make to make this your own!

  • Use other toasted nuts like walnuts or almonds.
  • If not vegetarian, you can use chicken stock instead of vegetable.
  • Use different vegetables. Green beans, bell peppers, carrots, and shaved Brussels sprouts all work well.
  • Make this mushroom rice pilaf into a full meal by adding in some cooked shredded chicken or leftover turkey or ham.
wild rice and mushrooms pilaf in a large bowl

Can you make it ahead of time?

This wild rice pilaf with mushrooms can be made a couple of hours ahead of time and then gently reheated on the stovetop to serve. If you make the cranberry wild rice pilaf a day ahead of time, when you reheat it, add in a little more stock as the rice will have absorbed a lot of the liquid as it is sitting.

Can you make this with other rice?

A wild rice blend is the best to use for this pilaf recipe. You can make this wild rice and mushroom pilaf with brown or white rice, but be aware that the cooking time and required liquid will alter quite significantly. White rice absorbs water much more quickly and is more likely to become overcooked.

cranberry wild rice pilaf with mushrooms and pecans

Recipe Notes and Tips

  • The amount of vegetable stock and cooking time will vary depending on the type of rice/rice blend you are using. Check the instructions on the back of the rice package.
  • Make this wild rice pilaf vegan by using a plant-based butter.
  • Let the cooked rice stand for 10 minutes after cooking. This will help to get rid of any excess moisture and the rice will be lighter and fluffier.
rice and mushroom pilaf

More Easy Side Dishes

If you like this wild rice with mushrooms recipe, be sure to check out these other delicious side dishes.

thanksgiving mushroom wild rice side served in a white bowl
wild rice with mushrooms pilaf recipe in a white bowl
5 from 1 vote

Wild Rice Pilaf

This vegetarian wild rice pilaf is an easy to make side dish that's perfect for Thanksgiving and the holidays. Made with pecans, mushrooms and cranberries, it's a flavorful dish that works wonderfully with your roast turkey.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 8 servings

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Ingredients  

Instructions 

  • Toast pecans in a large pot for 1 – 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
  • Melt 2 Tbsp butter in the same pot and add sliced mushrooms. Cook for 6-7 minutes until browned and caramelized. Add garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Transfer to the bowl with pecans and cover to keep warm.
  • Add remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and add onion. Cook until tender and translucent. Add celery, rice, thyme, salt and black pepper. Stir wild rice blend together and cook for 1 minute, toasting rice. Add in 1/2 cup of stock and scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add remaining broth and bring rice & stock up to a simmer. Turn heat to low, cover and cook for 45 – 50 minutes without opening the lid or stirring the rice. (time will vary depending on the type of rice you are using. Check rice package instructions)
  • Remove pot from heat and let stand for 10 minutes without opening the lid. After 10 minutes, fluff rice with a fork, and stir in mushrooms, toasted pecans and dried cranberries. Taste and adjust seasoning. Sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley or green onions.

Video

Notes

  • The amount of vegetable stock and cooking time will vary depending on the type of rice/rice blend you are using. Check the instructions on the back of the rice package.
  • Make this wild rice pilaf vegan by using a plant-based butter.
  • Let the cooked rice stand for 10 minutes after cooking. This will help to get rid of any excess moisture and the rice will be lighter and fluffier.

Nutrition

Calories: 379kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 858mg | Potassium: 403mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 484IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 31mg | Iron: 1mg
Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!

About Neli Howard

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Neli Howard and the food blogger behind Delicious Meets Healthy. I started Delicious Meets Healthy in 2014 while working in public accounting. While everything I did at work was very analytical and detail oriented, I have enjoyed cooking because I get to use my creativity and experiment with flavors and textures of different foods.

5 from 1 vote

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1 Comment

  1. 5 stars
    Delicious combination of savory and sweet. It was a little too salty, but it’s hard to control sometimes with broth and salted butter. Next time I’ll add half the salt to the rice, then taste and adjust after adding in the mushroom mixture.
    I’ll definitely be making this again! It would be fabulous for either a potluck or dinner party, as well as an every day side.