This fried brown rice with mushrooms and spinach dish is a hearty side dish that goes well with any kind of protein.
About this Brown Rice Recipe
When we make brown rice, we make a lot. Then, the next day we make this as a side dish or we make tofu mushroom fried brown rice, which is a recipe for a main dish. We like the flavor of brown rice in certain dishes (like this brown rice with mushrooms and spinach), but it’s also good for you. Brown rice is a whole grain, meaning it still has the bran, germ, and endosperm of the grain. It’s gluten-free and is also a good source of fiber.
- Brown rice
- Fresh spinach
- Portobello or cremini mushrooms
- Extra virgin olive oil
Notes about ingredients
- Brown rice – If you don’t have any left-over brown rice, prepare some according to the package instructions. If you’re really in a hurry, you can use quick-cooking brown rice or grab one of those handy packages that only require 90 seconds in the microwave. If you go with the packaged variety, read the labels! Some brands have only a few ingredients and no chemicals. Choose that variety instead of a type with a long list of ingredients. There is no reason to complicate rice.
- Mushrooms – We used the baby Portobello mushrooms shown in the ingredients picture. You might see them called cremini mushrooms. Both names refer to the same mushroom. Their firm texture when browned makes them a good choice. Additionally, they brown a little better than white mushrooms and that nice color adds visual appeal to any dish. Go here to read some info about portobello and cremini mushrooms.
- Cooking oil – Use any relatively high-heat oil. For information about oils and their uses, see the post about cooking with oils. We use either avocado oil or olive oil. Either one of those is a good choice.
- Spinach – We use bagged spinach from the produce section of the grocery store. It works fine, and we’ve had good success with it in many recipes. Just be sure to use it up quickly once you have opened the bag. It gets limp and soggy pretty fast.
Making brown rice with spinach and mushrooms
Step 1: Prepare the ingredients
- Slice the mushrooms and set them aside. Be sure to brush the mushrooms with a mushroom brush or wipe them with a paper towel or cloth before you slice them for cooking. If you rinse them, they absorb moisture and get a little soggy.
- Mince three medium garlic cloves – or put them through a garlic press.
Step 2: Sautée the mushrooms and garlic
- Add the minced garlic to the oil, cooking it on low-to-medium heat for a minute or two before adding the mushrooms.
- Gently slide in the sliced mushrooms and stir, coating each slice with oil. The oil browns the sliced mushrooms giving them a firm texture while keeping them moist and tender inside.
- Stir the mushrooms and garlic until the mushrooms are lightly browned.
Step 3: Add the rice and spinach to the mushrooms
- Now that you have sautéed the garlic and mushrooms, toss in the rice and spinach.
- Stir this mixture until the rice and spinach are nice and hot.
Serving brown rice with spinach and mushrooms
This brown rice with mushrooms and spinach dish is a hearty side dish that goes well with a serving of protein like grilled salmon or tuna steaks.
- Look in the produce section of your grocery store for tubes of garlic paste or jars of minced garlic. When we’re in a hurry or traveling in our RV, we use one of these alternatives to mincing garlic with a knife or putting it through the garlic press.
- Because we don’t season this with salt during preparation, feel free to sprinkle on a little soy sauce or ponzu sauce.
- Fresh spinach cooks down. That means you start with what looks like a whole lot of spinach and wind up with just the right amount when it’s been cooked. If you are accustomed to using only frozen or canned spinach, you might be surprised how the spinach volume changes as you cook it. You might also be surprised at how much more flavorful fresh spinach is. If you’ve never used fresh spinach, this recipe is the perfect time to try it.
Brown Rice with Spinach and Mushrooms
- 2 cups of cooked brown rice
- 2 tablespoons olive or avocado oil
- 3 garlic cloves minced
- 1 cup of sliced mushrooms
- 2 cups of fresh spinach
- Cook the brown rice according to package instructions.
- Brush the mushrooms with a mushroom brush or wipe them with a paper towel or cloth.
- Slice the mushrooms.
- Mince the garlic or put each clove through a garlic press.
- Sautee the garlic and mushrooms on low-to-medium heat until the mushrooms are lightly browned.
- Add the rice and spinach, stirring until the rice is hot and the spinach as cooked down.
Products used in this recipe