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Kalyn's Kitchen

Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms

Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms could be a gluten-free stuffing idea for Thanksgiving, or just serve it as a side dish any time of year. This tasty wild rice dish is a fairly low-glycemic dish compared to traditional stuffing. Use Side Dishes to find more recipes like this one.

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Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms found on KalynsKitchen.com

I’m a fan of wild rice, which is actually not rice at all, but the seed of a type of grass that grows in the U.S., Canada, and China. I’ve used it in dishes like Turkey and Wild Rice Soup, and it’s often sold in a mix with brown rice. This Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms uses wild rice in a way that was different for me, where the wild rice is the main ingredient in the dish, with sausage mushrooms, and fresh thyme adding flavor.

The recipe was called Thanksgiving Wild Rice on the Food Network site, where it included lots of butter that I switched for olive oil, but take your choice on that! This could certainly be served as a stuffing or side dish, but I enjoyed just eating a bowl of it for a quick lunch. I’m putting some of my leftovers in a 2-serving container in the freezer, and I’m guessing it will freeze well and taste great for lunch some day when I’m too busy to cook. (Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms was updated with better photos, October 2009.)

Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms found on KalynsKitchen.com

Wild rice isn’t a quick cooking food, and if the rice you use has been sitting on the store shelf or in your pantry for a year or so it may take even longer to cook. You need to simmer it in stock until some of the rice grains start to split apart and it’s soft but slightly chewy. When the rice is nearly done, start to brown the sausage. I used Jimmy Dean Pork Sausage, but this would be a great way to use turkey sausage as well. Mix the cooked wild rice and sausage in a bowl, then saute the onions and then the mushrooms. Cooking the onions with plenty of chopped fresh thyme adds a lot of flavor to this dish, but I think you could use dried thyme here with good results.

Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms found on KalynsKitchen.com

I used brown Baby Bella or Crimini mushrooms, but you can use regular white mushrooms if that’s what your store carries. Whichever type you use, be sure the mushrooms are well browned. Mix the cooked onions and mushrooms into the wild rice/sausage mixture, then add 1/2 cup stock and some chopped parsley, put it in a casserole dish and cover with the lid or foil. Bake 30-40 minutes, or until it’s piping hot and most of the stock has been absorbed.

More Recipes with Wild Rice:

Turkey and Wild Rice Soup with Cabbage, Parsley, and Sage from Kalyn’s Kitchen
Wild Rice Salad with Walnuts and Corn from French Kitchen in America
Brown and Wild Rice Salad with Snow Peas and Peppers from Kalyn’s Kitchen

Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms

Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms could be a gluten-free stuffing idea for Thanksgiving, or just serve it as a side dish any time of year.


  • 2/3 cup wild rice, rinsed and drained
  • 3 cups plus 1/2 cup chicken or turkey stock, homemade or canned
  • 2 T olive oil or butter (or less, depending on your pan)
  • one 12 oz. pkg. ground pork sausage (I used Jimmy Dean 50% less fat pork sausage but turkey sausage would be great too)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 T finely chopped fresh thyme leaves (or use 1-2 tsp. dried thyme)
  • 12 oz Crimini, Shitaki or white mushrooms, stems removed and coarsely chopped
  • 3 T finely chopped fresh parsley
  • fresh ground black pepper to taste


  1. In saucepan combine wild rice and 3 cups stock. (Original recipe added salt, but I didn’t think it needed it.)
  2. Bring to a gentle simmer, cover, and cook until rice is tender, about 60 minutes. or longer if the rice has been stored for a while. (Edit: I cooked the wild rice at the lowest possible simmer, in a pan with a very tight fitting lid. You will probably need to check after a few minutes, and possibly add some water during the cooking time, depending on how old the wild rice is, how tight the lid is on your pan, and how low your stove burner goes.) Rice should be tender to the bite with some grains starting to break apart when it’s done.
  3. Dump rice into colander and let it drain well. Begin preheating oven to 350.
  4. In medium sized frying pan, cook sausage until it is lightly browned. (I sometimes use a potato masher to break the sausage into small pieces as it cooks.)
  5. Drain off any excess fat and add sausage to the cooked rice. (If you don’t have reduced fat sausage, you can put the cooked sausage in a fine-mesh colander and rinse with very hot water to remove some of the fat.) Put drained rice and sausage into a mixing bowl.
  6. Wipe out pan with a paper towel if there is a lot of fat, then heat 1 T olive oil or butter, add onions and cook on low until starting to turn golden, about 10 minutes. Add the chopped thyme and cook 2 minutes more. Add thyme/onion mixture to the rice.
  7. Add more olive oil or butter to frying pan as needed, add chopped mushrooms and saute until lightly browned and all liquid has evaporated, about 10 minutes. Add mushrooms to the wild rice mixture.
  8. Add the chopped parsley and 1/2 cup stock and season with black pepper to taste. Transfer mixture to glass or crockery casserole dish with a lid.
  9. Bake until heated through, about 30 minutes. Serve hot.


Recipe adapted from Thanksgiving Wild Rice at the Food Network.

All images and text ©

Low-Carb Diet / Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Wild rice is actually a grass seed and not really rice, and it’s higher in protein, more nutritious, high in fiber, and lower on the glycemic index than rice. That makes this Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms a good choice for the South Beach Diet Phase 2, and other low-glycemic eating plans. Wild Rice is also relatively low in carbs, especially if you consider the fiber and count net carbs.

Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use the Recipes by Diet Type photo index pages to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.

Nutritional Information?
If you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into this nutrition analyzer, which will calculate it for you. Or if you’re a member of Yummly, you can use the Yum button on my site to save the recipe and see the nutritional information there.

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    29 Comments on “Wild Rice with Sausage and Mushrooms”

  1. If wild rice isn't rice, that explains a lot. I don't care for rice, but do like wild rice! 🙂

  2. Now, I never knew that wild rice wasn't actually rice. I still have things to learn!

  3. Kalyn, this sounds unreal. I am always looking for one-dish dinners and this one sounds like I winner. I cannot wait to make it, I just know that when I eat I am going to feel cozy and warm despite the chilly Montreal weather.

  4. If being a grass means not being a rice, then regular rice is not rice either – it's a grass too!

    This looks delicious and I plan to make it the next time I'm on my own for dinner, maybe with spicy sausage… LOVE spicy sausage… because my husband doesn't eat mushrooms and I don't want to omit them!

  5. Oh delicious!
    Wild rice and mushroom and Jimmy Dean sausage,
    These are a few of my favorite things…."

  6. This is a great fall dish.

  7. I'm saving this recipe for Thanksgiving. I didn't know wild rice wasn't a rice! I love that mustard colored bowl. Great picture

  8. Demandy, sorry but I don't have that info. My wild rice has been transferred into a jar so I don't have the label any more. The little South Beach guide for foods says 18 carbs in 1/2 cup wild rice if that helps, and since mushrooms have very little carbs and sausage has none, I'm thinking it would be pretty low.

  9. This sounds delicious, do you know the carb and dietary fiber count per serving? My husband is a type 1 diabetic but not on insulin so he requires usuall phase 1 levels of carbs. We've been following your blog for a while, keep it up!

  10. I live in Minnesota and my husband picks wild rice every year. We make a similar recipe with sausage, but we also use chicken, pheasant or duck with excellent results.

  11. Wow! That looks so flavorful! I bet that it is very delicious. Thank you for sharing this yummy recipe. I'm craving for the mushrooms.:)

  12. Perfect dish for the winter. I love that earthy flavor that mushrooms add.
    Have you tried the brown rice medley from Trader Joes? It's my fav.
    I have also been cooking a lot with the Trader Joes chicken sweet Italian sausage. Yum.

  13. I wonder if this would taste good if I used the very lean "homemade" chicken sausages a local meat shop makes right there… they're good and spicy… so it might work?!
    looks great… will have to try this one. I need to use up all the onions my husband planted this year!

  14. Gracie, hope they like it!

    Alanna, I didn't know that there were two kinds. Thanks for that tip. Now I want to try the quicker-cooking type!

    Katie, it was meant as a stuffing on the Food Network site. I'm thinking a mixture of this with cornbread stuffing mix might make a good Gluten-free stuffing.

    Dara, rice freezes very well, so I'm thinking this will freeze well too.

    Chris, fun. Glad I could give a memory of Thanksgiving past!

  15. Jimmy Dean always makes things better! I'll have to give this a try because it sounds similar to a dish my mom's best friend made for our thanksgiving get togethers each year.

  16. Wild rice has such lovely, nutty flavor which would work so well with mushrooms. Another great dish, Kalyn! I must admit that I have never frozen cooked rice. Does the texture of the rice hold up okay?

  17. I love the idea of using this as a stuffing for Thanksgiving! This will be my first gluten-free T-giving, and I've been contemplating stuffing ideas for a few days now. Although it's not traditional, I don't think that anyone in the family will be complaining about this!

  18. Looks great! As a native Minnesotan, we grew up with wild rice as a staple. So it wasn't until I moved 'south' that I learned that there is a huge difference between 'cultivated' wild rice (which is what's mostly found in grocery stores) and takes a long time to cook and natural wild rice (which is hard to find outside its growing areas) but cooks in just a few minutes. If you're interested, my recipe for Wild Rice Salad includes a side-by-side photo of the two kinds of wild rice.

  19. I am going to make this for my "picky" son and husband. I think they'll love it!!!

  20. After this recipe had been posted for hours I realized that I had used reduced fat sausage, but I didn’t put that in the recipe. I edited it as soon as I got home from school today. To those who saw it sooner, I apologize.