Rice is one of the most commonly eaten grains. Over half of the world's population relies on rice as a staple food. Rice is cooked by boiling or steaming and absorbs water while cooking.
Basics of Cooking Rice
- Combine 1 cup rice, liquid (see chart below), 1 teaspoon salt (optional), and 1 tablespoon butter or margarine (optional) in a 2 to 3-quart saucepan.
- Heat to boiling; stir once or twice as it begins to boil. Lower heat to a simmer; cover with a tight-fitting lid.
- Cook according to time specified on chart. If rice is not quite tender or liquid is not absorbed, replace lid and cook 2 to 4 minutes longer. Stir and serve.
- As a general rule, 1 cup of uncooked rice will equal about 3 cups of cooked rice.
- Leftover rice can be used later in the week to make fried rice or chicken rice casserole.
|1 Cup Uncooked Rice||Liquid||Cooking Time|
|Long grain rice||1 ¾ to 2 cups||15 minutes|
|Medium or short grain rice||1 ½ cups||15 minutes|
|Brown rice||2 to 2 ½ cups||45 to 50 minutes|
|Converted rice||2 to 2 ½ cups||20 to 25 minutes|
|Instant rice; flavored mixes||Follow package directions|
Types of Rice
Brown Rice is a whole grain that has a mild nutty flavor. It is chewier and more nutritious than white rice. It is a good source of fiber and many B vitamins.
White Rice is the name given to milled rice that has had its husk, bran, and germ removed. White rice is usually enriched with vitamins, but does not have as much fiber as brown rice.
Converted Rice is rice that has gone through a steam-pressure process before milling, producing extra fluffy and more separate looking rice.
Instant Rice is white or brown rice that has been completely cooked and dehydrated after milling. This process reduces the time it takes to cook the rice. This type of rice usually costs more than regular rice.
Long Grain Rice has a long, slender kernel. When cooked, the grains are separate, light, and fluffy.
Medium and Short Grain Rice tends to be stickier and works well when using chopsticks.
Wild Rice is a combination of four different rice varieties. It has its own unique texture and flavor. It is high in protein and fiber and low in fat.
- 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 small onion, scrubbed with clean vegetable brush under running water and sliced
- 1 pound beef, pork, chicken, shrimp, or tofu, cubed or thinly sliced*
- 1 (14 ounce) package frozen oriental vegetables, thawed or 4 cups fresh vegetables, chopped (such as zucchini, broccoli, cabbage, mushrooms, etc)
- 2 cups rice, cooked (optional)
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 Tablespoons soy sauce
- Wash hands with soap and water.
- In a large skillet, heat oil. Saute onion for 1 minute.
- Add protein food of choice. Stir-fry until nearly cooked through. Add vegetables. Cook for 2 to 4 minutes, adding water if needed. Continue cooking until meat is cooked through.
- In a separate bowl, mix together water, cornstarch, lemon juice, sugar, and soy sauce. Mix well.
- Pour mixture onto vegetables. Heat for 2 to 3 minutes or until thickened.
- Serve over cooked rice if desired.
* You can leave out the meat to make vegetable stir fry.
- Serving Size (1/4 of recipe):
- Calories 460
- Total Fat 32g
- Saturated Fat 12g
- Cholesterol 85mg
- Sodium 390mg
- Total Carbohydrates 20g
- Fiber 5g
- Total Sugars 3g
- Protein 23g
- Vitamin A 100%
- Vitamin C 25%
- Calcium 4%
- Iron 20%
The Nutrition Education Program (NEP) delivers evidence-based nutrition education and obesity prevention interventions through a combination of education strategies coupled with multi-level community changes that occur within the environment to promote healthy eating and active lifestyles.
This material was funded by USDA's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program – SNAP and Expanded Food & Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP).