My ORIGINAL "Cheesy" Sprouted Brown Rice with Baby Spinach and Mushrooms is an easy and healthy plant-based recipe made with clean, real food ingredients. It's the perfect plant-based side dish made with 3 easy steps and is ready to enjoy in under 30 minutes!
Here's Why This Recipe Works
My top 3 favorite reasons:
- Use Fresh Rice or Leftover Rice
- Can Be Prepared In Under 15 Minutes
- Made With Clean, Real Food Ingredients
You can feel good about making my healthy, plant-based recipe because it's vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, and soy-free.
Karielyn's Expert Tips + Ingredient Substitutions
Here are some of my expert tips to make this recipe perfectly:
Sprouted Brown Rice: I used "sprouted" brown rice because of the additional nutritional benefits, but you could also substitute with the following:
- Regular Brown Rice
- White Rice
- Cauliflower Rice
In addition, you can use fresh rice or leftover rice - as long as you have (2) cups cooked rice for the recipe.
Avocado Oil: This can be substituted with organic extra-virgin olive oil.
Mushrooms: I used "baby bella" mushrooms, but feel free to use your favorite variety or whatever you have on hand.
Onion: Both white and yellow onions will work well in this recipe. I do not recommend using a sweet onion since this is a savory recipe.
Cauliflower: You will need raw, uncooked cauliflower cut into small bite-size or floret pieces which will make it easier to blend. You can buy pre-cut cauliflower or use a large head of cauliflower and cut it into pieces.
Cashews: I used "raw" cashews instead of "roasted + salted" cashews. An optional step is to soak them in filtered/purified water for 30-60 minutes before adding them to your Vitamix. This will make the cashews soft and the sauce extra smooth and creamy.
Zucchini: Make sure it's peeled before cutting into cubed pieces and adding it to your Vitamix. In addition, I added it to increase the nutritional profile of the recipe, but it can be omitted if you prefer.
Almond Milk: I like to use homemade almond milk, but you can substitute with your favorite unsweetened non-dairy milk. Another great option is to use Joi Organic Almond Milk made with 100% organic almonds.
Nutritional Yeast: This is what gives the recipe it's "cheesy" flavor. Feel free to adjust the amount to your preference.
Garlic: Fresh garlic will give the best flavor, but you could also use organic garlic powder if you don't have fresh.
Red Pepper Flakes + Turmeric Powder: I added the red pepper flakes to give the recipe a little spicy flavor and the turmeric powder to add color to the sauce. Both can be omitted if you prefer.
Himalayan Pink Salt: This is my salt of preference, however, it can always be substituted with sea salt.
Serving Size: This recipe will make approximately (4) cups. Nutritional information is for 1/2 cup which is (1) serving.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why Is Sprouted Brown Rice Better Than Regular Rice?
Sprouted Brown rice is nutritionally superior to regular brown rice for the following reasons:
- contains 10 times more GABA than regular white rice (studies show it may promote calmness, increase restful sleep and lower anxiety)
- contains 7 times more magnesium than regular white rice
- contains 7 times more fiber than regular white rice
- contains 3 times more Oryzanol than regular white rice
What Does "Sprouted" Mean?
"In nature, when a seed is planted, the seed's chemical structure changes in order to support new life. The new seed needs nutrients to grow and the existing kernel needs the energy to sustain the new life.
The seed turns it's internal starches into more Vitamins, Amino Acids (GABA), and minerals for the young plant to feed on as it grows.
So, the art of "sprouting" is beginning the germination process, but stopping it before the plant actually grows, thus locking in all the newly added nutrients".
(source: Planet Rice product insert)
Where Can I Buy Sprouted Brown Rice?
The brand I like to use, Planet Rice, comes in two varieties:
Sprouted Brown Medium Grain Rice (Buy It Here):
- Sprouting gives an extra boost of vitamins and nutrients to grains like rice
- Enhanced nutritional benefits and bioavailability
- Easier to digest than traditional brown rice
- Gluten-free, GMO-free, Whole Grain
- Longer shelf life
Sprouted California Blond Medium Grain Rice (Buy It Here):
- The outer bran layer is partially milled off
- Softer texture and faster cooking time
- Identical nutrition profile to Sprouted Brown Rice
The other thing I loved about the Planet Rice brand is the rice comes from a 5th Generation family company made in California, right here in the U.S.A. And, it's whole grain, Non-GMO Verified and naturally gluten-free.
How Can I Make This A Meal?
Sometimes I like to use this as a meal instead of a side dish and add slices of Field Roast "Smoked Apple Sage" vegan sausage adding an additional 26 grams of vegan protein.
If you add the vegan sausage, you may want to reduce the amount of added salt to the recipe.
Want More Healthy Plant-Based Side Dish Recipes?
Check out these:
- "Cheesy" Scalloped Potatoes
- Cilantro and Lime Cauliflower Rice
- Spicy Mexican Cauliflower Rice
- or my CLEAN EATING Cookbook with 75+ plant-based recipes made with clean, real food ingredients just like this one that you will love!
Did You Make This Recipe?
I'd love to hear about it! Please give it a rating and leave a comment below...it would make my day! 🙂
Vegan "Cheesy" Sprouted Brown Rice with Baby Spinach and Mushrooms
For the rice:
- 2 cups sprouted brown rice (uncooked)
- 3 cups water (filtered/purified) (filtered/purified)
For the veggie saute:
- 1 tablespoon 100% pure avocado oil
- 2 cups organic baby spinach (chopped)
- 1 cup organic mushrooms (diced)
- 1/2 cup organic onion (diced)
- 2 cloves organic garlic (freshly crushed)
For the sauce:
- 1 1/2 cup organic cauliflower (cut into floret pieces)
- 1 cup homemade almond milk
- 3/4 cups nutritional yeast
- 1/2 cup organic raw cashews
- 1/2 cup organic zucchini (peeled and cubed)
- 1 clove organic garlic (freshly crushed)
- 1 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt
- 1 teaspoon organic red pepper flakes
- 1/8 teaspoon organic tumeric powder
Prepare the rice:
- Stovetop Method - Bring (3) cups of water to a rolling boil. Add (2) cups of sprouted brown rice. Stir, cover tightly, then reduce heat to low. Let simmer for 25 minutes and DO NOT remove the lid. Fluff prior to serving.
- Instant Pot Method - add (3) cups of filtered/purified water and (2) cups of sprouted brown rice and set the Instant Pot on HIGH --> PRESSURE COOK --> 10 minutes. Fluff prior to serving.
Prepare the sauce:
- Add all ingredients for the sauce to a Vitamix and blend until smooth and creamy, then set aside.
Prepare the veggie saute:
- Prepare the vegetables: dice the baby spinach, mushrooms, onions and crush the garlic.
- Add all the prepped veggies and the avocado oil to a non-toxic skillet and lightly saute on low-medium heat for approximately 2-3 minutes, or until the onions and spinach are soft.
- When the rice is ready, add it to the skillet with the sauteed veggies. In the same skillet, add (2) cups of the cooked rice and the entire sauce mixture (approximately 1 1/2 cups) and stir until well combined.
- Add the sauce to the skillet and stir everything together until well combined.
- Optional: If you want to add sausage, add 1 - 2 cups of sliced vegan sausage to the skillet and stir until the sausage is warmed up.
- Optional: Garnish with extra diced baby spinach.
- Best served when hot.
- Regular Brown Rice
- White Rice
- Cauliflower Rice
Hi, I'm Karielyn! I'm the published cookbook author of CLEAN DESSERTS and content creator of The Healthy Family and Home website since 2012. I specialize in creating easy, healthy plant-based recipes that are gluten-free + vegan and made with clean, real food ingredients that you can feel good about eating.