How to cook brown riceOctober 9, 2023
Have you ever wondered how to cook brown rice perfectly or how long to boil it for? Brown rice (sometimes referred to as whole grain rice) is identical to standard white rice, except that the germ and bran of the rice grain remain attached. While it might be known as a healthier option to white rice, many people are put off by brown rice, believing it to be too complex to cook. If you’ve ever wondered how to cook brown rice on the stove, how long it takes to cook brown rice, or what the best portion size is, read on and follow this step-by-step guide.
How to cook brown rice
Cooking brown rice takes patience, but the key is to use the correct rice-to-water ratio. The perfect brown rice ratio requires twice the amount of water to grains of rice. Additionally, you must give the rice adequate time to absorb the water. Many brands of brown rice will advise you to boil it for longer than standard white rice, usually for around 30 to 35 minutes. To get the best results, the rice should be simmered for most of this time. For the last five to 10 minutes, you should leave the rice well covered to absorb the water while off the heat. As a result, you should get light and perfectly tender grains every time.
How to make brown rice
As brown rice takes some time to cook, it’s always a smart move to get it started before you begin prepping the other parts of your meal. Check the rice periodically as you perform other cooking tasks. As a result, by the time your other ingredients are ready, you’ll find that your rice will be as well.
A note on brown rice serving size
Approximately half a cup of brown rice per person should give everyone a perfect portion of brown rice. However, portion size also depends on appetite. You may want to prepare more brown rice for hungrier guests.
Brown rice UK varieties
While learning how to cook brown rice, always examine the rice you are using. It may be short-grain, medium-grain, sprouted, quick- cooking, converted, brown basmati or long-grain brown rice. While many of these types of rice will cook at similar times, some vary greatly. Therefore, if you’re cooking brown basmati rice it may differ from cooking long grain brown rice.
How to cook brown rice on stove tops
To ensure the perfect rice-to-water ratio, carefully consider the size of the pot you’ll be using. When making between one to two cups of brown rice, a medium saucepan is the best option. If the saucepan is too big, your rice may not steam correctly and if it’s too small it could boil over and make a sticky mess. Choose a pot with a lid that fits properly and doesn’t let too much steam escape. While cooking, try not to lift the lid too much to avoid steam being released.
The amount of water to use for brown rice is dictated by whether you are boiling or steaming.
Boiling brown rice
How to cook long grain brown rice by boiling:
- Place 250g of rice into a saucepan and pour in 500ml water.
- Bring the rice and water to a rolling boil before reducing the heat gently to a simmer.
- Cook the rice for 30 minutes and then turn the heat off completely.
- Swiftly cover the rice with a lid and then leave it tightly covered for a further five to 10 minutes so that any remaining water is absorbed.
Steaming brown rice
How to steam brown rice:
- Place 250g of brown rice in a dish that has a cover. Pour in enough water to cover the rice and let it sit for two hours.
- Drain the rice in a colander.
- Fill the steamer with water up to the high mark, then place the basket on your steamer.
- Place the rice in a bowl with two and a half cups of clean water.
- Cover the steamer and steam the rice for between 65 to 70 minutes.
- Let the rice sit for 10 minutes and then serve straight away.
How long to cook brown rice?
As mentioned earlier, different types of rice may take longer to cook. The cooking time is also impacted by how much brown rice you are making. For two cups of long grain brown rice, a total of 40 minutes is required: 30 minutes boiling time and 10 minutes to complete the absorption method.
What to serve with brown rice?
Due to its strong and nutty taste, brown rice is particularly well-suited to flavours and spices with plenty of kick. Try serving brown rice with:
- Smoked fish
- Soy and peanut sauce
- Citrus fruits such as lemon and lime
- Haloumi cheese
Recipes with brown rice
HelloFresh’s recipe development manager Mimi Morely loves cooking with brown rice, and believes, “the simplicity of brown rice has the power to enhance any dish and make it a filling, balanced meal”. You’ll find her favourite HelloFresh brown rice recipes below.
Now that you understand the best ways to cook brown rice, there are plenty of dishes you can try. Brown rice makes a delicious accompaniment to recipes from all over the world. Try wholegrain rice cooked with:
- Meat and fish curries
- Spicy fried meats
- Stuffed cabbage rolls
- Bean chillies
If you’re looking for a delicious whole grain rice recipe, HelloFresh has plenty to choose from.
- Bean Chilli with Brown Rice
- Brown Rice Burrito Bake
- Kung Pao with Brown Rice and Cashews
- Pan-Fried Halloumi with Steamed Brown Rice & Quinoa