Spring is a perfect time to enjoy grain salads. They are a great transition from hearty winter meals to light summer fare. The tangy sweet chewy goodness of this cranberry walnut wild rice salad is a satisfying meal on it’s own, but it’s also a great side dish – making it an ideal choice for potluck get-togethers.
Wild Brown Rice Mix
I buy my wild brown rice mix from the bulk section of our local health food store. If you don’t have that option, Lundberg Wild Blend appears to be very similar. For this recipe, I cook the rice in my rice cooker (on the brown rice setting) several hours ahead of time and remove it from the cooker immediately when the timer goes off. I fluff it with a fork and set it aside to cool – this prevents the rice from becoming mushy.
I always try to sneak dark leafy greens in wherever I can. You would hardly guess this salad includes raw baby kale. While baby kale leaves are tenderer than adult plants, mincing them in the food processor makes them even more palatable.
Cranberry Walnut Wild Rice Salad
- 4 cups wild brown rice mix cooked (2 cups uncooked)
- ¾ cup Magical Applesauce Vinaigrette (see recipe on forksoverknives.com)
- ½ red onion medium
- 2 stalks celery
- 2 cups baby kale
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- 1 apple medium, diced
- If you do not have cooked rice on hand, cook rice in advance, fluff with fork and allow to cool.
- Prepare Magical Applesauce Vinaigrette.
- Place onion in a food processor fitted with the S blade and pulse until onion is finely chopped.
- Scrape onion into a bowl and repeat the process with the celery and baby kale, separately.
- Add walnuts and cranberries to chopped vegetables and stir until well combined.
- Scape cooled rice into chopped vegetables with a fork (to help separate the grains) and stir until well combine. You may find it helpful to scrape and stir ⅓ of the rice at a time.
- Add vinaigrette and diced apples to the salad, stir and serve or refrigerate for 1-2 days for later use.
Note: I do not include nutrition information with my recipes because I subscribe to the theories presented in the book Whole and believe we should focus on eating a variety of whole foods instead of counting calories or keeping track of individual nutrients.