Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing

Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing with tender rice, mushrooms, cauliflower, sage and thyme is the perfect side dish to serve for Thanksgiving or Christmas.

If you’re looking for a way to eat more healthy this holiday season while still enjoying your favorite festive recipes, then this is the perfect stuffing option for you. It’s a gluten-free and nutritious Side Dish that the whole family is sure to love! For more healthy alternatives this season, try Healthy Green Bean Casserole and Healthy Sweet Potato Casserole.

Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing in baking dish


This healthy alternative to traditional stuffings comes just in time for holiday dinners. It’s an easy and healthy addition to your Thanksgiving or Christmas menu, and it’s gotten rave reviews from people. The stuffing alternative is made with a Wild Rice and mushroom mixture as the base. It has a classic stuffing flavor from the onion, celery, and fresh herbs like thyme leaves and parsley. Then it’s all topped off with pecans for a nice crunch in each bite.

It’s also the perfect stuffing for any of your friends who are gluten sensitive. Wild rice doesn’t contain any gluten, making this a naturally gluten-free stuffing.

Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing collage

Not only is this delicious stuffing gluten-free, but it’s also lower in carbohydrates and calories than traditional bread stuffing. Wild rice is also high in protein and rich in dietary fiber. It has a fluffy texture, and nutty flavor that easily absorbs the essence from the fresh herbs, and vegetables around it. So, it really is the perfect healthy replacement for your favorite stuffings. However, if you prefer a classic stuffing with bread, and still want to make it healthier you can always try Whole Wheat Stuffing to go with your turkey dinner.

If you have any leftovers after the holidays, you can toss the stuffing in a fresh green salad for a new meal. Top it off with spinach, kale, and other favorite veggies, a simple vinaigrette dressing, and a handful of walnuts for some crunch. It’s the perfect healthy and filling lunch.

Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing in mixing bowl



  • Stovetop: Before you start the Rice Stuffing recipe, you’ll need to cook the rice. First, rinse ½ cup wild rice. Then add it to a dutch oven with a pinch of salt and 1 ½ cups water. Turn the stove to medium-high heat to bring the water to a boil. Then cover the pot and simmer over low heat for another 50 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit for 5 more minutes before uncovering.
  • Pressure cooker: To speed up the prep time and get your rice ready for the oven time faster, you can make it in an instant pot. Rinse the rice then add ½ cup of rice, ¾ cup of water, and a pinch of salt to the pressure cooker. Seal and cook on high pressure for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat, and do a natural release before opening the pressure cooker.

Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing close up in baking dish


  • Vegan: If you’re preparing a vegan Thanksgiving menu, there are a few ingredients you’ll need to change to make this recipe work for a vegan or vegetarian diet. Firstly, replace the chicken stock in the cooking liquid with ½ cup vegetable broth. There’s also an egg in this recipe, that you can replace with a Flaxseed Egg.
  • Veggies: There are so many different delicious veggies, you can add to this dish for some extra texture and flavor. Chop your favorite vegetables and squashes into pieces to make stuffing with butternut squash, carrots, broccoli rice, kale, green onions, or peppers.
  • Quinoa: You can use the same vegetables and flavorings on a quinoa base if you prefer it to wild rice. Or, do one part wild rice and one part quinoa.

Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing in baking dish

  • Seasonings: There are a variety of herbs and spices you can experiment with for this recipe. Rosemary, bay leaf, coriander, oregano, or a dash of nutmeg would all taste amazing in Wild Rice Stuffing.
  • Add-ins: For some extra mix-ins try adding different kinds of nuts and seeds like almonds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, or sunflower seeds to go along with the pecans. You could also toss in some fruit like chopped apples or dried cranberries for some sweetness.



  • Serve: Don’t leave this stuffing side dish at room temperature for more than a couple of hours.
  • Store: If you have any leftovers, you can cover the dish to store it in the fridge. Kept sealed in the refrigerator this recipe will be good for a week. Reheat it in the oven or microwave before serving.
  • Freeze: You can also freeze Wild Rice Stuffing for up to 6 months.

Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing close up on spoon

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Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing

Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing with tender rice, mushrooms, cauliflower, sage, and thyme is the perfect side dish to serve for Thanksgiving or Christmas.
Yield 6 Servings
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American


  • ½ cup wild rice , rinsed well
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 ounces crimini mushrooms , chopped
  • ½ yellow onion , diced
  • 2 stalks celery , diced
  • 4 cloves garlic , minced
  • 2 cups riced cauliflower
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon rubbed sage
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup fresh parsley , chopped
  • 1/2 cup pecans , chopped


  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and spray an 8x8 inch baking dish with baking spray.
  • Cook wild rice according to packaging or use the recipe above.
  • Add olive oil to a large skillet.
  • Add mushrooms, onion, celery, garlic, and riced cauliflower on medium heat, cooking for 6-8 minutes until softened.
  • Whisk together broth, egg, salt, sage, thyme, pepper, and parsley in a large bowl.
  • Add in the cooked vegetables and cooked wild rice, stirring until well combined.
  • Spoon wild rice mixture into the baking dish (do not press down).
  • Top with chopped pecans.
  • Bake, uncovered for 25-30 minutes.


Calories: 193kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 31mg | Sodium: 438mg | Potassium: 526mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 401IU | Vitamin C: 32mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 2mg
Keyword: Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing

Healthy Wild Rice Stuffing collage

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a trained professional chef who has cooked for private clients for over a dozen years. Experienced in handling dietary restrictions, allergies and picky kid eaters, she's well versed in coming up with healthy, yet flavorful recipes.


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