I don’t know how I’ve lived on this earth for almost 30 years and never had black rice before, but it’s true.

So, last month when I was asked to develop professional recipes for a brand who makes a yummy black rice, I made it my mission to have a little nibble.  I’ve seen black rice in sushi at Whole Foods Market and some fancy Manhattan restaurants but haven’t had a chance to actually whip it up and play with it myself.

I figured it would be a lot like brown rice, but to my surprise it wasn’t.  It was a bit rougher (if that is even a word) and not as soft n’ fluffy as it’s brown rice cousin.

At first I was a bit perplexed as to what to pair it with but once I closed my eyes and started to imagine other flavors that would compliment this rice- my mind ran wild.

Slivered almonds and fresh scallions are all the rage right now in my kitchen, so I of course had to toss them in there.

And the balsamic dressing. O’ the balsamic dressing- another staple in many of my recipes.

This sweet n’ savory concoction of garlic, mushrooms, balsamic, carrots, celery and shallots are make this summertime rice salad a recipe for success.

Plus, it’ll look so pretty for your sunset dinner on your patio table under your umbrella.

Ahhh, just close your eyes and picture that right now.

Black Rice.





Big, Big Smile.

Am I Right?

Balsamic Shiitake Rice Salad
Serves: 8
Gluten-Free and Vegan
Author: Amie Valpone
Recipe type: Entree


  • 3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 2 cups shiitake mushroom caps thinly sliced
  • 2 large carrots chopped
  • 1 shallot chopped
  • 2 celery stalks chopped
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • ¾ tsp. freshly ground white pepper
  • 3 cups black rice cooked according to package instructions
  • 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 2 scallions thinly sliced


  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic, stir-fry until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add mushrooms and sauté for 1 minute.
  3. Add the carrots, shallot, celery, sea salt and pepper. Stir-fry until vegetables are tender, about 5-7 minutes. Stir in the cooked black rice and balsamic vinegar. Mix well to combine.
  4. Transfer the rice mixture into a 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Cover loosely with tin foil; bake for 30 minutes or until tender.
  5. Remove from oven; top with scallions and serve.
Nutrition Facts
Balsamic Shiitake Rice Salad
Amount Per Serving (8 g)
Calories 272 Calories from Fat 18
% Daily Value*
Fat 2g3%
Sodium 263mg11%
Potassium 248mg7%
Carbohydrates 57g19%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 2625IU53%
Vitamin C 2.1mg3%
Calcium 27mg3%
Iron 1.2mg7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


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  1. I love black rice and the recipe is delicious. I’d just like to add one thing though. The cook time says 40 minutes with a total time of 45 minutes but this is a bit misleading since this is assuming the black rice is already cooked. Black rice can take quite a while to cook, at least 1/2 hour, sometimes more. Just wanted to throw that out there that people need to add on an extra half hour or more for cooking the rice when taking into consideration how much time is need in total to prepare this dish. Otherwise – fantastic!!

  2. Great info. Lucky me I came across your blog by chance (stumbleupon).

    I’ve bookmarked it for later!

  3. hi val. was looking for black rice recipes n found this site of yours. i’ve been cooking with black rice for a very long time. its used a lot in malaysia, where i first tasted it. i ha a dessert with it..it is slow cooked in coconut milk, pandan leaf and palm sugar until it becomes very thick.

    i tend to pressure cook it so it bursts open, then add in lots of veggies and big chunks of spicy sausages and simmer the lot in milk and just add in some salt n pepper.

  4. Ohh! Black Rice! This might call for a trip to Whole Foods. 😉 Love the idea of rich shiitakes and bright, crunchy celery and scallions. There’s something about the rice that looks very dessert-y too… maybe like a coconut-y rice pudding?

    1. Sounds tasty to me Val; coconut pudding would be fabulous! Let me know how it turns out!
      Have a wonderful week.

      1. I actually made a coconut black rice pudding with date molasses (we have them in India in abundance) and it was all gone by the time I served them to my son and husband …….just all gone (yes I did get a small bowl for me 🙂