Have I told you how much I miss cooking for more than just my husband and me? It's difficult to cut back when you are so geared toward cooking for a family and suddenly so it seems, your kids are all grown up and living lives of their own. When my kids were here and both of us held down full-time jobs, getting dinner on the table every night in a reasonable amount of time was often quite the ordeal. So way back when the boxed variety of rice and roni was a great help to me in the kitchen. Who can resist something that's ready in 15 minutes, right? But these days, I am older and have to be careful of my sodium intake, so I've had to say goodbye to the boxed variety.
In the wake of that, one day I decided to make a homestyle version of my own. Now whether it had already been done by another prior to my posting I can't say. All I know is, I created something that is so quick and easy I would never have to rely on the box kind again ~ not when I can make it so fast here at home. The first version, Homestyle Rice and Roni, is very popular here on the blog and has led the way to my creating a version with broccoli and cheese and an Asian style as well. Today, it's with mushrooms! I have been really wanting mushroom risotto, but honestly I could not justify spending over $7.00 for arborio rice with our recent budget for groceries. Instead I opted to make my rice and roni and add in mushrooms.
This Mushroom Rice And Roni cost me approximately $3.82 to make and serves 4-6 portions. It's so much less than risotto and is a perfect week night side dish to make as it cooks in about 15 minutes!
- 1 cup white rice
- 1 - 10 oz. box crimini mushrooms - chopped (or white button)
- 1 cup onion - small dice
- 1/3 cup cut spaghetti
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 3 tbsp. butter
- 1 tbsp. olive oil (or canola)
- 1 1/2 tsp. dried parsley flakes - crushed
- 1/4 tsp. granulated garlic
- 1/4 tsp. salt (I used kosher salt)
- 1/8 tsp. black pepper (I used a fine table grind)
- In a wide skillet that has a lid, heat the pan over medium high heat and add in the olive oil. Let the oil heat up in the pan for 20-30 seconds and add in the mushroom pieces. Turn the heat up to high and saute quickly to get some color on the mushrooms. Takes about 1-2 minutes. Remove the mushrooms to a waiting plate or bowl.
- In that same wide skillet, melt the butter over medium high heat. When the butter sizzles, add in the onions and cook for about a minute until they soften; giving the pan a shimmy shake or stir while they are cooking. Then add in the cut spaghetti. Keep stirring until it starts to brown a bit.
- Turn the head down to medium low and add in the rice and dried herbs. Stir and slowly add in the broth.
- Turn the heat up until it comes to a bubble, lid it, turn the heat down to low and cook for a total of 15 minutes. IN THE LAST MINUTE OR SO OF COOKING, add in the mushrooms and stir. Heat the mushrooms back up and your rice should be perfectly cooked and ready to plate.
The beauty of the base recipe for the rice and roni is you can get creative with it and swap the mushroom for another vegetable of your choice. And the other great thing is that this side dish will pair well with chicken, pork, beef or seafood ~ fish in particular!
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