Wild Rice Salad

The nutty flavors of toasted wild and black rice combine with candied walnuts for a flavorful vegetarian (and gluten-free) side dish with a hint of sweetness from local dried cherries. The rice, nuts and dressing for this salad can all be made ahead of time. The salad can also be dressed and allowed to sit while you finish preparing the rest of your meal, if desired.
Photography By D. Lucas Landis | November 09, 2015


Adapted from Anna Wiebe

Serves 10–12

Toast the rice in a pan over medium heat with 1 tablespoon butter for 2–3 minutes. In a 5-quart pot, combine the rice with cold water to cover by 2 inches. Add 1 teaspoon of salt. Simmer, covered, until tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Place the walnuts, brown sugar, the remaining tablespoon of butter and ½ teaspoon salt in a heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat. Stir frequently for 5 minutes, until the sugar is dissolved and the nuts are beginning to brown. Pour the mixture onto parchment paper and allow to cool.

Make the vinaigrette while the rice is simmering: Whisk together the cider, shallot, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard and garlic. Gradually whisk in the oil until emulsified.

Rinse cooked rice in a sieve under cold water; drain. Stir together the rice, vinaigrette, walnuts, parsley, dried cherries and feta cheese. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired. Serve at room temperature.

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  • ½ pound wild rice (we recommend Lundberg Family Farms Wild Blend)
  • ½ pound black rice (we recommend Lundberg Family Farms Black Pearl)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1½ teaspoons salt
  • 2 cups chopped walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • ¼ cup apple cider
  • 3 tablespoons chopped shallot
  • 4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1¼ cups chopped flat leaf parsley
  • 1 cup dried cherries
  • ½ cup crumbled feta cheese
  • Black pepper
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