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casserole dish with wild rice & butternut with cranberries and pecans

Wild Rice & Butternut Casserole with Cranberries and Pecans

A lovely medley of wild and brown rice pilaf, sweet roasted butternut and fresh or dried cranberries, deliciously crunchy pecans, and a subtle hint of nuttiness, this harvest casserole is brimming with festive colors and reminiscable fall flavors.
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Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: butternut squash, casserole, dinner, rice, Thanksgiving sides
Servings: 10 servings
Calories: 208kcal

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Equipment

  • 9 x 13 casserole dish

Ingredients

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    Ingredients for Wild Rice & Butternut Casserole with Cranberries and Pecans

    • 1 cup wild and brown rice blend I am using Lundberg
    • 4 tablespoons olive oil divided
    • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt divided
    • 1/2 teaspoon pepper divided
    • 1 medium butternut squash peeled and cut into a 1" dice
    • 1 large onion rough chopped
    • 2 tablespoons thyme fresh
    • 1 tablespoon sage dried
    • 1/2 teaspoon marjoram dried
    • 3/4 cup fresh cranberries or 1/2 cup dried
    • 1/2 cup pecans
    • 1/2 cup Parmesan aged, grated

    ** to enhance the wild rice during cooking

    • chicken stock homemade, use what rice package instructions call for
    • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika optional

    Instructions

    The Method

    • Place a rack in the center of your oven and preheat oven to 425°F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil and set aside.
    • Drizzle 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a 9 x 13 casserole dish and be sure to grease the sides all the way up. Set aside.

    ** I cook my rice in homemade chicken stock to give it richness and depth of flavor; add the smoked paprika, if using, directly to the cooking liquid and cook according to package directions, adding butter and/or salt if called for.

    • Cook the wild rice. You will end up with about 3 cups cooked.
    • While the rice cooks, toss the diced squash in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Sprinkle with half of the salt and half of the pepper. Turn out onto the prepared baking sheet and roast in the oven for 15 minutes undisturbed. The squash should caramelize and begin to turn golden brown. If it requires and additional few minutes to brown, it's okay to let it go longer. You are looking for that caramelization.
    • Once the squash is caramelized, toss the squash to loosen from the foil and expose additional sides to the heat. Scatter the rough-chopped onion over top and place back into the oven for an additional 5 minutes. Remove from oven, but DO NOT turn off heat.
    • In a large mixing bowl, toss the remaining tablespoon of olive oil, the fresh (or dried) cranberries, pecans, and herbs with the remaining salt and pepper. Add the rice and mix well. Add the roasted butternut squash and toss to combine.
    • Turn the mixture out into the prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese and place into the oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and casserole begins to brown on top.
    • Garnish with additional cranberries and a handful of fresh herbs if desired.

    Nutrition

    Serving: 1serving | Calories: 208kcal | Carbohydrates: 25g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 202mg | Potassium: 410mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 8423IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 117mg | Iron: 2mg

    Please note that the nutrition information provided above is approximate and meant as a guideline only.