This Pecan Rice Pilaf is an easy Thanksgiving side dish that is full of rich fall flavors!
It’s that time of year again. The holidays are quickly approaching and I’ve been working on a few new recipes for this year’s Thanksgiving dinner. Introducing a new recipe to a beloved holiday meal isn’t always easy, at least not in my family. We all have recipes that we love and expect to see on the menu and when something gets bumped for a new recipe it had better be good! I think this Pecan Rice Pilaf is going to pass the test with flying colors. This easy side dish recipe is full of flavor and the additional crunch from the roasted pecans makes it perfect for fall not to mention it is going to go great with my Apple Pecan Stuffing!
What makes rice a pilaf, verses just rice is cooking it in a seasoned broth. This rice dish starts by adding the dried rice to onions sauteed in butter. Chicken broth is added to give it more flavor and the rice cooks that way until it is tender. You can make life simple and save some time on Thanksgiving if you make the rice the day before. Once it has cooked in the buttery onions and broth you can let it cool and store it in the refrigerator overnight. When you are ready to use it you can warm the rice back up by placing it in a skillet with 3/4 cup of water, covering it, and heating it over medium high heat for about 5 minutes. While the rice warms back up you can get the pecans ready. They are toasted in a skillet with a littler butter to give bring out their rich flavor. When the pecans are ready and the rice is warm you can toss everything together along with a little fresh parsley. The rice is so flavorful from the broth and the crunch of those lightly cooked, buttery pecans makes the dish something extra special.
- Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add pecans and saute them until they are lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Set pecans aside.
- Melt 5 tablespoons of butter in the same skillet over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and cook until the onions are tender, about 10 minutes.
- Once the onions are done add rice to skillet and stir well. Add broth, salt, thyme, and pepper. Cover and simmer until rice is tender and all liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes.
- Once the rice is done stir the pecans and parsley into the mixture.
This Pecan Rice Pilaf is going to make an awesome Thanksgiving side dish but it isn’t just for the holidays. It is so simple to make that it is perfect for weeknight dinners with the family.