You can learn to make your own instant brown rice at home. This recipe uses a dehydrator to dry cooked rice and speed up the cooking time when you are ready to serve it for meals.
Brown rice is terrific for your food storage because it is healthier for you than white rice. Unlike white rice, which has the bran and germ layers removed, brown rice has all the nutrients intact. They give it the rich texture and nutty flavor that is not found in white rice.
The shelf life of traditional brown rice is short, only 3 to 6 months on average. Even with proper storage practices, you’ll need to use uncooked brown rice within s6 months or the oils will go rancid and you’ll waste money.
You can extend the storage life up to 24 months if you package and store uncooked rice in the freezer. Another way to extend the shelf life is to make instant brown rice and store it in canning jars with oxygen absorbers. Precooking and then drying the rice will keep it from oxidizing.
Another benefit of using your own instant brown rice is the cooking time. It takes a long time to cook brown rice so you must plan ahead for dinner if you are using it. Even using a rice cooker it can take from 60 to 80 minutes for a batch to finish. What if you could cut down your preparation time by a third? Really, DIY instant brown rice from cupboard to dinner plate is possible in 15 minutes.
This recipe uses a dehydrator to dry cooked rice and speed up the cooking time in the future when you are ready to use it. It does not mean that I have found some fantastic way to take brown rice and cook it start to finish in 15 minutes. Unfortunately, there is no shortcut for nutritious meals.
DIY Instant Brown Rice
Ultimately, taking a little time to prepare your rice now will save time and effort at dinner preparation time. You’ll have healthy rice on the table in as little as 15 minutes and will save money by doing it yourself. Start looking for sales and stock up!
FYI, this also works for white rice. Cook long grain brown rice according to package directions; make sure all liquid is absorbed. I like to use a rice cooker and cook it in half-pound increments, but any amount of cooked rice will work, even leftovers.
Cover individual dehydrator trays with parchment paper, plastic wrap, or Paraflexx liners and spread the cooked rice in a single layer. Dehydrate at 125°F for 5 to 7 hours.
Midway through the drying process, break up any rice that is stuck together and rotate trays from top to bottom (on a round dehydrator) or one-quarter turn (on an Excalibur dehydrator).
You will know the dehydrated rice is completely dry if it clicks when dropped on a tabletop.
Allow the rice to cool completely and store it in canning jars with 100cc oxygen absorbers. Alternatively, you can remove oxygen from the jars with a FoodSaver jar attachment. Due to the high-fat content of brown rice, this homemade quick brown rice should be used within 12 months.
To use Homemade Quick Brown Rice
- Measure 1 cup of dried rice, place in a saucepan and cover with 3/4 cup of cool water. Stir and soak for 5 minutes to begin rehydration.
- Bring to boil over high heat for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Remove from heat, cover and let sit 10 minutes.
- Fluff with a fork.
Yield: Makes 2 cups of rice. 1 cup uncooked rice = 3 1/2 cups cooked rice = 2 cups dehydrated rice.
Add chicken or beef bouillon to the soaking water for more flavor.
Add cinnamon and brown sugar during step 2. It’s terrific for a morning treat.
Add broccoli and cheese to step 2 and make a complete meal.
Add peas and drizzle in an egg white, during step 2, to give it an oriental flair.