Good morning lovely people, I hope you’re doing well!
Today, I’m going to talk to you all about RICE – the many different varieties, nutrition profiles, way to cook and how to incorporate them into your diet.
I LOVE rice – weather it’s a risotto, a baked rice, wild rice over a nice warm salad or even in nanna’s chicken broth – I really do enjoy this grain. I get a lot of questions about my rice cooker (which I sometimes show on my stories) and the best type of rice for our health and so on.
So, today, I thought I’d answer those questions here. Now, there are LITERALLY THOUSANDS of varieties of rice (over 40,000 actually), so I obviously won’t be delving into each one. I’m going to focus on the ones below:
This is medium gran rice used typically for making risotto. It differs from arborio rice (which is often used in risotto) in that it is firmer, contains a higher starch content and keeps it’s shape better which is why I prefer to use this type of rice over arborio when making risotto. Carnaroli rice is grown in northern Italy.
Nutrition: A 100g of Carnolini rice contains 359 calories, 1g of fat, 80g of carbohydrates and 7g of protein.
Long Grain Brown Rice
There are many varieties of brown. All brown rice varieties are WHOLE GRAINS – which means that the inedible hull is removed however both the bran layer and cereal germ are still there. Essentially, what this means is that there is still a lot of fibre in brown rice as opposed to white rice (where all the outer layers are removed). Fibre is INCREDIBLE important for our gut health and overall health so this is my personal first choice when making rice. This is not the say that there’s anything wrong with white rice, but adding fibre to your diet is normally a very good idea, especially when studies show time and time again that most people in the developed world do not get nearly enough fibre.
Nutrition: A 100g serving contains 360 calories, 3g of fat, 85g of carbs, 3g of fibre and 9g of protein.
Red rice is a pretty recent discover for me which I am loving – It contains antioxidants, magnesium and fibre which are all really important for our health. In fact, it’s my new go-to when batch cooking rice to go into salads and lunches. It is the highest in fibre, lowest in carbs and contains a fair amount of protein making it ideal for a healthy balanced diet.
Nutrition: a 100g serving contains 330 calories, 71g of carbohydrates, 2.2g of fat, 8g of protein and 6.2g of fibre.
Jasmine rice is delicate, soft, buttery and has a really mild sweet flavour. This is they rice I cook when I’m trying to be fancy. It cooks beautifully and pairs really nicely with Asian dishes.
Nutrition: a 100g serving contains 348 calories, 78g of carbohydrates, 0.9g of fat and 7g of protein.
The difference between brown, white and red rice
White rice has the outer layers – the husk, bran and germ – all removed. As a result, this removes the fibre and a lot of the vitamins and minerals, so it does have less nutrients when you compare it to some of the other varieties – such as brown and red rice.
White rice has a higher glycemic index which means your body breaks down white rice more quickly. White rice is also lower in fibre – fibre is important for gut health and keeping you feeling full for longer.
Brown rice has the outer hull removed but it still has the bran layer and the germ. What this means is there is a lot more nutrients which are still left in the rice – including fibre, vitamins and minerals.
Brown rice, similar to white, has different grain lengths – short, medium and long. Brown rice is a good source of magnesium, iron and can be a good source of zinc. It also contains more fibre compared to white rice.
Red rice is arguably the most nutritious rice variety you can choose.
While red and brown rice are both healthy options, red rice is actually the better choice. Red rice contains a higher fibre content and is higher in terms of the amounts of beneficial nutrients present within the rice itself.
Using a Rice Cooker
I was gifted a small rice cooker by my mother-in-law last year and use it pretty much weekly. It cooks rice perfectly and isn’t big or bulky so I really do enjoy using it. Having said this, do I think you NEED this appliance to cook rice? No, not really. Cooking rice on the stove achieves pretty much the same results in almost the same amount of time (using a rice cooker does shorten the cooking time but only by about 5 minutes). However, if rice is a staple in your diet and you have trouble cooking rice on the stove or you want your stove top to be clear to be able to simultaneously cook something else on the stove, this might be for you.
I hope you’ve found this helpful and will happily cook your fave rice dishes this week – tag me if you do 🙂
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Until my next post, be well xXx