{Healthy New Year} Whole Grain Risotto with Kale and Carrots

This post is part of the Virtual Potluck! We are teaming up with Bob’s Red Mill and California Olive Ranch to bring you four weeks of healthy eating–A Healthy New Year. You can read more about the project here. This week I’m focusing on a side dish. Each week will include a giveaway so you can create healthy dishes with these great products as well. Also, CA Olive Ranch would like to offer a 10% discount to you. Just enter the coupon code ‘BLOGFRIENDS’ when you buy from their online store.

For the side dish, we were challenged to pair Bob’s Red Mill’s Grande Whole Grains with California Olive Ranch’s Miller’s Blend Olive Oil. The grain mix includes hard red white wheat, long grain brown rice, whole oats, whole rye, whole triticale, whole barley, white buckwheat, and sesame seeds. Bob’s Red Mill suggests using these grains as a cereal, a pilaf in salads, soups, and pita bread or as a stir- fry with vegetables. California Olive Ranch describes Miller’s Blend as having a “fruity beginning balanced with a bit of pepper at the end.”

I chose to make a risotto which we served with a roasted chicken.  And let me tell you, this is some nutritious risotto. I love eating healthy foods, it just makes you feel so good. When I got home from the grocery store with this week’s groceries, I washed another huge bunch of kale and put it into the fridge with a smile on my face, knowing that I would be eating so well this week. Okay–so maybe that sounds a little cheesy, but it’s true. I feel better about myself when I’m putting healthy foods into my body.

Whole Grain Risotto with Kale
adapted generously from Bob’s Red Mill

2 Tablespoons Miller’s Blend Olive Oil
2 shallots, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 medium carrots, grated (about 1 cup)
2 cups of Grande Whole Grains
1/2 cup white wine
4 cups reduced sodium chicken stock
1 Tbsp chopped fresh thyme
4 cups chopped kale, lightly packed
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste

1. In a large sauté pan or Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onions, carrots and garlic and sauté until softened and fragrant, stirring frequently.
2. Add in the wine and scrap off any bits that may be on the bottom of the pan. Continue to cook for 2-4 minutes.
3. Add in the chicken stock and fresh thyme and bring to a boil. Add the grains, stir, reduce heat to medium-low and cook covered for 30 minutes
4. Add chopped kale and continue to cook for 15-20 minutes or until grains have softened and liquid is absorbed.
5. Remove from heat and stir in Parmesan until melted. Add salt and pepper to taste.
6. If desired, drizzle with extra Miller’s Blend Olive Oil.

Verdict: Felt good to be eating such a nutrient-packed risotto. The grains do retain a fair amount of bite to them (that’s FIBER folks!), so it isn’t smooth like your traditional risotto. It is much more chewy. More like a pilaf. The flavors in this are great though and I kind of like the chewiness of the grains.
Husband’s take: I don’t think he’ll necessarily be asking for it again, but he ate seconds!
Changes I would make: None, but it would be fun to play around with different vegetables and herbs.
Difficulty: Easy!

Giveaway has closed. Winner is Connie! Congrats Connie!

GIVEAWAY details: One winner will receive Grande Whole Grains and Miller’s Blend Olive Oil.

To Enter:

Visit Bob’s Red Mill or California Olive Ranch’s Facebook page and find the Virtual Potluck code word. Use that code word in a sentence in your comment.

For Extra Entries (MAKE SURE to leave an extra comment for each or they won’t count!):

1. Follow BRMCOR and VirtualPotluck‘s Twitter profiles and tweet about the contest linking to the blog you’re entering from and using the #virtualpotluck hashtag. Then comment again, letting us know you’ve done so, by providing the link to your tweet.
2. “Like” Virtual Potluck on Facebook 
3. Subscribe to my RSS feed or add your name to my email list (please confirm when you get the email asking you to do so).
4. “Like” Not Rachael Ray on Facebook.
5. Follow @Not_RachaelRay on Twitter.

Don’t forget you can get additional entries in each week’s giveaways by visiting our host blog and finding other participating VP bloggers sites to comment on.

That’s up to six chances to win (just here on my blog)! Enter by Tuesday (1/17) and I’ll choose a random winner on Wednesday (1/18). Winner will have 48 hours to respond to my email before I choose another winner. Prize will be shipped by BRM and COO. Good luck!

Disclosure: I was provided with free products to use, review, and create recipes with. All opinions, as always, are 100% my own.

When you make a recipe from my site tag it with #RachelCooks!
I love to see what you're creating!


  1. Hi Rachel!

    How many would this serve as a main?



  2. Pingback: 50+ Kale Recipes » Rachel Cooks

  3. I bet you could make this into a soup and it’d be really good!

  4. And I subscribe to your blog via RSS.


  5. I follow you on Twitter !

  6. I like you on FB!

  7. I like virtual potluck on fb

  8. This looks healthy and delicious! I love adding kale to green up a dish… hopefully I win Miller’s Blend to make this dish :)

  9. Here’s to building a better US! Cheers.

  10. I like Virtual Potluck on FB.

  11. I like Not Rachael Ray on FB.

  12. I love following along and seeing all the different ways to use the Grande Whole Grains and Miller’s Blend Olive Oil.

  13. This recipe sounds delicious and I’m sure it was enhanced using Miller’s Blend. Thanks for the picture of the grains!

  14. I follow you on twitter: ljskop.

  15. A cousin (who’s Italian-American)was just saying on the phone that he makes risotto a lot, and a friend of his from Milan said that you can add almost anything to risotto. Miller’s Blend sounds like a good beginning for this risotto.

  16. Your use of the Miller’s Blend and the Whole Grains Blend looks like a great side dish and at the same time would make a great entree for me. I have never tried Kale but plan to soon and this looks like it could make the cut as my first recipe. The close up photo looks amazing and your dish looks so “fresh”. Good Work!

  17. I “like” Not Rachael Ray on Facebook.

  18. I subscribe to your RSS feed.

  19. I like Virtual Potluck on Facebook.

  20. I tweeted your tweet https://twitter.com/#!/BoonieSooze/status/157505230458720257

    AND I follow BRM, COR, and Virtual Potluck on Twitter.

    Phew! That was a lot of work!

  21. Would love to try Miller’s Blend!

  22. That’s pretty much all I use, whole grain rice or whole grain period. This looks so colorful and filling!

  23. We love kale and try to squeeze it into just about everything. Great combo!

  24. This looks great and it would help with my Build a Better Me goal to eat more dark leafy greens.

  25. This dish is right up my alley and I love chewy pastas and grains.
    I love all the veggies you used in here as well.

  26. Miller’s Blend would be perfect with the spicy flavor of Bob’s recipe for Grandé Mexicali. Cheers!

  27. Love this! I need to make this like now!

  28. I love risottos made with whole grains, but most of the recipes I’ve seen have called for soaking over night (it might have been a wheat berry risotto). I will have to try this.

  29. Pingback: A Tasty and Heathy New Year Challenge with Bob’s Red Mill and California Olive Ranch «

  30. Oh, this looks so yummy! Wish I could try the Grande Whole Grains but there not gluten-free. Still, I bet this would be yummy with millet or good old fashioned arborio rice.

  31. follow @Not_RachaelRay on Twitter.

  32. signed up for RSS feed

  33. like not rachael ray on facebook

  34. “Like” Virtual Potluck on Facebook

  35. Miller’s Blend and Bog Red mills are a great combination

  36. Omg this looks amazing–creamy and healthy. Yum! I will like you on FB!

  37. I follow virtual potluck on facebook

  38. I follow you on twitter

  39. I can’t wait to try this recipe with millers blend

  40. Risotto is one of my favorite things to make. This sounds right up my alley. LOVE the whole grains!

  41. I like Not Rachael Ray on Facebook

  42. I like Virtual Potluck on facebook

  43. I would love to have a taste of your Whole Grain Risotto with Kale made with Miller’s Blend Olive Oil.

  44. I follow you on Twitter @GoddessFoodie.

  45. I like you on FB.

  46. I would love to dip some bread in Miller’s Blend.

  47. I subscribe via email.

  48. Cooking with Miller’s Blend makes everything taste better.

  49. I love the different grains in this. It sounds so delicious – and healthy!

  50. yum! i love the idea of a healthier risotto- and ive got a giant bag of carrots in the fridge! ps- i am infusing vodka right now with one of the marx food vanilla beans and it smells heavenly!

  51. I would love to try the Miller’s Blend olive oil.

  52. Sounds sooo good! Sometimes it’s nice to have a side dish with a little texture; I’ll have to keep this one in mind!

  53. This sounds so yummy! Love this meal :)

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