Last week my wife Laura had surgery to repair a torn tendon in her foot—the result of a tennis match gone awry. It was a pretty routine procedure, but the recovery time is long (six weeks) and she had no mobility at all for the first week. Because of this I wanted to prepare as much food as I could that she could hop (literally—she has a boot on and a cane to get around when absolutely necessary) into the kitchen and microwave when she’s hungry. That means pre-packaged meals, fresh things like fruit and vegetables, and things I make in that tool sent from heaven, the Instant Pot.
One of the first things I decided to make—mostly because we had all the ingredients on hand and I didn’t want to make a trip to Whole Foods—was a cream-based rice soup. I remember having that as a kid when I was on the mend and really enjoying it. The heat warmed me up and it was so hearty that it helped me to relax and recover. I thought it could do the same for Laura, so I whipped it up. Turns out it was really good. So I spent this week tweaking the recipe a bit and what’s below is the final product.
This is a relatively straightforward recipe, veganized and enhanced with a few extra add-ins like kale and coconut milk. I think Beyond Meat Chicken Strips work best for the “chicken” component as far as making it feel old school, but there are others you might want to try instead—things like soy curls or maybe even tempeh.
It’s really easy to make this soup thanks to the Instant Pot, but if you don’t have one of those, a large pot or Dutch oven would do as well. The procedure would be the same, but you’d want to bring it to a boil and then reduce to a simmer and cook for about 25 minutes. Also, I made mine very thick, but if you want to thin it out you can add another cup of coconut milk or broth (or water).
So give this recipe a try and let me know what you think. It’s going to be a staple for me as the cold weather comes in, and I hope it will be for you, too. Let me know how it goes in the comments below, and don’t forget to tag @nutfreevegan on social media so I can check out your photos.
Hearty Instant Pot "Chicken" and Wild Rice Stew
- 2 Tbsp. chickpea flour
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil
- 2 large stalks celery chopped
- 2 large carrots chopped
- ½ large white onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 bag Beyond Meat BeyongChicken Strips Grilled, chopped into ½-inch chunks
- 1-½ cups wild rice brown or white work, too
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 1 Tbsp. rosemary
- 1 Tbsp. thyme
- 1 Tbsp. parsley chopped
- ½ tsp. salt
- ½ tsp. pepper
- 1 cup kale chopped
- Mix chickpea flour and coconut milk in a large bowl and set aside.
- Set instant pot to Sauté and when it’s hot, add celery, carrots, onion and garlic. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes.
- Add remaining ingredients except for kale and stir. Set instant pot to Soup setting with a time of 10 minutes. Once it’s finished cooking, allow the steam to release naturally—about 10 minutes—and then open the pot. Stir in kale and let sit for 5 minutes before serving.