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Orange Cranberry Wild Rice

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Orange Cranberry Wild Rice is a little sweet, tart, and nutty filled with the wonderful flavors of fall. It’s a delicious side dish paired with chicken, turkey or pork.

Orange Cranberry Wild Rice on a green plate on a white wooden table.

I’ve made a few variations of this Orange Cranberry Wild Rice dish over the years making it with quinoa and brown rice but I always come back to the wild rice. There’s just something terrific about it, the variety of colors and nuttiness in the mix works wonderfully with the sweetness of the orange and tartness of the cranberries.

I will note that the length of cook time depends on the brand of wild rice you use. I’ve used some brands that cook in 20 to 25 minutes and then some that take 35-40 minutes. I believe boxed wild rice cooks faster than bulk wild rice. Not entirely sure why but just FYI.

A pan of Orange Cranberry Wild Rice

I think this would be a terrific dish to serve for Thanksgiving- a nice lighter alternative to the many heavy sides we tend to make. I’ve included it several years for some of my extended family who are vegetarians making it with veggie stock instead of chicken stock. If you don’t have fresh oranges to squeeze for orange juice go ahead and use orange juice from a jug (I promise it’s okay!).

This is my first post for Cranberry Week 2017. Check in tomorrow for Slow Cooker Cranberry Chicken and, on Thursday, Oatmeal Cranberry Pancakes.

For more cranberry recipe goodness, you might like Banana Cranberry Muffins and Slow Cooker Cranberry Applesauce for breakfast and Cranberry Turkey Meatloaf for dinner.

What dish is a must for your Thanksgiving dinner?

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A large helping of Orange Cranberry Wild Rice on a green plate with dried cranberries in the background.

Orange Cranberry Wild Rice

A pan of Orange Cranberry Wild Rice

Orange Cranberry Wild Rice

Orange Cranberry Wild Rice is a little sweet, tart, and nutty filled with the wonderful flavors of fall. 
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 115kcal
Author: Jade Jones


  • 1 small onion diced
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup wild rice
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 Tbsp orange zest optional
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper


  • Saute diced onion in olive oil over medium heat for 3-5 minutes until soft and caramelized.
  • Add dried cranberries, chicken broth, orange juice, orange zest, salt, and pepper to pan. Stir to combine.
  • Bring to a boil. Cover pan and lower heat. Simmer for 30-35 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and let sit, covered, for 10 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed.


Calories: 115kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 290mg | Potassium: 168mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 15IU | Vitamin C: 9.5mg | Calcium: 11mg | Iron: 0.6mg
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See all the other cranberry creations being shared as we kick off Cranberry week today. Be sure to follow #cranberryweek to see all the delicious recipes:


    1. I buy wild rice in bulk from my local grocery store so I’m not entirely sure but I do believe it is a blend of some kind. You could also use a boxed blend or whatever is available at your local grocery store! I’ve seen bags of wild rice on the shelves at my local Kroger affiliate.

  1. Hi Jade! I just wanted to update you to the ‘cult following’ that is going on at my office with respect to your recipe. We have had people using this side dish in many of their meals from breakfast rice (with their normal bacon/egg combo) to using it in chicken wraps and pulled pork sandwiches. Once again, thanks for something that is so easy to make yet so extremely versatile.

    1. Elaine, you are wonderful to stop by again and share with me! I am so touched that you have loved my recipe enough to pass it on to family and friends. I am truly honored!

      1. Hi Jade. I have seen that one of your followers has asked if there are specific types of wild rice that you use for this recipe. My friends and work associates have tried a couple of types (and grains) and they tend to use the one (and only one) that I use for this. It is nice and nutty but allows for the flavours to explode and it’s a mild enjoyable flavour. I don’t know if you have the same ones in those areas but mine is Nuworld Classsic Wildrice Blend – 7 grain in particular. FYI

  2. I tried your recipe exactly as you said (and I usually do it the first time I try new recipes ) according to all recipe notes and then change it afterward to suit my taste. I am a very fussy chef and yet found the doubled recipe spot-on when I made it a couple days ago for our Canadian Thanksgiving gathering. I find myself on my third double-batch now due to the response by all (and my average numbers at dinner gatherings at home are 19 people) and even though our life is back to usual, I’m taking a cup of finished rice for either lunch or supper grains for my meals. Thanks for adding such a nice nutty flavour addition to our occassions.

  3. Oh, I love rice dishes, I seriously could just eat and eat them. This sounds like an awesome refreshing combination, I will have to give this a go!

    Thanks for linking up to Marvelous Monday on Smart Party Planning.

  4. 4 stars
    Ohhh sounds easy, delish and a touch exotic! Hubby will think I totally spent all day in the kitchen 🙂

  5. I love wild rice! I might not get to make this for Thanksgiving because I don’t know where I am going for Thanksgiving yet. Guess I will just have to make it on a boring old weekday.

    Thanks for sharing on Tasty Tuesdays.

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