Savor the Flavor: Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf Recipe

Imagine the combination of earthy mushrooms and the delicate floral sweetness of lavender coming together in a rice pilaf. The result is both comforting and sophisticated, making it the perfect side dish for an elegant dinner party or a cozy weeknight meal at home. As a vegan chef, I love experimenting with flavors and ingredients to create plant-based dishes that are not only delicious but also packed with nutrients. This mushroom and lavender rice pilaf recipe is another example of how eating vegan can be both healthy and incredibly flavorful.

Rice pilafs have been around for centuries and are enjoyed all across the globe. In fact, some studies suggest that rice may have been cultivated as far back as 5,000 years ago! While there are many different ways to prepare rice pilaf, this recipe uses a combination of basmati and wild rice, along with savory mushrooms, fragrant lavender, and spices like fennel seed and mustard seed.

Whether you’re a fan of mushrooms or just looking for a new way to enjoy rice, this mushroom and lavender rice pilaf is sure to impress. So go ahead and give it a try – you might just discover your new favorite side dish!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf (Vegan)
Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf (Vegan)

Are you looking for a vegan dish that’s packed with flavor and nutrition? Look no further than this Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf. This recipe is specially crafted to delight your taste buds while offering numerous health benefits.

For starters, the combination of wild rice, basmati rice, and aromatic herbs creates an earthy and floral flavor that will captivate your senses. The mushrooms add a meaty texture and umami taste while the lavender provides a unique floral undertone that’s simply divine.

But what really sets this dish apart is its nutritional profile. The use of vegetable broth instead of traditional chicken broth makes this recipe vegetarian-friendly, while the absence of any animal products makes it completely vegan. Plus, with hearty whole grains like wild rice and basmati rice, you’ll get a healthy dose of fiber that’s good for digestion.

Whether you’re following a plant-based diet or just looking for a delicious new side dish to add to your repertoire, this Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf is sure to impress. So why not give it a try? Your taste buds – and your body – will thank you.

Ingredient List

 A fragrant lavender and mushroom pilaf that is both hearty and elegant
A fragrant lavender and mushroom pilaf that is both hearty and elegant

Let me walk you through the ingredients you’ll need to prepare this Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf. Don’t worry, all ingredients are 100% vegan and easy to find at your local grocery store or online.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Mushrooms: For this recipe, I recommend using cremini mushrooms; they have a meatier texture than white button mushrooms, which makes them an excellent addition to the rice pilaf. You will need about 8 ounces of mushrooms.
  • Shallot: The shallot adds a delicate oniony flavor that complements the mushrooms and lavender nicely. Finely chop one medium-sized shallot.
  • Basmati Rice: The original recipe calls for basmati rice, but you can also use jasmine or long-grain brown rice as a substitute.
  • Wild Rice: Wild rice has a nuttier flavor and a firmer texture than regular rice. It makes a great addition to this dish. You will need around 1/2 cup of wild rice, which is roughly equal to 2 ounces.
  • Lavender: Dried culinary lavender flowers give this dish a pleasant floral aroma with a hint of sweetness. You only need two teaspoons of dried lavender flowers.
  • Vegetable broth: It’s essential to use high-quality vegetable broth or stock to infuse the rice with rich flavors. Check the label for any non-vegan ingredients like honey or gelatin.
  • Olive oil: I recommend using extra-virgin olive oil for its robust flavor and health benefits.
  • Fennel seed and Mustard seeds: These two seeds add an earthy and slightly sweet flavor that works well with the rest of the spices.
  • Other seasonings such as fresh cilantro, green onions, cracked black pepper, salt.

Make sure your pantry is well-stocked with all these ingredients before you start cooking!

The Recipe How-To

 The perfect vegan side dish for any occasion
The perfect vegan side dish for any occasion

Now that you have all the ingredients ready, let’s start making this delightful Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf. This recipe requires a little bit of preparation, but it is not complicated. The secret to make the perfect pilaf is choosing the right type of rice and letting it cook on low heat. I recommend using either basmati or jasmine rice for this dish.


  • 1 cup of basmati rice
  • 1/2 cup of wild rice
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon of fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon of mustard seeds
  • 8 oz of sliced mushrooms, crimini or shiitake work well
  • 2 cups of vegetable broth
  • 2 teaspoons of dried lavender
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Chopped fresh cilantro or green onion (optional)

Step 1: Rinse the Rice

First, rinse the basmati rice and wild rice in cold water to remove any dust and extra starch. Soak it for at least ten minutes before cooking.

Step 2: Sauté Shallots and Garlic

Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large saucepan. Once hot, add minced garlic, chopped shallots, fennel seeds and mustard seeds. Stir occasionally until shallots are transparent (about six minutes).

Step 3: Add Mushrooms

Add mushrooms to the saucepan and cook until tender and soft (about five minutes).

Step 4: Mix Everything Together

Add both the rinsed and soaked basmati rice and wild rice into the same saucepan. Stir to combine.

Step 5: Add Broth and Lavender

Pour in vegetable broth into the saucepan with salt, pepper, dried lavender. Bring it to boil over high heat then lower down heat to low simmer.

Step 6: Cook the Rice

Cover with a lid and simmer on low heat for about thirty-five minutes, or until all the liquid is absorbed. Do not remove the lid during cooking time.

Step 7: Fluff with a Fork

Remove from heat once done and fluff with a fork. You can garnish with some freshly chopped cilantro or green onion if you like.

This mushroom lavender pilaf recipe uses simple ingredients but produces an exquisite flavor that even meat-lovers will crave for! Sometimes it’s better to choose a plant-based option that is equally delicious as it is nutritious.

Substitutions and Variations

 A colorful and nutritious addition to any meal
A colorful and nutritious addition to any meal

If you’re looking to add your own twist to this Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf, consider experimenting with some substitutions and variations.

For instance, if you’re not a fan of lavender, feel free to leave it out and simply make a Mushroom Rice Pilaf instead. You could also swap out the jasmine rice for brown rice or wild rice for a heartier texture.

Vegans may also want to try using vegetable broth instead of the traditional chicken broth, while those who follow a gluten-free diet can use gluten-free tamari sauce instead of soy sauce.

For added texture and flavor, consider tossing in some cooked chickpeas or toasted nuts like slivered almonds or chopped pecans. And if you prefer a spicier kick to your dishes, you can top off the pilaf with some chili flakes or a drizzle of hot sauce.

With so many possibilities for variations, this Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf recipe is truly versatile and customizable. Let your creativity shine and enjoy experimenting with different flavors and ingredients.

Serving and Pairing

 Who knew that mushrooms and lavender would create such a delicious marriage in a rice dish?
Who knew that mushrooms and lavender would create such a delicious marriage in a rice dish?

When it comes to serving and pairing Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf, there are plenty of options to choose from. This vegan-friendly dish is incredibly versatile and makes an excellent accompaniment to various meals.

Firstly, this fragrant and savory rice pilaf can be enjoyed as a side dish with grilled vegetables, roasted chicken or baked fish. The delicate aroma of lavender adds a subtle yet distinctive flavor to the rice, perfectly complementing various entrees.

For a heartier meal, you can also enjoy this pilaf alongside bean stew or vegetarian chili. The aromatics from the mushroom, fennel seed, and mustard seeds provide an earthy savoriness that balances well with the spicy notes of chili.

If you’re looking for more inspiration to make this dish shine, consider pairing Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf with other plant-based recipes like Baba Ghanoush, Black Bean, and Corn Relish or even White Bean Escarole soup. Not only will these recipes work well together for a meal plan or dinner spread but they are immune system-boosting as per Mayo Clinic article on COVID 19 advice & updates.

Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf also goes well with red wine like merlot or zinfandel. The hint of black pepper in the recipe pairs excellently with the boldness of these strong wines.

Whether you’re looking for gluten-free vegetarian weight loss recipes or just an easy meatless meal for weekday nights, Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf packs a punch of deliciousness that will satisfy both your taste buds and appetite.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Add a touch of sophistication to your dinner tonight with this simple recipe
Add a touch of sophistication to your dinner tonight with this simple recipe

When making the Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf, you can save time by preparing it ahead of time. This dish can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to a month. To reheat the pilaf, simply place it in a microwave-safe dish and heat it up until it’s warm. If you are planning on reheating the entire batch, transfer it to a baking dish and bake in the oven at low heat until heated through.

If you plan on storing this dish, I recommend dividing it into portions and storing them in separate containers. This is not only convenient for reheating but also makes portion control easy. When you’re ready to eat, simply take out what you need and heat it up.

This dish is perfect for meal prep, as it’s easy to make and stores well. You can serve it as a side dish or use it in a variety of main dishes such as bean stew, vegetarian chili or even as a stuffing for vegetables like bell peppers or zucchinis.

Before serving again, I suggest adding a little bit of broth to the pilaf to moisten it up. You can use vegetable broth or mushroom broth depending on your preference. This will bring back the moisture and texture of the rice while keeping its original flavor intact.

Keeping this recipe on hand allows you to enjoy a delicious meal without having to worry about making something from scratch every time you need something quick and easy. Enjoy!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Aromatic and comforting, this rice pilaf will warm your soul
Aromatic and comforting, this rice pilaf will warm your soul

As an experienced vegan chef, I have learned some tips and tricks to make the best Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf. Here are some of my favorite tips for achieving perfect pilaf every time.

Firstly, rinse the rice before cooking it to remove excess starch. It helps the rice grains fluff up and separate beautifully. For this recipe, I recommend using basmati or jasmine rice. They are both long-grain varieties that work well in pilafs.

Secondly, for extra flavor, toast the fennel and mustard seeds before adding them to the pilaf. Heat them gently in a dry skillet until fragrant but not burnt. They’ll add a subtle licorice-like flavor that complements the mushroom and lavender well.

Thirdly, use vegetable broth instead of water to cook the rice for a richer taste. If you prefer a sweeter flavor, try using coconut milk instead of broth.

Fourthly, make sure to use good-quality mushrooms in this recipe. Shiitake mushrooms work particularly well because they offer a meaty texture and rich umami flavor. Be sure to sauté them until they’re nicely browned before adding them to the pilaf.

Fifthly, don’t forget to season your pilaf with sea salt and cracked black pepper to bring out all those flavors.

Sixthly, let the pilaf rest after it’s cooked for around 10 minutes. The steam will continue cooking and soften the grains, making them perfectly tender.

Finally, garnish each serving of Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf with some fresh chopped cilantro or green onion for a pop of color and freshness.

Follow these tips, and you’ll be enjoying delicious mushroom lavender rice pilaf in no time!

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf is a must-try recipe for anyone looking to add some excitement to their vegan meal plan. With its unique combination of mushroom and lavender, this recipe will leave you feeling satisfied and impressed with its flavor profile. Plus, there are numerous ways to customize this dish to fit your own preferences, making it a versatile addition to any menu.

Not only is this recipe delicious and easy to prepare, it also has health benefits that make it a great choice for those looking to maintain a plant-based lifestyle. With fresh ingredients like mushrooms, green onion, and cilantro, this dish is packed with nutrients that can contribute to heart health and weight loss.

So, whether you’re new to the world of vegan cooking or have been practicing for years, give this Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf a try. You won’t be disappointed!

Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf (Vegan)

Mushroom and Lavender Rice Pilaf (Vegan) Recipe

This recipe uses either jasmine rice (original to recipe) or basmati rice. Adapted from 'The Lavender Cookbook'. If you are new to lavender and/or are a wee bit concerned about the amount in this recipe, start off by adding one half tablespoon (or less even) then you can always add more later.
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Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Vegan
Calories 272.3 kcal


  • 1 tablespoon dried culinary lavender ('Provence' is preferred)
  • 2 teaspoons mustard seeds (yellow or black mustard seeds not specified. I tried one teaspoon of each.)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (I tested 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 tablespoon coconut oil)
  • 1/4 lb mushroom, diced small (one variety or a mixture of mushrooms)
  • 1 cup jasmine rice (rinsed under cold water in a fine mesh strainer then set aside to drain) or 1 cup basmati rice (rinsed under cold water in a fine mesh strainer then set aside to drain)
  • 1/2 cup shallot, peeled and diced
  • 1/4 lb mushroom, diced small (one variety or a mixture of mushrooms)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 2 cups vegetables broth (or chicken broth)
  • 1/2 cup green onion
  • fresh cilantro, for garnish


  • Place the lavender, mustard seeds and fennel seeds in a spice grinder. PULSE until finely ground.
  • Warm the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  • Stir in the rice and shallots; saute for 5 minutes.
  • Add the mushrooms, sauteeing for about 5 minutes or until golden brown and the liquid from the mushrooms has started to evaporate.
  • Stir in the salt, pepper and lavender mixture.
  • If using a rice cooker, transfer the rice mixture to the appliance. Stir in the broth. Cook for 30 minutes or until the rice is tender and the the liquid has completely absorbed.
  • If using the stove top, stir in the broth, cover the pot, bring to the boil, then reduce to simmer and cook for about 20 minutes or until the liquid has evaporated.
  • Stir in half of the green onions.
  • Transfer the cooked rice to a serving platter and garnish with the remaining green onions. If desired, you can garnish the top of the rice with fresh cilantro, too.
  • Remember: Cooking time varies depending on if you are cooking the rice on the stove top or in a rice cooker.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 97gCalories: 272.3kcalCarbohydrates: 44.8gProtein: 6.2gFat: 7.8gSaturated Fat: 1.1gCholesterol: 0.2mgSodium: 607.4mgFiber: 2.5gSugar: 1.8g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Easy, Rice, Vegan
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