Congee is one of my favorite quick weeknight meals. It’s also a fabulous dish for dinner parties, where guests can easily customize their own. I love to have bowls of different toppings (air-fryed tofu), sautéed broccoli or baby boy choy, steamed spinach, toasted nuts, sauces, etc… The congee itself is pretty much “set it and forget it” in the rice cooker, especially if you have a porridge setting on your rice cooker.
If you’re not familiar with congee, it’s a savory porridge made from slow cooked rice, that is then topped with your choice of delicious toppings. Traditionally it is made with fish or meat, but it is so easy to make it vegan and gluten-free. I find that using a flavorful bouillon to add a bit of depth to the rice is important. My favorite here is Better Than Bouillon Vegan Chicken. It’s pretty easy to find, and gives the dish some background flavor.
My favorite toppings are usually sautéed or airfryed tofu, homemade chili paste (this recipe from my blog!), spinach, broccoli, kimchi, and a drizzle of tamarind and Sriracha.
I made this recipe recently on AM Northwest, and wanted to share it here too. Go make this simple, yet amazing recipe! I have no doubt that it will soon become your favorite too.Print
Easy Rice Cooker Congee
This is a delicious Chinese comfort food dish that makes a great week night dinner. It’s also great to make for dinner parties, where guests can customize their bowls with a variety of toppings.
1 cup Cal Rose or medium grain rice
About 5-6 cups water, or as needed
Better Than Bouillon vegan no chicken base
Tamari, Soy sauce or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
Sesame or hot chili oil
Dry roasted peanuts, cashews, or almonds
Thinly sliced scallions
Broccoli (sautéed or added to congee at the last minute)
In a rice cooker with a porridge setting, or a 2- to 4-quart saucepan with lid, combine the rice and 5 cups of the water. Set the rice cooker to the porridge setting and turn on. If using a saucepan, bring mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and partially cover. Continue simmering for about 1 1/2 hours. If using the saucepan, you will need to stir the congee occasionally. If the congee is too thick or stiff, or if you like it slightly thinner, add a little more water as needed. The congee will be soft and porridge-like when it’s done.
Once the congee is finished cooking, I add some vegan chicken bouillon to taste. I also like to add a few handfuls of spinach or chopped fresh broccoli, stir and close the lid for 5 minutes so the vegetables can steam.
Serve the congee hot. Ladle into individual bowls and garnish with toppings of choice.
The leftover congee can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. You can reheat it in the microwave, stirring in a little extra water to thin it out if needed. Adjust seasonings to taste.
Gluten-Free + Vegan