This Coconut Brown Rice Breakfast Bowl is a great alternative to oatmeal and is equally satisfying and comforting for your morning meal. I love it because it really changes up my morning breakfast routine while still being easy to make and extra delicious. The best part is this breakfast bowl is great for those busy mornings since you prep it the night before!
My go-to breakfast is typically an acai bowl or smoothie, savory oats, sweet oats or just toast with eggs, salt and pepper. (Or, if I’m being really fancy – eggs and spinach and green onions.) But, every once in a while I want a change of pace from my regular options. I know, having brown rice for breakfast might seem a little strange at first, but it’s really not that different from oatmeal. And it’s just as healthy and delicious!
I stumbled upon this concoction the other night when I had some leftover brown rice and coconut milk after making curry. So, being of a waste-not-want-not mindset, I mixed the brown rice together with a few other ingredients and let it sit overnight just to see what would happen. The result was so yummy. It’s now one of my favorite go-to breakfasts and hope you love this easy breakfast recipe too!
Coconut Brown Rice Breakfast Bowl Recipe
To make the Coconut Brown Rice Breakfast Bowl, you’ll need just some basic ingredients you probably already have on hand. You’ll combine cooked brown rice with canned coconut milk and a banana. Mix in a little salt, cinnamon, vanilla extract and pecans and that’s it! You could also add maple syrup if you prefer things a little sweet!
The recipe below is for one serving, or it could be two smaller servings. In one serving, below are the approximate nutrition stats:
12.2 g fat
71.3 g carbs
10.8 g sugar
6.9 g protein
Note that this doesn’t include maple syrup and factors in for 4 tablespoons of coconut milk, rather than 2. Yes, this is a high-carb breakfast. (You know I’m pro carb!) And it’d be a great post-run breakfast to replenish glycogen stores.
But numbers aside, here’s why these ingredients are rockstars!
Brown rice is a good source of fiber and healthy carbs. Fibrous foods help lower cholesterol, promote digestion and help you feel full for longer after a meal.
Coconut milk is a healthy fat that helps to prolong the feeling satiation and potentially prevents you from caving in to your cravings throughout the day.
Bananas are one of my favorite foods. Not only are they high in fiber but they are packed with potassium, magnesium, antioxidants, and have high mineral content. Not only do I have them for breakfast, but they are my go-to snack for pre or post runs since they contain easy to digest carbs.
Cinnamon is another great source of nutrition. Loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, cinnamon should be included in everyone’s diet. There are so many incredible benefits to eating cinnamon that instead of listing them, I’ll just include a link to this thorough list from Healthline.
Vanilla extract is used in this recipe mainly as a flavor enhancer rather than for any particular nutritional benefits. But it does add a great flavor.
Pecans are another tasty but nutrient and mineral-rich food. Most nuts are, but pecans in particular are packed with phytonutrients, which have powerful antioxidant benefits, a high zinc level, which helps your body’s immune cell count and they have the most flavonoids (another important antioxidant) of any other tree nut. Can you see why I often opt for pecans in my recipes? Also, I just think pecans pair really nicely with brown rice.
The preparation of this breakfast bowl is super straightforward and easy. The only reason it takes as long as it does it because you have to cook the rice! (Or, ideally you’ll already have some leftover brown rice!!) If I’m prepping rice for dinner, I just plan to make a little extra for this breakfast dish. Then, while the rice cooks, I gather all of my other ingredients and start measuring out what I need.
I usually just go ahead and put the ingredients in the bowl and add the rice in when it’s done cooking! It’s not as pretty or Insta-worthy as having the rice on the bottom and toppings strategically placed on top, but it does save time!
So let’s get to the particulars of making this delicious breakfast.
Prepare the brown rice. Either use plain (unseasoned) brown rice from a leftover meal or cook up a fresh batch the night before. I prefer using short-grain brown rice since it’s more starchy and cooks up soft and sticky. Just follow the instructions on how to cook your brown rice – usually just cooking for 45 minutes on medium low heat, with a 4:1 ratio of water to rice.
Combine all the ingredients. Once you have cooked the brown rice, you can combine all the ingredients together in a small bowl – except the pecans! Cover these ingredients with a paper towel or kitchen cloth. Or, make it in a glass container with a lid and it’ll be the perfect meal to take with you to the office.
Stick it in the fridge overnight. Come morning, this breakfast bowl is ready to go – you just need to add the toppings! If you’re wanting something warm to eat for those cold mornings, you can heat it in the microwave for about 45 seconds or warm it up using the stovetop and small pot for about 5 minutes or until your desired temperature is reached.
Add any toppings you want! I love adding pecans on top and digging right in. However, feel free to use walnuts, dried fruits, chia seeds, ground flax seeds, hemp seeds, berries and whatever else you can think of.
Alternative Options For This Recipe
Personally, I love coconut milk in this but any milk will work. My favorite is coconut milk, but almond milk is a very close second. If you tolerate dairy, you can use cow milk. Or any nondairy milk like hemp milk, rice milk, or soy milk will work.
If you prefer your breakfasts to be a little sweeter, adding a small handful of dried fruit is a great option! Or a drizzle of maple syrup is the perfect complement to the starchy brown rice.
Maybe pecans aren’t your thing. If you prefer other nuts, feel free to add those in! Nuts are a healthy fat – just be mindful not to go overboard on them sine they are very calorie dense!
I personally think this recipe makes the perfect amount for one person. But I love a hearty breakfasts! Your household might be able to squeeze two meals from this recipe if you aren’t big breakfast eaters.
I have tried making this in the morning without letting it sit overnight. While it is still good and yummy, it definitely is not as creamy. That’s why I always make mine ahead of time. Plus I don’t like to spend too much time making breakfast in the morning.
Hopefully, if you read this recipe in time, you just might have time to make your own Coconut Brown Rice Breakfast Bowl and have it ready to eat for tomorrow morning!