Congee is a traditional rice porridge that is popular in many Asian countries. Because it's easy on the stomach, it's a perfect dish for children, sick people, and the elderly, but most everyone enjoys it as a side dish or with various toppings for a main meal. This particular version of congee is made with nutritious ingredients such as brown rice, shiitake mushrooms, kale, and ginger. It's nourishing, comforting, and a perfectly restorative meal to eat when you're recovering from an illness or feeling particularly low on energy.

Comforting Shiitake and Kale Congee [Vegan]

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  • 1 cup brown rice (I used long grain), soaked in water overnight, rinsed, and drained
  • 3 cups water
  • 3 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1-inch piece of fresh ginger root (peeled), grated
  • 3 tablespoons tamari or low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon nutritional yeast
  • 8 Shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and thinly sliced
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Large handful of baby kale, or other greens
  • Cilantro, for topping, optional
  • Chopped scallions, for topping, optional


  1. Add all of the ingredients, except for the kale and toppings, to a medium-sized pot. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat so that the rice is at a simmer.
  2. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 60-90 minutes, or until rice is tender and most of the liquid has cooked off (but not dry). About 10 minutes before cooking has finished, stir in the baby kale.
  3. Taste and adjust seasonings. Divide between four bowls and sprinkle with optional toppings.


- Pre-soaking the rice isn't necessary, but I've gotten into the habit. It speeds up the cooking time and I think makes for a moister end product. - You can also use dried mushrooms. Just chuck some in with all of the other ingredients. - This can be made in a rice cooker as well.

Nutritional Information

Per Serving: Calories: 115 | Carbs: 20 g | Fat: 1 g | Protein: 5 g | Sodium: 786 mg | Sugar: 4 g Note: The information shown is based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.


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