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Putting the “Wild” Back in Wild Rice Soup

Putting the “Wild” Back in Wild Rice Soup

January 31, 2011
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My husband is a hunter. There, I said it. Although we were both born and raised as suburbs-kids, Ryan loves the great outdoors and spends a great deal of his fall and early winter getting up early, gathering his gear and looking for our “groceries” (that’s how I like to think of it). As a result, we have a lot of meat in our freezer this time of year. Right now it’s walleye, grouse and – the most abundant – pheasants galore. It took me a little while to get accustomed to this style of meals, but I’ve done my fair share of recipe testing, and what shocked me is that wild game is not so crazy after all.

Take pheasant for example: it’s very similar to chicken, but it’s very lean (gotta love that!). Because the meat is trimmer, it is just a little more firm (wild birds get a lot more exercise than your average grocery chicken); however, most city slickers (like me) wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between pheasant and chicken when it’s seasoned or prepared in another dish.

So, what do I do to use up this abundance of wild pheasant? I take a fabulous favorite like Slow Cooker Wild Rice Soup and swap out the chicken for pheasant. Ta-dah! The soup is healthier and I get to use ingredients I already have on hand.

To make your easy Slow Cooker Wild Rice Soup, begin by rinsing the rice. I had never prepared wild rice before, but this stuff is amazing! It begins as hard, narrow little black grains and after simmering it explodes into fluffy rice. Am I the only one who didn’t know that it starts out looking entirely black?

Anyway, just put the rice in a larger measuring cup, add water…


…and drain.


Prepare your veggies by washing and chopping. I like to have baby carrots on hand for snacking, so I chopped those up instead of shredding larger carrots.


The recipe calls for chicken or turkey, but – as I mentioned – we used pheasant breasts. Pheasants are a little smaller than chickens, so I used more. 


Cut up your chicken, turkey, pheasant or other foul-of-choice into one-inch cubes. It doesn’t have to be pretty.


Combine the rice, veggies and meat into your crock pot, then add the chicken broth. My box of broth was a little larger than the recipe called for. So, I saved it in the fridge just in case the soup was looking too thick later on. You can always thin it out a little.


Put the lid on the crock pot and turn the setting to low. Head off to work, school, go buy groceries, shovel your driveway… whatever you need to do on this blustery winter day. Cook for 6 – 8 hours.

When you return home, the smell of hot, delicious soup will greet you! Just before you’re ready to sit down to dinner, combine sour cream (I used light sour cream) and flour in a medium bowl.


Increase the crock pot setting to high, and then add the thickening mixture to the soup. This combination of sour cream and flour will give the soup its creaminess.


Mix thoroughly and continue to stir occasionally until the soup thickens. This should take about 6 – 8 minutes.


Serve your soup in cups or bowls and garnish with toasted almonds. They give the soup a nice little crunch.


Don’t you feel wild? Ok, at least warm, healthy and full?

Try making this Slow Cooker Wild Rice Soup to enjoy on a cold winters night, and let me know how it turned out for you by rating and reviewing the recipe.

Come back in a few days when Becky will be sharing a recipe perfect for Super Bowl entertaining.

Amanda is paid to write for the Land O’Lakes Recipe Buzz® Blog.
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Great no nonsense recipes!!! I am glad I found this site!!

Posted July 10, 2016 by janet parriott


Posted September 25, 2013 by SHEILA
Test Kitchen Comment
From: Cindy
Sheila, Please click on the underlined name of the recipe in the blog post. You will go to the actual recipe in our data base. Enjoy!
Posted October 04, 2013

Seriously? Light sour cream? Have you read the ingredients - yuck. Use the real thing or skip it altogether. This is a great recipe with chicken or equally good with ham. There is a difference between wild pheasants and farm/hunting preserve pheasants in the gamey-ness of the flavor. The preserve pheasants would probably be good in this soup - thanks for the suggestion. When adding the sour cream/flour mix, it does help to temper the cream mix with some hot broth to avoid any curdling. Found that out the hard way! Great recipe and definitely a crowd pleaser - the crock pot has come home nearly licked clean!

Posted February 16, 2013 by Ann
Test Kitchen Comment
From: Cindy
Excellent! Thanks for your tips!
Posted February 18, 2013

Amanda, my husband is a hunter as well. I woud like to see more recipes of vension. This recipe is a good one. I will try it.

Posted January 23, 2013 by Bonnie H.

Hey Suzie Q, thanks so much for your great post! Let us know if you have any other wild game recipe suggestions. We always welcome new ideas!

Posted February 13, 2011 by Amanda

Hi Amanda, Actually hit on this website for a butter cookie recipe and found this recipe. I can totally relate to your story. I was raised in a suburban non hunting family and married into a hunting one! Opposites attract! I now hunt myself and am always looking for new recipes to cook my "groceries"! Although pheasant season is over here, I am looking forward to trying this recipe, it looks delicious and easy! The health benefits of eating wild game are great, and it is encouraging to see good recipes to make it taste even better. Thanks for sharing. Looking forward to making this! Suzie Q in PA

Posted February 02, 2011 by Sue