Kale & Rice Casserole

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 60 - 65 minutes
Total time: 1 hour and 15 minutes
Servings: 4-6


  • 2 large bunches of kale, leaves removed from ribs and torn
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or grated
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp salt, plus more for seasoning
  • ½ tsp pepper, plus more for seasoning
  • 4 tbsp flour
  • 1 cup pasteurized whole milk
  • 1 cup chicken or vegetable broth
  • ¼ cup coconut milk
  • 4 cups cooked wild rice
  • 1½ cups grated pasteurized cheddar cheese
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 large, sweet onions, sliced into thin rings


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a 2- or 3-quart casserole dish.
  2. Heat a very large skillet over medium-high heat. Add kale and water, cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until kale wilts, 10-15 minutes. Once kale is wilted and water is absorbed, remove skillet from heat and use tongs to remove kale to a plate. Set aside.
  3. Add butter to skillet and cook until it begins to brown. Reduce heat to low and add garlic, thyme and nutmeg. Cook for about 10 seconds. Add cooked kale and toss to combine.
  4. Sprinkle flour over kale mixture and cook for 1 minute. Add whole milk and broth and bring to a boil while stirring. Reduce heat and cook until thick, 2-3 minutes. Add cream and stir to combine.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in rice. Pour mixture into prepared dish.
  6. Using tongs, wipe skillet clean with paper towels. Add 2 tbsp olive oil and heat over medium-high. Add onions and salt and pepper to taste. Cook, stirring constantly, until onions begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Continue cooking until onions are golden brown, about 20 minutes.
  7. Sprinkle half of the cheese over the casserole, then spread onions in an even layer. Top with remaining cheese. Bake until cheese is melted and onions are crispy, 20-25 minutes.
* Adapted from Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center