Crafting Wholesome Delights: Low Calorie Rice Cake Recipe

Fact Checked By: Macaria Valerie

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In the realm of mindful eating and balanced nutrition, finding snacks or light meal options that are both delicious and low in calories can often feel like a daunting task. However, nestled within the simplicity of whole grains lies a culinary gem that promises to delight taste buds without tipping the scale – low-calorie rice cakes.

Rice cakes, humble in their origins yet versatile in their potential, offer a canvas for culinary creativity while providing a satisfying crunch and wholesome goodness. With this low-calorie rice cake recipe, we embark on a journey that celebrates the marriage of nutrition and flavor, offering a delightful snack or light meal option that’s as nourishing as it is delicious.

Join us as we explore the art of crafting rice cakes that are not only low in calories but also bursting with flavor and texture. From the careful selection of wholesome ingredients to the thoughtful balance of sweet and savory elements, this recipe promises to redefine your snacking experience, one crispy bite at a time.

Prepare to indulge in guilt-free satisfaction as we delve into the world of low-calorie rice cakes – a culinary adventure that proves healthy eating can be both enjoyable and fulfilling.

Low Calorie Rice Cake Recipe

low calorie rice cake recipes

Creating a low-calorie rice cake recipe involves focusing on ingredients that are both light and flavorful, ensuring that the final product is satisfying without being heavy on calories. Here’s a simple recipe for low-calorie rice cakes that you can enjoy as a snack or a light meal, packed with the goodness of whole grains and customizable with various healthy toppings.


  • 2 cups brown rice (uncooked)
  • 4 cups water (for cooking rice)
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons of a natural sweetener (like stevia or honey, adjust based on preference and dietary needs)
  • A pinch of salt
  • Optional: sesame seeds, chopped nuts, or dried fruits for topping


Cook the Rice:
  • Rinse the brown rice under cold water until the water runs clear.
  • In a medium pot, bring 4 cups of water to a boil. Add the rinsed rice and a pinch of salt, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 45 minutes, or until the rice is tender and all the water has been absorbed.
  • Remove from heat and let it sit, covered, for 10 minutes.
Season the Rice:
  • Gently fold in the apple cider vinegar and natural sweetener into the cooked rice while it is still warm. Adjust the sweetness according to your taste.
Form the Rice Cakes:
  • Wet your hands with a bit of water to prevent sticking, and form the rice into small, flat cakes, about 1/2 inch thick. If the mixture is too sticky, you can also use plastic wrap to shape the cakes.
Dry the Rice Cakes:
  • Preheat your oven to the lowest setting (around 200°F or 90°C).
  • Place the rice cakes on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and sprinkle with optional toppings like sesame seeds, chopped nuts, or dried fruits if desired.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 2-3 hours, or until the rice cakes are dry to the touch and slightly crispy. Flip them halfway through the drying process to ensure even drying.
Cool and Store:
  • Allow the rice cakes to cool completely on a wire rack before storing them in an airtight container. They should keep for up to a week.
Serving Suggestions:
  • Top with avocado and tomato for a savory snack.
  • Spread with almond butter and banana slices for a sweet treat.
  • Enjoy plain as a low-calorie, crunchy snack.

This low-calorie rice cake recipe is a great way to satisfy your cravings without compromising on health. It’s simple, versatile, and allows for plenty of creativity with toppings and flavors. Enjoy crafting these homemade rice cakes and incorporating them into your healthy eating habits!

Expert Tips

Crafting the perfect low-calorie rice cake not only requires following the recipe but also understanding the nuances that can make or break this seemingly simple snack. Here are expert tips to ensure your rice cakes are delicious, nutritious, and perfectly textured:

1. Choose the Right Rice

  • Opt for whole grain rice like brown rice for its higher fiber content, which not only contributes to the feeling of fullness but also offers a nuttier flavor and a chewier texture than white rice. Whole grains can help keep the calorie count in check while maximizing nutritional value.

2. Control the Sweetness

  • When adding sweeteners like stevia or honey, start with a smaller amount and adjust to taste. Remember, the goal is to enhance the natural nuttiness of the rice without making the cakes overly sweet, keeping them low in calories.

3. Experiment with Flavors

  • Incorporating natural flavorings such as vanilla extract, cinnamon, or citrus zest can add complexity to your rice cakes without significant calorie additions. These ingredients can elevate the taste and make your rice cakes a delightful snack.

4. Monitor the Oven

  • The low and slow drying process in the oven is crucial for achieving the right texture. Keep an eye on the rice cakes, especially towards the end of baking time, to prevent them from becoming too hard or burnt. Every oven is different, so adjustments to temperature or time may be necessary.

5. Add Texture with Toppings

  • Toppings like sesame seeds, chopped nuts, or even a sprinkle of sea salt can add texture and flavor without adding too many calories. If using dried fruits, chop them finely and use sparingly to keep the sugar content low.

6. Press Firmly When Shaping

  • When forming your rice cakes, press the mixture firmly to compact the grains. This helps in creating a more cohesive cake that won’t crumble easily once dried. Wetting your hands or using plastic wrap can prevent sticking and make shaping easier.

7. Store Properly

  • To maintain freshness and crispness, store the cooled rice cakes in an airtight container. If they start to soften, you can briefly toast them in the oven to rejuvenate their texture.

8. Serving Suggestions

  • Be mindful of what you pair with your rice cakes if you’re watching calories. Low-calorie toppings like light cream cheese, cucumber slices, or a thin layer of hummus can complement your rice cakes without adding excessive calories.

9. Patience is Key

  • The drying process cannot be rushed. Low temperature and patience ensure the rice cakes dry out evenly without becoming too tough. This slow process helps achieve the desired crispness.

By following these expert tips, you can elevate your low-calorie rice cake recipe from a simple snack to a gourmet treat that’s both satisfying and healthy. Experiment with flavors, textures, and toppings to discover your perfect combination, and enjoy the process of creating a snack that’s good for you and tastes great too.

Why This Recipe Is Just So Good…

The low-calorie rice cake recipe stands out for several compelling reasons, making it a beloved choice for those seeking a healthy, satisfying snack or a versatile base for a variety of toppings. Here’s why this recipe is so good:

1. Nutritional Value

  • The use of whole grains like brown rice not only keeps the calorie count low but also provides a good source of dietary fiber, vitamins, and minerals. These nutrients are essential for maintaining a healthy digestive system, stabilizing blood sugar levels, and keeping you feeling fuller for longer, contributing to overall health and weight management.

2. Customization

  • This recipe offers incredible flexibility, allowing for customization to suit individual tastes and dietary needs. Whether you prefer your rice cakes sweet or savory, the basic recipe can be adapted with various toppings and flavorings, making it a versatile snack option for any time of the day.

3. Simplicity

  • Despite its simplicity, the recipe delivers in terms of flavor and texture. The natural nuttiness of the rice, combined with the slight sweetness from natural sweeteners and the option to add subtle flavors like vanilla or cinnamon, makes these rice cakes surprisingly tasty.

4. Texture

  • The texture of these homemade rice cakes is another reason why they’re so appealing. The exterior offers a slight crispness, while the interior remains light and chewy, providing a satisfying eating experience that’s not found in store-bought versions, which can be overly dry or bland.

5. Diet-Friendly

  • For those watching their calorie intake or following specific dietary guidelines, these rice cakes are an excellent option. They’re naturally low in fat and calories, and by choosing the appropriate toppings, they can fit into a gluten-free, vegan, or whole-food diet.

6. Economical

  • Making rice cakes at home is cost-effective compared to purchasing pre-packaged options. With minimal ingredients required, most of which are pantry staples, you can create a batch of healthy snacks without breaking the bank.

7. Health-Conscious Snacking

  • In a world where processed and high-calorie snacks are readily available, this recipe provides a health-conscious alternative. It encourages mindful snacking and offers a guilt-free way to satisfy cravings, whether you’re looking for a quick snack or a light meal base.

8. Sustainability

  • For those mindful of their environmental impact, homemade rice cakes are a more sustainable option than commercially produced snacks. By making them at home, you reduce packaging waste and can control the source of your ingredients, opting for organic or locally sourced rice to minimize your carbon footprint.

In conclusion, the low-calorie rice cake recipe is cherished for its nutritional benefits, versatility, and delicious simplicity. It embodies the principle that healthy eating doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive and proves that simple ingredients can create wonderfully satisfying dishes.

Storage Instructions

Proper storage is essential for maintaining the freshness and crispiness of homemade low-calorie rice cakes. Here are some storage instructions to ensure your rice cakes stay as delicious as the day you made them:

At Room Temperature:

  • Cool Completely: Before storing, allow your rice cakes to cool completely on a wire rack. This helps to avoid condensation inside the storage container, which can make the rice cakes soggy.
  • Airtight Container: Transfer the cooled rice cakes to an airtight container. Keeping air out is crucial to maintaining their crisp texture.
  • Dry Environment: Store the container in a cool, dry place to prevent moisture from softening the rice cakes. Avoid places with high humidity.


  • Homemade low-calorie rice cakes can typically last up to a week when stored properly at room temperature. The key to their longevity is ensuring they are fully dried and cooled before storage.

Refreshing Rice Cakes:

  • If the rice cakes lose their crispness, you can refresh them in the oven. Preheat your oven to 300°F (150°C) and bake the rice cakes for 5-10 minutes or until they’re crispy again. Watch them closely to prevent burning.

Freezing (Not Recommended):

  • Freezing homemade rice cakes is not recommended as it can significantly alter their texture. Rice cakes are best enjoyed fresh and can easily be made in small batches for immediate consumption.

By following these storage instructions, you can enjoy your homemade low-calorie rice cakes at their best, ensuring that every bite is as satisfying as the first. Remember, the key to successful storage is keeping them dry and airtight, so they retain their delightful crunch.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

low calorie rice cakes recipe

Q: Are rice cakes really low in calories?

A: Yes, plain rice cakes are generally low in calories, typically containing around 35-60 calories per rice cake, depending on the brand and size. However, it’s essential to check the nutrition label, especially if the rice cakes are flavored or have added ingredients.

Q: Can I make rice cakes at home to control the calorie content?

A: Absolutely! Making rice cakes at home allows you to control the ingredients and customize them to suit your preferences. Using whole grain rice and minimal added sweeteners or fats can help keep the calorie content low.

Q: Are rice cakes a good option for weight loss?

A: Rice cakes can be a part of a weight loss plan due to their low calorie content and relatively low glycemic index. However, they should be consumed as part of a balanced diet that includes a variety of nutrient-dense foods.

Q: How can I make rice cakes more filling?

A: To make rice cakes more filling, consider topping them with protein-rich ingredients like nut butter, cottage cheese, or hummus. Adding sliced fruits or vegetables can also increase their volume and fiber content, promoting a feeling of fullness.

Q: Can I eat rice cakes as a meal replacement?

A: While rice cakes can be a convenient snack or part of a meal, they are not typically considered a suitable meal replacement on their own. It’s important to consume a variety of foods to ensure you’re getting all the essential nutrients your body needs.

Q: Are flavored rice cakes higher in calories?

A: Flavored rice cakes may contain added sugars or fats, which can increase their calorie content compared to plain rice cakes. It’s best to check the nutrition label for information on calorie content and ingredients.

Q: How should I store rice cakes to maintain freshness?

A: Store rice cakes in a cool, dry place in an airtight container to maintain their freshness and crispness. Avoid exposing them to moisture, as this can cause them to become stale or soggy.

Q: Are rice cakes gluten-free?

A: Plain rice cakes made from rice are naturally gluten-free. However, flavored varieties or those with added ingredients may contain gluten, so it’s essential to check the label if you have a gluten sensitivity or allergy.

Q: Can I freeze rice cakes?

A: While you can freeze rice cakes, they may become slightly softer when thawed. It’s best to store them in an airtight container or freezer bag and consume them within a few weeks for the best quality.

Q: How can I ensure my rice cakes are crisp without being too hard or chewy?

A: Achieving the perfect crispness without making the rice cakes too hard involves controlling the oven’s temperature and the baking time accurately. Bake at a low temperature, around 200°F (90°C), to slowly remove moisture without hardening the rice excessively. The key is to allow for a gradual drying process. Additionally, ensure your rice cakes are not too thick; keeping them around 1/2 inch thick will help them dry evenly and become crisp.

Q: Is it possible to make these rice cakes without added sweeteners but still keep them flavorful?

A: Absolutely. While sweeteners can add a nice flavor, you can omit them and instead enhance your rice cakes with natural ingredients that do not add significant calories. Incorporating spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, or adding citrus zest can introduce complex flavors. Another option is to blend a portion of the cooked rice with aromatic ingredients like herbs or garlic before forming the cakes, adding depth to the taste without needing sweeteners.

Q: Can I use a dehydrator instead of an oven for making rice cakes?

A: Yes, a dehydrator is an excellent alternative for drying out the rice cakes, offering more control over the temperature and potentially a more uniform drying process. If you use a dehydrator, follow the manufacturer’s instructions for drying similar items, keeping in mind that the time needed can vary based on the thickness of the cakes and the specific dehydrator model.

Q: What’s the best way to re-crisp rice cakes that have softened during storage?

A: If your rice cakes have softened, you can restore their crispness by toasting them in the oven at 300°F (150°C) for a few minutes or until they’re crispy again. Watch them closely to avoid burning. Alternatively, a toaster oven or an air fryer set at a low temperature can also effectively re-crisp the rice cakes.

Q: How can I add protein to these rice cakes for a more balanced snack?

A: To incorporate protein without adding many calories, consider spreading a thin layer of low-fat cottage cheese or a smear of almond butter on top of the rice cake. Another option is to include protein-rich seeds, like chia or hemp seeds, into the rice mixture before baking. These seeds can boost the protein content while also adding texture and nutritional value.

Q: Are there any grain-free alternatives for making low-calorie rice cakes?

A: For a grain-free version, you could experiment with cauliflower rice. Cook the cauliflower rice, then mix it with a binding agent like egg whites (for a higher protein, low-calorie option) or a small amount of almond flour to help hold the mixture together. Season as desired, form into cakes, and follow a similar low-temperature baking process to dry them out.

Q: How can the flavor profile of these rice cakes be varied to prevent snack-time boredom?

A: Varying the flavor profile can be as simple as incorporating different spices, herbs, or extracts into the mixture before baking. For savory cakes, add finely chopped herbs, garlic powder, or nutritional yeast for a cheesy flavor. For sweet variations, experiment with cinnamon, vanilla extract, or cocoa powder. Changing up the toppings or spreads can also introduce new flavors and textures, making each snack time unique and exciting.

These expert-level questions and answers cover a broad range of topics related to enhancing, storing, and diversifying low-calorie rice cakes, ensuring you can enjoy a healthy snack that doesn’t compromise on flavor or texture.


As we conclude our journey through the realm of low-calorie rice cakes, we’ve not only explored a recipe that marries the simplicity of wholesome ingredients with the joy of snacking but also embarked on a deeper appreciation for mindful eating. These rice cakes are not just a testament to the versatility and potential of simple, nutritious ingredients; they represent a commitment to a lifestyle where every bite is an opportunity for nourishment and satisfaction.

The journey through crafting these low-calorie delights has revealed that snacking and health-conscious eating need not be at odds. With the right approach, it’s possible to enjoy flavors that tantalize the taste buds while also serving the body’s nutritional needs. This recipe, grounded in the principles of simplicity, nutrition, and taste, provides a blueprint for endless variations that can cater to any palate or dietary requirement.

In embracing low-calorie rice cakes as part of your snacking repertoire, you’re not just choosing a healthier option. You’re also embracing the possibility of creativity in the kitchen, the pleasure of guilt-free snacking, and the opportunity to nourish your body in a way that feels indulgent yet is inherently balanced.

As we part ways with this culinary guide, remember that the essence of this recipe lies not just in the ingredients or the method but in the intention behind it. The intention to create something that is both light in calories and rich in satisfaction, that respects the body’s needs while delighting the senses. This low-calorie rice cake recipe is more than just a snack; it’s a celebration of balanced eating, a nod to culinary creativity, and a step towards a more mindful and nourishing approach to our daily diet.

So, let these rice cakes be a reminder that healthy eating can be delicious, satisfying, and above all, a source of joy. May your kitchen adventures continue to be inspired by the principles of balance, wellness, and flavor, proving that, indeed, the best meals are those that nourish both the body and the soul.

Photo of author

Macaria Valerie

About the author

With over 15 years of experience in the culinary world, Macaria Valerie has developed a unique niche expertise in the art and science of rice cooking. Born in Taipei and raised in San Francisco, Macaria's passion for perfectly cooked rice is a blend of her Taiwanese roots and modern culinary techniques. She has traveled across Asia, gathering traditional rice recipes and cooking methodologies. Macaria is not just about plain rice. She's explored the depths of risotto in Italy, paella in Spain, biryani in India, and sushi in Japan. Yet, she believes that the core of these dishes lies in mastering the basic foundation - the rice. In her popular blog, "Expert Reviews Best Rice Cooker", Macaria shares not only her favorite rice recipes but also reviews the latest in rice cooker technology. She's been a consultant for major kitchen appliance brands, aiding in the development and testing of their rice cooker lines. In her spare time, Macaria conducts workshops and classes, ensuring that the art of cooking perfect rice is accessible to everyone. Whether you're aiming for a simple bowl of fluffy white rice or venturing into the intricate world of flavored rice dishes, Macaria Valerie is your go-to guide in the rice cooker niche.

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