In 2004, Rashad became the first black actress to win the Tony Award for Best Actress, which she won for her role in the revival of A Raisin in the Sun. Her other Broadway credits include Into the Woods, Jelly's Last Jam, Gem of the Ocean, and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. She won a NAACP Image Award when she reprised her A Raisin in the Sun role in the 2008 television adaptation. She has also appeared in the films For Colored Girls, Good Deeds, and Creed.
For Disney, she played Aunt Polly in Polly: Comin' Home!, voiced a cleaning lady in Mickey's 60th Birthday, Glacia the Ice Witch in Sofia the First, and will voice Joe's Mother in the 2020 Disney/Pixar film, Soul.