This rice and beans recipe is easy to make and super delicious! It’s inspired by combining Mexican and Thai food to create a meal from a nearly empty pantry. Sounds interesting, doesn’t it? Learn to make this rice and beans recipe for yourself with step-by-step instructions below.

Rice and beans in a large bowl with cheese on top.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

This rice and beans recipe:

  • is quick and easy to make
  • doesn’t include complicated instructions or hard-to-find ingredients
  • is free from the most common food allergens
Closeup of a large scoop of rice, beans, onions, and peppers.

Rice and Beans Ingredients

  • Dry rice: jasmine or basmati would be super yummy.
  • Water: to cook the rice.
  • Black beans: drained and rinsed.
  • Extra virgin olive oil: to saute the vegetables in. Optional if you use a non-stick pan.
  • Onion: chopped or diced.
  • Pepper: yellow, orange, red, or green bell peppers.
  • Coconut milk: adds flavor and makes the dish deliciously creamy.
  • Red curry paste: adds a touch of spice and flavor.
  • Salt (optional): the recipe may need a bit of salt based on your preferences.
  • Grated cheese or cheese substitute (optional): to put on top as a garnish.

Substitutions and Variations

  • Rice – try different varieties of rice: jasmine rice, brown rice, basmati rice, wild rice, etc.
  • Black beans – you could use other beans like pinto beans, lentils, kidney beans, etc.
  • Vegetables – add any veggies you have in your fridge: beans, broccoli, garlic, mushrooms, etc.
  • Spices – try cilantro, thyme, cumin, red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, ginger, and\or chili powder.

How to Make This Rice and Beans Recipe

  1. Cook the rice according to package directions.
  2. Mix the coconut milk, curry paste, and salt in a glass measuring cup. Set aside.
  3. In a non-stick pan (or pot) at medium heat, sauté the olive oil, onions and peppers.
  4. Turn the heat to low and add the black beans.
  5. Add the cooked rice and coconut mixture to the pan. Stir to combine and heat through.
  6. Serve garnished with grated cheese, chopped tomatoes, lime juice, or fresh parsley or cilantro.
Rice and beans recipe in a bowl with a spoon in it.

Recipe Tips

  • If you use dried beans instead of canned beans, soak them beforehand. Using the recipe as is with dried beans may result in some pretty crunchy beans!
  • Add a little oil or vegetable broth if your rice and beans stick to the pan.
  • This recipe is great for leftovers – fridge or freezer! You can also double the recipe so you have more to store for later.

Storing and Reheating

  • Refrigerator – store the leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 5-7 days.
  • Freezer – put your rice and beans in a freezer-safe container in the freezer for three months.
  • Reheating – warm your leftovers in the microwave or on the stovetop. If frozen, thaw before reheating.

Dietary Considerations

This rice and beans recipe is already gluten-free, seafood-free, dairy-free, soy-free, nut-free, and vegan. Talk about an allergy-friendly meal!

Small spoonful of rice and beans held over the bowl.

FAQs

Can rice and beans be a meal?

Rice and beans make a great meal! Combining the two gives you all nine amino acids (a complete protein). Plus, rice and beans taste super yummy together!

Is this rice and beans recipe healthy?

This rice and beans recipe is healthy! In my opinion, the only way to make it healthier is to add more veggies to the dish or on the side.

Is this rice and beans recipe vegan?

Yes, this rice and beans recipe is vegan! There is no milk, cheese, butter, eggs, etc. (Just skip the cheese garnish or use a vegan substitute.)

What kind of rice is best for this rice and beans recipe?

I like jasmine rice, but you can also use basmati rice, white rice, brown rice, or wild rice!

What kind of beans should I use for this recipe?

I think black beans are the best for this recipe, but you can also use pinto beans, kidney beans, red beans, or lentils.

Can I add vegetables to this rice and beans recipe?

Absolutely! I suggest adding peas, broccoli, garlic, cauliflower, mushrooms, and\or carrots.

Can I add meat to this rice and beans recipe?

You don’t need to, but you definitely can! Chicken breast, ground beef, ground turkey, lamb, sausages, and ground chicken would all be great additions to this recipe.

Closeup of a large scoop of rice, beans, onions, and peppers.

Rice and Beans Recipe

Yield: 2-4 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Inspired by a nearly empty pantry and Mexican and Thai food, this rice and beans dish is both quick and delicious!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dry rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil, optional
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup diced pepper
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1 tsp red curry paste
  • salt to taste
  • grated cheese or cheese substitute, optional

Instructions

  1. Cook the rice according to package directions.
  2. Mix the coconut milk, curry paste, and salt in a glass measuring cup. Set aside.
  3. In a non-stick pan (or pot) at medium heat, sauté the olive oil, onions and peppers.
  4. Turn the heat to low and add the black beans.
  5. Add the cooked rice and coconut mixture to the pan. Stir to combine and heat through.
  6. Serve garnished with grated cheese, chopped tomatoes, lime juice, or fresh parsley or cilantro.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 283Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 7mgSodium: 688mgCarbohydrates: 37gFiber: 9gSugar: 3gProtein: 11g

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily via Nutrifox.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest