Your New Favorite Rice and Beans
Rice and beans is a staple for anyone living a plant-based lifestyle but also for many people who are not plant based. This food combination is inexpensive, non-perishable (before its cooked obviously), nutrient dense and can take on so many flavors. For this rice and beans dish, were keeping it in the Latin American flavor profile, using dried chiles, cumin, onion and garlic as our main flavor contributors.
My husband and I have made this almost every week for months and were still not tired of it (I actually kind of think he's getting tired of it but I'm not so I keep making it haha). It keeps really well in the refrigerator and I love to take it to work for lunch topped with avocado slices.
Full disclosure: This recipe is a two part recipe. But its SO worth it. Plus the chile sauce can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, making the final dish come together super quickly. You will also have a little bit of chile sauce left over but you will be stoked about it because it adds so much flavor to sautéed veggies or tempeh for a homemade burrito bowl or add it to tofu scramble for a little Latin American flair.
Your New Favorite Rice and Beans
Yield: about 4 servings
For the Chile Sauce
2 Dried Ancho Chiles (stem and seeds removed)
1 Cup Vegetable Stock
1/2 Cup Roughly Chopped Onion
1/3 Cup Roughly Chopped Carrot
1 1/2 tsp Cumin
1 Clove Garlic
2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tsp Agave Nectar (or just granulated sugar)
1 tsp molasses
Pinch of salt
Black Pepper to Taste
For the Rice and Beans
1 Cup Dry Rice (About 3 Cups cooked rice- either white or brown will work)
1 Cup Onion, small dice
1 Cup Red Bell Pepper, small dice
1 Large Clove of Garlic, minced
1 Cup Chile Sauce
3/4 Cup Water
1 Tbsp Cornstarch
2-15oz Cans Pinto Beans, drained and rinsed
Salt and Pepper to taste
1/4 Cup Chopped Cilantro
Tear the chiles into small pieces and put into your blender. Bring 1 cup vegetable stock to a simmer and pour into your blender over the chiles. Let sit for 15 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and blend on high for about 1 minute or until everything is well combined and mostly smooth. Either use immediately or transfer to a jar and store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
For the rice and beans: Cook your rice according to package directions. You will get about 3 Cups cooked rice from 1 Cup dry rice. Set aside.
In a large sauté pan over medium high heat, combine onions and bell peppers and a pinch of salt. Cook for 5-7 minutes or until the vegetables are cooked through and starting to brown. Add garlic and cook for 1 more minute.
While the vegetables are cooking combine the water and cornstarch in a measuring cup, stirring to dissolve the starch. Reduce heat to medium and add the chile sauce. Cook for about one minute, then add the water and cornstarch mixture slowly while stirring everything together with a wooden spoon.
Add the beans, turn heat to low and simmer for about 5 minutes. Lastly add the cooked rice, gently folding it in to the bean mixture. Top with chopped cilantro and serve with your favorite toppings. But may I suggest a squeeze or lime, avocado, chopped tomato and more cilantro?
** I use pinto beans but whatever you like or have on hand will be great here. Or if you cook your own the amount of beans will be about 3 cups.
Let me know how you like this recipe or if there is something you'd like to see me make next!