Red Beans and Rice

red beans and rice

Roughly once a week, we eat Latin at our house: tacos or quesadillas, enchiladas, pork with spicy rubs. Although the red rice and beans of New Orleans — the version that most readily comes to mind — is not strictly Latin, rice and beans is a staple eaten throughout Latin America. We often serve it with a side of tortilla chips and a dollop of sour cream or a sprinkling of shredded cheddar. Though we eat our share of pork, for sure, this version is vegetarian. Pair it with spicy rubbed pork chops if you’d like some meat on your plate. And don’t think you need to save this dish for Mardi Gras — it’s an easy, hearty, delicious meal in any season.

Makes 4 servings


  • 1 cup dried kidney beans, rinsed and soaked overnight
  • 1/2 tsp. fine sea salt
  • 1 cup dried long grain brown rice
  • 2 cups water or broth
  • 1/2 tsp. fine sea salt
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil or butter
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil or lard/pork fat (this will give your dish a “meaty” flavor)
  • 2 medium onions, finely diced
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 green pepper, finely diced
  • 1 jalapeño, finely diced
  • 1 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 2 tsp. fine sea salt
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 cups diced tomatoes, with juice
  • 1 cup chopped, fresh cilantro or parsley


  1. Drain beans, then refill the pot with water, covering beans by one inch. Add salt to the pot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil for one minute and then simmer on low for 20 minutes or until the beans are tender but not mushy.
  2. While the beans are cooking, start the rice. Heat water or broth to a boil. Add rice, salt and oil and reduce to a simmer over low heat. Cook for 20 minutes or until rice is tender.
  3. Now for the good stuff. Heat fat in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onions, garlic and peppers, and sauté until the peppers are tender, 4-5 minutes.
  4. Add herbs and spices and heat for one minutes. Mix in the tomatoes and cook until all breaks down and mixes together into a nice sauce. Taste and adjust seasonings for personal preference.
  5. Stir in beans and rice. Scoop into serving bowls and top with cilantro or parsley if you prefer.