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Red Beans and Rice

What’s red about Red Beans and Rice. In this recipe it’s the red beans, tomato paste and chili powder. And for a red hot taste, you can add a sizable pinch of crushed red pepper.

Most of the ingredients in this effortless mouthwatering recipe are already in your cupboard and won’t require an extra trip to the supermarket, making it a handy dish to fix on days when you’re extra busy or in a hurry.


3/4-cup uncooked brown rice

1/2-cup diced onion (fresh or frozen)

1/2-cup diced green bell pepper (fresh or frozen)

3 ounces tomato paste (half a 6-oz. can; freeze the rest for later use)

2 teaspoons chili powder

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1 teaspoon dried basil (or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil)

1 teaspoon dried oregano (or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano)

1/2-teaspoon sea salt

hefty pinch of crushed red pepper

15.5 ounce can of red beans (black beans may be substituted)

Freshly ground black pepper


1. Bring 1-1/2 cups water to a boil over high heat.

2. Stir in the rice, onion, bell pepper, tomato paste, chili powder, garlic, basil, oregano, salt and crushed red pepper.

3. Cover saucepan tightly and reduce heat to lowest setting. Cook for 40 minutes without removing the lid.

4. Stir in beans and black pepper and heat 8-10 minutes.

5. Taste and adjust the seasonings.

With all the herbs and spices, very little salt is needed and sea salt is saltier than regular powdered salt. Fresh basil and oregano may be used in place of the dried. (Note: While dried herbs are added at the beginning of the cooking, fresh should be chopped and added at the same time as the beans and black pepper.)

This vegetarian dish is delicious and nutritionally balanced. For those who want their meat fix, cook and season lean ground beef and add it to the beans and rice just before serving.

Red Beans and Rice is only slightly spicy hot. If you appreciate more of a taste kick, add more crushed red pepper and/or chili powder. Serve with plain Greek yogurt and bias-sliced bananas for a complementary, cooling taste.