Easy Black Beans and Rice

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Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Black beans and rice is such a classic combination, especially in Caribbean or Southern cooking. There are probably dozens of ways to make it; this one is an easy recipe that cooks up quick and tastes great.

Now, if you are really serious about your beans you’ll soak dry black beans overnight and then cook them for an hour or two first, but then that wouldn’t be quick and easy. So we’ll save that approach for another recipe.

This recipe is better for a “the chicken is on the grill, what am I going to serve it with?” side dish, and uses canned black beans. By the way, my pal David recommends mixing some chopped up canned green olives, the ones with pimentos in them, for giving an additional boost to basic black beans and rice.

Easy Black Beans and Rice Recipe

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  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked white rice
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, thinly sliced (for added flavor you can substitute roasted red bell peppers or some chopped pimentos)
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 16-ounce cans of black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 Tbsp white vinegar
  • A few dashes of Tabasco or 1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 heaping Tbsp chopped fresh oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional Lime wedges and cilantro for garnish

Method

1 Cook rice according to package instructions. White rice usually takes 15 minutes to cook once the water is simmering, and 10 minutes to sit.

2 Heat oil in a large skillet on medium high. Sauté onions and bell peppers for 3-4 minutes, until just beginning to soften, then add garlic and sauté a minute more. Add the black beans, vinegar and Tabasco or cayenne. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 5 minutes.

3 Stir in rice and oregano. Add salt and pepper to taste.

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Showing 4 of 29 Comments

  • Max T

    Maybe I am a dummy, but in step 2, when it says: “Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 5 minutes”, I don’t understand what there is to boil, other than 2 tbls of vinegar, after having washed and drained the beans.

    I added a bit of water so that there was something to boil.

    Also, what’s the function of the vinegar, for flavor only? I would probably try again without the vinegar, if it’s only purpose is to add flavor.

    Yes, simmer the vinegar, which heat the beans. The acid in the vinegar intensifies the flavor of the dish, so I would not omit it. ~Elise

  • Latresha

    I also have dry black beans. Once I soak them overnight what is the next step. I dont have a pressure cooker. Do I boil them & then add them into the already cooked rice

  • Gloria Sumner

    Thanks for the great beans and rice recipes! I am German who is making rice and beans for 40 people for the first time. Our church has a welcome dinner for the migrants who come to a large local corn grower for harvest. Now I feel confident I will be able to make them feel like they are getting a “taste of home” and not some bland, unfamiliar dish!

  • Cassie

    Not sure how I feel about the oregano. Otherwise, absolutely delicious!! Even added some cumin, mmmmm

  • Sarah

    Yummy recipe….I’ve made something very similar in the past. I use Basmati rice almost exclusively with black beans…they compliment each other well, especially when mixed with cilantro and lime!

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