Veggie Loaded Rice and Beans

 Rice and beans with extra vegetables and avocado

     Are you looking for a vegetarian or vegan dish that plant-lovers and meat eaters alike will enjoy? Well look no further because this rice and bean dish is loaded with veggies and can be spiced up or down for the likes or any taste buds.  I promise, you won’t even miss the meat! Beans and other legumes are staple in many cultures, and for good reasons: 1) They are very affordable 2) They are filling and high in fiber 3) A fun fact is that at least 1 cup of beans per day are consumed by people who live in the “Blue Zones”, which are the areas of the world where people live the longest and are the healthiest.  In case you were wondering, the five noted “Blue Zones” are: Okinawa, Japan; Sardinia, Italy; Nicoya, Costa Rica; Ikaria, Greece, and Loma Linda, California.  You can read more about that here.                                                                

This recipe is:

Filling
Fiberfull (okay I made that word up)
Flavorful
Versatile (eat plain, mash some guacamole on top, with chips, or in a tortilla)

     Please note that the emphasis of this recipe is on the beans and vegetables, NOT the rice, so it may not be as rice-heavy as other rice and bean dishes you have eaten in the past.

Make it:

  ingredients, minus the broth, rice, and spinach.

Step 1: Start cooking rice (brown or white) according to package instructions but use vegetable BROTH instead of water to add more flavor.  I suggest NOT using the cheap minute-rice type products; longer grain rice take a bit longer but tastes SO much better.

Step 2: While the rice is cooking, start chopping all your vegetables and opening and rinsing the cans of beans.

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Step 3: Sauté carrots, celery, and onion for about 10 minutes (covered) and then mix in garlic and about 2 cups of chopped spinach.  Add the rest of the spices and salt/pepper and cook for 5-10 more minutes until the spinach cooks down a bit.

Step 4: Mix in 2 cans of beans followed by 2 cups of cooked rice.  Stir in 2 tablespoons of hot sauce (more or less to taste)

Step 5: Add additional spices to taste.  I suggest serving with a make-shift guacamole (avocado mashed with lime/salt/garlic). 

Step 6: Devour

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Veggie Loaded Rice and Beans
A flavorful rice and bean dish with an extra dose of veggies.
Ingredients
  • 2 cups brown or white rice, cooked
  • Vegetable broth (in place of water to cook rice)
  • 1 cup carrots, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, chopped
  • 1 cup red onion, chopped
  • 1.5 tsp garlic, minced
  • 2 cups spinach, chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp oregano, dried
  • 1 tsp parsley, dried
  • 1/8 tsp (or more to taste) pepper
  • 1/4 tsp (or more to taste) salt
  • 2-15 oz cans beans, canned (I used red kidney)
  • 2 Tablespoons hot Sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon oil (olive, avocado, or coconut)
Instructions
1) Cook rice in broth according to package instructions. 2) In a separate pan, sauté carrots, celery, and onion in the oil for about 10 minutes (while mostly covered). Add in the garlic, 2 cups of chopped spinach, and the rest of the seasonings and cook for 5-10 more minutes, or until the spinach cooks down a bit. 3) Mix in the beans, hot sauce, and rice. Stir well to combine. 4)Taste the recipe and add more seasonings as desired! Tastes great served with guacamole mixed in!
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4-6 servings
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