Easy Red Beans and Rice Recipe

Tonight’s dinner was a combination of the three power factors of convenience cooking – cheap, easy, and fast.  I made this in my beloved Zojirushi rice cooker, but it would be just as easy to make on the stovetop.  Let’s get started!

Vegetarian Red Beans and Rice

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  • 2 cups brown rice
  • 1 can dark red kidney beans
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tsp Spanish paprika
  • 4 cups water or vegetable stock
  • salt and pepper to taste

To Prepare:  First things first, rinse those beans.  When I have the time and the foresight, I always prefer to use dried beans.  But again, that takes time and foresight – which we rarely have at our house.  Canned beans are a completely acceptable alternative, as long as they are rinsed and drained well.

Add the can of beans and all of the dry rice to your rice cooker or pot.  For 2 cups of long-grain brown rice, you need to add 4 cups of water or stock (recipe can easily be halved to just one cup of rice and 2 cups water – I’m just showing you what I made!).  Next up, mince your garlic (or add the handy frozen garlic cubes that I told you about here) and add to the mix, along with the 2 tsp of Spanish paprika.  That’s it – you’re done prepping!  This is the foolproof "dump in a pot and heat" method of cooking! 

If you’re using a rice cooker, this is the point where you hit START and go relax until it sings to you.  For the stovetop crew, stay with me – you have a few more simple steps.  Bring the water up to a boil, cover with a lid, reduce heat to a simmer, and wait about 40 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed.  Resist the urge to take the lid off and check the progress.  The buildup of steam in the pot is critical for the rice to absorb the mixture, and removing the lid lets all of that out!  Go ahead and check after 40 minutes – you want all the excess liquid to be gone.  When finished, fluff with a fork, finish seasoning to taste, and serve! 

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Since we knocked out protein and carbs in our main dish, we ate ours with simple roasted veggies on the side. 

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Oven roasted broccoli – crispy but still full of flavor…

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Roasted eggplant – my favorite way to cook my favorite vegetable.

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This red beans and rice recipe is great for nights when you want something filling and fast.  It has the hearty feel of comfort food, without the labor and time that most comfort food requires. 

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As always, I hope you enjoy!