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Spanish Rice and Beans

Spanish Rice and Beans


This recipe has become an instant favorite in my house! Spanish Rice and Beans is a simple, one-pot, affordable dish that even my kids love. It's great as a side, or you can add some extra protein and serve it as a main dish! It's filled with vegetables and so much Spanish flavor that you won't be able to resist it.


Units Scale
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 2 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 3 bell peppers, stemmed, seeded and finely diced
  • 2 cups basmati white rice (or jasmine white rice), rinsed well in a fine mesh strainer
  • 4 cups filtered water
  • 1 (15 ounce) cans black beans or red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes (and their juices)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 2 bay leaves


  • 1/2 cup pitted green olives, sliced (about 17 olives)
  • 1 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro and/or fresh Italian flat leaf parsley leaves (large stems removed)
  • 1 large lemon or lime, zested


  1. Preheat 5.5 quart dutch oven over medium heat.  Prepare your veggies and spices.  Once the pot is hot add oil, onions and salt.  Saute over medium heat for 10 minutes stirring every minute or so.  This is longer than most recipes call for but I like to let the onions caramelize a bit.  It enhances the flavor so much.  During the last two minutes of cooking the onions add the garlic and spices and sauté with the onion.
  2. Add the bell peppers and rice and saute for 5 minutes. 
  3. Add water, drained beans, diced tomatoes and their juices, tomato paste, maple syrup and bay leaves.  Stir well and bring the mixture to a boil.  
  4. Cover tightly and reduce the burner to low and simmer covered for 30 minutes until rice is soft and liquid is absorbed.  
  5. Stir in herbs and olives.  Add lime or lemon zest.  You can also add the juice if desired but I typically just do the zest.  Taste and adjust seasonings if desired. Serve hot.
  6. Store leftovers in an airtight container in refrigerator (once fully cooled to room temperature).  Leftovers keep for up to five days.


For extra protein you can use a second can of beans.

  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 40
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Spanish

Keywords: spanish rice and beans