Easy One-Pot Vegetarian Black Beans and Rice

Updated on December 4, 2019
Sara Krentz profile image

Sara loves making large batches of food that she can use in other recipes later in the week.

Vegetarian black beans and rice.
Vegetarian black beans and rice. | Source

Balance: Protein and Carbs

This recipe goes well with all of your favorite Tex-Mex meals. It is an excellent side dish for enchiladas, burritos, tacos, or chalupas. I also like to serve it as a main dish with any combination of avocado slices, chopped tomatoes, fresh cilantro, lettuce, sour cream, tortilla chips, and Frank's Red Hot Sauce.

As an entree, this recipe makes about eight servings. As a side dish, it feeds a small army. It also makes a tasty option as a filling in meatless burritos and enchiladas. If you have meat-eaters in your crew, you can easily add chicken, beef, or pork; this is a wonderfully versatile recipe.


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 cup long-grain rice
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 1/2 cups enchilada sauce
  • 2 heaping teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes with chiles
  • 1 (15-ounce) can low sodium black beans
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped


  1. In a large measuring cup, stir the enchilada sauce, lime juice, and spices together.
  2. In a stock pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add rice and garlic and saute for about 2 minutes.
  3. Stir in the liquid mixture from step 1, bring just to a boil, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Stir in the canned ingredients, and simmer for another 5 to 10 minutes until rice is the desired consistency.

Photo Guide and Topping Suggestions

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Sauteing the rice and garlic.Adding the canned ingredients.Toppings on the finished rice and beans.Delicious toppings.Hot sauce is good, too.More toppings.Ready to eat!
Sauteing the rice and garlic.
Sauteing the rice and garlic. | Source
Adding the canned ingredients.
Adding the canned ingredients. | Source
Toppings on the finished rice and beans.
Toppings on the finished rice and beans. | Source
Delicious toppings.
Delicious toppings. | Source
Hot sauce is good, too.
Hot sauce is good, too. | Source
More toppings.
More toppings. | Source
Ready to eat!
Ready to eat! | Source

How to Chop Cilantro the Easy Way

When chopping such things as herbs and green onions, I find it much easier to use kitchen shears than a knife. Below is a video tutorial on how to chop cilantro for those who don't own kitchen shears (or if you simply prefer to use a knife). The clip is short but very useful. Before you begin, wash the cilantro in cold water, then blot dry with paper towels.

Removing the stems can seem daunting and time consuming. As the chef in the video clip mentions, you can use the top part of the stems. All you really need to do is remove the longest parts that don't have any leaves attached. That's what I do; I don't worry too much about getting some of the stem in with the leaves.

Chop Veggies on Bamboo Cutting Boards

Core Bamboo 10488AM Amazon Exclusive Bamboo Cutting Board Set, 3-Piece
Core Bamboo 10488AM Amazon Exclusive Bamboo Cutting Board Set, 3-Piece
I love these bamboo cutting boards, even though they are not as easy to care for as the cheaper, flexible ones. Bamboo has to be hand-washed, as it cannot be put through a dishwasher cycle. Before I knew better, I did just that, and wooden cutting boards and spoons will crack or split after several washes. You also have to occasionally rub down your bamboo cutting boards with a special oil that you can buy specifically for this purpose; conditioning the wood with oil keeps it from drying out. You can use different types of oils, but they must be safe for consumption, so I simply buy a product that is made specifically for use on cutting boards, wooden utensils, butcher blocks, etc. Amazon is a great place to find a variety of brands at various prices, but I imagine you can find what you need at any kitchen store, although the selection might be limited. Another con of using bamboo cutting boards is that they can take on the odor of onions or other foods with a strong smell, but this is easily remedied by rubbing some lemon juice into the wood prior to conditioning it with oil.

Brown Rice vs. White

Be sure to add at least 15 minutes to cooking time (and extra liquid) if using brown rice as it takes longer to cook.

Helpful Tips for Best Results

  • Brown rice takes a little longer to cook than white. Keep checking the consistency; you don't want your rice under-cooked and crunchy.
  • Add a can of corn to make the dish more colorful. You can also stir in chopped green onions just before serving.
  • I don't drain the canned goods; it adds more flavor. Also, by the time I add the canned food, the rice usually needs the extra liquid. In fact, you may find that you need to add a little water.
  • Red beans work just as well as black beans in this recipe.
  • If you're pressed for time, you can skip the second step entirely, if you don't mind leaving out the garlic. You can also skip the scallions and the cilantro, if you don't feel like chopping them up.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Top this dish however you like, and enjoy!Tomatoes and avocadoes on top of beans and rice.Tasty beans and rice loaded with toppings.
Top this dish however you like, and enjoy!
Top this dish however you like, and enjoy! | Source
Tomatoes and avocadoes on top of beans and rice.
Tomatoes and avocadoes on top of beans and rice. | Source
Tasty beans and rice loaded with toppings.
Tasty beans and rice loaded with toppings. | Source

Rate It

Cast your vote for Beans & Rice

What's Your Favorite Way to Enjoy Beans and Rice?

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© 2011 Sara Krentz


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    • Sara Krentz profile imageAUTHOR

      Sara Krentz 

      4 months ago from USA

      My pleasure. Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment, and good luck with your health goals.

    • lizmalay profile image


      5 months ago from USA

      I have been fasting for a few days now. It is my healthy goal this year to fast for a few days every month. The result? I feel great! Before breaking the fast, I prefer cooking something simple, healthy, and delicious! I think I have found a perfect recipe. My husband loves black beans, and I love rice. Thank you for sharing the recipe.

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I love to try this recipe. Beans are great for health.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Looks so yummy right now, makes me very hungry.

      Gosh, it smells so good in your Squidooland. lol :)

    • LilyBird profile image


      7 years ago

      Yummy! Thanks for the recipe!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I am going to making all your recipes :) Blessed!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Great lens, nicely done! Squidlike

    • profile image

      CyberTech LM 

      8 years ago

      Black Beans & Rice MMMmmmmmm have to make this one! Bookmarked the page!

    • Terry Boroff profile image

      Terry Boroff (flipflopnana) 

      8 years ago from FL

      Mmmm - looks like this will be dinner tomorrow - Thanks!

    • TreasuresBrenda profile image

      Treasures By Brenda 

      8 years ago from Canada

      We don't eat nearly enough beans and should eat more. Interesting recipe.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Looks delicious!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      This looks so yummy and I love rice, have never cooked with black beans though.

    • Blackspaniel1 profile image


      8 years ago

      Nice lens

    • jballs6 profile image


      8 years ago

      Great lens, one for me to try cheers for sharing x

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Enjoyed your article, this basic food sure packs a punch to a entree dish to me.

    • Sara Krentz profile imageAUTHOR

      Sara Krentz 

      8 years ago from USA

      @flicker lm: Of course; there's always plenty : )

    • flicker lm profile image

      flicker lm 

      8 years ago

      Looks tasty! Do you give out samples? :D

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Nicely put together lens - I'm not big on beans myself, but I may keep this in mind when cooking for others! :)


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