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This easy red beans and rice is wonderful with our without the meat!
I’ve always read about getting adequate protein (all 9 amino acids) through the combination of rice and beans. And while this classically southern dish is typically served with sausage, it doesn’t have to have the sausage to be a filling and tasty meal.
There are typically two camps of people in clean eating. Those that believe whole in the benefits of white rice and those who believe in the whole grains approach of brown rice. Both have their pluses and minuses.
WHICH RICE SHOULD YOU CHOOSE?
- White rice has more thiamin, iron and folate but is more processed.
- Brown rice has more niacin and is less processed.
- Both have about the same calorie content.
Those in the white rice camp site the fat that it is fat free. But at about 1 gram of fat per cup, brown rice has such minimal fat, it’s hardly worth the argument, and at the end of the day, clean eating avoids processed foods. So brown rice has always been my first choice.
- Rice and beans create a complete protein with all 9 amino acids.
- If you are plant based but others at your dinner table are not, you can serve yourself a meat-free portion while giving them the sausage they will no doubt prefer with this meal.
SERVE THIS WITH:
A dish of green salad on the side is excellent with this meal. It will give you extra veggies and fiber while making the meal feel even more substantial.
STOCK YOUR FREEZER:
- Freeze this in portioned sizes.
- Freeze up to 4 months.
- Defrost in the fridge.
- If freezer space is an issue, freeze this in sandwich bags (for portioned sizes), flatten and freeze on a cookie sheet. Once frozen, it will be flat and easy to wedge in or pile up inside your freezer.
A note on the beans: Traditional southern red beans and rice use a small, red bean. But I don’t have access to those here in my area, so I subbed with kidney beans. Use what’s available to you.
YOU MIGHT ALSO ENJOY THESE CLEAN EATING RECIPES:
- Clean Eating Brown Rice Parmesan Recipe
- Clean Eating Pineapple Turkey Rice Bowls Recipe
- Clean Eating Italian Seasoning Recipe
RED BEANS AND RICE RECIPE:
Red Beans and Rice
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 cup red onion (minced)
- 1 cup celery (chopped fine)
- 1 cup green bell pepper (chopped small)
- 2 cups vegetable broth (divided)
- 2 tbsp. garlic powder (yes, 2 tbsp.!)
- 1 tbsp. dried parsley
- 1 tbsp. Italian Seasoning (see link above to make your own)
- 1 ½ tsp. ground black pepper
- 1 ½ tsp. dried thyme
- 1 ½ tsp. smoked paprika
- 1 ½ tsp. dried sage
- 1 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
- 1 medium bay leaf
- 2 ½ cups cooked kidney beans (or small red beans – canned is fine too. )
- 4 cups cooked brown rice (I cooked mine with vegetable broth instead of water)
- pre-cooked meat of your choosing (optional)
- In a large skillet (I used a wok), warm the oil and add the onion, celery and bell pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes or until they begin to soften.
- When the oil runs out, add in 1 cup of the vegetable broth and the spices and beans.
- Add the rest of the broth as needed.
- (Add any pre-cooked meat here if using.) Cook until the vegetables are properly cooked through and everything is nicely combined.