Red Beans and Rice

Red Beans and Rice could be described as a hearty comfort food, served with cornbread and topped with a bit of sliced peppers, make those jalapeños if you like some kick.

Red Beans and Rice make a tasty comfort food for long winter days.

I’ve always thought that cooking bean-based recipes from dried beans would be such a hassle. I’ve learned over the last couple of years that nothing could be further from the truth. It does take a little preparation, but it’s not as if it requires that much time. And that’s where the hassle part of most projects come in to play anyway.

A collage of dried beans, rice, and a hearty bowl of red beans and rice.

What I love about using dried beans is the control. (Yes, I can be a control freak, but only about beans and canned goods stacked neatly in the pantry…everything else is up for grabs). Here’s my problem with canned beans; too much salt for my taste. Well, there’s also the hassle of recycling the cans.

A hearty vegan comfort food, Red Beans and Rice.

I use the Jane Brody trick of letting canned beans sit in cool water for a bit to leach out some of the sodium, but I’m still left with a canned, salty taste. A bag of dried beans solves that problem entirely. I can add as much or as little salt as I like. And I can use my favorite sea salt instead of table salt. See? The control freak in me is completely unfreakified. (I’m fairly certain that’s not a word, but you get the point).

Adorned with sliced peppers, this red beans and rice dish is sure to please your football party guests.

People often have a misconception that vegan diets are expensive. This meal is one example proving the opposite. At our grocery store a bag of red beans is around one dollar. A bag of brown rice is just about a dollar as well. This recipe also calls for TVP (textured vegetable protein). You can get a bag of Bob’s Red Mill TVP at most grocery stores for around five dollars (and you only need some of that for this recipe). Throw in some chopped carrots, onion, garlic and seasonings, and you’ve got a reasonably-priced meal that’s not too difficult to make.

Sounds like happiness in a bowl if you ask me!

Red Beans and Rice

(Adapted from Bob’s Red Mill Recipes)


  • 2 cups dried red beans (1 bag)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cups carrots, chopped
  • 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 8 cups water
  • 2 cups TVP
  • 2 tablespoons Chili Powder
  • 1 tablespoon Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Turmeric
  • 1 can Stewed Tomatoes
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 2 cups water
  • Salt and Pepper to taste


Soak the red beans in 5 – 6 cups of water several hours or overnight. Drain the beans of the soaking water and rinse well.

Place the rinsed beans in a large dutch oven with the onions, garlic carrots, and water. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer and cook for about 45 minutes then add the TVP, Chili Powder, Cumin, and Turmeric.

In the meantime, place the brown rice in a medium sauce pan with the water. Bring the water to a boil and then reduce heat to a low simmer and cook covered about 30 – 40 minutes.

Cook the mixture until the beans are fully tender, 30 – 40 minutes. You’ll notice a lot of the liquid has cooked into the beans. This is when you’ll add the stewed tomatoes (including liquids).

Add the cooked rice to the beans and then comes the fun part. Take a little taste to see how much salt and pepper (and other seasonings) need to be added. Garnish with sliced green onions, peppers, or jalapeños (for some kick).

This recipe should produce 8 servings, depending on the size of those servings.

Updated by Marly · Permalink

7 Responses to Red Beans and Rice

  1. I need this biiiiiig time. BIG TIME.

  2. Absolutely love red beans & rice!

  3. I love red beans and rice! This recipe looks delicious and I love the addition of the TVP. I will try soon!

  4. Yum yum, this is definitely my kind of comfort food. I always cook my beans from scratch now, it really is no work and I’m saving on added sodium, reducing my environmental impact (can production and recycling), money..and not to mention all those dried beans in their containers look so pretty in my kitchen 🙂
    Oh, could you let me know what size can of tomatoes. I’ve noticed that often our can sizes in the UK differ from US ones. Thank you!

    • It was a 15 oz can of stewed tomatoes. Although I have seen some in 14.5 oz cans. And it would be fine to use diced tomatoes too. The options are (not literally) endless!

  5. Super, thank you! That is our typical size can of tomatoes in fact. Looking forward to trying this one.

  6. Sounds delicious Marly – looks super hearty and spicy!


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