This vegan red beans and rice recipe could be described as hearty comfort food. Serve this dish with vegan cornbread and topped with a few sliced peppers. You can make those peppers jalapeños if you like some kick.
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.
What are Red Beans?
Red beans are different than kidney beans. Small red beans are what you’re looking for in this recipe and are easily found in the dried beans section. I love this resource for learning more about the different types of beans.
What You Need
You can find the full printable recipe, including ingredient quantities, below. But first, here are some explanations of ingredients and steps to help you make this recipe perfect every time.
Here are the ingredients you’ll need for this recipe:
- Dried red beans — You can find these along with the other dried beans. If you’re in a hurry, substitute canned red beans. You’ll need 4 cans.
- Olive oil
- Bell pepper
- Seasonings — We’ll use chili powder, turmeric, cayenne pepper, dried thyme, and bay leaves.
- Liquid Smoke
- Vegetable broth
- Stewed tomatoes
- Textured vegetable protein — You can buy this at health food stores or online. Substitute veggie meat crumbles.
- Salt + pepper
- Brown rice — You can use precooked brown rice, instant brown rice, or make your own from scratch.
How to Make Vegan Red Beans and Rice
- Soak the red beans in water several hours or overnight. Drain the beans of the soaking water and rinse well.
- Cook onions, carrots, and bell peppers in a large pot with oil over medium heat. Cook until veggies are tender, about 5 minutes.
- Add garlic and cook for another minute.
- Stir in the spices and and cook for about a minute.
- Add beans, vegetable broth, and water. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 1 hour.
- Stir in the TVP and stewed tomatoes and cook for 15 minutes, until the TVP is tender.
- Cook brown rice in a medium pan. Here’s more on how to cook brown rice.
- Serve beans with the rice along with your favorite toppings.
How will you know the beans are cooked? First, when you stir them, they shouldn’t “ping” against the spoon. The beans should be heavy and thus move more sluggishly and heavy around the pan. Second, remove one of the beans with a spoon and allow it to cool and taste it. The bean should be tender, not chewy or crunchy.
To serve, add a scoop of rice to beans to a bowl. Here are some things you can serve alongside or on top of this tasty recipe:
Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. It can be frozen in a freezer-safe container for up to 2 months.
Cheap Vegan Recipes
Another thing I love about this vegan rice and beans recipe is that it’s cheap! People often have a misconception that vegan diets are expensive.
Here’s a breakdown of costs for this recipe based approximate prices at my local grocery store (Price Chopper):
- A bag of red beans: $1
- A bag of brown rice: $1
- TVP (textured vegetable protein — I found a bag of Bob’s Red Mill TVP in the health food section of my grocery store): $4
- Remaining ingredients like chopped carrots, onion, garlic and seasonings: $5.
This all comes to around to $11 and creates 8 generous and filling servings. That’s $1.38 per serving. If you ask me, that’s a very a reasonably-priced meal that’s not too difficult to make.
More Vegan Stew
Sure, this vegan red beans recipe is amazing, but now you want more vegan stew recipes? Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. Be sure to try these out:
Red Beans and Rice
- 2 cups dried red beans 1 bag
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion peeled and chopped
- 2 cups chopped carrots
- 1 cup chopped bell pepper (green, yellow, or red)
- 5 large garlic cloves peeled and minced
- 2 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon Liquid Smoke
- 1 cup water
- 32 oz vegetable broth (or 5 1/2 cups)
- 2 medium bay leaves
- 1 15 oz can stewed tomatoes
- 2 cups textured vegetable protein
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 cup dry brown rice
- 2 cups water
- Soak the red beans in 5 – 6 cups of water several hours or overnight. Drain the beans of the soaking water and rinse well. Set aside.
- In a large pot over medium heat, add olive oil, onions, carrots, bell peppers. Cook until veggies are tender, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another minute. Stir in the spices and liquid smoke, and cook for about a minute.
- Add beans, vegetable broth, and water. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 1 hour. Stir in the TVP and stewed tomatoes. Cook for another 10 – 15 minutes, until the TVP is tender.
- 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. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- To serve, add a scoop of rice to beans, along with cornbread and your favorite toppings (like vegan sour cream, vegan yogurt, chopped jalapenos, fresh parsley).
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The nutrition information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator and should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.