Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Quick Red Beans and Rice




So what's so special about beans and rice?  Beans are really good for you.  And I mean awesomely good for you.  There's no fat or cholesterol in beans.  Unlike any of the animal sources of protein.  They have a ton of fiber and protein...so they keep you full longer.  That's a definite plus for anyone who is watching their weight.  And in the U.S., who isn't?  Last but not least, they are dirt cheap.  A can of generic beans is about 50 cents.  A bag of dried beans are pennies per serving.  Dried beans are easy to rehydrate, require very little hands on time and the rehydrated beans freeze pretty well.  It does take planning, though, as it can take up to several hours.  But my favorite thing about this beans and rice dish?  It tastes fantastic.

My cost:
1) Can of red kidney beans, store brand: $0.49
2) Can of stewed tomatoes, store brand: $0.79
3) Onions, vegetable oil, dried oregano, garlic powder, brown rice: already in the pantry. 

Changes that I made:
Hardly any, really.  The original recipe calls for black beans and instant brown rice.  I had actually eaten a black bean dish for most of last week, so I wanted to change it up a bit with red beans.  Cutting edge, I know.  As for the instant brown rice, I've never eaten instant rice in my life and well, I already owned regular brown rice so I figured I wouldn't have to eat the instant stuff just yet...

One of the things I like about this recipe is that all of the sodium comes from the canned foods. (A good thing or a bad thing?  I'm not thinking about it too much.)  So, seriously, you don't need to add any more salt. Besides, the garlic, onion, and oregano provides plenty of flavor too.

The Recipe

Quick Red Beans and Rice 
(Inspired by "Quick Black Beans and Rice" at Allrecipes.com)

Serves 4

Ingredients


1 onion, chopped
1 (15 oz) can of red kidney beans, undrained
1 (14.5 oz) can of stewed tomatoes, undrained
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 cups of cooked brown rice

Directions:

Heat a large saucepan over medium high heat.  Add all of the ingredients except the rice and bring to a simmer.  Simmer for about 5 minutes, or until everything is heated through.  Serve over 1/2 cup of brown rice.

Nutrition per serving:

Calories 271
Calories from Fat 47

% Daily Value *
Total Fat 5.3g 8 %
Saturated Fat 0.5g 2 %
Cholesterol 0mg 0 %
Sodium 552mg 22 %
** Potassium 260mg 7 %
Total Carbohydrates 47.8g 15 %
Dietary Fiber 8.8g 35 %
Protein 10g 20 %

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