We can thank our friends in South America for one of the more popular dishes around, black beans and rice. It is an inexpensive source of energy, iron and protein. The beans are higher in protein and the rice has greater iron, so when you combine the foods you end up with a complete protein that provides the amino acids the human body cannot produce on its own. Clever!
The latest dietary guidelines recommends increasing the consumption of beans to three cups per week per person. Beans have about the same calories as meat but provide more fiber, little fat, and high water. This means the individual feels fuller quicker and is less likely to overeat, which will aid in weight loss.
This recipe will work as a side dish or an entree. You can reduce the prep time considerably if you use frozen vegetables that you warm through in the microwave and start with an instant rice packet. If your family is not fond of broccoli, substitute corn or peas, or be creative.
Fiesta Rice and Beans Recipe
2 Cups cooked rice
½ Teaspoon chili powder
1 Can (19 ounces) black beans, drained and rinsed
2 Cups broccoli florets
1 Cup salsa or picante sauce
¼ Cup shredded cheese
Cook rice per directions on the package but add the chili powder to the water.
Cook vegetables to a point where they still have some crispness.
Combine beans, rice, vegetables, and salsa and top with cheese.