One Pot Rice and Beans

by Mar 3, 2023

New York Times Cooking ran a one-pot meal feature and it inspired me to simplify our rice and bean dinner which includes a Spanish rice, and beans, cooked separately. Don’t ask me why I didn’t think to throw the beans in with the rice before now, but it is the way to go!

Serve with heated tortillas, shredded cheese, and tomatillo salsa. This red cabbage black bean slaw is a great way to add more vegetables to the meal. If you’re planning in advance and want to get some beans cooked, here’s how.

Serving suggestion with tortillas griddled with cheese, tomatillo salsa, and sliced jalapeño.


One Pot Rice and Beans

serves 4


  • 1 tbsp avocado oil or other neutral cooking oil
  • ½ small onion, diced
  • 1 cup medium or long grain white rice Calrose is a good basic
  • ½ tsp Kosher salt
  • 1 ¾ cup water or broth (chicken or vegetable) or some of each
  • 2 cups cooked beans


  1. Heat oil in sautée or sauce pan (2–3 quart size), add onion and cook until softened, stirring with a wood spatula, about 5 minutes. Add the rice and stir to toast.

    Add salt and water or broth and bring to a boil. Stir in the beans, lower heat to maintain a slow simmer, cover and let cook until liquid is absorbed into rice, about 20 minutes. Turn off heat and let sit 5 minutes (or up to 1 hour) before serving.

Recipe Notes / Tips

  • Variation for more of a Spanish/red rice: add tomato with the onion. I use what I have around, sometimes just a tablespoon of tomato paste but a chopped fresh tomato is nice. Of course you can use canned chopped tomatoes, drain them first and use 1/4–1/2 cup. 
  • Corn tortillas warmed on a griddle with some shredded cheese is a welcome addition. I like putting cheese directly on the griddle and topping with a tortilla, when the cheese starts to crispify, it is easy to flip and warm the other side of the tortilla.
  • If you've made this in advance, reheat by sprinkling a couple tablespoons of water over the rice and beans, cover and put in 300°F oven for about 20 minutes.

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