Rice and Bean Bowls/Tacos

Weekday Meals: Rice & Bean bowls/tacos

Ah, Monday. Everyone’s favorite day. After slogging through the start of another week at work and coming home to find we were down to canned foods and some slightly wilted spinach, a trip to the grocery store was inevitable. But you can’t send us to the grocery store hungry or we walk out of there with a $200 bill and a lot of food that ends up going to waste. So first things first, we needed an easy and filling meal. And if it resulted in some leftovers for lunches during the week, even better!

Rice and Bean Bowls/Tacos

Rice and Bean Bowls/Tacos

Two things we almost always have on hand in our kitchen: brown rice and black beans. We make many iterations of the same basic dish with these ingredients.

My process for making rice comes from years of eating boxed Rice-A-Roni. I can no longer eat this because 1) I know what’s in it now, and 2) Matt has a bad reaction to MSG. Since we started dating, I’ve found that a lot of things I enjoyed as a kid are now off the table, especially pre-packaged stuff that comes with a “flavor packet.” That’s usually a red flag. Anyway, the point is that the process for making rice is the same.

Step 1:
Start with a few pats of butter in a pan over medium heat, then add the rice. This was 2 cups of rice.

Step 2:
Season the rice and let it continue to cook for a few minutes. We like lots of spices, so I used chili powder, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, and some dried cilantro.

Step 3:
Add minced garlic, a can of corn, and a can of Rotel-Hot tomato/chile mix (drained). You could certainly use fresh if you’ve got it. We didn’t (hence the need for the grocery store trip). Just give it a quick stir, then proceed to Step 4.

Step 4:
Add the liquid. You can use water, but I like to do at least 50% stock. I used 2 cups stock and 2 cups water. But with the liquid in the canned veggies, 1 cup water probably would’ve sufficed. Then cover and simmer on low. (*Due to the excess liquid, it took about an hour and 20 minutes to cook.)

Finished Product:

While the rice was cooking, Matt whipped up some black beans.

Using some of the same spices as the rice, he also grabbed some peppers (cayenne and pequin) from our garden. Peppers and herbs are the few things we having growing right now.

I like my food in bowl form.
Topped with spinach, avocado, and garlic chives (from our garden).

Matt prefers his in taco form.

With that, we were fueled up and ready to hit the grocery store!