Cilantro Lime Black Bean Rice is light, delicious, and so versatile. Whether it’s on your favorite burrito, as a side dish, or a late night snack straight from the fridge, you won’t be able to resist this awesome dish
When Kara and I were in college, a Taco Bell opened 2 blocks from our apartment. On a whim, we decided we needed to eat there the first 30 days in a row they were open. To this day I have no clue why we thought that was necessary. A few years later Chipotle opened nationwide. I decided to give it a shot at the original location in Denver, and I haven’t eaten at Taco Bell since.
I’m a creature of habit at Chipotle, so I always get the fajita burrito. I sometimes change up the protein, but I always, ALWAYS get the cilantro lime rice. Yes, they put too much on the burritos. Yes, of course, I could tell them to scale back. And yes, I plan to tell them that each time. But come crunch time, I give in.
I rarely go to Chipotle these days but I still crave the rice so I decided to make my own version at home. And instead of the traditional, I kicked it up several notches with Cilantro Lime Black Bean Rice
WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS
- It’s easy to make, and ready in about 25 minutes
- It’s perfect as a side dish, in a burrito, or on its own
- You can make it ahead, and it’s delicious hot, room temperature or even cold
TIPS FOR MAKING THE PERFECT RICE
- Basmati Rice is my hands-down favorite for Cilantro Lime Black Bean Rice. It is more aromatic than regular long grain rice and cooks up perfectly every time
- Cover your saucepan and let the rice simmer on low for 15 minutes.
- Remove the saucepan from heat and let it rest for 5 minutes.
- Don’t stir your rice! Stirring activates the starches, resulting in a stickier texture. Instead, just fluff it with a fork
IMPORTANT TIPS FOR FLAVORING YOUR RICE
- Start by sauteeing onion and garlic in Avocado Oil. The onion and garlic practically melt by the time the rice is done and they add so much flavor
- Sure you could cook the rice in water, but to add more flavor I use Vegetable Broth (or chicken broth if you prefer). I like to use homemade broth; if you use store-bought, look for no salt added.
- Add a little bit of salt to the liquid. You don’t need a whole lot for that great punch of flavor
- Fresh cilantro is a 100% requirement, and you can adjust the amount to your personal preference.
- Fresh lime juice and lime zest. Limes are plentiful and inexpensive, and you really have no idea how fresh the lime juice in the jar really is
NOTE: I use about 1 Tablespoon of lime juice for this recipe. It’s not overwhelming but adds a nice brightness to the rice. You can adjust the amount to your preference.
ABOUT THOSE BLACK BEANS
Black beans are high in protein and fiber, low in fat, and versatile. Last year I created a fabulous Black Bean Soup, but that’s my only black bean recipe on the blog so I need to get my act together. With chickpeas, I almost always use dried, but I prefer to use canned Black Beans. And if you don’t use the whole can at once, store the rest in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Add the black beans at the very end, along with the cilantro and lime juice and zest. If you add the beans to the cooking liquid, they become too mushy for my tastes
SERVING OPTIONS AND LEFTOVERS
There are so many great ways to enjoy Cilantro Lime Black Bean Rice:
- As a side dish with Grilled Vegetable Fajitas or Steak Fajita Quesadillas
- In a burrito
- With your favorite protein for weekly lunch meal prep
- A side dish for a party, picnic, or potluck
I’m not usually a big fan of leftovers, but Cilantro Lime Black Bean Rice is an exception. As a matter of fact, it might even be better the next day! I love to eat it at room temperature or even straight out of the fridge.
Cilantro Lime Black Bean Rice will last for about one week in an airtight container in the fridge.
MORE RECIPES I LOVE AS LEFTOVERS
- Baked Homemade Mac and Cheese
- Farro Sausage Stuffed Peppers
- Dirty Rice Chicken Skillet
- Maple Mustard Garlic Sheet Pan Chicken
DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE? COMMENT AND RATE BELOW, THEN TAKE A PICTURE AND TAG ME ON FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM: @KARYLSKULINARYKRUSADE
Cilantro Lime Black Bean Rice
- Add rice to a mesh strainer. Rinse and drain well
- In a large saucepan, heat avocado oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook for 3 minutes, until slightly softened. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute.
- Transfer rice to saucepan, stir well to combine for about 1 minute. Add broth and salt, bring to a boil, and reduce to a low simmer. Cover with lid and cook for 15 minutes.
- Remove saucepan from heat, and fluff rice with a fork. Re-cover, and let rest for 5 minutes
- Add black beans, lime juice, lime zest, and cilantro to rice. Toss well with a fork.