My Plant-Based Week
My Plant-Based Week

Leftover Morphology: Caribbean-Style Lentils, Beans and Rice

Some of our most satisfying and tasty meals have come along when I didn't really have anything specific planned...or have been on the cusp of a major grocery shopping event and low on funds! Using as much as I can out of our pantry on any given night helps to make sure I stay on budget. This meal is defintely one of those quick and cost-effective meals that was very filling and that everyone enjoyed.

 

There is rarely a moment when you can't find dry lentils, beans and brown rice in my pantry. When you are eating a plant-based diet, these items are absolutely necessary building blocks to any protein-packed meal. I know it's healthier to use ingredients like dry beans and legumes as replacements for meat than to always rely on things like tofu and other fake meats.

 

 

For this dish, I used dry lentils, both red and green from my pantry and some cooked navy and pinto beans that were in my freezer. A few aromatics and spices brought the meal nicely together and combining it with some cooked brown rice made it a complete meal, no sides necessary! As most of my meals do, this made enough for two dinners and lunch for my husband on the third day. The only item I had to purchase to create this great dinner was a package of mini sweet peppers at the grocery store for $2.99. Everything else came from my pantry, refrigerator and freezer--items that had been purchased for general use or for other meals. Getting 8-10 servings for only an extra $3 is a total win in my book!

 

Caribbean Style Lentils, Beans and Rice (Prep/Cook Time: 25 minutes Yield: 8-10 Servings, depending on size)

 

½ large onion, finely chopped

1 tbs. extra virgin olive oil

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 small or 9 mini sweet bell peppers, chopped (I used a combo of mini red, yellow and orange)

1 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes, with juice

2 tsp. chili powder

1 tbs. cumin

2 tsp. oregano

½ tsp. allspice

Pinch of cinnamon

Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup water

1 vegetable bouillon cube

½ cup dry lentils (I used a 1/4 cup each of red and green lentils)

2 cups cooked brown rice

4 cups cooked beans (I used navy and red)

Fresh lime wedges and cilantro for garnish if desired

 

  1. In a Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and cook an additional 2-3 minutes. Add the tomatoes with juices, the peppers and dry spices. Cook for 3 minutes.
  2. Add the water and bouillon cube, bring to a boil and add the lentils. Reduce heat and simmer until the lentils are tender, about 12-15 minutes. Add the rice and beans and simmer until heated through. Garnish with the fresh lime wedges and cilantro.

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Hi! I'm Milissa and my passion is affordable plant-based eating. Here is where I share my family's favorite recipes and show you how you can eat healthfully on any budget!

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