Make Ahead

Cuban Black Beans and Rice

February  2, 2015
1 Ratings
  • Serves 8
Author Notes

My grandfather is from Cuba, and brought us this recipe, which we love and use often in many forms and variations. Delicious, simple, and easy, it's been a huge hit among friends and family across generations. It's perfect for making ahead or making extra; the longer it spends in the crock pot (up to 12 hours!) the better, and freezes well. —Steph Avalos-Bock

What You'll Need
  • 1 pound dried beans: black, small red, or garbanzos
  • 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, pressed
  • 1-2 onions, chopped
  • 3 bell peppers, chopped
  • 15 ounces tomato sauce
  • 1-2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1-2 tablespoons honey or vinegar
  • salt to taste
  1. Soak and cook the beans with 1 tbsp salt. Overnight in the crock pot is easiest. Discard the cooking water; return beans to crock pot. (Note: you can use canned beans and skip this step to save time. Just be sure to adjust the salt accordingly.)
  2. Saute the garlic in olive oil for a minute; add onion and green pepper. Cook 5-10 minutes until soft, adding salt to taste.
  3. Add tomato sauce, bay leave(s), and oregano. Cook 10-15 minutes, until sauce darkens slightly. Taste and correct seasoning.
  4. Add tomato mixture (we call this the soffritto) to the beans in the crock pot and cook on high about 6 hours or on low 8+ hours. (You can also make this on the stove and eat if after about 2 hours, but it's much better if you give it more time.)
  5. When done, add vinegar if using black beans, or honey if using small red beans, to taste.
  6. Serve with steamed rice, white or brown.

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