I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again – I love rice. Do you know else I love? Rice with Cuban black beans on top! In my world, this is called arroz con frijoles.
Arroz con frijoles [pronounced a·rros kon fri·ho·les] is a Cuban rice and beans recipe that is a simple yet classic dish made with white rice and Cuban black beans.
What’s the difference between Moros y Cristianos/Arroz Congri and Arroz Con Frijoles?
Moros y Cristianos/Arroz Congri is when white rice and black beans are cooked together in the same pot.
Arroz con frijoles is a Cuban rice and beans recipe where the white rice and black beans are cooked separately. They both taste DELICIOUS, but today, we’re focusing solely on arroz con frijoles.
Let me show you how to make it!
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Green pepper, onion, garlic. The sofrito! Most Cuban dishes start off with this delicious trifecta.
- Dried black beans. I’m typically a fan of canned black beans which is how I make my frijoles negro but dried black beans just taste better and are more nutritionally dense. Is the cooking process longer using dried black beans? Yes. Is it worth it? Also, yes.
- Water. You need water to soak the dried black beans overnight and to cook the rice.
- Olive oil. For sauteing the sofrito for the beans.
- Red wine vinegar and granulated sugar. A perfect balance of acidity and sweetness for the black beans.
- Oregano, cumin, salt, pepper, bay leaf. This will flavor up our silky Cuban black beans!
- Long grain white rice. The most versatile rice for less clumpy, more fluffy rice.
- Vegetable oil + salt. To flavor up and cook the rice without it becoming too sticky.
Love rice? Me too! When I’m not making white rice with black beans, I’m making Spanish yellow rice!
How To Make This Cuban Rice and Beans Recipe
- Soak the beans. You must soak them in 3 cups of water overnight. Honestly, this is the hardest part of this recipe. All that waiting!
- Soften the beans. The next day, drain and then add 5 new cups of water to the pot. Bring to a boil and cook them for 60 minutes, stirring frequently. But be careful not to let the beans dry out completely. You can add 1 cup of water if they are absorbing the water too quickly. Keep an eye on them.
- Sauté the sofrito. After most of the water has been absorbed, you can start making the sofrito (garlic, green peppers, onion mixture).
- Simmer with the rest of the ingredients. In a saucepan, add the sofrito, softened black beans, water, olive oil, red wine vinegar, sugar, salt, oregano, cumin, pepper, and a bay leaf. Stir to combine and bring to a boil and place the lid on top.
- Cook until silky perfection. Reduce to low heat and cook for 20 minutes until you get a thick, silky and creamy consistency.
- Make the rice. In the meantime, add the rice, water, oil, and salt to a large saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes until the rice is tender and the water is absorbed. Remove from the heat but do not open the lid for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork. The result is soft, fluffy white rice, not mushy nor wet.
- Serve your arroz con frijoles! Serve the white rice with cooked black beans on top. And I serve them with sweet plantains too for good measure. *wink wink*
I don’t have time to soak beans, can I use canned beans?
If you’re pressed for time, you can absolutely make Cuban black beans using canned beans instead of dried black beans, click here to follow my black beans recipe using canned black beans.
How long do cooked black beans last?
Cooled, cooked black beans last 4-5 days in the fridge in an airtight container.
Make sure they don’t stay at room temperature after cooking for longer than 1-2 hours to avoid the growth of bacteria.
You can also freeze cooked black beans for up to 4 months.
How long does cooked rice last?
Cooked white rice will last no more than 3 days in the fridge in an airtight container and up to 1 month in the freezer in a freezer bag or freezer-safe container.
What to serve with arroz con frijoles?
- Sweet Plantains (Platanos Maduros)
- Tostones Recipe (Twice-Fried Plantains!)
- Pollo Asado (Cuban-Style Grilled Chicken)
- Cuban Vaca Frita de Pollo (Shredded Chicken Recipe)
You can also serve it as a main dish! Why not? Beans are full of protein after all.
Can’t wait for you to try it!
Cuban Rice and Beans Recipe (Arroz con Frijoles Negro)
For the black beans
- 1/2 cup diced green pepper
- 1/2 cup diced yellow onion
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 12 ounces dried black beans
- 1 cup water
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 bay leaf
For the white rice
- 1 cup White rice washed and rinsed thoroughly
- 2 cups water
- 1.5 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt or more to taste
- Soak the dried black beans in a pot full of 3 cups of water overnight.
- The next day, drain and then add 5 new cups of water to the pot. Bring to a boil and cook them for 60 minutes, stirring frequently. Be careful not to let the beans dry out completely. You can add 1 cup of water if they are absorbing the water too quickly. Make sure to keep an eye on them. After softening them for 60 minutes, drain and transfer to a bowl. Set aside.
- In a saucepan, sauté green pepper, onions, and garlic at medium heat for 5 minutes until softened.
- Next, add the softened black beans, water, olive oil, red wine vinegar, sugar, salt, oregano, cumin, pepper, and a bay leaf. Stir to combine and bring to a boil.
- Place the lid on top and reduce to low heat. Cook for 20 minutes until you get a thick, silky and creamy consistency. Taste and adjust seasonings, if needed.
- In the meantime, make the rice. In a large saucepan, add the rice, water, oil, and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for about 15 minutes until the rice is tender and the water is absorbed. Remove from the heat but do not open the lid for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork. The result is soft, fluffy white rice, not mushy nor wet.
- Serve the white rice with cooked black beans on top. Enjoy!