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Red Beans and Rice
with green beans

Active: 35 minTotal: 35 min

Red beans and rice is budget friendly and quick to put together on a busy weeknight! Served with a flavorful tomato sauce and green beans on the side, this meal has everything you need for a little midweek pick-me-up.
Smarts: This recipe makes enough tomato sauce for Thursday night's calzones.



Tomato Sauce with Garlic and Thyme:
  • Onions, medium - 1, diced
  • Bell peppers, red - 1, diced
  • Garlic - 4 cloves, chopped
  • Thyme leaves - 1 tsp, leaves torn
  • Oil, olive - 1 Tbsp
  • Paprika - 1/2 tsp
  • Tomatoes, crushed (28 oz / 794 g) - 1 can
Red Beans and Rice:
  • Beans, pinto (14 oz / 397 g) - 2 cans, drained and rinsed
  • Tomato Sauce with Garlic and Thyme (ingredients listed separately) - ~2 cups
  • Cooked rice (leftover from Monday) - ~2 cups
Boiled Green Beans:
  • Green beans, fresh or frozen - 1 lb, chopped into 1” / 2.5 cm pieces
  • Butter - 1 Tbsp

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 serving
Servings Per Recipe 4
Amount Per Serving
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% Daily Value
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  1. Green beans / Onions / Bell peppers / Garlic / Thyme - Prep as directed. Store green beans in one container. Combine onions and bell peppers in another container. Combine garlic and thyme in a third container. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  2. Make tomato sauce - (This makes enough for Thursday’s meal. If prepping right before cooking, get water for green beans boiling before continuing with prep.) Heat a saucepan with olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and bell peppers and saute until soft, 3 to 4 minutes. Add garlic, thyme, and paprika and saute for 1 minute. Pour tomatoes over top and simmer for 5 minutes. Season with some salt and pepper. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  3. Beans - Drain and rinse beans.


  1. Bring a large stock pot of salted water to a boil.
  2. While water is coming to a boil, combine pinto beans and tomato sauce (reserve half for Thursday) in a large skillet. Place skillet over medium heat and cover. Simmer beans and sauce for 10 minutes to let the flavors come together.
  3. Once water in the stock pot comes to a boil add green beans and simmer until tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Drain.
  4. Return to beans and sauce. Gently mash some of the beans with a fork or spatula. (Note: Mashing some of the beans will give the dish a creamier texture.) Season with some salt and pepper. Stir in some hot sauce if you’d like the beans spicy.
  5. Toss green beans with butter. Season with some salt and pepper.
  6. Reheat leftover rice in the microwave.
  7. Serve red beans / sauce over rice. Enjoy green beans on the side.

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This meal has 35 reviews

Liked this a lot. I didn’t think the meatballs and sauce would fit in my skillet, so I made the sauce in my Dutch oven and transferred the meatballs to the sauce after browning them. I like my meatballs extra brown; I think this helped keep them together in the sauce. I did have a lot of loose (burnt) rice in the skillet, but his wasn’t a big deal since I wasn’t adding the sauce to that pan. To simplify things, I skipped the potatoes and steamed green beans in the microwave. Still very satisfying.

By: Danielle
Posted: Nov 16, 2018
Diet: Original

Fine but not fantastic. Tried to make it a bean sauce instead of tomato based and it was a bit dry. Added some potatoes into the cauliflower/bean mix because my family loves them...

By: Shawn
Posted: Nov 16, 2018
Diet: Paleo

This is one of those meals that I thought was good the first time around but thought the leftovers were great. I think the longer the meatballs sit in the sauce, the better they are. I really like the side too. It's simple but great.

By: Chelsea
Posted: Nov 16, 2018
Diet: Original

I really liked this, and I was able to prep it during the day so it came together easily. Plus, my 1 year old ate all of it, even the green beans!

By: Kera
Posted: Nov 15, 2018
Diet: Original

The meatballs did come apart during the process. Maybe adding more panko next time to firm them up a little more. Otherwise great dish!

By: justen
Posted: Nov 13, 2018
Diet: Original

We really enjoyed this dish! We eat keto, so I left out the rice and potatoes, and swapped the breadcrumbs for crushed pork rinds. I wish I had doubled the sauce because it was delicious!

By: Stephanie
Posted: Nov 12, 2018
Diet: Gluten-free