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Seared Plantain Bowls
with Cuban rice and beans / bell peppers / avocados

Active: 35 min Total: 35 min
These easily customizable bowls with Caribbean-inspired flavors were first featured in May 2016, but we've added sauteed bell peppers and spinach for even more texture and color.
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Ingredients

Metric
Servings:
4
Cuban Rice and Beans:
  • Rice, uncooked white or brown - 2/3 cup
  • Beans, black (14oz / 397g) - 1 can, drained and rinsed
  • Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
  • Cumin - 1/4 tsp
  • Vinegar, red or white - 1/2 tsp
Seared Plantain Bowls:
  • Bell peppers, any color - 1, thinly sliced
  • Onions, medium - 1/2, thinly sliced
  • Jalapenos (opt) - 1, chopped
  • Limes - 1/2, wedges
  • Cilantro - 1 Tbsp, chopped
  • Plantains - 3 (look for very ripe, dark brown fruit)
  • Avocados - 1
  • Lime juice - 1 tsp
  • Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
  • Spinach, baby - 5 oz
  • Yogurt, plain or Greek - 4 Tbsp

Nutrition Facts

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Prep

  1. Make rice - For white rice, rinse until clear. Fill a saucepan or Dutch oven (or rice cooker) with rice, water (use 2:1 ratio for water to rice), and some salt. Cover with lid and bring to a boil. Once water boils, stir, lower heat to a low-medium, and cover. Check white rice after ~20 min; brown at ~45 min. Rice is done when it's absorbed all the water. If it's not done, leave the cover on until all water has been absorbed. Take cover off to release steam and fluff with a wooden spoon after 5 minutes. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  2. Bell peppers / Onions / Jalapenos - Prep as directed and combine. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  3. Lime wedges / Cilantro - Prep as directed. Store separately. (Can be done 1 day ahead)
  4. Beans - Drain and rinse.
  5. Plantains - Peel and slice. (Prep plantains for Thursday's melts at the same time if you are planning to make that meal.)

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Make

  1. Heat oven to 425F / 218C. Brush a sheet pan with some oil. Add plantains (include plantains for Thursday if you are making that meal) in a single layer and brush with some more oil. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt. Bake, turning halfway through cooking, until golden brown, 15 to 17 minutes total.
  2. Mash avocados with cilantro and lime juice. Season with some salt.
  3. Heat a nonstick pan or skillet over medium-high heat. Add cooking oil (the portion for the bowls) and then bell peppers, onions and jalapenos to heated oil. Saute until peppers and onions are tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Add spinach with a pinch of salt and saute just until spinach is wilted. Set aside and return pan to heat.
  4. Reduce heat to medium. Add oil (the portion for the rice and beans) and then beans, cumin and vinegar to heated oil. Saute for 1 minute. Stir in rice just until heated through.
  5. Divide rice and beans between serving bowls and top with plantains (remember to reserve half if doubled for Thursday), sauteed peppers / spinach, mashed avocado, yogurt and lime wedges. Alternatively, just set all the components out and let everyone assemble their bowls at the table. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts

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Reviews

Ratings

Original (141)
Gluten-free (14)
Paleo (15)
Vegetarian (24)

Most Helpful

A very delicious meal! I added garlic, tomato paste and a bit of stock to the veggie mix (my family is Cuban and it felt more authentic that way).

By: Aileen
Posted: Feb 21, 2019
Diet: Original
1 Helpful

62 reviews

A very delicious meal! I added garlic, tomato paste and a bit of stock to the veggie mix (my family is Cuban and it felt more authentic that way).

By: Aileen
Posted: Feb 21, 2019
Diet: Original
1 Helpful

I had forgotten how much I like plantains until I made this. I followed some other reviewers’ advice and added garlic and threw everything into the pan along with the rice.

By: Judith
Posted: Jan 04, 2019
Diet: Vegetarian
0 Helpful

Delicious! Added extra cumin and vinegar to rice & beans. Added garlic to veggie mix.

By: Caroline
Posted: Apr 02, 2017
Diet: Vegetarian
0 Helpful

This meal was delicious. Only made about 5 servings instead of the 6 we selected. We ran out of the rice/bean mixture and the sautéed bell peppers. We used sliced romaine instead of spinach due to my allergy, was still wonderful.

By: Nellie
Posted: Mar 23, 2017
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

We don't eat pork, so I used chicken breasts. Sauteed the onions, garlic and jalapeno in the Instant Pot, then added the chicken and everything else. Used the poultry setting (auto-sets to 15 minutes) and the slow release. Shredded it, then put it back in the pot with the liquid -- delicious! Used shredded cabbage instead of spinach, as I needed to use it (and it seems to blend better with peppers and onions). Will make again.

By: Sarah
Posted: Mar 15, 2017
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

The flavors in this dish are amazing! So delicious!

By: Krystal
Posted: Mar 10, 2017
Diet: Paleo
0 Helpful