How to make Red Beans and Rice

Arroz con Frijoles Video

The wonderful smell of red beans and rice invades our home every time I make this simple recipe from South America, specifically from my native country of Colombia.

Many people ask me how to make delicious beans and rice, I simply give them this recipe I am sharing with you today. All the Ingredients in it are very easy to obtain at any ethnic aisle of a normal supermarket or grocery store.

The Main Tool Is Having the Best Pressure Cooker

The main tool to prepare this delicious food and many other Hispanic food recipes is a pressure cooker.

If you buy one I am sure you will be using it quite frequently to make your dishes in at least half the time you normally take to make the same recipe in a conventional pot.

A pressure cooker allows food to cook perfectly while keeping nutrients intact. For a dish like red beans and rice it is a blessing to have this tool since it ends up being a time and nutrients saver after soaking the beans overnight.

Main Secret for Perfect Red Beans and Rice

There is no doubt adding a whole green plantain and a generous sized carrot gives your red beans and rice recipe the perfect consistency. After cooking the beans with the entire plantain and carrot just take them out and blend them. The add the mix back to the soup.

Toxicity in Red Kidney Beans

Many people don’t know that many beans have a toxic compound that degrades when cooked at very high temperatures. Red kidney beans have a high concentration of “lectin phytohaemagglutinin,” a toxin many varieties of beans have.

Pressure cookers use very high temperatures to cook therefore degrading the toxin easily, instead slow cookers use low cooking temperatures that probably don’t degrade the toxin and can cause food poisoning.

In countries like Great Britain health authorities, specifically PHLS, recommends to soak your beans in water for 5 hours before you cook them to soften them and degrade the toxin easily.

As harmless as they may appear you should never eat beans without thoroughly cooking them at high temperatures of at least at a 100 degrees Celsius.



Why Are Beans So Nutritious and Healthy

Beans are rich in protein and high fiber that lowers cholesterol.

Another great advantage is that kidney beans because of its high fiber content prevent blood sugar levels from rising rapidly after a meal, therefore many people with hypoglycemia and diabetes should eat kidney beans regularly.

Kidney beans are rich in soluble and insoluble fiber which helps decrease constipation and digestive disorders. Red beans and brown rice make a perfect match because they provide slow burning carbohydrates. Red beans also are rich in Iron which increases energy levels.

A Bit of History

Beans appear to have originated in Peru, from where many native indian traders spread them in their trading travels through Central America and South America. In the 15th century Spanish explorers returning home introduced kidney beans to Europe and from there they spread to Africa and Asia.

Beans and Rice


  • 1 pack – about 16-Oz or 2 cups of Cargamanto beans or red kidney beans
  • 1 red onion chopped
  • 1 teaspoon of Salt
  • 1 beef bouillon cube (if desired)
  • 1 big whole carrot
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 whole green plantain
  • 10 cups of water
  • 1 ripe tomato chopped (optional)

For preparation see video.

Video at the top by


  1. Michelle says:

    I recently bought a pressure cooker and use it for everything from stocks to stews to braises. Before buying one I didn’t think I needed it but after buying one I just fell in love with mine. If you don’t know which one to buy, I would recommend reading reviews from Cook With Pressure. They do a good job explaining the pros and cons and which one would suit your budget.

Speak Your Mind