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Southern Rice and Beans

Rice and Beans is a one-dish Southern menu item you'll find in every restaurant and home south of the Mason-Dixon Line. It's a comfort dish that is delicious, healthy, and filling, usually served with cornbread, sweet onion and a glass of sweet tea.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time2 hrs
Total Time2 hrs 5 mins
Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: American, Southern
Servings: 12 about cups cooked beans
Calories: 50kcal
Author: Anecia Hero - SmartyPantsKitchen
Cost: $3


  • 1 lb. dried pinto beans
  • 8 cups water or broth
  • 1/4 cup table salt 2 tablespoons for soaking; remainder is for taste
  • 2 tablespoons onion powder or 1 cup fresh, diced onion
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 cups rice , brown or white rice
  • hamhock optional
  • salt and pepper to taste


No Soak Method

  • Rinse and drain beans
  • Place them in a large Dutch oven on the stove top; cover with water and 2 tablespoons salt; bring to a rapid boil; boil for 15 minutes, turn off the heat and put a lid on the beans
  • After one hour, bring the beans back to a hard boil for 10 minutes; add onion, garlic, pepper and any other variations (see recipe notes); lower heat and cook on low heat till beans are tender; additional water or broth may need to be added during the cooking process; taste for seasonings and adjust accordingly

Soak Method

  • Rinse and drain beans; place them in a large bowl, add 2 tablespoons salt, cover with water; cover bowl with plastic wrap and allow beans to soak overnight
  • The next day, place the beans and soaking water in a large Dutch oven; add water to cover beans by about 2 inches; add onion, garlic and other variations (see Recipe Notes); cook on low for 3-4 hours, until beans are tender; taste for seasonings and adjust accordingly

Slow Cooker Method

  • Place beans, 2 tablespoons of salt, and other variations (see Recipe Notes) in slow cooker and cover with water; cook on low 8 hours

Rice Preparation

  • Add water and rice to saucepan; bring to boil
  • Reduce heat to simmer, cover rice and simmer until rice is fluffy


Rice and Bean Variations

If your Northern friends won't eat plain Rice and Beans, consider dressing-up the beans with these options:
    • Add a protein such as smoked sausage or ground beef/turkey; this gives a hearty "American" spin to plain beans
    • Add barbecue sauce, maple syrup or ketchup to the beans; converts plain beans to barbecue beans
    • Add diced green chiles, a can of Rotel tomatoes and cilantro ;gives beans a "Southwestern/Mexican" flair
    • Add diced, fresh jalapeno and top with sour cream; spices up the beans "Mexican" style


Calories: 50kcal