The best meal preps are simple dishes with lots of color, variety and flavor. This budget-friendly salsa rice and beans dish has it all!
Ready to give it a shot!
What you need to know about this recipe:
- Sausage links (pictured) are OPTIONAL. This meal is plenty filling and packed with protein without them, but I had a lot to use up. This recipe is even faster if you skip them, so keep that in mind!
- But if you did want to add your favorite protein (shrimp, beef, pork, chicken breast, turkey) or plant protein (tempeh, seitan, tofu) you totally could. Simply cook it on the side in a small skillet and throw it in the pot of rice and beans at the end!
- This is a great opportunity to use up leftover salsa. Any kind works and it adds a delicious flavor to the rice.
- We want this meal to be super colorful, but you can swap out the bell pepper, corn and peas for cherry tomatoes, spinach, mushrooms, broccoli, chopped green beans, cauliflower, zucchini, summer squash, plantains and red onion would all work in this meal.
- Substitute black beans for pinto beans or your favorite legumes! Lentils also work.
I didn’t get fancy with the toppings, but if you wanted to add avocado, green onion, or sour cream/crema, that would be delicious.
If you want to double this recipe, simply double the ingredients! Allow more cooking time for the rice and you’ll need a larger skillet to mix everything together.
Storage & reheating notes:
This salsa rice and beans meal will last in the fridge for up to 5 days. It’s not freezer-friendly. I recommend reheating it on the stove or in the microwave.
Budget-Friendly Fiesta Salsa Rice And Beans
- 1/2 cup rice any kind works
- 1/2 cup salsa any kind works
- 1 TBSP olive oil sub coconut oil, butter
- 3 sausage links of your choice optional, chopped into rounds
- 1-1/2 cups frozen corn sub fresh or canned
- 1-1/2 cups frozen peas sub fresh
- 1 red bell pepper chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/4 tsp chili powder
- 15 oz can of black beans sub pinto beans
- 1 cup cilantro chopped, for garnish
- 1 lime cut in half
- For the rice: add 1/2 cup of rice to a pot with 1/2 cup + 2 TBSP of water and 1/2 cup of salsa. Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 15-20 minutes, or until the water has been fully absorbed. Then turn off the heat, but keep the pot covered to let the rice steam for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, heat up a skillet over a medium flame. Add 1 TBSP olive oil. IF USING, add the sausage links and cook the pieces, stirring and flipping occasionally, for 5-7 minutes (until cooked through). If not using, skip to the next step.
- After adding olive oil to the pan, add the frozen corn, peas and bell pepper with salt, pepper, cumin and chili powder. Cook for 10 minutes over medium heat. Then add the can of beans and cooked rice to the pan. Squeeze half a lime over the pan, then mix everything together. Taste and adjust flavors (maybe add more salt, more chili etc).
- Divide the mixture between three meal prep containers. Garnish with extra lime wedges from the remaining half of a lime and cilantro if desired. That's it!