Authentic Spanish Rice with Beans

Authentic Spanish Rice with Beans

A flavorful, spicy yellow rice with beans and meat, tossed with peas, tomatoes, corn, and green pepper, topped with cheese and baked


8 servings


1 Tablespoon butter
3/4 cup Basmati rice*
2 medium-large onions, diced
1 1/4 cups chicken broth**
3/4 teaspoon turmeric
1 pound ground beef
1/4 teaspoon lemon pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1-2 teaspoons freshly crushed cumin***
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 green bell pepper, diced
2 large tomatoes, washed and diced
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup frozen corn
1/2 cup frozen peas
1 cup cooked black, pinto, or kidney beans
salt, to taste
1 Tablespoon freshly chopped cilantro (or more, if you love cilantro!)
4-6 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded


1. Melt butter in saucepan and add about 1/4 of your total chopped onions (about 1/2 an onion). Cook and stir for several minutes; add rice and stir until mixed. Add chicken broth and turmeric and stir. Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, stir once and re-cover. Cook on low for 20 minutes or until rice is fully cooked.

2. In skillet, brown ground beef with remaining onions; drain excess grease. Add lemon pepper, chili powder, cumin, pepper, bell pepper, tomatoes, sugar, corn, and peas. Cook and stir until simmering; simmer for a minute or so.

3. Lightly grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Drain a little of the juice from the meat mixture into the dish, to coat the bottom.

4. In a large bowl, combine cooked rice, meat mixture, beans, and cilantro. Toss to mix well, and add salt to taste. Pour into prepared baking dish and top with shredded cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes.

Authentic Spanish Rice

Authentic Spanish Rice with Beans
Additional Notes: 

*Can substitute other rices, but Basmati is best because it doesn't over-absorb the liquid and become soft and mushy.

**Can substitute water, but chicken broth gives a better flavor.

***May substitute pre-ground cumin, but use more because it won't be as flavorful as freshly-crushed.

This recipe was included in my freezer meal plan of main dishes when preparing for the birth of my fourth child. Read my update on how this recipe and the others turned out after freezing!

Preparation Time: 

35 minutes

Cooking Time: 

30 minutes

Tammy's Review: 

This is a really good Spanish Rice recipe!! It is seriously the BEST Spanish rice I have ever eaten. My husband, who doesn't normally enjoy Spanish rice (but loves Mexican foods!) really liked this.

This easy Spanish rice has the perfect balance of seasonings, vegetables, meat, beans, and rice. If you want an authentic, great-tasting Spanish rice, this is it!!

I first tasted this when my uncle made it for us. I immediately knew I wanted to get his recipe! He told me the ingredients he had used to make it, and I came up with these measurements and instructions.

My rating: 10/10


Please see the recipe above for my complete review! Thanks! ~Tammy


I have a love-hate relationship with Mexican Recipes. Some I find excellent, others not so. And it doesn't fall along pretty lines of liking/disliking authentica Mexican dishes or vice/versa liking/disliking Americanized Mexican recipes. I just follow my taste buds, which typically means: slightly spicy, but not not really hot, and easy bean please.

This recipe definately is a winner for my tastes. It is a really balanced dish which has a nice balance of rice, vegetables, beans, etc. Nothing seems out of whack. This dish works as a side or as a main course (kind of like a casserole). If you are looking for a very flavorful Spanish Rice or a great Mexican dish to add variety to your menu give this a try.


We had this for dinner last night (with slight alterations, the biggest being no meat since I'm a veggie) and we loved it! It's so colourful as well as deliciously tasty.
But what is lemon pepper?


This has really good flavors. I love Spanish Rice, but no one else in my family does. I thought I had everything on hand to make this, but after I got started, I realized I didn't have any beans, so I made the dish without beans. I added a can of green chilis to the mix and that was just the kick it needed for me. Beans would have been good too. I don't like green bell pepper, so I put an orange bell pepper in and it looks so festive. Since this made a lot and I'm the only one who will eat it, I am experimenting to see if this is a freezer-friendly meal. I put up several ziploc bowls in the freezer to take to work for lunch. I didn't bake it with the cheese on it for the freezer. I'm planning on warming it in the microwave and add the cheese to the warmed up bowl. I'll let you know if this works.

Edited: FYI, this dish did hold up very well in the freezer. I will be adding this to my once-a-month cooking list for the future!


this looks so good!! i am sending it to my great niece i am half Italian and half Cuban this is my food!!!


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