How to Season Black Beans: 3 Easy Latin-Inspired Recipes - Public Goods

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How to Season Black Beans: 3 Easy Latin-Inspired Recipes

In the mood for tasty, seasoned black beans? YUM! We don’t blame you.

three cans of public goods organic black beans, four jars of public goods spices

You’re in luck because we’re sharing three different ways to season canned black beans to totally transform any meal of the week.

Learning to cook black beans is pretty quick and painless — and remains an easy staple to include as an entree or a satisfying side dish. They also offer loads of nutrients and protein, making them a healthy anytime meal (they’re also great tossed under eggs in the morning).

Often a staple in Cuban dishes (hello, Cuban Black Bean Soup), we’re sharing three ways to season Latin-inspired black beans. Once you’ve mastered cooking black beans, you can play around with different recipes to simmer loads of unique flavor into them.

It’s finding the perfect mixture of spices to make them taste good that can be a challenge. That’s why we’re here to help.

From savory to spicy, we’ve got the best approach to seasoning your black beans with all the good stuff like garlic, cumin, cilantro, zesty olive oil and more.

Note: The following black bean recipes were devised using canned black beans, but you can also substitute dried black beans if you prefer. Make sure to prepare your dried beans accordingly. Start by giving the beans a rinse in water, followed by soaking them in a large bowl with water and salt for eight to 24 hours. Next, drain and rinse them again. Finally, cook the soaked beans in water and a bit of salt, simmering them at a low heat until the beans are tender.

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How to Season Cuban Black Beans with Cilantro and Garlic

bowl of white rice and black beans topped with cilantro herb on tablecloth, spices in bowl

Seasoning traditional black beans Cuban-style with cilantro and garlic can truly be an enjoyable sensory experience. Just the thought of simmering your pan with the smell of garlic and topping off your warm beans with the delicious aroma of cilantro — you’ll want to give this dish a go tonight.

Ingredients You’ll Need:

can of public goods black beans, jar of public goods oregano, jar of public goods cumin, jar of public goods garlic, jar of public goods basil, spices in a bowl on tablecloth
Shop: Oregano ($4.00), Cumin ($4.00), Garlic Powder ($4.00), Basil ($4.00)
  • 1 black bean can
  • 1 pinch of garlic powder
  • 1 pinch of cumin powder
  • 1 pinch of oregano powder
  • 1 pinch of basil powder
  • 2 garlic cloves or 1 tsp of minced garlic
  • fresh cilantro, serve to taste
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, if desired

How-to Season, Cook and Serve

  1. In a 4-quart saucepan, simmer 2 tsp olive oil with garlic cloves or minced garlic over medium heat. Include chopped onion, if desired.
  2. Pour can of black beans.
  3. Slowly begin adding seasoning ingredients of garlic, cumin, oregano and basil powder.
  4. Stir and bring bean mixture to a complete boil.
  5. Lower heat to medium-low and cover.
  6. Cook until all flavors come together and beans are soft.
  7. Garnish with about 3 tbsp cilantro.
  8. Serve with white rice and Tostones (green fried plantains) for true a Caribbean treat con mucho sabor.

Feel free to create this savory tried-n-true staple with chicken or pair it over quinoa with a tender egg over top for a satisfying black bean protein bowl.

Cooking Time: 5 minutes

How to Season Mexican Black Beans with Red Pepper

jar of public goods turmeric, jar of public goods cayenne pepper, jar of public goods rosemary, jar of public goods red pepper flakes, chopped red onions in a bowl, black beans with shredded cheese in a bowl, small black cooking pot with lid, corn tortillas, garlic cloves
Shop: Crushed Red Pepper ($4.00), Rosemary ($4.00), Cayenne ($4.00). Turmeric ($4.00)

Cook until fragrant. The sazon (flavor) from the seasoning of these savory black beans will put you in the mood for a fiesta.

Feel free to use either black beans or refried beans for this dish. Using Public Goods refried beans allows you to make a healthier version of this Mexican classic without unnecessary lard or saturated fats.

Once you’ve mastered this dish, be sure to try our hearty recipe for Beef and Black Bean Chili. Or, if you’re vegan, go with this Vegan Black Bean Breakfast Bowl recipe.

Ingredients You’ll Need:

jar of public goods turmeric, jar of public goods cayenne pepper, jar of public goods rosemary, chunk of white cheese, two corn tortillas

  • 1 black bean can or 1 refried bean can
  • 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of rosemary powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne powder
  • 1 diced yellow onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil

How-to Season, Cook and Serve

  1. Heat the canola oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat.
  2. Add sliced yellow onion and cook until the onion caramelizes.
  3. Sauté the garlic with the red pepper, rosemary, turmeric, and cayenne powders.
  4. Add black beans and let simmer.
  5. Simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally until beans thicken.

Cooking Time: 7 minutes

These fragrant beans will dress any taco or make an amazing vegetarian accompaniment topped over salad. Nutritious and with a soft kick, serve them with sprinkled cheese and soft or hard taco shells, fajita style.

Congri — Rice and Black Beans Havana Style with Paprika

 jar of public goods italian seasoning, jar of public goods garlic powder, jar of public goods paprika, mixed white rice and black beans topped with sliced onion sliced and red pepper in a bowl, cuban bread, napkins
Shop: Paprika ($4.00), Italian Seasoning ($4.00)

Arroz Congri (aka Cuban Rice and Black Beans) is a staple in many Latin kitchens because it’s often served as a side dish with meat on special occasions and holidays. You’ll love the taste and aroma of this popular Caribbean dish. Make more and store for next day’s lunch — paired solo or with a nice avocado salad.

Ingredients You’ll Need:

jar of public goods italian seasoning, jar of public goods garlic powder, jar of public goods paprika, canned public goods black beans, small white cooking pot with lid

  • 1 black bean can
  • 1/2 teaspoon of paprika powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Italian seasoning powder
  • 1/2 cup chopped green and/or red bell pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 1 pinch oregano
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1 cup uncooked long grain rice or jasmine rice
  • 1 small chopped onion
  • garnish with red peppers and onions

How-to Season, Cook and Serve

  1. Heat oil a heavy pot over medium heat.
  2. Rinse the vegetables, add onions, peppers, minced garlic, paprika, Italians seasoning and garlic powder.
  3. Add rice, beans, oregano and water.
  4. Cover, reduce to low heat and let simmer 20 minutes.

Cooking Time: 20 minutes

This dish is called Congri due to the black color formed by the rice and black beans being cooked together. In fact, it’s recommended you don’t drain the liquid from your black bean can because it adds richness to the dishes’ black color and will keep your rice and beans moist.

Warning: This rich dish is addictive, but luckily it’s also high in fiber and protein. Leave as-is for a vegan treat or pair with chicken, fish or steak.

Public Goods Black Beans are a healthy source of plant-based protein and digestion-friendly fiber, so be sure to sample all three of these recipes and add them to your monthly repertoire.

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Comments (2)

  • Hi! I attempted to make the congri rice and bean recipe and must say it was confusing. It doesn’t say how much oil to add and/or whether to rinse and drain the can of beans. Hard to follow without clear instructions.

    • Thank you for your comment. Sorry for the omission! Please be aware that since these are organic beans, you have a choice in rinsing. In reference to the oil, two teaspoons of oil are recommended, but it’s a matter of taste. This is a very old family recipe so feel free to alter and experiment – I’m sure it will turn out delicious!

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