Vegetarian, SideMalia Howe

Black Beans and Rice Con Queso

Vegetarian, SideMalia Howe
Black Beans and Rice Con Queso

That is what my husband said when he walked in the door tonight and discovered Black Beans and Rice Con Queso on his plate. It was immediately followed by, "I always forget to ask for it because I don't know what it is called." Now he knows.


This is another recipe from that Bible study cookbook I mentioned in the salmon cakes post. It is one I make regularly, and usually make it ahead. I have taken it to many new moms, and I think it's a nice change of pace from your usual new-baby fare of some sort of baked pasta with hamburger. I really love it topped with a fast homemade salsa--this one--but lately I've enjoyed it just as much with store bought salsa (for the record, my current favorite is this one)

I almost always double it (remember we like leftovers), but if you have a small family, or are not ridiculously big eaters as we are, then go ahead and make half of the proportions I give you (and use an 8x8 square pan).

I find Mexican food to be very vegetarian friendly, and honestly, I prefer it as such. Beans and rice are a fantastic combo, and make a complete protein. Almost anything is good topped with salsa and sour cream, right?  I often make guacamole to go along with this meal, both because I adore guacamole and because my baby thinks avocados are awesome. You can make it up fast by mashing an avocado or two, squeezing in the juice of about a half a lime, pinch of salt, and a couple tablespoons of salsa. Easy peasy.You have no excuse.


Black Beans and Rice Con Queso

-adapted from the Side By Side Rochester cookbook

  • 2 c. uncooked brown rice (if you think you don't like brown rice, try it here. It works so well)
  • 4 c. water
  • 2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cans (4 oz each) chopped green chiles
  • 1/2 t. cumin
  • 1 t. chili powder
  • 1/2 t. garlic salt
  • 2 c. cottage cheese
  • black pepper to taste
  • 2 c. shredded cheddar cheese

Bring rice and water to boil, cover and simmer on low for 45 minutes or until done. Stir in beans, chili powder, cumin, green chiles, and garlic salt. In a separate bowl combine cottage cheese, black pepper, and all but 1/4 c. shredded cheddar. Spray a 9 x 13 pan and spread half of the rice and bean mixture on the bottom. Top with cottage cheese mixture, followed by the remaining rice/beans. Sprinkle with reserved 1/4 c. cheddar. Feel free to pop this in the fridge for a day or two. When you are ready to eat, heat the oven to 350, and bake uncovered for 35-40 minutes, or until hot and bubbly. Top with sour cream and salsa, and serve a few tortilla chips on the side for some crunch. There you have it--Mexican comfort food.