A healthy, vegetarian, gluten free dinner the whole family will love! You won’t miss the meat in this easy to make, One Pot Cheesy Mexican Lentils, Black Beans and Rice!
Is it really already Monday again? I never feel like I have enough time on the weekends during the holiday season to get everything done that I need to. Between shopping, decorating, baking and get togethers it doesn’t leave much time for relaxing or meal planning.
Luckily I have slew of easy recipes, many of which can be made in a single skillet or pot, like this One Pot Cheese Mexican Lentil, Black Beans and Rice. Along with being a one pot meal it’s also vegetarian and perfect for meatless Monday!
I’ll be honest, we don’t follow meatless Monday very often in our house. My husband almost always wants meat with his dinner, unless he’s having a big plate of pasta. Pasta is fine every once in a while, but I don’t eat it often because I usually feel super bloated afterwards.
When I eat meatless I prefer to not just do straight carbs, but rather a mix of protein and carbs. Pulses just happen to be the perfect solution!
Many people have no idea what pulses are and up until a year ago I wasn’t familiar with the term either. Pulses are delicious, protein-packed, sustainable foods known as dry peas, chickpeas, lentils and beans.
Both are full of iron. One serving of black beans actually has more iron that a 3 ounce serving of flank steak! Iron is important, especially for women and even more so for female athletes. Not having enough iron in your diet can leave you feeling tired and low on energy.
Along with the nutritional aspects of using pulses in this recipe I also love the flavor and texture they add. Black beans have a nice creaminess to them and paired with the chewy and heartier lentils it makes for a great meat substitute.
When I served this One Pot Cheese Mexican Lentils, Black Beans and Rice to my husband I was skeptical if he would like it. Turns out he loved it! I can’t tell you how glad I am that I now have a few meatless, pulse filled meals that we can both enjoy.
2016 has been declared by the United Nations as the International Year of Pulses (“IYP”). The goal has been to increase awareness of the many benefits of pulses, including their nutritional profile, environmental and sustainability benefits, affordability and potential to address global food security.
I encourage you all to take the Pulse Pledge if you haven’t already. It’s simple! Just commit to eating pulses once a week for 10 weeks. Check back next week for another awesome pulse recipe and learn about how versatile and sustainable they are as well!
- 1/2 cup diced yellow onion
- 1 clove of garlic, grated or minced
- 1/2 cup uncooked long grain brown rice
- 1/2 cup uncooked green lentils, rinsed (brown or red lentils may also be used)
- 2-3 cups low sodium vegetable broth
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon ground chipotle powder (optional)
- Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- 15 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1/2 cup fire roasted tomatoes, drained
- 4 ounce can diced green chiles
- 1 small zucchini, shredded
- 1/2 cup frozen corn, defrosted
- 1 cup red enchilada sauce
- 3/4 cup shredded cheese, I used sharp cheddar and part skim mozzarella
- Cilantro for garnish (optional)
- Heat a large pot or saucepan over medium high heat. When the pot is heated spray with cooking oil and add in the onion and garlic. Sauté for 2-3 minutes then add in the brown rice and lentils.
- Add in the vegetable stock, stir and bring to a boil. Once boiling, cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 35-45 minutes, or until the lentils and rice are tender. If there's any excess liquid drain it.
- Season the rice and lentils with salt, pepper, chili powder, cumin and chipotle powder. Add in the remaining ingredients except 1/4 cup of the cheese and stir together.
- Heat the mixture until the cheese is melted. Top with the remaining cheese and cover with a lid. Heat on low until the cheese is melted and the mixture is bubbly.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 356Total Fat: 5gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 10mgSodium: 1214mgCarbohydrates: 61gFiber: 15gSugar: 12gProtein: 21g