Dirty Rice & Beans

Prep time: 35 mins
Calories: 421

Traditional “Dirty Rice” gets its name from the addition of a ground meat like chicken liver or gizzards. This version uses mushrooms for a cleaned-up version with lots of great flavor and nutrition. The addition of red beans creates a balanced protein for a vegan entrée with holiday flair.


vegan dirty rice and beans

Jennifer Beeman


3 tablespoons grapeseed oil, sunflower oil or coconut oil, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper or to taste
2 cups minced mushrooms (about 8 ounces shiitake, crimini, Portabello or combination)
2 cups minced yellow onions (1 large onion)
1 cup minced celery
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 cups gluten-free vegetable broth
1 cup long-grain rice (jasmine or basmati)
2 cups fresh or frozen okra, chopped, or fresh or frozen cut green beans
1/2 lime or lemon, cut into quarters (omit if using green beans)
1 (15-ounce) can red kidney beans or aduki/adzuki beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, for serving
Hot sauce, optional, for serving


1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large heavy-bottomed Dutch oven or large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cayenne pepper, stir and cook without browning 30 seconds. Add mushrooms and onions and sauté 5 to 7 minutes until softened, stirring occasionally.

2. Add celery, red bell pepper, thyme, oregano, smoked paprika, salt and pepper and cook 15 minutes until vegetables are slightly colored.

3. While vegetables are cooking, bring broth to a boil in a separate pot. Add rice and reduce heat to very low. Cover pan and cook according to package instructions or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat, fluff with a fork, cover and set aside.

4. In a separate skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat. Add okra and lime and sauté 5 to 7 minutes until tender. (Frozen okra cooks faster than raw. Cooking okra with lime, separate from the other vegetables, reduces the slippery liquid that okra releases when cooked.)

5. Add cooked rice, okra and beans to cooked vegetables and stir to combine. Heat over medium heat 5 minutes to warm all ingredients, stirring frequently. Serve warm with chopped fresh parsley and hot sauce, if desired.

TIP: For a single-serving vegetarian entrée, cut an acorn squash, delicata squash or small spaghetti squash in half and remove the seeds. Bake squash halves in a 400°F oven 30 minutes. Fill each half with Dirty Rice & Beans and bake until warmed through, about 10 minutes.

Each serving contains 421 calories, 5g total fat, 0g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 0mg cholesterol, 270mg sodium, 82g carbohydrate, 20g fiber, 21g sugars, 21g protein, 52Est GL.

Contributing chef Sueson Vess is a food coach, cooking instructor and author of Special Eats.

Yields 10 servings
1 serving contains 421 calories, 5g total fat, 0g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 0mg cholesterol, 270mg sodium, 82g carbohydrates, 20g fiber, 21g sugars, 21g protein.