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A flavorful rice and beans dish flavored with onions and garlic. This dish is a staple of a Nicaraguan breakfast.



For the beans

  • 1 (16-ounce) bag dried small black beans
  • salt
  • 7 garlic cloves, peeled and left whole
  • Dash of white vinegar

For the rice

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, divided
  • 1 medium onion, minced (about 1 cup), divided
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups long-grain white rice
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 green bell pepper, cored and seeded
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro, optional for garnish


For the beans:

  1. Pick over the beans to remove any stones and broken beans. Rinse the beans in cold water and place in a large pot. Cover with cold water until water is about 3 inches above the beans. Soak for 30 minutes.
  2. Without adding new water, place pot of beans over medium-high heat , add a dash of white vinegar, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer the beans for 30 minutes. Turn off heat, cover beans, and set aside for one hour.
  3. Return the pot to high heat and bring beans back up to a boil. Add 2 teaspoons salt and garlic, reduce heat to medium, and simmer until beans are tender, 30 to 60 minutes. Allow to cool completely and transfer the beans into a covered dish. Refrigerate overnight.

For the rice:

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add 2/3 of the onion, 1 tablespoon of the minced garlic and cook, stirring, until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the rice and cook, stirring, until the grains are evenly coated with oil, 2 to 3 minutes. Add broth and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. Increase heat to high, and bring to a boil. Add bell pepper on top of rice – do not stir in.
  3. Boil the rice without stirring until most of the liquid has evaporated and you can see small bubbles bursting on the surface of the rice. Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook (do not stir, do not remove lid) for 15 minutes. Remove and discard bell pepper. Fluff rice with a fork. Transfer the rice to a covered container and chill in the refrigerator overnight.

For the gallo pinto:

  1. Saute the remaining onion and 1 tablespoon of garlic in 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the rice, adobo sauce, and 2 cups of the cooked beans to the skillet and cook, stirring, until rice is evenly coated.
  3. Continue to cook and stir to allow the flavors to meld and the mixture becomes ever so slightly crispy, about 10 minutes. Cover and cook over low heat an additional 10 minutes.
  4. Serve and enjoy.


  • Serving Size: Serves 4 -6