I’ve never been one for New Year’s resolutions.  There is no magical date to make changes in your life, and if you want to make the changes, you can put forth the effort on any day of the year.  There’s no time like the present!  However, if you are trying to make some healthier choices (whether because of a New Year’s resolution or not), this side dish might be a good thing to incorporate into your menu plan.  It has whole grains in the form of brown rice, veggies, and beans to provide some protein.

Bridget suggested using two cans of black beans, so that is what I did.  I liked it this way because I love black beans, but I think if you’re wanting a rice dish, it might be a little heavy on the beans.  I suppose it just depends on if you’re in a rice kind of mood or a bean kind of mood :)  With all the beans, I think topping with a bit of salsa and shredded cheese could make this a light meal all on its own.  It would also be great with some spicy grilled chicken mixed right in.  I served it alongside honey chipotle glazed chicken, and it was an excellent pairing.


4 tsp. olive oil
1 cup onion, chopped fine
1 red bell pepper, chopped fine
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
2¼ cups water
1½ cups long-grain brown rice
1 tsp. salt
1-2 (15 oz.) cans black beans, drained and rinsed
¾ cup corn kernels (fresh from cob, or frozen and thawed)
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
¼ tsp. ground black pepper


  • 01

    Preheat the oven to 375° F.  Adjust an oven rack to the middle position.  Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat until shimmering.  Add the onion and bell pepper to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until well browned and tender, about 12-14 minutes.  Stir in the garlic and cook just until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

  • 02

    Add the chicken broth and water to the pan.  Bring the mixture to a boil.  Remove the pot from the heat, stir in the rice and salt, and cover.  Bake until the rice is tender, 65-70 minutes.

  • 03

    Remove the pot from the oven and uncover.  Fluff the rice with a fork, stir in the beans and corn, and replace the lid.  Let stand for 5 minutes.  Mix in the cilantro and black pepper.  Serve.