Diabetes Cure

Black Bean and Brown Rice Casserole

This black bean and brown rice casserole is meat-free, super tasty, and so easy to make! It’s packed with flavor and melty cheese for a hearty, satisfying dish.

Bowl of Black Bean and Brown Rice Casserole with spoon

Casseroles are one of my go-to easy weeknight meals. You can throw them together in minutes for a healthy and delicious dinner.

This black bean and brown rice casserole is one of my favorites when I’m looking for a meat-free option. The chili powder and green chilis give it a punch of flavor while the melty cheese makes it taste like a dream.

And like any great casserole recipe, this one is a breeze to whip up. Sauté the veggies, mix the dairy, layer the casserole, and toss it in the oven. When it’s almost done, add a little more cheese on top!

The result is delicious meat-free comfort food that’s so good, you may find yourself making it on a regular basis. It’s certainly a staple in my household.

How to make black bean and brown rice casserole

This tasty meat-free recipe comes together in just a few simple steps.

Ingredients for the casserole in individual ramekins

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 1½ quart casserole dish with nonstick spray.

Step 2: Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the onion and garlic, then cook until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.

Onion cooking in a pan

Step 3: Add the spinach and cook until wilted.

Step 4: Remove from heat and transfer to a large bowl. Add the cooked rice, beans, chili powder, and green chiles to the bowl.

Rice, bean, and vegetable mix in a bowl

Step 5: In a separate bowl, mix the ricotta and milk until smooth. Stir in 1 cup of mozzarella.

Cheese and milk mix in a bowl

Step 6: Spread ⅓ of the rice mixture in the bottom of the dish, then half of the ricotta mixture. Repeat the layers, ending with the rice mixture.

Black Bean and Brown Rice Casserole ready to put in the oven

Step 7: Cover the casserole dish and bake for 30 minutes.

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Step 8: Uncover, spread the remaining mozzarella on top, then bake, uncovered, until the cheese melts, about 5 to 10 minutes.

Finished dish on a table with plates and cutlery

Are black beans good for people with diabetes?

Yes they are!

Beans are a great source of protein and fiber. In fact, their fiber content may help stabilize blood sugars. That’s especially important in a dish like this that contains a simple carbohydrate like rice.

On top of that, beans are also packed with vitamins and minerals. They’re a healthy source of magnesium and potassium, for example, which are essential to proper body function.

Whenever possible, I do recommend making your own beans since canned beans have higher sodium. Check out my no-soak Instant Pot method for a super easy way to cook beans!

Closeup of a plate of the casserole

Storage

I think leftovers might be my favorite part about casseroles. It’s a great way to meal prep for the week!

If you have any extra casserole, you can store it covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. I recommend reheating in the oven or gently in the microwave.

Bowl of black bean casserole on table

Other meat-free dinners

Looking for a few more diabetes-friendly meals that don’t include meat?

Here are some of my favorite delicious and hearty recipes that I know you’ll love:

When you’ve tried this casserole, please don’t forget to let me know how you liked it and rate the recipe in the comments below!

Black Bean and Brown Rice Casserole

Print

Black Bean and Brown Rice Casserole

This black bean and brown rice casserole is meat-free, super tasty, and so easy to make! It's packed with flavor and melty cheese for a hearty, satisfying dish.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Diet Low Fat
Keyword black beans, casserole
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 243kcal
Author Diabetic Foodie

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 1½ quart casserole dish with nonstick spray.
  • Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the onion and garlic, then cook until the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes.
    ½ tablespoon olive oil, 1 large onion, 3 cloves garlic
  • Add the spinach and cook until wilted.
    ½ pound spinach leaves
  • Remove from heat and transfer to a large bowl. Add the rice, beans, chili powder, and green chiles.
    2 cups cooked brown rice, 1 can (15 ounces) black beans, 1 tablespoon chili powder, 1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chiles
  • In a separate bowl, mix the ricotta and milk until smooth. Stir in 1 cup of mozzarella.
    1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese, ¼ cup nonfat milk, 1½ cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • Spread ⅓ of the rice mixture in the bottom of the dish, then half of the ricotta mixture. Repeat the layers, ending with the rice mixture.
  • Cover the casserole dish and bake for 30 minutes.
  • Uncover, spread the remaining mozzarella on top, then bake, uncovered, until the cheese melts, about 5 to 10 minutes.
    1½ cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

Notes

This recipe is for 6 servings of casserole.

To keep the sodium low, I recommend cooking your own beans instead of using canned black beans.

Leftovers can be stored covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Nutrition

Calories: 243kcal | Carbohydrates: 32.3g | Protein: 14.3g | Fat: 6.1g | Saturated Fat: 2.9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2.1g | Trans Fat: g | Cholesterol: 17.5mg | Sodium: 425.1mg | Potassium: 446mg | Fiber: 5.8g | Sugar: 2.3g | Net carbs: 26.5g
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