Feel the Flavor of Puerto Rico with this Arroz con Habichuelas

Written By Alla Levin
December 31, 2021

Feel the Flavor of Puerto Rico with this Arroz con Habichuelas

The cuisine of Puerto Rico is extensive, with a unique flavor, thanks to its multiple ethnic roots. It is the result of centuries of constant evolution in the use of ingredients and influences. This island’s gastronomy is proud to have given some of the best dishes in the Caribbean.

Afro-Caribbean cuisine, present in all Antillean countries, is characterized by the use of different spices and sauces. The identity of Puerto Rico has distinctive gastronomy that enriches its culture.

Rice with Beans: a crown jewel in Puerto Rican cuisine

As part of its varied cuisine, the classic Arroz con Habichuelas is a typical rice-based meal, tasty and full of flavor. No one who has visited the island left the country without having enjoyed this dish at least once.

It is not only easy to cook, but it is also affordable as well. All the ingredients are present in every household.  For more recipes with rice and beans, visit the following link: minuterice.com/recipes/red-beans-and-rice/. Anyway, here you can see how to make two of the most popular Puerto Rican dishes

Easy Arroz con Habichuelas recipeEasy Arroz con Habichuelas recipe


  • 400 gr. of rice.
  • 250 gr. cooked beans.
  • 600 ml. of water or broth.
  • 1 cup tomato puree.
  • 1/2 onion.
  • 1 chicken cube.
  • 1/2 cup of smoked ham.
  • 2 cloves of garlic.
  • 1/4 bell pepper.
  • 2 coriander or coriander leaves.
  • 1 tbsp of stuffed olives.
  • 1/2 tsp cumin.
  • 2 tbsp of vegetable oil.
  • Salt to taste.


  1. Chop the onion in small pieces. Also, peel the garlic and mash them in a mortar with a pinch of salt until they form a paste.
  2. Wash the pepper, remove the stem along with the seeds, and dice. Cut the cilantro finely after washing. Separately chop the ham into small cubes.
  3. To make the stew, pour a little oil in a medium saucepan and when heated, put the ham to fry over medium heat.
  4. When it is golden brown, put the onion in the pan and sauté for a couple of minutes. Then add the pepper, the garlic and cook stirring for 3 minutes.
  5. Next, pour in the tomato sauce, the cube, the cumin and cook for 10 minutes over low heat.
  6. Take the cups of rice and in a colander, wash the rice well with water, when the water comes out transparent, drain the rice.
  7. Now put the rice in the saucepan with the rest of the ingredients, including the coriander, olives, and salt, give it a couple of turns while the water evaporates.
  8. Mix the rice to integrate with the rest, pour in the beans, and finally the broth (water is ok too).
  9. Ensure that the rice is neither too watery nor too dry, so remember to make the correct proportion, in this case it is 4 cups of rice, so you should use 4 cups of water or broth. Cook over high heat until it comes to a boil.
  10. Once it boils, stir the rice and when the liquid begins to evaporate, cover and cook over low heat for 20 minutes or until the grain is softened.

Puerto Rican Rice and Beans recipe

Ingredients for the rice:

  •  2 cups medium-grain white rice.
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil.
  • 1 tsp salt or to taste.
  • 3 cups of water.

Ingredients for the beans

  • 1 can of pink beans.
  • 1 low sodium vegetable cube.
  • 2 tbsp olive oil.
  • 3 tbsp of sofrito (Puerto Rican sauce).
  • 2 tsp seasoning.
  • 3 tbsp tomato sauce.
  • 1 cup squash, cut into pieces.
  • 1 1/2 cups water.
  • 1/4 tsp salt or to taste.
  • 1/2 tsp sugar.


  1. In a pot over medium/high, pour the water, the oil and salt to taste . When starting to boil, pour in the rice and mix to soak the rice completely.
  2. Cook uncovered over medium heat until the water is absorbed. Then cover and cook over medium/low heat until the rice is soft (about 20 min).
  3. In a medium saucepan pour the oil, heat over medium/low and combine the sofrito, seasoning, and vegetable cube. Sauté for a minute.
  4. Pour the tomato sauce and sauté for two minutes. Mix the pumpkin and water. Boil over low heat for 5 minutes.
  5. Serve the beans over the rice.

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