Saturday, February 04, 2006

Santa Fe Beans and Rice

I am not a huge fan of beans and rice. I'm not a huge fan of microwave meals, either. But I am a huge fan of the Weight Watchers Smart Ones Santa Fe Beans and Rice microwave meal.

So naturally, I decided that I needed to figure out how to make it myself, instead of buying this meal in a one-time use, "disposable" plastic dish. I believe that I have figured it out. It's not exactly identical, but it has the same sort of delicious flavor. The recipe follows:

Becca's Santa Fe Beans and Rice

2.5-3 cups water (depending on the type of rice you're using)
1 cup tomato sauce
1 packet taco spices* (enough for one pound of meat)
1-2 dashes cayenne pepper

2 cups uncooked rice
1 16 oz can red beans, drained**
1 small zucchini, diced into small pieces
8 oz frozen corn kernels

1 cup reduced-fat sour cream***
1 tablespoon skim milk

grated Monterrey jack cheese

Combine water, tomato sauce, taco spices, and cayenne pepper in large saucepan. Heat to boiling. Add rice, beans, zucchini, and corn. Bring to a boil, then lower temperature and simmer until rice is cooked and liquid is gone.

When rice is almost done, combine sour cream and milk in microwave-safe bowl. Heat in microwave until warm and mixture is runny.

To serve: Scoop some beans and rice onto a plate or into a bowl. Top generously with sour cream sauce. Sprinkle grated cheese on top. Microwave until cheese is melted, if desired.

Other serving suggestions: This would be really good on a bed of lettuce, like a taco salad. Also, I think it would be fun to eat with tortilla chips.

* I used a commercial packet of taco spices, but you can get the same flavor for a lot less money by combining 2 teaspoons instant minced onion, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch, 1/2 teaspoon crushed dried red pepper, 1/2 teaspoon instant minced garlic, 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano, and 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin ("Taco Seasoning Mix" recipe from More House Specialties by Deanna House).

** You can prepare your own red beans ahead of time -- you want to have about 3 cups of beans for this recipe.

*** You can use real sour cream or even fat-free sour cream, except for the fact that fat-free sour cream is completely disgusting.


Anonymous said...

very random, but i had to tell you that i'm addicted to those damned smart ones rice and beans, too. i made up my mind to figure out how to duplicate it... and this result pops up when i google "santa fe rice and beans recipe."

i will try it out tomorrow. :) i'm glad someone's already figured it out!

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much! I too, decided to find a recipie to duplicate that meal because I absolutely LOVED it! I kinda figured I could use taco seasoning, but I wanted to see what I found on the internet and your blog was the only thing that came up!

Dawn said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you! This is my very favorite frozen dinner, and your recipe to recreate it sounds very easy and tasty! I can't wait to try it!!!!!

Jenny said...

THANK YOU! This is so perfect. I've been looking for this for awhile and haven't found anything close. Yours looks like it might be. I'm going to try it tomorrow!


Rachel said...

I cooked this tonight and it was amazing! I will be making this one of my go-to meals! Vegetarian, delicious and healthy :) Thank-You!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the recipe. Santa Fe Rice & Beans is also my favorite and wanted to make my own healthy version at home without all of the preservatives and chemicals. Some healthy options would be to use brown rice, reduced-fat cheddar and mozzarella, and plain greek-style yogurt for the sour cream.

Wendy said...

Just searching for recipes for this, and this is the only one I've seen using taco seasoning.

Since I like taco seasoning, I think I'll give it a try. Thanks!

I'm also going to add some sliced black olives on top like I saw in another recipe. Love olives :)

Anonymous said...

Eating the results of this recipe right now. It's good and darn close to the original!! Ta-da! I will no longer be paying 3 bucks a pop for those darn freezer meals!!!

Rebecca said...

After nearly 6 years, this is my most popular blog post. I am glad the recipe still stands up to the test of time. Thanks for commenting and I'm glad you liked the recipe!