Easy Cuban Black Beans and Rice Recipe

Moros y Cristianos (Black Beans and White Rice)

The Spruce / Eric Kleinberg

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 35 mins
Total: 45 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Yield: 4 bowls
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
275 Calories
3g Fat
48g Carbs
13g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 275
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 4%
Saturated Fat 0g 1%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 189mg 8%
Total Carbohydrate 48g 18%
Dietary Fiber 10g 35%
Total Sugars 0g
Protein 13g
Vitamin C 3mg 13%
Calcium 45mg 3%
Iron 4mg 20%
Potassium 464mg 10%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Black beans served with white rice is a beloved staple in Cuban cooking. Traditionally, the beans are cooked from scratch, starting with dried black beans and aromatics, which get simmered together for hours on the stovetop until the beans are tender. Although this recipe skips that step and uses canned black beans, the result is a very tasty and flavorful dish, perfect for when you need to get a meal together quickly.

"The Cuban-style black beans and rice were tasty and a simple recipe to prepare and cook. The flavors were well balanced, and I didn't add salt because the recaito is somewhat salty. 30 minutes was plenty, as I had to stir them a few times near the end of the cooking time to prevent sticking." —Diana Rattray

Black Beans and White Rice Tester Image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, undrained

  • 1/4 cup recaito

  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1 dash salt, or to taste

  • 1 dash freshly ground black pepper, or to taste

  • 4 cups hot cooked white rice

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Moros y Cristianos (Black Beans and White Rice) ingredients

    The Spruce / Eric Kleinberg

  2. Combine all ingredients, except the white rice, in a saucepan.

    Combine all ingredients, except the white rice, in a saucepan

    The Spruce / Eric Kleinberg

  3. Bring to a boil over medium heat.

    bean mixture cooking in a saucepan

    The Spruce / Eric Kleinberg

  4. Lower heat and let simmer uncovered until beans reach your desired consistency, anywhere from 30 to 40 minutes.

    beans cooking in a saucepan

    The Spruce / Eric Kleinberg

  5. Remove and discard bay leaf.

    Remove and discard bay leaf from the bean mixture

    The Spruce / Eric Kleinberg

  6. Serve black beans side by side or over the top of the white rice.

    Moros y Cristianos (Black Beans and White Rice)

    The Spruce / Eric Kleinberg

Can You Use Dried Beans In This Recipe?

Absolutely! Cook dried black beans on the stovetop, in the slow cooker, or in the pressure cooker. Replace the canned beans with 2 cups of freshly cooked black beans and 1/2 cup of water or broth.

Recipe Variations

  • For heat, add a minced jalapeño chili pepper or a dash of cayenne pepper, to taste.
  • Add a garnish of fresh chopped cilantro, sliced green onions, sour cream, or lime wedges.
  • For heartier beans, add about 1/2 cup of sliced smoked sausage or diced ham to the beans.
  • Sauté 8 ounces of ground chorizo or beef until browned; drain and add to the beans.
  • Double the recipe ingredients to make 6 to 8 servings.

How to Store and Freeze

  • Refrigerate leftover black beans and rice in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
  • To freeze leftover black beans, transfer them to an airtight container or zip-close bag. Remove as much air as possible and freeze for up to 6 months.
  • Freeze leftover rice in zip-close bags or airtight containers for up to 1 month.

What Goes With Rice and Beans?

Many dishes go well with black beans and rice. Here are a few ideas.

What Is the Difference Between Recaito and Sofrito?

Recaito and sofrito are similar wet seasoning products. They are both made with culantro or cilantro, but sofrito usually includes tomato.