Coconut Rice and Beans with Peppers and Kale (plant-based, gluten-free)

5 from 2 votes
We were inspired by a national dish of Belize to make this coconut rice and beans dinner. I added in some veggies from our farm box to round out the meal.
Belize is a beautiful coastal country in Central America between Mexico and the Caribbean, with jungles and beaches and coral reefs. Not to mention delicious food!
Hope you enjoy this little culinary trip to a wonderful new land without having to leave your kitchen.
For today's inspiration, here are Thich Nhat Hanh's four mantras for loving relationships. If you or a loved one is suffering, you can practice saying these things. You can say them to yourself or to your loved one:
Darling, I am here for you.
I know you are here, and I am very happy.
I know you are suffering. That is why I am here for you.
I am suffering. Please help me.
If you are able to sit with yourself or your loved one with genuine kindness and presence and say these things, it can open up new possibilities for connection, compassion, and reconciliation. If it doesn't work, don't worry – you or your loved one might just need more time. Try again later on.
Wishing you many wonderful connecting experiences in your life!
Prep Time 3 hrs
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 4 hrs
Course Main Course
Cuisine Belize
Keyword beans, coconut, gluten-free, plant-based, rice, veggies


  • 9 small handfuls of dry white or red beans (about 4 cups)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 bunch kale, chopped
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 1 Tbsp basil or parsley leaves, minced
  • 1 400mL can coconut milk
  • 3 cups cooked brown rice
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • If you have time, soak the beans in water overnight first. Then, whether or not they’ve been soaked, put the beans in a large pot filled with water. Bring the pot to a boil over high heat, then turn the heat down to medium and boil gently for at least 3-4 hours (if dry) or 1 hour (if pre-soaked). When the beans are tender and not crunchy, drain and rinse them in cool water and set aside.
  • In the same large pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions, garlic, red pepper, kale, and minced basil leaves. Stir and cook for about 5 minutes until the onions and peppers are soft.
  • Add the beans back into the pot with the vegetables, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Next, add the rice and coconut milk. Stir to combine everything thoroughly, and let it simmer for a few minutes until everything has come together nicely into a thick and creamy dish.
  • Serve the coconut rice and beans with your favorite side dish, or eat it as a complete meal in itself. Enjoy your creamy tropical getaway! 🌴
Did you make this? Please let me know by tagging @maitricooks on Instagram and leave a rating in the comments below. Happy cooking, and lots of love! 
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