One of the all-time classic Caribbean dishes, rice and beans hold a special place in every Belizean’s heart. Simple enough for everyday fare, beans and rice are the perfect accompaniment to a rainbow of other flavors both sweet and hot, making it the perfect introduction to Belizean cuisine.
Why You Have to Taste Belize Rice and Beans On Your Vacation
Most Belizeans would agree that you can’t properly say you’ve been to their country without sampling the rice and beans. The flavors change and shift in both subtle and dramatic ways as you cross the country, each of the ethnic groups in the country adding their own twist to this staple dish. Whether it’s the stick-to-your-ribs classic Creole version, curried East Indian varieties, Maya caldo, or fiery hot Caribbean style, there’s a rice and beans dish for every palate.
Where in Belize Can You Find Rice and Beans?
Rice and beans are sure to be on the menu of every mom and pop restaurant as well as the fanciest dining establishments in Belize.
When Is the Best Time to Try Rice and Beans?
Most people in Belize eat beans and rice for lunch but visitors spending the day on tour can enjoy rice and beans as part of a delicious dinner. And many people enjoy beans and rice for breakfast too!
Best Way to Eat Rice and Beans
Nothing goes better with a freshly prepared dish of rice and beans than Marie Sharp’s pepper sauce, the world-famous condiment made in Dangriga. Other options include mixing in some onion sauce or adding in your favorite protein. The perfect pairing with a hearty beans and rice meal is an ice-cold Belikin beer or soft drink.
How to Make Belize Rice and Beans
This recipe is simple enough for anyone to make it and is a great way keep enjoying an authentic taste of Belize when you’re back home. You can add any protein, but stewed chicken is a traditional Belizean favorite.
Belizean Rice and Beans Recipe
4 pounds of chicken (various parts).
Vinegar or lime juice to taste
1 clove chopped garlic
1 teaspoon of red recado (spice mix)
1 teaspoon each of thyme, salt, and pepper
1 small tomato
1 sliver of fresh ginger
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon of cumin
1 tablespoon chopped green/red peppers (sweet)
2 tablespoons of chopped onion
Cilantro to taste
Thoroughly wash and pat dry chicken pieces.
Season chicken with cilantro, cumin, thyme, salt, pepper, vinegar/lime juice, and recado paste.
Add 2 tablespoons oil to a pan and add brown sugar. Cool until melted without burning.
Add garlic to pan.
Add ginger to pan, removing ginger when it is fully browned.
Add chicken and fully brown on all sides.
Add all remaining seasoning plus half a cup of water.
Cover pan and reduce heat to low, simmering for one hour until chicken is tender.
Note: Add water as needed throughout the cooking process so the pan never is completely dry.
Rice and Beans
The classic Belizean dish, warm and hearty with the perfect balance of heart and soul.
1 pound red kidney beans (washed and drained)
2 pounds rice
2 cloves garlic
Black pepper to taste
1/2 teaspoons thyme
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup coconut milk
If using dried beans, soak overnight or a minimum of 6 hours until soft..
Boil beans with garlic and onion in 6 cups of water.
Add pepper, thyme, and salt.
Add coconut milk and return to boil.
Add uncooked rice to beans.
Cover and then cook on low heat until rice is tender.