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LifestyleColumnistsMarge Perry

3 Simple meatless bean dishes

Meatless rice and beans

Meatless rice and beans Photo Credit: Marge Perry

TIP: Buy low-sodium or organic canned beans, which are also much lower in sodium. Before using canned beans, place them in a strainer and rinse under cold running water.

BLACK AND RED RICE AND BEANS

1 cup quick-cooking brown rice

1 tablespoon olive oil

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 stalks celery, chopped

1 cup chopped onion

1 green bell pepper, chopped

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon oregano

2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced tomatoes with green chilies

1 (15.5-ounce) can low-sodium red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 (15.5-ounce) can low-sodium black beans, drained and rinsed

Hot sauce as accompaniment (optional)

1. Cook rice according to package directions, omitting any fat.

2. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the garlic, celery, onion, bell pepper, chili powder, cumin and oregano and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables soften, about 6 minutes. Add the tomatoes and beans and cook until the mixture thickens, about 5 minutes.

3. Serve the beans over the rice and pass hot sauce as an accompaniment. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 388 calories, 12 g protein, 72 g carbohydrates, 10 g fiber, 5 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 1213 mg sodium

 

PASTA FAGIOLI (PASTA AND BEAN SOUP)

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 1/2 cups chopped onion

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 carrots, cut in 1/4-inch dice

2 stalks celery, cut in 1/4-inch pieces

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary

4 cups lower-sodium vegetable or chicken broth

1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes

1 cup orzo or small bow-tie pasta

2 (15.5-ounce) cans low-sodium white beans

Salt and pepper to taste

1/4 cup grated Parmesan

1. Heat the oil in a soup pot set over medium high. Add the onion, garlic, carrots, celery, thyme and rosemary and cook, stirring occasionally, 6 to 8 minutes, until carrots are somewhat softened.

2. Add the broth and tomatoes and bring to a boil. Stir in the pasta and cook until slightly underdone, about 7 to 8 minutes. Add the beans and cook another 4 minutes until pasta is cooked through. Add salt and pepper to taste.

3. Ladle into serving bowls and top each with 1 tablespoon of the Parmesan. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 358 calories, 15 g protein, 64 g carbohydrates, 11 g fiber, 4 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 1,031 mg sodium

 

BLACK BEAN AND RICE BURRITOS

1 tablespoon olive oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup chopped red onion

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1 1/2 cups chunky store-bought salsa

1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained, rinsed and lightly mashed with a fork

1 cup thawed frozen corn

1 cup cooked (brown or white) rice

4 (10-inch) flour tortillas

1 cup low-fat shredded Cheddar or Mexican-blend cheese

1. Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet set over medium high. Add the garlic, onion and cumin and cook, stirring frequently, 3 to 4 minutes, until the vegetables are softened.

2. Stir in the salsa, black beans, corn and rice and reduce the heat to medium. Cook, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes, until the mixture is thickened.

3. Heat the tortillas according to package instructions. Working one at a time, spoon one fourth of the filling down the center of each tortilla, leaving an inch free at the top and bottom. Top with 1/4 cup of the cheese. Fold the short ends up toward the middle, then roll the burrito closed. Place each burrito seam side down and cut in half on the diagonal to serve. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 437 calories, 16 g protein, 61 g carbohydrates, 6 g fiber, 14 g fat, 5 g saturated fat, 942 mg sodium

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