Southwest Black Bean Casserole

Don’t throw away that leftover rice! This is a simple southwest black bean casserole recipe featuring pantry staples, perfect for using up leftover rice and whatever vegetables you have on hand. Plus, the leftovers can be used in several different ways making delicious meals for days. Leftovers can be enjoyed in your favorite wrap, burrito style or added to greens with toppings for a burrito salad bowl. Say goodbye to food waste and hola to comforting, Southwestern flavors the whole family will enjoy!

There’s no shame in cheating this recipe. If you’re rushed, replace the onions, garlic, pepper and diced tomatoes with a 24oz jar of salsa. Simply mix all ingredients in a bowl with cooked rice and transfer to casserole dish.


  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked brown rice (4-5 cups leftover cooked rice)
  • 3 cups water or vegetable broth
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small white or red onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp natural taco seasoning (or make your own spice mix, see below)
  • 1 sweet bell pepper, diced
  • 1 (15oz) can black beans
  • 1 (14.5oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups frozen corn
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced (cook for 2-3 minutes in the microwave to soften)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups tortilla chips, crushed (optional for crunchy topping)
  • Spice Mix:
  • 1 Tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne powder (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 375F and lightly grease a 9×13-inch casserole dish.

  2. Make rice: (Skip if you have leftover rice) In a small saucepan, bring rice and vegetable broth to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cover. Let simmer until rice is tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed, 40 to 50 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork.

  3. While the rice is cooking, you will have time to prep your casserole ingredients. Chop onions, mince garlic, dice bell pepper, microwave and dice sweet potato, measure out spice mix and frozen corn. Drain and rinse the black beans.

  4. Once everything is prepped, heat olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook until translucent.

  5. Add garlic, spices and bell pepper. Stir well and cook for 1-2 minutes before adding the diced tomatoes.

  6. Let the mixture cook for an additional 1-2 minutes, stirring frequently. Once the liquid from the tomatoes is bubbling, turn off the heat.

  7. Add the black beans, sweet potato and corn to the pot and mix well. Once the rice is cooked and fluffed, add it to the pot. Mix everything together and transfer to casserole dish.

  8. Top with crushed tortilla chips and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until mixture is heated and chips have lightly browned. Remove from oven and serve with your favorite Southwestern toppings like salsa, avocado, green onions and tortilla chips.

By Chantal Denis