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David’s Rice and Beans Recipe, Engineer-style

David’s (Better-Than) El Pollo Loco Rice & Beans

Spicy, low-fat, low-salt and delicious. Add a salad and you can feed 6-8 people.



  1. Two 27-ounce cans of pinto beans, not drained
  2. One 8-ounce can of tomato sauce with Jalapeño pepper
  3. 1/4 cup finely chopped Serrano chilies (about 4 small or 2 large) (Guide to chilies)
  4. 2/3 cup water
  5. One Tablespoon olive oil


  1. Sauté chilies in oil until soft
  2. Add beans and tomato sauce and stir.
  3. Turn heat up to high, bring to boil.
  4. Reduce heat to low, stir one more time, then cover and simmer for  20 minutes.
  5. Uncover and stir again; remove from heat.



  1. One  Tablespoon of olive oil
  2. Serrano chilies, 2-3 Tablespoons, finely chopped (about 2 small or 1 large)
  3. Onion, 1/3 cup chopped (about 1/2 of a small onion)
  4. Sweet red bell pepper, 1/3 cup minced (about 1/3 of a large pepper)
  5. Four cups water
  6. Two cups long grain rice
  7. One  8-ounce can of tomatoes sauce with Jalapeño


  1. Sauté Serrano chilis, onion and sweet red bell pepper in  olive oil until soft
  2. Add water, rice and tomato sauce; stir to combine
  3. Turn heat to high and bring to a boil.
  4. Let cook for one minute (stir several times while it’s cooking)
  5. Cover and cook on lowest setting for 25 minutes. Remove from heat.
  6. Uncover and stir. Ready to serve.

Note: All the stirring is to keep the rice from sticking to the bottom of the pot and burning.

Salt can be added to each individual serving to taste. Not necessary to add to salt to the cooking water. It’s spicy enough that it probably won’t need salt.

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