Red Bean and Rice Stew

Transport yourself to the Caribbean with this satisfying and comforting coconut milk based stew that is super simple to prepare. Add whatever colorful vegetables you have on hand and experiment with different types of beans and plant-based milks. You can also replace the rice with quinoa or other grains. The stew will thicken as it cooks. Serve with a colorful side salad.

Written by
Jonathan Marbas
Last updated
July 22, 2022


4 cups vegetable stock or water
1 (15-ounce) can coconut milk
1/2 cup uncooked white basmati rice
1 cup yellow onion, 1-inch half moon slices
¾ cup celery, diced
3 large garlic cloves, pressed or minced
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh thyme, or 1/2 teaspoon dried
1 bay leaf
1 (15-ounce) can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained well, or 1 1/2 cups cooked
1 cup carrot, ½ inch thick slices, bias cut
1  cup sweet potato, ½ inch chop
1 cup zucchini, ½ inch chop
1 cup mushrooms, crimini or button, quartered
½ cup corn, fresh or frozen
1 cup kale or other green like spinach or collards
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons lime juice, optional
1 teaspoon  wheat-free tamari or soy sauce (optional if using water instead of vegetable stock)
1/4 cup dried coconut, optionally toasted for garnish
Sea salt and ground black pepper to taste


1. Place the vegetable stock and coconut milk in a 3-quart pot over medium-high heat. Add the rice and stir well.
2. Add the onion, celery, garlic, thyme, and bay leaf, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Add the beans, carrots, sweet potato, zucchini, mushrooms and corn and cook for 10  minutes, stirring occasionally.
4. Add the kale and corn and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the remaining ingredients and stir well.
5. Remove the bay leaf  and garnish with coconut before serving.

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