Would you believe me if I told you this recipe was inspired by a hospital kitchen? TRUE STORY. In fact, these one pan moroccan rice & white bean bowls were nowhere near my radar for January recipe content. For some reason, the unplanned spur of the moment inspiration always ends up being THE BEST.
While I am someone that typically thrives on routine, it’s the tiny webs of uncomfortable-spontaneity that make my life a little more balanced. I love to be organized; to set aside time for a morning routine and plan out a quality work schedule. But I also have this adventurous piece to my soul that loves to pop in and color outside the lines.
We all operate in different ways which is pretty cool. From a physiological standpoint, our bodies function well off routine. Think digestion, metabolism, sleep patterns, rest, movement…they’re operating optimally from physiological routine-response mechanisms. Can you tell anatomy fascinates me?
From a mental perspective, some of us live for chaos while others crave structure. I don’t think either one is wrong or right. At the end of the day, you have to live with yourself so you might as well do what makes you feel best right?
Clearly that is a topic I need to do a detailed article on! Stay tuned 🙂 Now lets tie all this back to moroccan rice & white bean bowls. Regardless of how structured your lifestyle is…staying curious is so important. Be open to trying new things, flavors, experiences and people. Less judgement, more curiosity. The base of TNK’s philosophy 🙂
So during my food production rotation there was a huge batch of moroccon sausage and rice being made and my eyes grew wild. Have you cooked any moroccan dishes before?
This was my first time and let me tell you the flavors are insane. It’s sort of this mix of cajun, mexican, jamaican and indian. Makes absolutely no sense right? Once you try this dish you will understand!
These bowls are nourishing, warm and hearty. They’re bursting with intense flavors, spices and herbs that keep you intrigued.The best part is the base of ingredients and spices are beyond simple.
To my struggling college students out there, I gotchu! I provided some details on key spices, nutritious facts and variations below 🙂
Moroccan Rice & White Bean Bowls Nutritious Facts & Details
Sprouted Brown Rice: For this recipe I used cooked sprouted brown rice. I recommend buying the 3 minute quick cooking packets of rice that you can find in the freezer section of stores like Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods. I have been using these microwavable rices packets for years and they honestly taste better than when I attempt to cook the raw version. This girl is all about QUALITY CONVENIENCE and it will only make your weeknight dinner or meal prep come together that much easier.
Whole Foods sells a sprouted brown rice in their freezer section that I absolutely adore. While regular brown rice will work just fine for this recipe, sprouted grains from a nutritonal standpoint, are more bio-available. This means they offer higher amounts of nutrients like folate, iron, zinc, magnesium and protein. Through the germination process of sprouting, starches and phytic acid are broken down which makes the nutrients not only more available, but highly absorbable. This process can also make it easier for us to digest versus regularly processed grains. This is why you may here about soaking/sprouting beans and legumes vs. canned for digestive ease.
For someone that has struggled with digestive issues, I definitley notice a difference when consuming sprouted grains versus the heavily processed, but it all varies (this is why many people tend to digest pure, fresh sourdough bread better than a highly processed whole wheat). I don’t solely buy sprouted grians but do opt for them when possible. Just some food for thought 🙂
Resources and evidence based articles on sprouted grains here: wholegraincouncil.org
Key Spices: You’ll notice an ecletic mix of spices in this recipe and I do not recommnd leaving them out! In order to get that true moroccan flavor. The combination of slightly sweet cinnamon paired with cajun spices all come together beautifully. I suggest trying Old Bay seasoning for a spiced cajun flavor, but you can also try cayenne if needed. And don’t forget the turmeric! It adds a slight earthy flavor to the dish while also lending anti-inflammatory benefits. Boom shaka.
Fire Roasted Tomatoes: For optimal flavor, use fire roasted canned tomatoes instead of plain. Trust me on this! It makes a huge difference in the flavor profile of the recipe. I get mine from Trader Joe’s!
Protein Options: What I love about this dish is how versatile it is. You can easily keep it vegetarian since it has plant focused protein from the white beans and sproued rice but I also love to bulk it up with cooked chicken sausage or sauteed garlic shrimp! Even shredded chicken would be delicious. You do you boo!
- 1 Tbsp. coconut oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup chopped carrots (I buy them pre-diced)
- 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 tsp each: cumin. cinnamon & cajun seasoning (Old Bay or sub Cayenne)*
- ½ tsp turmeric + sea salt to taste
- 1 28 oz. can fire roasted tomatoes**
- Juice from 2-3 limes
- 2-3 cups cooked, sprouted brown rice
- 1 15 oz. can white beans, rinsed and drained
- Handful of fresh cilantro + chopped peanuts
- Optional: Add cooked sausage or shrimp for extra protein!
- Heat a large skillet pot over medium high heat and add coconut oil. Allow pan to sizzle then add onion and garlic. Stir for a few minutes until onion is browned and garlic fragrant.
- If adding sliced sausage or shrimp, sautee at this time until cooked through over medium heat.
- Add in chopepd carrots and bell pepper the stir in spices. Allow to sautee over medium heat for about 3-5 mintues. Slowly add in the canned tomatoes, and lime juice. Then mix in the cooked rice and beans,
- Cover pan and allow dish to simmer for atleast 15-20 minutes. The longer it simmers, the more pungent and flavorful the dsh will be!
- Toss in fresh cilantro, chopped nuts and extra lime. Adjust seasonins as needed. I typically end up adding more cajun spice but depends on your preference .