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Cheezy Chorizzo Rice and Kidney Beans


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Ingredients

2 packages beef-flavored rice mix
1 pound chorizzo (mexican sausage)
1 medium can red kidney beans
1 8oz package Taco cheese mix (Kraft is best)
1 large yellow onion
1/2 cup chunky salsa (mild to hot depending on your tastes)
2 cloves garlic, minced
Sour cream, if desired.


Over medium heat, heat a large skillet with 2 tablespoons vegetable oil.


Chop the onion and mince the garlic and add them to the hot pan.


Sweat the onion and garlic mixture until the onions are just underdone, not completely translucent.


Add the chorizzo and fry it up. Spoon out the grease, but leave some of it -- it contains a LOT of flavor from the spices in the chorizzo.


Drain and lightly rinse the kidney beans and then mix them into your chorizzo and onions.


Add the salsa.


Stir the mixture frequently to make sure it doesn't stick. When the mixture is hot all the way through, place your skillet on the back burner and let it sit.


In a 2-quart saucepan, prepare the beef rice mixture as instructed on the package.


Once the rice is finished, mix it into the pan with the chorizzo, beans, onion, garlic and salsa.


Add an average of 4 oz of the taco cheese. I like more, so I add the entire package. Some may like less, depending on your preferences.


Season accordingly with salt and pepper. I also like a pinch of cayenne and some red pepper flakes for extra spice, but it's better to put it on the table then add it to the entire mixture so that guests or other diners can add it to their liking.


Spoon the mixture onto a plate or into a bowl.


Add a dollop or two or three of sour cream, if desired.


I garnish it with a little chopped fresh cilantro.


Variances: You can also spoon the mixture into soft flour or corn tortillas and eat them like that, but I find the extra carbs aren't really needed.


You can substitute the spicy chorizzo for a milder pork breakfast sausage or even regular ground beef.


The cheese can be substituted for plain cheddar, mozzerella, or even a jar of con queso dip, but I like the added spice of the Taco cheese and the ... cheesiness... of it. Mmm, cheese.


This is a quick-fix weeknight meal for us, whipped up out of stuff we usually have in the fridge, freezer and pantry. It doesn't really require grocery shopping unless you want to fancy it up. Honestly, I came up with it when we were dirt poor and barely had two pennies to rub together. A trip to the food bank that week scored us the chorizzo, onion, cheese and sour cream and salsa. The garlic I had in the fridge in a jar, and the kidney beans had been in the pantry for months. It's most memorable to me because it was ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS, and it was just something I kind've whipped up out of hunger.


Pairs Well With


Notes

This is a quick-fix weeknight meal for us, whipped up out of stuff we usually have in the fridge, freezer and pantry. It doesn't really require grocery shopping unless you want to fancy it up. Honestly, I came up with it when we were dirt poor and barely had two pennies to rub together. A trip to the food bank that week scored us the chorizzo, onion, cheese and sour cream and salsa. The garlic I had in the fridge in a jar, and the kidney beans had been in the pantry for months. It's most memorable to me because it was ABSOLUTELY DELICIOUS, and it was just something I kind've whipped up out of hunger.

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