Chorizo Red Beans and Rice

5 from 4 votes
45 minutes
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Chorizo Red Beans and Rice is perfect fall Tex-Mex inspired comfort food that’s still on the light side!

Photo of Red Beans and Rice with Chorizo and Bell Pepper Saute in clay dish on brown burlap.

The combination of beans and rice to make a meal is shared by cultures around the world.  When combined, these budget-friendly food staples form a complete protein.  Add chorizo sausage and the flavor is over the top!

Photo of Red Beans and Rice with Chorizo being stirred in cast iron skillet with wooden spoon.

What is chorizo sausage?

  • There are two varieties of chorizo sausage:
    • Mexican which is fresh and raw
    • Spanish which is cured and some types can be quite dry
  • True chorizo is made with pork, although it’s now possible to buy chicken chorizo

If you’re not into pork and can find chorizo made with chicken or even a soy chorizo, by all means, use it.

Tips for Chorizo Red Beans and Rice:

  • When cooking with dried ground spices, I add them to the fat in the pan then cook very briefly before adding the other ingredients.  I feel this helps to “open up” the flavor.
  • A rule of thumb I follow when deciding to use canned beans for convenience or start with dried beans is how much the beans will dominate the dish and the other textures going on in the dish.
  • For a dish like this Red Beans and Rice with Chorizo, canned beans are fine because of all the texture going on.  Just be sure to rinse them thoroughly because the liquid they’re packed in can be quite salty.

Close-up photo of Red Beans and Rice with Chorizo in cast iron skillet.

  • Cook the rice while making red beans and rice.  One of the easiest ways I’ve found to cook brown rice is to simply boil it like pasta.  Get a pot of water boiling, add salt to taste, then the rice (no need to measure) and let it boil for approximately 25 minutes.  If the water gets low, add more to keep the rice moving so it does not cook in its own starch.
  • When it’s cooked to an al dente stage, drain it well in a sieve and you will have beautiful, fluffy brown rice.
  • Brown rice is something I like to cook a lot of at one time; it freezes well so it’s always ready for a quick side dish.

I top this dish with a tangle of brightly colored bell peppers.  Use any color or combination of peppers.  A splash of fresh lime juice makes the saute sing!

Then, light the dish on fire with your favorite hot sauce if desired!  Let’s eat!

Don’t miss my New Orleans-inspired Easy Red Beans and Rice Recipe for another version of this classic combination!

Photo of Red Beans and Rice with Chorizo and Bell Pepper Saute with hot sauce being dripped onto dish.

For more Tex-Mex inspired recipes, be sure to try my:

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Red Beans and Rice with Chorizo and Bell Pepper Saute in earthenware bowl.

Chorizo Red Beans and Rice

5 from 4 votes

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By: Carol | From A Chef's Kitchen
Red Beans and Rice with Chorizo and Bell Pepper Saute is perfect fall Tex-Mex inspired comfort food that's still on the light side!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Beef
Cuisine Southwestern / Mexican
Servings 6
Calories 399 kcal


Red Beans and Rice

  • 2 tablespoons canola oil - or olive oil
  • 3 links fresh Mexican chorizo sausage - chicken or pork, approximately 3/4 pound)
  • 1 medium onion - chopped
  • 1 large pepper - chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic - minced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons dried Mexican oregano
  • 1 large bay leaf
  • 1 can (15-ounce) crushed tomatoes - crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can (14.5-ounce) chicken broth
  • 1 can (15-ounce) red beans - red beans, drained and rinsed
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper - to taste
  • hot sauce - to taste
  • cooked brown rice

Bell Pepper Saute

  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 red bell pepper - sliced
  • 1 yellow bell pepper - sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper - sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic - sliced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper - to taste


Red Beans and Rice

  • Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the fresh chorizo links, reduce heat to medium and brown well on all sides. (Will not be completely cooked through at this point.) Transfer to a cutting board to cool. When the chorizo is cool enough to handle, slice lengthwise, then slice into 1/2-inch pieces.
  • Meanwhile, add onion and Ancho pepper to the pan. Cook 4-5 minutes on medium-low or until beginning to soften. Add the garlic, chili powder, coriander, cumin, oregano and bay leaf and cook briefly, approximately 15 seconds.
  • Add the tomatoes, chicken broth, chorizo and beans. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer 12-15 minutes or until thickened and chorizo is thoroughly cooked through. Remove bay leaf.
  • Season to taste with salt, black pepper and hot sauce. Serve with brown rice and sauteed peppers.

Sauteed Peppers

  • Heat canola oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the bell peppers and garlic and cook 3-4 minutes or to desired doneness. Add lime juice and salt and pepper to taste. Serve atop beans and rice.


MAKE AHEAD: Can be made up to 2 days ahead. Add 1/4 cup water if very thick. Heat thoroughly on the stovetop.
FREEZER-FRIENDLY: Cool thoroughly and freeze up to 3 months.
The nutritional analysis does not include brown rice.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 399kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 33mg | Sodium: 730mg | Potassium: 232mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1588IU | Vitamin C: 89mg | Calcium: 54mg | Iron: 2mg

These are estimated values generated from a nutritional database using unbranded products. Please do your own research with the products you're using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

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5 from 4 votes (4 ratings without comment)

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    1. Hi, Rhonda, Thanks so much for your question. Just skip #1 of the recipe and go right to sauteeing the onions then add the chorizo in when the recipe states to. Thanks again and hope you enjoy!

  1. This had very good flavor. I will add more chorizo next time, as I thought it was a little light for the amount of sauce. Definitely a keeper!

    1. Hi, Alyssa, Thanks so very much and so glad you enjoyed! Yeah, not sure there’s such a thing as too much chorizo. Love it! Thanks again!