Healthy Salad Recipes: Brown Rice & Black Bean Salad

Brown Rice Healthy Salad Recipe
Today, I share a salad recipe that I’ve been eating most weekdays for lunch. After reviewing many healthy salad recipes, I found this salad recipe to be filling and satisfying, not to mention it’s packed with fiber, protein and nutrients. I like that it’s colorful, crunchy, chewy, sweet, sour … it satisfies all of my senses.

Although I’m not a fan of New Year resolutions, I did tell myself that this year I must eat healthier. My weak areas tend to be breakfast and lunch, as I either skip these meals entirely or grab something quick that is not a healthy choice (i.e. snack foods are my enemy).

My real issue is not being prepared each day with healthy options, so I decided to find recipes I could prepare at the start of each week and have available every day. The following brown rice salad recipe is full of healthy ingredients and takes minutes to prepare. And, it tastes delicious. I like it so much in fact that I’ll eat a few bites as a mid-afternoon snack!

You can use this salad as a lunch or dinner side dish. I served it one night with a piece or roasted chicken breast on top. And, since it doesn’t contain any mayo, it’s a perfect contender for a summer barbecue or picnic.

Healthy Brown Rice & Black Bean Salad
adapted from Weight Watchers New Complete Cookbook

2 cups cooked brown rice, cooled
1 cup cooked peas, cooled
1 yellow or red bell pepper, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 14 oz. can black beans, drained & rinsed
1/2 cup onion, diced
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 cup pomegranate seeds
1 jalapeño, seeded and finely diced
4 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lime
1/2 teaspoon salt

Mix salad ingredients in a large bowl, then add liquid ingredients. Stir to combine, then refrigerate for 2 hours (it’s best left overnight). It lasts for several days in the refrigerator.

Recipe Notes:

  • Brown rice: I highly recommend using basmati brown rice (Lundberg Basmati Brown is the brand I buy most often and find in most grocery stores). It’s a narrower rice grain that isn’t tough and chewy like some other types of brown rice. I think it’s the closest thing to white rice that you’ll find.
  • Frozen Vegetables: Frozen peas and corn taste delicious and are good options for making this salad. Just microwave the amount needed for a few minutes.
  • Customize: Feel free to have fun with this salad — replace peas with corn, or swap out black beans for pintos. It’s an easy to customize salad!

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