Gallo Pinto (Costa Rican Rice & Beans)

Prep Time
Cook Time
Ready In

"Almost every Latin American country has its version of rice and beans, and in Costa Rica their version is called gallo pinto. A countrywide household side dish, everyone has their own version and call it "the best". This recipe is from Sabores, a Costa Rican cooking site, cooking school, and magazine that I enjoyed greatly when I lived there."

Original recipe yields 6 servings


  • Serving Size: 1 (201.7 g)
  • Calories 485
  • Total Fat - 7 g
  • Saturated Fat - 2.5 g
  • Cholesterol - 5.7 mg
  • Sodium - 256.4 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate - 88.3 g
  • Dietary Fiber - 11.2 g
  • Sugars - 9.7 g
  • Protein - 17.8 g
  • Calcium - 145.5 mg
  • Iron - 5.6 mg
  • Vitamin C - 0.7 mg
  • Thiamin - 0.8 mg

Step 1

In a large frying pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Saute the onion, garlic, bell pepper and celery for 3 minutes.

Step 2

Add the beans with their liquid and season with the Worcestershire sauce and cumin.

Note: the dish should NOT be soupy, so not much of the bean liquid is needed. It definitely adds color to the dish and helps the rice mix in.

Step 3

Add salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer and cook for about 5 minutes, then add the rice. Stir gently to combine until the rice is heated through.

Step 4

Add the cilantro, then adjust seasoning to taste.

Most of the time, the rice is placed on the serving plate with a large rice ladle, making a pretty rounded scoop. You can do this by filling a bowl with the gallo pinto and then inverting it onto the serving plate.

Tips & Variations

No special items needed.



Nice variation on rice and beans! Love all the color, texture, and flavor the veggies provide. Thanks for sharing! CQ4

review by:
(4 Sep 2017)