Mexican Minestrone 

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Serves 2 | Cooking Time 30 minutes

This simple, humble, rice and bean soup is made easy with the use of basic pantry ingredients. Brothy, spicy, and flavorful, it’s perfect for days when you are feeling under the weather. Keep it vegan or add meat. Infused with Mexican spices, the earthy soup comes alive with zesty lime, fresh cilantro, and spicy jalapeño.


  • 1–2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, rough chopped
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons coriander
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
  • 1/8–1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste, or one diced tomato
  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup rice (basmati, jasmine), rinsed really well
  • 1 can pinto or black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 lime
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • Garnish: sour cream, avocado, lime wedges, sliced jalapeño


Heat oil over medium-high heat in a medium pot or Dutch oven. Add onion and sauté, stirring constantly 3–4 minutes until golden and fragrant. Add garlic and sauté 2 more minutes, turning heat down to medium. Add all the spices and tomato paste, and toast 1 minute, stirring.

Add broth and rice. Make sure to rinse and drain the rice well beforehand. Add the beans, bring to a boil, cover, then turn heat to low and simmer 15 minutes or until rice is cooked through and tender.

Add salt and a generous squeeze of lime juice. Taste, and adjust salt, lime, and heat.
Garnish with the options of your choice.

Notes: Don’t be tempted to add more than 1/2 cup of rice or to cook the jalapeño in with the soup — it will get too spicy. Add the jalapeño as a garnish. If you want to add meat, add 1 cup of cooked meat (chicken breast, ground beef, etc.) right at the end.

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