I still lived in the States the first time I made this black beans and rice dish inspired by the Weight Watchers Santa Fe beans and rice recipe. I haven’t lived stateside since 2010, so I have no idea if Weight Watchers Santa Fe beans and rice is still part of the Smart Ones line-up, but back then it was one of my favorites.
I first went the DIY Smart Ones route to save money, four DIY Smart Ones lunches cost me a bit more what one frozen Smart Ones cost. Now that I live abroad, over six years later, I’m still making this version of the Weight Watchers Santa Fe beans and rice recipe because it’s easy, vegetarian, delicious, and inexpensive… even in Denmark.
I buy dried black beans and pressure cook them a pound or two at a time, then freeze them in 1 1/2 cup servings. That’s the most difficult part of this recipe… aside from the rice, there’s no precooking, just mix everything together, put it in a casserole dish and bake it! It can even be made ahead :)
Weight Watchers Santa Fe Beans and Rice Recipe
1 1/2 cups cooked black beans (or one 15 oz. can drained and rinsed)
1 can diced tomatoes (15 oz.)
1 cup frozen corn
1 cup salsa
1 cup low fat sour cream
1 cup shredded low fat cheese
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 t salt
1/8 t black pepper
Cook the rice using your preferred method. I put the 2/3 cups rice in saucepan with 1 3/4 cups water, bring it to a boil and let it simmer until craters appear in the surface, then cover it, reduce the heat to low, and let it steam for 20 minutes. This pretty much gives me bang on 2 cups of cooked rice.
Mix everything together in a large bowl and transfer to a 2.5 quart casserole dish that’s been sprayed with cooking spray.
Bake the casserole uncovered at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
If fat content doesn’t concern you, sprinkle more cheese on top and cook another 10 minutes, or run it under the broiler until the cheese melts.
I don’t follow Weight Watchers, and haven’t calculated the points per serving, but to me this is a pretty dead DIY ringer for the Weight Watchers Santa Fe beans and rice recipe used in Smart Ones frozen meals, and I can’t imagine the nutritional values are too far off if you use low fat ingredients.
You can of course also make this with full fat sour cream and cheese, as I often do for my guys, and it tastes even better!
Alicia Snow says
This looks so good! And I love that it’s vegetarian. I’m not one personally, but I still like to make a meat-free meal ever so often. I’ve never actually made beans in a pressure cooker, I always get them in a can. I guess that means it’s time to try it.
I haven’t tried the Weight Watchers diet, but I have made modifications to my diet. I eat more whole foods, less processed, and lean meat. Have lost about 15 pounds that I gained from my medication. This beans and rice dish looks delicious! I also cook with brown rice, beans, and legumes more often.
Robin Rue (@massholemommy) says
That sounds so yum! I Love that this is a healthy alternative :) NOM.
EBL Food Allergies says
I’m surprised that it’s still considered a weight watchers recipe when using sour cream and cheese. Looks delicious!
Sarh S says
That looks quite tasty! I’m not on the weight watchers diet, but sometimes I buy the weight watchers dreamsicle things just because they are quite tasty. Anyhow, great recipe, we will have to try this.
OMG! This looks so good. I am going to have to try this and see If i can figure out the point value for this dish.
This sounds like a good vegetarian recipe. I’ll pass it on to my cousin, I think she’ll love it. Thanks!
Crizzy Kiss (@CrizzyKiss) says
Omg! This is perfect for my boyfriend since he’s trying to lose weight and he loves rice. I’m sure he’s gonna like it, thanks a lot!! ;)
This looks so incredible! I’m actually doing weight watchers online right now and am down 13+ lbs! YAY! I need to try this recipe, it looks filling and delicious! Thanks for sharing it!
This looks like such a yummy recipe I would never think it was Weight watchers! I have been eating healthier but am finding I get pretty hungry. I think I need to add more protein.
I’d love to try this out but I need to do it in moderation. Beans make my gout flare up.
jataya wiley says
I lost 100 pounds on weight watchers and I absolutely love their program. I would recommend it to anyone struggling with weight loss! There recipes are fabulous and easy to make. This Santa Fe Beans and Rice looks fabulous! I must try it! Thanks for sharing!
Wow! Congratulations on your awesome weightloss, that’s not easy! You must be so proud of yourself :)
Elizabeth O. says
I always thought rice was out of the question when it comes to losing weight. This recipe looks amazing, I’d love to give it a try. It looks really packed with flavor!
Brown rice is actually quite high in fiber, which fills you up quicker and keeps you fuller longer than other lower fiber foods, so it’s great for dieters. White rice is an entirely different story.
This dish looks great! I always love finding low cal recipes that have my favorite foods in them.
Euge Nia says
This recipe sounds amazing. I love eating healthy and delicious food! I’ll definitely try it!
Coach Donna L Ward says
What fun that you are still making this yummy sounding casserole and it does look easy – thank you for sharing this savory saver!!
JessicaACassidy (@wifetoalineman) says
Anything that has rice, I am in! Blame it with my Asian blood. This sounds like a very healthy recipe to try.
Vera Sweeney says
This looks like a great dinner!! I love Weight Watchers recipes, even though I am not on the plan. It an be hard to find meals that my family likes that are not horrible calorie wise.
Shaylee Field says
I’ve never tried anything from weight watchers but this sounds delish! I love rice and beans :)
I love spicy rice and beans! Can’t wait to make this!
Fashionable Librarian says
This looks really good and delicious. Delicious and healthy in the same sentence usually gets my attention
Amy Jones says
Looks Yummy, i also love granola, its hard staying fit ´=(
LOL! It really is torture, I don’t know how I manage :)
We used to always buy the Smart Ones Chicken Suizas, years ago! I never thought of trying to replicate them. Kind of a fun project to do! I do like beans and rice.
Since moving abroad, replicating things I miss from the States has become a necessity. Funny how I used to do it just to save money.
I love a dish with the perfect hint of spice and this sounds like just that. Thanks so much for sharing such a healthy and yummy recipe!
MryJhnsn (@mryjhnsn) says
I make something very similar. I just love the flavor and texture combinations.
Ana Fernandez says
Looks so easy to make and so healthy at the same time! good combination!
Sarah Bailey says
Oh wow this sounds so good and the fact it is better for you – well what is there not to love! x
I love brown rice as I find it healthier than the usual rice we have. That looks yummy! Thanks for sharing your recipe :)
Mhaan | http://www.mommyrockininstyle.com
This looks DELICIOUS! I may have to try this next time we have tacos or something! Thanks for linking up with us at Friday Funday and please come back again next week!
This looks so amazingly tasty! It would be great to make up a big batch and have for lunches for awhile or even freeze for later.
Can you tell me what kind of cheese you used?
Hi Karen, I used shredded cheddar.