Brown Rice Black Bean Salad with Herb Green Sauce

This rice and bean salad has a lot of variety which makes it very flavorful, colorful, and healthy! It was inspired from a rice salad made in culinary school at the Natural Gourmet Institute. Brown rice is a staple in my pantry- it’s great to have on hand for last minutes meals because you can use it in so many ways! It pairs great with beans and many different vegetables which is why I chose it for this salad recipe. All together, this salad provides a lot of textures, flavors, and a vast array of nutrients. Prep this salad for a week’s worth of lunches or have it as a side dish for dinner.

Yield: 6 cups of salad, 3/4 cup of sauce


  • 1 cup brown rice, uncooked and rinsed clean
  • 1 3/4 cup BOILING water
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, divided*
  • 1/2 cup dry black beans, soaked overnight, drained, and rinsed OR 1 15 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice, (1-2 limes)
  • 1 tablespoon dijion mustard
  • 5 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1/4 cup whole unsalted walnuts
  • 2 ribs celery, cut to approx. 1/4″ dice
  • 1 large carrot, cut to approx. 1/4″ dice
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut to approx. 1/4″ dice
  • 3-4 tablespoons feta cheese



  1. In medium pot, add rice, BOILING water, and 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt. Bring back to a boil over high heat. Once it reaches a boil, reduce heat to a simmer.
  2. Cook rice, covered, for 30-35 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and allow rice to steam for another 15 minutes- still covered. Uncover and fluff with a fork. Let cool and add to a large bowl.
  3. *If using dry beans, drain soaked beans and rinse with water. Add to a medium pot, cover beans with 2-3 inches of water, and add 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt. Let beans gently simmer for about 30 minutes or until tender. Drain, rinse, and add to the bowl with rice. *If using canned beans, drain, rinse, and add to same bowl.
  4. Preheat oven to 350F.
  5. Start prepping your sauce ingredients. Add rice vinegar, lime juice, dijon mustard, olive oil, parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon of sea salt to a blender. Blend for 30 seconds. Set aside.
  6. Place walnuts onto a baking sheet and toast in oven for 5-7 or until fragrant. Remove from oven and roughly chop.
  7. Add chopped walnuts, diced celery, carrot, red bell pepper, and feta cheese to rice and beans.
  8. Pour half of the dressing over the mixture and stir until all ingredients are lightly coated. (Don’t dump all at once!) However, feel free to add more if you like a heavier sauce.


brown rice black bean salad


  • Leftovers can keep in the fridge for 1 week.
  • This salad can be enjoyed cold or slightly warm.

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