Gallo Pinto

A Costa Rican classic of rice and beans.


Bean Ingredients

  • 2 cups black beans (presoaked overnight)
  • 1 medium yellow onion (diced)
  • 2 stalks celery (chopped)
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro (chopped)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon salt

Rice Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups rice
  • 1/4 cup red bell peppers (diced)
  • 1/4 yellow onion (diced)
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt

Gallo Pinto Ingredients

  • 1/2 red bell pepper (diced)
  • 1/4 cup cilantro (chopped)
  • 1/4 yellow onion (diced)
  • 2 tablespoons hot sauce of choice
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)



  • In a large soup pot, sauté garlic with oregano, salt, and sugar over medium heat for 3-5 minutes.
  • Add beans.
  • Add enough water to cover beans completely.
  • Bring to a boil over high heat.
  • Once boiling, reduce to a simmer and cover for an hour or so.
  • Add water periodically, making sure beans always have enough water to cover them as they cook.
  • When the beans are soft, add onions, celery, and cilantro.
  • Cook for 10 minutes, then turn off heat.


  • Rinse rice in water.
  • Sauté onions, garlic, and red pepper on low heat with oil for 1-3 minutes.
  • Add rice.
  • Add salt and curry powder to taste.
  • Stir, and fry for about one minute.
  • Add about 5 cups water or enough to cover rice with an additional inch of water.
  • Bring to a boil over high heat.
  • Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes.

Gallo Pinto

  • When rice and beans are both ready, sauté red pepper, garlic, and onions in a separate pan for 3-5 minutes.
  • Add cooked beans and mix gently.
  • Add rice and cilantro and mix together.
  • Add hot sauce or chilero to taste and serve hot with a fried egg.

#sidedish #vegetarian #glutenfree #staplefood

Recipe submitted by Kelsey Ives - Peace Corps Volunteer, Costa Rica (2010-2012)

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