Dinner, Recipes, Sides

Copycat Cafe Rio Black Beans and Cilantro Lime Rice

April 2, 2016

That’s right. Today you are getting a twofer! 

That’s awesome because it like, never happens? But today, my friends, you are getting more bang for your buck and that’s a beautiful thing. 

Because these are the LAST RECIPES that you need to complete your Cafe Rio experience at home. 

What what?! 

Yeah. This is happening. At your house! 

Just a quick PSA: This post has way too many pictures… but Cafe Rio! 

Copycat Cafe Rio/Costa Vida Black Beans recipe. They are SO GOOD!

Back in the day when I didn’t know what was what, I used to just pop open a can of black beans and call it good, but you wouldn’t believe how big of a difference that makes on the overall taste of the salad/burrito. 

It was just wrong. So wrong on so many levels. 

So I found myself a new recipe and it has revolutionized Cafe Rio at home! 

And everyone already knows that the Cilantro Lime Rice is a gift sent from the Almighty, himself. So yeah… that recipe is here today, too.

You’re welcome. 

Copycat Cafe Rio/Costa Vida Cilantro Lime Rice. It's tangy. It's zesty. It's PERFECT!

Copycat Cafe Rio Black Beans
These beans are mixed with flavorful spices and fresh ingredients to become the perfect accompaniment to your Mexican Fiesta!
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Ingredients
  1. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  2. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  3. 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  4. 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  5. 1 1/3 cups tomato juice
  6. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  7. 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
Instructions
  1. In a nonstick skillet, cook garlic and cumin in olive oil over medium heat until fragrant. Add beans, tomato juice, and salt, continually stirring until heated through. Add the cilantro just before serving.
Notes
  1. Once you get this going, it cooks up super fast but don't be afraid to set it on low heat and prep other things. That's what I like to do!
My Mom Taught Me To Play With my food http://playzwithfood.com/
Copycat Cafe Rio Cilantro Lime Rice
This fragrant and zesty rice is much easier to make than you might think!
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Ingredients
  1. 2 tablespoons canola oil
  2. 1 cup uncooked long grain white rice
  3. 1 teaspoon butter
  4. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  5. 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  6. 2 cups chicken broth
  7. 1/2 cup water
  8. 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  9. 2 teaspoons sugar
  10. 3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
Instructions
  1. In a large saucepan over medium/high heat warm oil. Fry rice in oil until the grains become bright white with occasional golden brown spots. This should only take a couple of minutes. Add butter, garlic, 1 teaspoon lime juice, chicken broth and water to the saucepan and bring to a boil. Adjust the temperature to low and cook for 15-20 minutes, until rice is tender, stirring frequently. Remove from heat.
  2. In a small bowl combine 1 tablespoon lime juice, sugar and cilantro. Pour over hot cooked rice and mix in as you fluff the rice. Serve immediately.
Notes
  1. I like to make this first, so that I can be chopping and prepping other things while this goes low, and slow. Ya know?
My Mom Taught Me To Play With my food http://playzwithfood.com/
I like to call this next sequence of pictures the Evolution of Mexican Food:

Homemade Costa Vida-2930

First you take your tortilla (I like to use raw tortillas from the store) fry that baby up on a skillet and sprinkle some cheese over the top so it get’s all nice and melty. Then you hand that one to your toddler and you make another one exactly like it. 

Homemade Costa Vida-2932

Then add the rice. 

Homemade Costa Vida-2933

And beans. As many as you want, baby! 

Homemade Cafe Rio/Costa Vida is SO good and so easy! This recipe has fresh ingredients and your slow cooker does most of the work!

And don’t get me started on this Sweet Pork. It’s probably the solution to world peace. 

Homemade Cafe Rio/Costa Vida is SO good and so easy! This recipe has fresh ingredients and your slow cooker does most of the work!

Lettuce. Blah. 

Homemade Cafe Rio/Costa Vida is SO good and so easy! This recipe has fresh ingredients and your slow cooker does most of the work!

Okay, okay. Here is where it get’s interesting again. A bright and delicious dumping sprinkling of some of that super fresh Pico De Gallo

Homemade Cafe Rio/Costa Vida is SO good and so easy! This recipe has fresh ingredients and your slow cooker does most of the work!

Baby Girl’s personal favorite: The tortilla strips. (I try not to take it too personally that it’s basically the only thing that I didn’t make on this entire pile of deliciousness.) Oh yeah. She likes the lettuce, too… *Sigh

Homemade Cafe Rio/Costa Vida is SO good and so easy! This recipe has fresh ingredients and your slow cooker does most of the work!

A nice sprinkling of Parmesan Cheese (I feel like Queso Fresco would be way more appropriate, but I digress… this is America after all.)

Homemade Cafe Rio/Costa Vida is SO good and so easy! This recipe has fresh ingredients and your slow cooker does most of the work!

And… the pièce de résistance. The wonderful, the incredible, the oh so famous Cilantro Lime Ranch that we all wish we could dive into headfirst.

Yeah… you have a blender full of it. None of that tiny little plastic single serving crap that you get at the restaurant. My salad is always swimming in it. Look at it. 

SWIMMING I TELL YOU. 

Homemade Cafe Rio/Costa Vida is SO good and so easy! This recipe has fresh ingredients and your slow cooker does most of the work!
Homemade Cafe Rio/Costa Vida is SO good and so easy! This recipe has fresh ingredients and your slow cooker does most of the work!

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