Rice and Beans Rollups

These funky rollups are the perfect vegan beans and rice recipe. A tasty mix of brown rice and kidney beans are flavored to perfection, rolled up in Swiss chard leaves, and topped with a creamy brown rice sauce, then dolloped with salsa. They're positively addicting.

Vegan Rice and Beans Rollups

The tangy Southwestern flavors will continue to call to you after you've cleaned your plate, but since they're filling and satisfying, you will find that it's nearly impossible to binge - whew!    :)

So let's get started...

Here are the major ingredients you will need:

Cooked brown rice or rice combo (I used a mixture of brown rice, wild rice, lentils and barley)
Cooked kidney beans
8 large Swiss chard leaves, stems cut off
Tangy Rice Sauce (recipe below)

Now, you can certainly use another whole grain besides brown rice, such as quinoa, millet, or buckwheat.

And you can use any other type of bean that you have on hand too. But the flavors for the Tangy Rice Sauce were chosen from the Kidney Bean Vegan Flavor Matches so the flavors would all meld together. So if, for instance, you want to use black beans, then I recommend you use the recipe below as a sort of jumping off point, using the flavors you like best from the Black Bean Vegan Flavor Matches instead (again follow the link above).

The first thing you will do is create your Tangy Rice Sauce.

Vegan Tangy Rice Sauce
Makes aprroximately 2 cups

1 cup brown rice/brown rice combination (if you have decided to use a different whole grain for your filling, use a cup of that grain instead)
1/2 cup cashews, roasted (you can also use raw but may need to tweak the flavors of the completed sauce a bit)
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon pure maple syrup
1 teaspoon prepared yellow mustard
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/8 teaspoon chili powder blend
1 cup water, add slowly until desired consistency is reached

Place ingredients in a blender, adding water slowly, and blend until completely smooth and pourable. Set aside.

Now, let's make our Rice and Beans Rollups...

Step 1: Heat oven to 400 degrees. Make your filling with 2 1/2 cups brown rice and 2 cups kidney beans, flavoring it with ingredients you love, or follow my list of ingredients (below)*. Divide the mixture up into 8 equal parts right there in the pan.

Step 2: Place a little salsa in the bottom of a 9x13" baking dish. On a large plate, lay out one Swiss chard leaf. Place 1-2 Tablespoons of rice/bean mixture onto the middle of the leaf. Roll up, starting at the large end of the leaf. This can be a little messy, and you may have to tuck the sides in as you roll. Perfectionism here will drive you crazy, so just go with the flow and have fun with it. Place roll seam-side down in the dish. Repeat until all rollups are complete.

Step 3: If your Tangy Rice Sauce has firmed up a bit at this point, add just a touch more water and blend until pourable. Pour over rollups to completely cover. Dollop with salsa.

Step 4: Bake for 25-30 minutes or until heated throughout. Carefully transfer rollups to a plate -- 2 rollups per person.

Please note: When you place your rollups in the oven, they will look very pretty and colorful. By the time the cooking is complete -- wellllll, not so much. But don't judge a book by its cover. This dish is delectable perfection, even though it's a bit homely looking.

Happy cooking!

Sassy's Signature

p.s. If you would like a little assistance with flavoring your filling, here is what I used:

* Rice and Beans (Filling)

1/4 cup vegetable broth
1/4 - 1/2 cup onion, chopped
2 1/2 cups cooked brown rice/brown rice combination
2 cups cooked kidney beans
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar, or to taste
Tamari soy sauce, to taste
Nutritional yeast, to taste
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Step 1: Heat veggie broth in a large pan. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until transluscent. Add remaining ingredients.

Step 2: Remove a small amount of this rice/bean mixture and mix with a small amount of your Tangy Rice Sauce and a bit of salsa. Do the flavors match to your liking? You may need to tweak the flavors a bit to balance sweet, sour, salty, bitter/pungent, and spicy.

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