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Southwestern Black Bean Pasta (30 minute pantry meal!)

This recipe for Southwestern Black Bean pasta is a great pantry recipe for a 30 minute meatless meal! It features pasta with a smoky tomato sauce and plenty of black beans.

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Creating this recipe for Black Bean Pasta

This recipe for Black Bean Pasta is an adaptation of a meal we at years ago when I was a teenager. I know the recipe came from a magazine, but I’ve tried and tried to find the original recipe and have never been able to, so I had to recreate it based off of ingredients that I knew it contained.

I know this recipe had a smoky tomato based sauce with lots of black beans in it along with onion and green pepper. Besides the bulk of the ingredients being items that I like to keep stocked in my pantry, one of the things that I’ve always loved about this recipe is how easy and quick it is to make.

Black Bean Pasta Recipe Ingredients

I love that this recipe for Black Bean Pasta largely relies on pantry ingredients. That makes it an easy 30 minute meal to make in a pinch!

  • Pasta
  • Black Beans
  • Onion
  • Green Bell Pepper
  • Garlic
  • Seasonings (cumin, salt, pepper, oregano)
  • Tomato Sauce
  • Diced Tomatoes
  • Optional Garnishes: Chopped Cilantro and Shredded Cheese

For the complete ingredient list and detailed instructions, scroll to the bottom of this post for the FREE printable recipe card.

How to Make this Black Bean Pasta Recipe

You won’t believe how easy this Black Bean Pasta Recipe is to make!

First, you’re going to saute the onion and pepper. Then you’ll add in the garlic and the spices. Adding some heat to the cumin will toast the spice and enhance the flavor even more, giving the sauce a richer, more complex flavor rather than the flavor of raw spices.

After the onion and pepper have been sautéed and the spices toasted, you’ll add in the black beans (make sure to drain them first!), tomato sauce, and diced tomatoes.

Let the sauce simmer for 20 minutes so the flavors fully develop. While the sauce is simmering, you’ll prepare the pasta. When the sauce is done simmering, stir in the pasta, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve optional with chopped fresh cilantro and shredded cheese. I like pepper jack or a mild or medium cheddar.

What Pasta Shape Works Best with This Recipe?

You can use whatever pasta you have on had or what you like best. I recommend sticking with shells, penne, rotini, or something similar in this recipe.

Can I Add Meat to This Black Bean Pasta Recipe?

Yes! If you prefer this recipe to have meat, I recommend adding Crock Pot Mexican Chicken to this recipe. Add the cooked, shredded chicken to the Black Bean Sauce before combining it with the pasta.

If taco meat is more your style, 1 pound of ground beef cooked with this Spicy Taco Seasoning would also be a great addition to this Black Bean Pasta Recipe for those wanting to add additional protein to their meal.

Can I add Extra Vegetables to this Recipe?

Yes, of course! Corn, extra bell peppers (try a mix of green, red, yellow, and orange for extra color) would be great, easy additions to this black bean pasta.

To add extra green, try adding some chopped fresh spinach. If you want to try using frozen spinach, add it in with the sauteed vegetables to thaw and allow some of the moisture to evaporate. (Related: How to Freeze Spinach)

How Long Does this Black Bean Pasta Last?

If you have leftovers, you can store this black bean pasta in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days when stored properly. Prepared foods should not sit out at room temperature for longer than 2 hours.

Refrigerate leftover prepared foods, such as this black bean pasta, in a container with a sealed lid. Make sure your refrigerator temperature is set according to manufacturer instructions.

What Should I serve with Black Bean Pasta?

If you’re looking for side suggestions to go with this recipe, I recommend a big green salad. It doesn’t have to be fancy at all. We often use mixed greens, lettuce, cucumber, shredded carrot, and tomato for a basic side salad. Check out these 3 Simple Salad Dressing Recipes to go along with your salad.

More Black Bean Recipes

Breakfast Bowls like these Southwest Protein Breakfast Bowls with Sweet Potato and Black Beans are a great way to enjoy a quick protein-packed, creative meal at home on busy weekday mornings.

In these Chicken, Black Bean, and Spinach Enchiladas, corn tortillas are filled with tender, shredded chicken, black beans, and fresh spinach. Then they’re smothered in both roasted tomatillo salsa and a tangy sour cream sauce.

Pumpkin and Turkey Black Bean Chili is a great fall chili recipe with tons of flavor. Even better, it’s super easy to make!

This black bean hummus is made with black beans instead of chickpeas, and is flavored with lime and cumin. This is a great dip to make for parties and potlucks!

Black beans, sweet potatoes, fire roasted salsa, and poblanos pair with black beans in this hearty, easy meatless Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili.

This Black Bean Soup with Andouille Sausage has just a bit of spice with the andouille sausage that is enough for me. I loved the hint of smokiness from the smoked paprika and ancho powder.

This Easy Black Bean Salad is packed with corn, tomatoes, cucumber, and more! It’s tossed with a lime-cumin dressing that’s full of flavor!

What are your favorite easy black bean recipes?

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Southwestern Black Bean Pasta

Southwestern Black Bean Pasta

Yield: serves 6
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

This recipe for Southwestern Black Bean pasta is a great pantry recipe for a 30 minute meatless meal! It features pasta with a smoky tomato sauce and plenty of black beans. This simple vegetarian black bean pasta dish only takes a few minutes to prepare and uses mostly pantry ingredients.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 2 Green Bell Peppers, diced
  • 1 Yellow Onion, diced
  • 2 cloves minced Garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Dried Oregano
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Cumin
  • 3 cans Black Beans, rinsed and drained
  • 28 ounces Tomato Sauce
  • 14 ounces Diced Tomatoes
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • 1 lb Pasta of choice - penne, rigatoni, and shells all make great choices

Instructions

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the bell pepper and onion and saute until tender, about 3 - 5 minutes.
  3. Add the minced garlic, dried oregano, and ground cumin. Saute another minute, until fragrant.
  4. Stir in the black beans, tomato sauce, and diced tomatoes.
  5. Cook over medium heat until bubbling, then reduce and simmer for about 20 - 30 minutes.
  6. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  7. Add prepared pasta to a large shallow bowl.
  8. Pour the black bean sauce over top.
  9. Serve, passing shredded cheese (if desired) for sprinkling over individual plates of pasta.

Notes

What Pasta Works Best for this Recipe

You can use whatever pasta you have on had or what you like best. I recommend sticking with shells, penne, rotini, or something similar in this recipe. I like the way the sauce coats those pasta shapes and that everything is in bite sized portions

Meat Additions

If you prefer this recipe to have meat, I recommend adding Crock Pot Mexican Chicken to this recipe. Add the cooked, shredded chicken to the Black Bean Sauce before combining it with the pasta.

You could also add strips of grilled chicken on top. I like this recipe for Grilled Cilantro Lime Chicken.

If taco meat is more your style, 1 pound of ground beef, ground turkey, or ground chicken cooked with this Spicy Taco Seasoning would also be a great addition to this Black Bean Pasta Recipe for those wanting to add additional protein to their meal.

Vegetable Additions

Yes, of course! Corn, extra bell peppers (try a mix of green, red, yellow, and orange for extra color) would be great, easy additions to this black bean pasta.

To add extra green, try adding some chopped fresh spinach. If you want to try using frozen spinach, add it in with the sauteed vegetables to thaw and allow some of the moisture to evaporate. (Related: How to Freeze Spinach)

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information
Yield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 319Total Fat 4gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 3gCholesterol 0mgSodium 806mgCarbohydrates 58gFiber 13gSugar 9gProtein 15g

GoodLifeEats.com offers recipe nutritional information as a courtesy and is an estimate only. This information comes from online calculators. Although GoodLifeEats.com makes every effort to provide accurate information, these figures are only estimates.

Did you make this recipe?

I’d love it if you let me know what you think! Snap a photo and tag me on Instagram at @goodlifeeats with the hashtag #goodlifeeatsrecipes so I can see what you’re cooking up in YOUR kitchen!

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Stephanie

Wednesday 25th of July 2018

Ack! I'm not finding the original recipe on Good Cheap Eats- is it available elsewhere??? I've made this a bunch of times and absolutely loved it.

Katie

Wednesday 25th of July 2018

It looks like the owner of Good Cheap Eats removed it from her site. I know it have it written down somewhere. Give me a few days to look for it and I'll update this post to include the recipe in it rather than a link to the site it is no longer posted at. I'll email you when I have this post updated. Thanks for letting me know!

Ashley

Wednesday 14th of September 2011

Made this tonight....very delicious! I added 1/2 lb of ground beef and a bit of diced chili pepper, and used Penzey's Arizona Dreaming for the spices. I froze 4 portions of the sauce, had one for dinner just now, and will have some for lunch tomorrow! Thanks!

Erica

Sunday 14th of August 2011

I made this for my family this evening, and it was excellent. We will be adding it to our recipe book! We are a vegetarian family with three young children, and it is often a challenge to find healthy meals that my kids like.

Alli

Thursday 28th of October 2010

delicious!! reminded me of a dish from another Texas favorite - Royer's in Roundtop. I'm hooked on your blog, Katie!

Jessica

Saturday 24th of April 2010

This looks quite good. I love black beans in just about anything, and the ingredients are ones that I always have on hand. Thanks!jessyburke88@gmail.com