Sweet Potato Black Bean Rice Bowl

Last updated: June 5th, 2024

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A healthy sweet potato black bean rice bowl recipe that’s so warm, cozy, and flavorful you’ll think you’re eating comfort food!

A healthy power bowl with brown rice, black beans, sweet potato, peppers, onion, and avocado

We’re super excited for fall, in case you haven’t noticed yet! Shorter days and cooler nights ahead have us constantly daydreaming about sweet potato, pumpkin, football snacks, and cozy bowls of soup and chili. But since we’re not quite into that time of year where we throw nutrition out the window and prepare for hibernation (i.e. winter), we cooked up the perfect meal to help bridge the seasons: a seemingly decadent yet nutritious Sweet Potato Black Bean Rice Bowl.

This sweet potato bowl recipe is the epitome of healthy food that tastes good and is easy to make. It’s so flavorful, cozy, and warm that it almost feels like comfort food – but it’s loaded with nutrients and will leave you feeling completely satisfied but not bloated. The perfect fall recipe to indulge in without ruining your summer health kick! Plus, you can make this low-calorie recipe in less than 45 minutes without much hands-on time. What’s not to love about that?

A lunch bowl of sweet potatoes, black beans, brown rice, veggies, and fresh avocado topped with goat cheese

Sweet Potato Black Bean Rice Bowl Ingredients

There are a ton of flavorful and nutritious ingredients in our healthy sweet potato rice bowl recipe:

  • Brown rice
  • Sweet potato
  • Pasilla (poblano) pepper
  • Red onion
  • Black beans
  • Lime juice
  • Cilantro
  • Avocado
  • Goat cheese
  • Seasonings: chipotle powder, paprika, ground red cayenne pepper, chili powder, cumin, and salt

Sweet potatoes, black beans, brown rice, and other heart-healthy ingredients make this the best power bowl recipe! Loaded with fiber, healthy fats, protein, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, each ingredient rounds out the nutrients in this recipe while creating a complex and delicious flavor profile. This recipe has quickly become one of our favorite weeknight dinners.

A black bean sweet potato rice bowl topped with fresh avocado slices and crumbled goat cheese

How To Make A Vegetarian Sweet Potato Bowl

The best part about healthy grain bowls is how easy they are to throw together! Here’s how to make our vegetarian black bean and sweet potato rice bowl:

  1. Steam brown rice.
  2. Cook the sweet potatoes on the stove while the rice is steaming, until they’re slightly caramelized and tender.
  3. Add the veggies, seasonings, and black beans to the sweet potato.
  4. Season the cooked rice with lime juice and chopped cilantro.
  5. Plate a bed of rice with sweet potato, black beans, and veggies on top. Finish with fresh avocado slices and crumbled goat cheese.

Only 5 steps and about 30 minutes to cook this easy vegetarian sweet potato dinner! You can even do prep and cleanup as you cook, since the sweet potatoes will take about 15 minutes before you need to add the rest of the ingredients. 

Get the sweet potatoes on the stove first, then slice your peppers and onions, prepare your seasonings, and drain and rinse the beans. If you have time to spare, you can even wash a few dishes! That’s what makes this black bean sweet potato recipe the perfect easy, healthy weeknight meal.

Note that you’ll want to cook the sweet potatoes until they are just beginning to feel tender, then add the veggies, seasonings, and black beans. This keeps the veggies and beans from overcooking since they only need a few minutes on the stove. But it also ensures the sweet potatoes aren’t overcooked by the time everything else is heated through. Just-tender sweet potatoes will end up perfectly softened after a few more minutes of cooking alongside the remaining ingredients.

A fork scooping into a sweet potato black bean rice bowl

Healthy Sweet Potato Rice Bowl Meal Prep: Storing & Reheating

Another great thing about healthy rice bowls is that they’re perfect for easy meal prep. Cook up a big batch of brown rice, sweet potatoes, black beans, and veggies at the beginning of the week and store portioned meals in microwave-safe containers in the fridge. Then simply reheat for about 2 minutes in the microwave (stirring halfway through) before topping with goat cheese and avocado slices. 

Prepared sweet potato black bean rice bowls will stay good for about 4 days in the fridge, so you’ll have delicious, healthy lunches ready on demand all week long!

A healthy sweet potato black bean brown rice bowl

This sweet potato black bean rice bowl tastes super fresh, yet warms you up with a little bit of spice and gives you that hearty, comforting feeling you crave from a cozy fall recipe. The creamy avocado and goat cheese on top feel just indulgent enough that you won’t even realize you’re eating something so healthy. It’s truly something magical! 

Try the recipe below and let us know what you think in the comments 🙂 And if you love it, don’t forget to rate and share! 

Nutrition References

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4.6 from 5 votes

Sweet Potato Black Bean Rice Bowl

A healthy sweet potato black bean rice bowl recipe that's so warm, cozy, and flavorful you'll think you're eating comfort food!
Servings 4 bowls
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes

Equipment

  • Small saucepan or rice cooker
  • Large sauté pan with lid

Ingredients

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup brown rice dry
  • 2 sweet potatoes peeled and diced into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 medium poblano (pasilla) pepper thinly sliced into 1.5-inch long strips
  • ½ small red onion thinly sliced
  • ½ teaspoon chipotle powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon ground red cayenne pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cumin
  • 15 ounces canned black beans drained and rinsed
  • 1 lime juiced
  • 4 pinches sea salt
  • ½ bunch cilantro chopped
  • 1 medium avocado sliced
  • 2 ounces goat cheese crumbled

Instructions

  • Bring water to a boil in a small saucepan. Then stir in the brown rice, cover and turn heat to low. Steam until the rice has absorbed all of the liquid, about 25 minutes. Set aside.
  • While the rice cooks, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add cubed sweet potatoes and season with about 3 pinches of salt. Cook until potatoes are lightly caramelized, stirring infrequently, about 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Cover the sweet potatoes and lower heat to medium. Cook until just tender, about 5 minutes, stirring once or twice if needed to prevent them from sticking to the pan.
  • Remove the lid and lower heat to medium-low. Add the sliced pasilla pepper and onion, then season with chipotle powder, paprika, cayenne, chili powder, and cumin. Add about 1 teaspoon of olive oil and stir to combine. Cook until peppers and onions are softened, about 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Next, stir in the black beans. Cook for just 2 to 3 more minutes until the beans are warmed through, then remove from heat. Season with juice from half a lime and a pinch of salt, stirring to combine.
  • Season brown rice with juice from half a lime and chopped cilantro, stirring to combine.
  • Serve a scoop of rice topped with the sweet potato, black bean, and veggies. Top with slices of fresh avocado and crumbled goat cheese and enjoy!

Notes

Timing: To make this meal a breeze, first cube your potatoes and get your water boiling. Then start cooking the rice and the sweet potatoes at about the same time. While the sweet potatoes cook, prep your pepper, onion, black beans, spices, and toppings. You can even wash a few dishes if you have time to spare, saving time on cleanup later!
Cooking the sweet potato: Cut the sweet potato into equal-sized cubes (about 1/4-inch) so they cook evenly. You’ll want to let them sit relatively undisturbed for about 15 minutes so that they get lightly crisped and caramelized on the outside. Give the pan a shake or turn them about with a spatula every 5 minutes or so to make sure the cubes brown on all sides. Then, cover and steam them for about 5 minutes until they’re tender (you should be able to dent them with the edge of your spatula).
Serving suggestions: This vegetarian sweet potato bowl recipe is so delicious for lunch or dinner. Eat it alone or serve with a side of corn tortilla chips and salsa.
Storing & reheating: You can meal prep these healthy rice bowls for the week by storing portioned meals in the fridge. Add brown rice and the sweet potato black bean veggie mix to microwave-safe containers and store in the fridge for up to 4 days. When you’re ready to eat, simply microwave uncovered for about 2 minutes, stirring halfway through. Top with fresh avocado and goat cheese and enjoy!
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Author: Nicole
Calories: 491kcal
Course: Dinner, Lunch, Main, Main Course
Cuisine: American, Fusion
Keyword: Avocado, black beans, brown rice, cilantro, fall, goat cheese, healthy, lime juice, meal prep, nutritious, pasilla pepper, red onion, sweet potato

Nutrition

Calories: 491kcal | Carbohydrates: 75g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 903mg | Potassium: 983mg | Fiber: 15g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 9795IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 114mg | Iron: 4mg

If you have any questions regarding the information presented in this post, please refer to our Nutrition Disclaimer here.

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Join the Conversation

  1. 5 stars
    This recipe is delish! Perfect for this time of year as the weather gets cooler. I’ll make this one again and again!

    1. Nicole Author says:

      Yay, so glad you enjoyed it! It really is the perfect fall dish. Definitely a go-to for the season!

4.60 from 5 votes (4 ratings without comment)

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