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Black beans and plantains in white bowls with guacamole, next to cilantro and limes.

Black Bean Bowls with Plantains and Guacamole

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  • Author: Alexandra Shytsman
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Latin
  • Diet: Vegan


Black beans and plantains are one of my all-time favorite pairings. Try them in these easy 30-minute bowls with guacamole.



For the Bowls

  • 2 yellow plantains with brown spots, cut into diagonal 1/2-inch-thick slices* (see note below)
  • About 3 tablespoons cooking oil of your choice
  • Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 medium shallot, finely diced (or 1/2 small red onion)
  • Two 15-ounce cans black beans, drained and rinsed (or 3 cups home-cooked beans)
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons minced cilantro*
  • 2 scallions, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime or lemon juice (about 1 lime)

For the Guacamole

  • 2 ripe avocados, pitted and peeled
  • 2 tablespoons finely diced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice (about 1 lime)
  • 1 tablespoon minced cilantro


  1. Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-low heat and add enough oil to generously coat the bottom. Add the plantains in a single layer (you’ll likely have to do this in 2 batches) and cook until golden*, about 3 minutes. Then flip with tongs and cook the other side. Transfer to a plate and season with salt.
  2. Add about a tablespoon more oil to the pan (if needed) and return to medium-low heat. Add the shallot with a pinch of salt and cook until soft, 3 to 5 minutes. Then add the beans, and 1 teaspoon each of paprika and cumin. Cook until warm, about 3 minutes.
  3. Turn the heat off, add the cilantro and scallions, and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  4. Lastly, make the guacamole. In a medium shallow bowl, mash the avocados with a fork until smooth. Then stir in the remaining ingredients and season to taste with salt.
  5. To serve, divide the beans and plantains among 4 bowls, and add dollops of guac.


  • If you can’t find yellow plantains, buy green ones and leave them at room temp for a few days/weeks to ripen. It’s also not a crime to make this dish with green plantains.
  • If you don’t like cilantro, sub with parsley.
  • Sweet plantains can go from golden to burnt quickly, so keep an eye on them.


  • Serving Size: 1/4 of the recipe
  • Calories: 545
  • Fat: 26.6 g
  • Carbohydrates: 67.7 g
  • Fiber: 20 g
  • Protein: 14.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 g

Keywords: black beans, plantains, guacamole, vegan

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