Coconut Rice with Beans

Panamanian cuisine has been influenced by a mix of Native American, African, and Spanish cooking and dishes, which is a reflection of Panama’s diverse population. Typical foods are rather mild without the pungency and heat of some of Panama’s surrounding neighbors.

A typical Panama meal usually includes meat, coconut rice and beans accompanied by local fruits and vegetables like yucca, squash and plantains.


  • 450 gm grated coconut
  • 450 gm rice
  • 900 ml water
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 60 gm tomato paste
  • 60 gm green peppers
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 15 gm hot pepper
  • 1 can of red kidney beans
  • oil


  • Boil the water with the coconut for 2 minutes.
  • Leave aside to cool.
  • When cooled, drain the milk out and put aside.
  • Heat the oil in a pot and sauté the green pepper, onion and hot pepper.
  • Add tomato paste, kidney beans and the reserved milk and simmer for ten minutes.
  • Remove the hot pepper and add the sugar and salt.
  • Cover and bring to a boil.
  • When it boils, add the rice and cook on a low heat until the rice is cooked.

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