Rice and beans are a healthy and affordable staple, providing protein, carbs and a moderate amount of fat. Although Spanish rice contains more calories than plain rice -- thanks to the added oil and tomato sauce -- it still won't bust your diet if you use a sensible recipe. And while refried beans may sound heavy, they often contain very little fat and relatively few calories. If you make them at home, go easy on the oil to reduce the calorie content.
Canned refried beans typically contain about 90 calories per half-cup serving. However, home or restaurant versions that have more fat may contain about 120 calories in just one-third of a cup. Spanish-style rice made from a package may contain about 200 calories per cup, while more-authentic homemade varieties could contain about 250 calories in the same serving. In total, your plate of Spanish rice and beans could range from 290 calories to 370 calories or more.
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Nina K. is a Los Angeles-based journalist who has been published by USAToday.com, Fitday.com, Healthy Living Magazine, Organic Authority and numerous other print and web publications. She has a philosophy degree from the University of Colorado and a journalism certificate from UCLA.