Daniel Fast Main Dish: A Taste of Sicily

sicilian beans and rice

Italy is a placed I’ve always wanted to visit. In fact, I plan to travel there someday with my husband before we’re both too old to enjoy it! One particular region of Italy has a long history of producing noted cuisines. Because of their reputation for quality food, Sicily is often referred to as “God’s Kitchen.” Some of the best recipes in the world come from this area.

This recipe is a tribute to my husband’s Italian heritage. I hope I can make the Sicilians proud with this dish. It contains many of their most-loved ingredients – garlic, tomato sauce, basil, parsley, and fennel. You might be surprised to see rice in this recipe, but, believe it or not, Italians do take a break from pasta to enjoy other foods!

Sicilian Beans and Rice

1/2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 (15.5-ounce) can black beans, rinsed, drained, slightly mashed
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil or 1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon fennel seed
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley or 1 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
4 cups cooked brown rice

Heat olive oil in a large skillet, and add onions. Cook until soft and translucent. Stir in garlic, and cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly so garlic doesn’t burn. Add remaining ingredients, and cook, uncovered, over low heat for 30 minutes. To serve, place ½ cup rice in a bowl or on a plate, and top with ½ cup beans.

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: about ½ cup beans and ½ cup rice)

Recipe Notes

  • Instead of brown rice, use quinoa or whole grain pasta.
  • Top with sliced olives.

Nutrition Facts
Calories per serving: 198
Carbohydrates: 40
Fat: 2
Protein: 7
Sugar: 4
Calcium: 3


  1. Pam Green says:

    We really enjoyed your Sicilian Rice and Beans recipe tonight, Kristen! This is definitely going to become a new family favorite. Thank you!

  2. My husband and I had this with a side of sautéed brussels sprouts for dinner tonight and it was delicious! And we have leftovers, so will have it again later in the week. Thanks for the yummy recipes! 🙂

  3. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. My whole family enjoyed it (husband, 12 yr old daughter and 13 yr old son). They all asked for seconds. My husband asked if we can make this a regular at our house. God bless you!

  4. LaDawna Reed says:

    This dish looks absolutely delicious and I would like to try it tonight. My question…after you have sauteed the onions and garlic and you say add the remaining ingredients, that’s just the beans right? you don’t mix the rice in do you? I’m looking at the picture and it appears as you used the mixture as a topping. I’m not all that familar around the kitchen, so I’m trying to follow the directions to the tee. Btw…I have made the potato soup, flatbread, cajun red bean and rice and they have all been wonderul. This weekend…flatbread pizza and banana creme pie! Thanks for all the delicious recipes. I have really enjoyed this fast so far.

    • That’s right. You cook everything but the rice in the skillet, and then you place the bean mixture on top of the rice. I hope you like it! Thanks for your comments, and I’m thankful you’ve been blessed by the recipes. 🙂

  5. LaDawna Reed says:

    Wow!!! I made this dish tonight and it was absolutely delicious! Thank you!

  6. So delicious…. would not have thought fennel would make such a difference! thanks for these recipes..I had it with caulifower “rice” as have celiac…

  7. This recipe looks fabulous. My question is, when I first heard about the Daniel Fast, I was told that only eat that of the earth. Fruits, veggies, nuts and filtered water. Beans and tomatoes from a can have preservatives. Can I use those items from a can or is there a special brand that is allowed?

    • Yes, you will find some variation on the food guidelines for the Daniel Fast. The idea is to limit your food intake and focus on prayer, just as the prophet Daniel did in the Bible. So my food list helps you form boundaries for the fast. Some people may choose to modify, and that’s a personal decision. As far as canned foods, yes, they are allowed. Of course, fresh food is always best, but sometimes that’s just not possible. I recommend using canned items with no or very little preservatives. On the Daniel Fast, you want to eat as cleanly as you can, avoiding chemicals, additives, preservatives, etc. Thanks for your question! May the Lord bless you as you seek Him!

      • Wouldn’t frozen veggies be a better choice over canned? I thought frozen had less or no added preservatives? Just asking

        • Yes. Fresh is best. Frozen is next. Then canned. Sometimes, though, fresh or frozen isn’t an option, so that’s why you’ll see some variety in my recipes. I realize not everyone can always use fresh, and sometimes there aren’t frozen veggies in the freezer! Thanks for your question. 🙂

  8. I guess I am having a hard time understanding how these recipes could be in line with a true Daniel fast. A true Daniel fast does not include Oils, Salt, or any processed food of any kind. Just fruits and vegetables, raw nuts and some grains such as brown rice and Quinoa.

    • Hi, Kelly! Thanks for your comments. I can understand your confusion. You will find many different variations on the Daniel Fast online. However, the guidelines you see on my website are the most widely observed. You can find a more detailed explanation on my Daniel Fast Food List page.