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Kidney Beans with Red Peppers, Tomatoes and Basil – Easy, Delicious, Nutritious Potato Topping

With this blog you’ll see that it is easy to create without a recipe!  And while you prepare this meal, you can also easily prepare some afternoon snacks! In a meal or alone, red peppers are so delicious!!

Tomatoes – frozen straight out of the garden. Quick to freeze, easy to use.

Scroll down to go directly to ingredients and directions

Or learn to create your own recipe:

Start creating by checking what you have on hand.

Check out your CSA box,  and look in your fridge, freezer and cupboards to see whats inspiring. With this meal, I let last summer’s frozen tomatoes be my starting point.  (Garden tomatoes are so easy to freeze: 1. pick them fully ripe,  2. rinse and dry, 3.  put them in a freezer bag. 4. Freeze!)

The red potatoes from the CSA box were asking for a topping – and cooking extra would mean the beginning of tomorrow’s meal.  Unlike the big white hybridized potatoes used for French fries, which are lacking in fiber and nutrients, red potatoes are nutrient dense.  Red potatoes contain protein, fiber, many of the B vitamins, potassium, manganese, magnesium…. (Read below for more on the sad problem with those  really big white baking potatoes.) Quarter the red potatoes  and set on to boil (anticipate 20 minutes – but check with fork for tenderness).

Memories of  how great Mini Peppers taste  grilled over a Memorial Day picnic fire!

Now browse your cabinets and fridge for inspiration.

We often have Mini peppers on hand – they are delicious just as is, or dipped in hummus, sliced on a salad, or in a creative dish!  For this meal, slice them however you like. And, by the way, they are also wonderful grilled!  Fresh basil in the fridge.  Red kidney beans are tasty and “pretty” as a potato topper;  we always have a variety of low sodium organic beans in our pantry.  Read about what to keep in a “Well Stocked Panty”.  And browsing the spice drawer, Cumin seemed just right – a beneficial Middle East spice.

Boiled Red Potatoes, Kidney Beans with Red Peppers

Put the beans and peppers in a pot on medium, and add the tomatoes to thaw and heat. Meanwhile chiffonade the basil to release its flavor, and looks lovely.  To chiffonade basil – stack the leaves, roll them, thinly slice the roll for nice curls of green.  The frozen tomatoes will thaw quickly and can be cut up in the pan easily.  Add the basil, shake in cumin to your taste (start with 1/4 teaspoon), and simmer slowly for 10 minutes while your potatoes finish.

This is a delicious salad combination, and great for snacks:

Mixed salad greens, snap peas, red cabbage, carrot, cucumber and kohlrabi, with a balsamic vinaigrette dressing.  While your chopping cut some extra to have on hand for afternoon snack!

Dinner from scratch is served in 30 minutes:

Add the topping to the potatoes and serve with salad!

This meal is easy to make AND clean up is super easy, just rinse the pans in soapy water – no scrubbing needed!

Colorful, nutritious, balanced meal – The more colors, the greater the variety of nutrients!

Ingredients and Directions (remember, you can add your own variations):

  • Red potatoes – cut to about 1 1/2 inch, put them on to boil, done when tender to fork.

  • 15 Oz Can Organic, low sodium kidney beans – put in pan on medium.

  • Add frozen or fresh chopped tomatoes

  • Mini sweet peppers – slice to your preference and add to beans

  • Chiffonade fresh basil (stack leaves, roll, slice) – add to beans

  • Cumin – add to taste – start with 1/4 tsp

  • Simmer 10 – 15 minutes

  • Serve over the boiled potato cubes with a delicious, colorful salad

While making your salad, cut extra to have on hand for afternoon snacks.

Cucumber and carrot sticks, kohlrabi slices, snap peas and red cabbage wedges,  and boiled potatoes are all great to grab as an afternoon snack.  Add a variety of nutrients and fiber to your day!  Even if you don’t have these already sliced for a snack, it’s soooooo easy to just grab a carrot, wash it and eat it; or grab a cucumber, slice and enjoy!   And instead of “dipping” in nasty ranch dressing that obscures the taste with salt and fat,  just savor the flavors of each individual vegetable.  Set your palate free!  So if you’re looking for a crunchy snack – don’t go for that salt, fat, additives bag of chips or cheetos (in fact, don’t keep those temptations in the house); instead have one (or more) of these crunchable, colorful delicious veggies!

When I was on a mission trip I learned this sad potato story:

Bolivian Marketplace Watercolor – In El Alto, by E. George MD

Until McD’s came along and co-opted their potatoes fields,  the Bolivians had a wonderful, affordable source of nutrition from their multi variety of potatoes, such as fingerlings, small yellow, red and sweet potatoes and many others; over 4,000 varieties of potatoes can grow in the Andes.  Farmers generally produced these native varieties with minimal or no use of agrochemicals.  McD’s used financial incentives to convince farmers to turn their acreage over to producing  the very big white potatoes; these were hybridized to maximize size for ease in making French fries.

In the process of hybridization of smaller white and yellow potatoes to oversized  french fry potatoes, a lot of the nutritional value was lost.  And they for sure don’t contain the nutrients and fiber that are in the native Bolivian potatoes they  replaced.  Unfortunately, the financial gains from growing the McD potatoes, did not cover the cost of the loss of an affordable, sustainable, nutritious, organically grown food staple for the Bolivians.  Nor does it cover the cost to the Bolivians’  health. Because of this agricultural change, as well as  a result of the introduction of many other highly processed American foods, they now face diabetes, hypertension and heart disease at increasing rates!   The most important tasks for us on that visit, was encouraging visitors to the clinic  to go back to eating their native colorful whole foods, prepared with their favorite spices!



An Adventure is a community-based 28-day program that can kick-start you on a lifetime of healthier eating with a whole foods, plant based lifestyle.

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