The Gallo pinto is a typical recipe of Costa Rica and Nicaragua based on rice and beans. In some countries, Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and it is formed by complete dishes, as for example in the Costa Rica tradition. Usually it is served accompanied by eggs, but also with a sour dense cream, bread or tortillas, chicken or fish. It depends on the tastes of the person and on what you will have that day in your fridge.

The “Gallo pinto” is perfect for a brunch for European people, not so used to eat a lot during breakfast.

One of the best quality of rice for this preparation is the Thaibonnet that has elongated grains, suitable to remain separated in cooking. If you do not find this quality you can use the Basmati rice, of similar consistency and easier to find on the market!

The name of the dish "Gallo pinto" take his origin from another meaning of the term Gallo, i.e. "tortilla". Originally the tortilla was used as the plate in which you put the dish to eat. While one of the legends around the Gallo pinto, tells of a rich lord of San Jose which invited many people for a local feat, sacrificing a Gallo pinto, spotted, who had done grease for several months.

The gallo was not enough for all the participants and to give food to all the guests the lord ordered to mix the gallo with rice and beans. From here the'ironic joke of the day after in which people who had attended the feast was asking to the other: "Did you eat the Gallo pinto of don Bernabé?"


Red beans (already cooked), better the black small ones if you find them 300g

Rice 150g

Red onion 1

Peperoni 1 (better half red and half yellow)

Bacon (or ham)






To prepare the Gallo pinto, start washing and finely chopping the onion, the peperoni and the bacon.

Put the oil in a big saucepan (keep aside a teaspoon), then add the chopped ingredients.

Leave them fries 5 minutes and then add some water. After 10 minutes, you can put the rice and let it take the flavors of the ingredients already in the pan.

In the meanwhile if you have the dry beans, boilt them for 30 minutes after having left them in water for 12 hours.

Keep the water in which you boil the beans and you will use it for cooking the rice.

Coming back to the pan, add the beans’ water and cover the pan. Continue to cook over with a very low heat for at least 15-20 minutes. In a bowl flavored beans with garlic, a teaspoon of seed oil and salt.

When the rice is cooked add the beans and leave it on the flame for 5 minutes more.

The Gallo Pinto is ready to be served!!




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