And just like that marathon training is done for the year! I ran my last race (a half marathon here in Montreal) yesterday and am happy to report that I survived it.

Cuban Black Beans

It was a different type of race this time. Unlike all of my other runs I didn’t have any support. Paul is in China and my family lives between 5-6 hours away so I had to get into the right head space to support myself – starting with:

girrrrrl, you’ve done this race before AND you have your best time ever at this race AND the finish line is kind of close to home, which is close to food.

So yeah, I was fine! And my sweet Mother in law arrived last night to stay with me so I feel super loved. We celebrated with homemade sweet potato burgers and it was magical. <3

Cuban Black Beans

Today is all about recovery and thinking about what races to run next year. I have an obsession with adding races to the calendar and scoping out fun routes to do in the future. But, like every year (not even kidding), the future is uncertain. Paul finishes his PhD this November, so we’re currently looking into places where he can do his Postdoc. We have our sights on one place in particular (and they want Paul too!) but like everything in science it all depends on money. If Paul gets the scholarship he applied for, we move. If Paul doesn’t get the scholarship we still move, just to our second…or third…or fourth choice.

So, who knows what full and 1/2 marathons I’ll be running next year!

Cuban Black Beans

While training I like to eat big meals with lots of protein, complexity and flavour, and this big pot of beans always satisfies my needs. Actually, I recently made these beans for my Cuban friend at work and he proclaimed that they were “just like Mamma’s!”. They’re spiced with garlic, onion, cumin and oregano, and are made with dried black beans. Totally traditional and totally fabulous.

But, you know? If you don’t have time to soak the beans, you can try my similar recipe for Costa Rican black beans, which is great for nights when you want something quick and healthy.

Cuban Black Beans

I like to serve these up alongside some fried plantains, sliced avocado and brown rice.

Cuban Black Beans

Enjoy! xo

Cuban Black Beans

Cook Time: 4 hours, 30 minutes

Yield: 8 servings


  • 1 lb dried black beans, rinsed
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tbsp fine sea salt


  1. Soak the beans overnight in a large pot. In the morning, drain the water and set beans aside.
  2. In a large heavy bottomed pot or dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-low heat. Add the onion and saute until it is soft and translucent, about 5-7 minutes. Add two of the minced garlic cloves and continue cooking for another thirty seconds. Add the drained beans to the onion and garlic mixture and fill the dutch oven with enough water to cover everything by an inch. Turn the heat up to high and bring beans to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, partially cover the saucepan and cook for one hour.
  3. After an hour, stir the beans and add the remaining two garlic cloves, fresh cilantro, and bay leaves. Return to a simmer and cook another 2-3 hours until beans are tender and the cooking liquid is thick. Stir occasionally while cooking.
  4. Once cooked, add cumin, oregano and salt (see notes).
  5. Serve beans on their own or with some brown rice, sliced avocado and fried plantains. Enjoy hot.


Recipe adapted from Eat Live Run

Beans actually taste best the next day, so making this dish ahead is recommended and encouraged!

Beans freeze very well and can be stored in an air-tight container for up to three months.

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26 Responses to Cuban Black Beans

  1. Tori says:

    So in love with this gorgeous plate of deliciousness! I need to be eating it!

  2. Laura says:

    Congratulation on you run and well done for doing it on your own. Btw, the bagel loaf was delicious, I just eat the last slice!

  3. Oh my gosh, I admire you! I cannot run for the life of me. Like, it’s sad. I wish I could! Congrats on your run!!! I LOVE a good cuban bean, and these sound SO flavorful!!!!

  4. you go girl! I want to run a half in November, havent trained or anything just a lofty dream.

  5. Wowsers, these look fantastic, and I love the serving plates too – so pretty!
    You guys are ever-moving eh? But at least you seem to have a lot of fun along the way! 🙂 And congrats on the last half marathon for the year 🙂 How many is that for 2015 now?
    I hope you are having a lovely evening! x

  6. This cuban feast look fabulous- love the black beans! 🙂 Pinning!

  7. Monica says:

    I’m so excited to see this. We recently had wonderful Cuban food in Miami Beach – the black beans at Versailles Restaurant in Little Havana was so amazing! I managed to make the Cuban white rice back home but the black beans seemed a bit more complicated. I can do this! : ) Thanks!

  8. Congrats on finishing your race! I will be keeping you and Paul in my prayers as you wait to see what the next chapter of life has in store for you. Love those fried plantains! Perfect with black beans. 🙂

  9. Woohoo–sending you a giant virtual high five! That is so awesome (I can barely run a mile and can’t even think about running a half marathon). These beans look fab–and great for carb loading 🙂

  10. I love a good veggie bowl filled with a few different bits and bobs that go well together. This one looks so good! Just have to remember to soak the beans… something I am never good at 🙂

  11. Sarah says:

    Yum!!!!!! This plate of goodness looks so amazing. Have been looking for a good black bean recipe as well… pinning!

  12. Kristina says:

    I know that many people don’t like beans, but I am deffinitely not one of them. This dish looks amazing. I need to try it! And congrats for the race!

  13. Congrats on your 1/2 marathon!! 13 miles seems to be an unfathomable distance for me, so I have HUGE respect for anyone who can do these things. And these beans look like such a great way to get healthy carbs + protein while you’re training!! 😀

  14. Joanne says:

    Yay! Congrats on finishing out the season STRONG. I’m sure you’ll find something awesome to run next year no matter where you are! There are so many great races out there. I’m pretty sure every vegetarian needs a good black bean recipe up their sleeves! This sounds so tasty and I bet it would be great in tacos, enchiladas, burritos, etc….the possibilities are endless!

  15. Ashlae says:

    I really need to run a half or full while I still can. I ran competitively in high school but gave it up in college (I was too lazy) (read: too busy staying out until 2AM when practice was at 6), and I’ve been wanting to slowly inch back in. I recently gave up long distance running but I have a feeling it’ll find me again, sometime in the not so distant future. 🙂 Congrats on wrapping up training and finishing that race! <3 These bowls are calling my name. You know how to eat, woman.

    PS – Can you tell that today is catch up on all my favorite blogs-day?

    • katrina says:

      lol, I’m just happy to see you pop in! Annnnnd happy to see that you’re getting back into running! It takes a while but you’ll get there friend! Especially since you have a base 🙂

  16. Sarah says:

    Hi. Congrats! Can I as where you got the plates?

  17. alyne t says:

    Seriously GORGEOUS!! i’m sharing this on fb <3

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