Mesquite Grilled Chicken with Confetti Black Beans, Rice and Tropical Fruit Salsa

Ok, so we’re cooking!  And you want something easy to do, is a great ‘show-off’ piece of art and is guaranteed to get significant praise.    You want something that capitalizes on your exceptional grilling prowess, but takes on some simple and new cooking skills that will be sure to impress your dinner guests.  This is it!!  And the best part is it’s flexible.

Take a look at the picture!!  It doesn’t have the Salsa!  That’s because some of my recipes are designed to build on the basic presentation to enable the appropriate addition of ‘accessories’, but only if you want them.  It’s like going to a dinner or dance club–sometimes you want to be in Black Tie and Formal Gowns for a special occassion, and sometimes it’s jeans and flip-flops.  The last time I made this, and when I took this picture, it was a jeans and flip-flops night, and I passed on the Fruit Salsa.  Instead I served it with a cool, fresh salad of Boston Lettuce and a balsamic viniagrette.  That and a glass of a buttery, smooth Chardonnay was all we needed for a great evening meal.  Next time I prepare it with the Salsa, I’ll take a picture and add it to the recipe photo cascade.

This recipe makes an amazing collections of great tastes, colors and textures.  You get the woody smokiness from the marinated and grilled chicken, the peppery, slightly spicy and but heartiness from the black beans and it all comes together with a citrusy sweet and spicy fresh fruit salsa that merges and balances all the layers of flavors produced by this dish.  And when it is artistically plated, it also feeds the eyes with contrasts of colors, textures and shapes that gives the dish an almost festive feel to the entre.

Give this one a try and let me know how it comes out!!

Prep Time: 1 hr 10 mins | Cook Time: 35 mins | Servings: 4 | Difficulty: Easy


For the chicken:

  • -1 cup bottled Mesquite BBQ Sauce
  • -4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

For the rice:

  • -4 cups cooked rice–Don’t get Quick Rice–buy Uncle Ben’s Regular Rice and follow the directions exactly–you cannot fail.

For the black beans:

  • -2 16 oz cans black beans
  • -4 tbsps olive or vegetable oil
  • -4 cloves garlic, peeled, smashed and chopped
  • -1 cup chopped yellow onion
  • -1/2 cup green pepper, diced
  • -1/2 cup red sweet pepper, diced
  • -1tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • -3/4 tsp salt
  • -1/3 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • -2 or 3 dashes Tabasco Sauce

For the Salsa:

  • 1/2 cup finely diced peeled firm-ripe papaya
  • 1/2 cup finely diced peeled firm-ripe mango
  • 1/2 cup finely diced peeled firm-ripe pineapple
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/3 cup finely diced red sweet pepper
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro or fresh mint
  • 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (Hot! As you like)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


For the Salsa: 

1. Stir together all ingredients.

2. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Notes: A. Alternative or additional fresh fruit can be used in this recipe. If you like strawberries or peaches, use them. If you don’t like papaya, use avocado. Just maintain the relative size of the ingredient portions as you form the recipe. B. I use the cilantro version most often, but the minted version is also top-notch as a garnish for fish, chicken and pork during the summer. C.  Other serving suggestions: 1. With tortillas as a dip. 2. Over BBQ Chicken as a garnish 3. Over baked white fish (like Mahi-Mahi or halibut) as a sauce to spice up the flavors of the fish.

For the Chicken:

1. Place chicken in baking dish and pour mesquite BBQ sauce over and mix.

2. Marinate in fridge until ready to grill.

3. About 30 minutes before serving and while rice is cooking, fire up the grill.

4. Remove chicken from dish and grill until done (about 10 to 12 mins per side). To get the grill marks, resist the tempation to keep turning it over–once is enough!!

5. Use more BBQ sauce from the bottle (not from the marinade) to coat chicken for the last 10 mins of grilling time.

For the Black Beans:

1. In a large sauce pot, heat olive or vegetable oil over medium high heat.

2. Add garlic, sauté for 1 minute.

3. Add onion, green and red peppers, sauté for 3 minutes until softened.

4. Add the black beans ( important, do not drain the beans, add everything from the can).

5. Add the remaining ingredients.

6. Simmer over low heat until hot stirring gently and for a maximum of 15 minutes, otherwise the beans get mushy.

7. Taste and adjust for salt and pepper and Tabasco to preference.

8.  A Great Trick:  let’s say you put in a little too much salt or Tabasco-it happens.  Don’t panic! Cut a Fresh Lime in half–squeeze 1/2 it and add the squeezed half lime to the pot and let simmer a few minutes.  I have no idea how it works-but it does.  Of course if your hand was wayyyy too heavy with salt or tabasco–now it’s time to Panic!

Assembling the Dish:

1. Place a nice scoop of rice in the middle of the plate

2. Surround the rice with about 1/2 cup of the black beans

3. Place top of the chicken on the rice so the bottom of the chicken is in the black beans

4. Top the chicken with a couple of large tablespoons ot the Tropical Salsa

5. Garnish with wedge of fresh cut lime.

Source: Lou’s Recipe Collection
Sent from Paprika Recipe Manager

Grilled Mesquite Chicken, Confetti Black Bean, and Rice

Categories: Great Recipes

Tags: , , , , ,

2 replies

  1. This recipe sounds so delicious and your directions are excellent. I will have to try this one in my kitchen and see what my “men” have to say about it!

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