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CREAMY RED BEANS AND RICE

Red Beans and Rice is one of those incredibly simple but delicious recipes that offer a huge bang for your buck. The winning texture and flavor combination is hard not to love!

A close view of red beans scooped with a spoon

RED BEANS AND RICE RECIPE

This dish has a bold flavor, with the addition of Andouille sausagesmoked turkey, and a generous amount of creole seasoning for a more distinct southern flavor. 

This dish is packed full of flavor and inexpensive. An amazing comfort soul food at its finest. The only difference is that an authentic Cajun home cook will not use recipes or measurements (lol).

It’s an any day meal, and it’s very easy to make. It a recipe you can make on laundry days because of the simmering time. 

Red beans and Rice served in a plate

YOUR GUIDE TO MAKING RED RICE AND BEANS AT HOME (HOW TO MAKE RED BEANS and rice)

Just like many creole/cajun recipe, the interplay of onioncelery, and bell pepper which is referred to as the trinity, coupled with a hint of creole seasoning, complement any other ingredients you add to the dish.

 Sprinkle a bit of hot sauce and vinegar on the beans for added spice.

HOW DO YOU THICKEN RED BEANS AND RICE? 

The best way to achieve the perfectly creamy texture of New Orleans-style red beans is to allow the beans to cook completely cook into a soft and creamy consistency. Then use the back of a wooden spoon to smash some beans against the side of the pot as you stir them. This will give the beans a creamier consistency.

SAUSAGE, SMOKED TURKEY OR HAM?

I love to use andouille sausage because it makes the right smokey-hot flavor for this dish. However, this is not the only protein that can be used for making this meal; you can also use smoked turkey, ham hocks, ham shanks, or a combination of any two proteins of your choice.

SOMETIMES SHORTCUTS ARE OK.

I love beans! All types of beans and I prefer to cook them from scratch because there’s a noticeable difference in flavor and texture when cooked from scratch.

Cooking red beans from scratch can take some time but I still believe they’re worth that time and effort. However, sometimes, shortcuts are allowed, and that is very okay! I do that sometimes too. 

If you forget to soak your beans or you are short of time. Canned beans are a great alternative. They are convenient and also flavorful.

WHAT TO SERVE WITH RED BEANS AND RICE

This can be accompanied by sweet cornbread, greens, and a glass of iced sweet tea. 

HOW LONG DO YOU COOK RED BEANS?

It takes about one and a half hours to three hours to cook red beans from scratch.

Basically, the amount of liquid you add and how long you cook your beans will determine how soft and how soupy your beans will be. If you like it really soft, cook longer, and if you like it really soupy, you can add more water.

A good way to know if the beans are soft is when you are mashing them against the pot. They should be very easy to mash. If you are finding some resistance, then you need to give it more time to simmer.

Red beans and rice in a pan. Garnished with parsley

HOW DO YOU MAKE RED BEANS AND RICE FROM SCRATCH?

  1. Rinse and sort beans – Sort the beans by removing any bad beans or specks of dirt. Then rinse and drain in a colander.
  2. Soak the beans – This helps to reduce the actual cooking time on the stove. It is advisable to soak the beans overnight, however, if you are short of time you can leave it for at least 4 hours. A second method is to bring the beans to a quick boil, turn off the heat and leave the beans to soak for one hour before draining and cooking it.
  3. Next, chop the aromatic vegetables – chop the veggies (onion, green bell pepper, and celery) ahead of time, so they are ready to go into the pot once the sausage is browned. 
  4. Slice smoked sausage and brown it over medium heat in a large pot. it is best to use a thick-walled pot like a cast iron pot or a Dutch oven. This will ensure even heat and reducing your chances of burning the beans.
  5. Cook the veggies until they become soft and translucent. By now, your kitchen should be smelling good because the flavors are starting to meld, and the aroma is fantastic!.
  6. Add the soaked, drained beans to the pot, together with the bay leaves and water. 
  7. Season with salt, pepper, hot sauce, and Cajun seasoning to taste. Be sure to add the seasoning a little at a time stir, and taste until you reach your desired taste.

That is it. Your pot of delicious, creamy red beans is ready. Serve in individual bowls and ladle some hot fluffy rice over it. Garnish with parsley if desired, and don’t forget the hot sauce. Each one can adjust the spiciness to their own taste. Enjoy!

WHAT IS ”THE HOLY TRINITY” IN CAJUN COOKING?

The trinity is the base for most cajun creole cuisine. It consists of onion, green bell pepper, and celery, usually in equal amounts. These are sauteed together until they become aromatic, and this provides a flavor base that other ingredients can build upon.

Other delicious southern recipes you might want to try:

Cooked Red Beans in a pan

Red Beans and Rice

Red Beans and Rice is one of those incredibly simple but delicious recipes that offer a huge bang for your buck. The winning texture and flavor combination is hard not to love!
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Calories: 2877kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Red beans
  • 2 tbsp olive oil or vegetable oil
  • 1 lb andouille sausage sliced
  • 1 cup onion finely diced
  • ¾ cup celery chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 7 to 8 cups chicken stock or more as needed
  • 1/2 lb Smoked turkey leg necks, ham bone, or ham hock
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • ½ to 1 tsp cayenne pepper or to taste
  • 2 tsp cajun seasoning
  • 2 tbsp chopped green onion or parsley for garnish

For serving:

  • Hot sauce
  • Apple cider vinegar

Instructions

Method 1: Overnight Soaking

  • Sort the beans by removing any dirt and bad beans
  • Pour the beans in a large bowl, add enough cool water to submerge the beans completely, and leave to soak for at least 4 hours. I prefer to leave it overnight.

Method 2: Quick Soak

  • For a quick soak, pour the beans in a stockpot, add enough water to submerge the beans about 4 inches, then bring the beans to a boil and let it sit for one hour. Drain and rinse under cold water. Pour the beans back into the stockpot.

Cooking:

  • Heat the oil in the skillet over medium heat and brown the sausage on both sides.
  • Stir in the onion, bell pepper, and celery Cook until tender. About 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant—about a minute.
  • Add the red beans, smoked Turkey, bay leaves, thyme, black pepper, cayenne pepper, cajun seasoning, and chicken broth. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat to medium-low and leave to simmer for 1 1/2 hours; Season with salt and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
  • Cook for another 30 mins or until thick and creamy.
  • Cook the rice: Bring the rice and water to boil in a pot. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Serve over rice. Enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 2877kcal | Carbohydrates: 194g | Protein: 175g | Fat: 155g | Saturated Fat: 48g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 431mg | Sodium: 6796mg | Potassium: 5740mg | Fiber: 42g | Sugar: 40g | Vitamin A: 3521IU | Vitamin C: 127mg | Calcium: 377mg | Iron: 26mg

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