This BEST Red Beans and Rice Recipe is the Ultimate Cajun Favorite done right! Insanely flavorful kidney beans with a hint of spice and meaty essence are served over white rice for the perfect Southern creole recipe. Much better than Popeye’s!! Serve with this my Southern Cornbread and some Seafood Gumbo, Shrimp Po’ Boy, Jambalaya Skillet, Etouffee, Low Country Boil and some New Orleans Beignets!!
This Red beans and Rice recipe is a soulful dish. I love to watch the beans simmer away in a pot of spices and intense flavors gradually thickening and melding together in the most magical way. Once ready, this kidney beans recipe is smothered with rice, and your first taste is the reward for your patience.
I grew up eating all types of beans. My mother is the queen of crock pot bean meals. From lima beans and pinto beans to red beans, we had them all and very regularly too. Red beans have a personality all their own, and the South really knows how to bring that personality out. I never really appreciated my mother’s consistent bean meals until later in life when I began making them myself.
I was 25 when I made my first pot of red beans. After the first pot, I was hooked. I loved the fact that the beans cooked on a low heat and after a few hours, just came together without much effort on my part beyond the initial prep. I also loved how healthy beans are. Each time I had them as a meal, the fiber totally filled me up. I was totally satisfied while eating less which was a good thing for my scale and waistline.
HOW TO MAKE RED BEANS AND RICE: How to Cook Red Beans
And lastly, this red beans and rice recipe just tastes so damn good y’all. A big bowl is about as comforting as a meal can get.
You must begin with the holy trinity that is very popular in cajun cooking. You will find this base in many New Orleans style recipes and it adds a ton of flavor.
With a trinity of celery, onions, and bell peppers, a dose of creole spices and andouille sausage and a heaping scoop of rice (I make this with brown rice usually to keep it even healthier), this is a meal that’s not only good for the body but oh so good for the soul.
WHAT INGREDIENTS MAKE THIS THE BEST RED BEANS AND RICE RECIPE
These are the ingredients that really make this recipe stand out above the rest:
- Chicken Stock – (this adds additional flavor to the base of the red beans and rice). Instead of using water, this is what you want!
- Hot sauce – adds that nice extra kick of spice!
- Creole Seasoning – definitely a must for giving you that true Louisiana flavor. Brands like Slap Yo Mama are fantastic to use.
- Andouille Sausage – It is truly one of the most important ingredients in this red beans and rice. (I use Sausages by Amylo’s chicken andouille flavor to cut down on fat)
Variation: Vegetarian Red Beans and Rice
You can easily make make this a vegetarian and vegan red beans and rice recipe. Here are the easy steps to take:
- Replace the chicken stock with vegetable stock. Super easy fix!
- Remove the sausage from the recipe as well.
- Also for an additional kick of flavor, add a little soy sauce! Taste until you like how much you add. Don’t add too much since it adds salt!
Variation: Red Beans and Rice Crockpot
This recipe can also be made in a crockpot. Simply saute’ all of your trinity ingredients up front and you can add to a standard sized crockpot and cook until tender, thick and delicious! You can add all of the ingredients in the morning and have an incredible dinner by the evening!
Want more beans? Try these Black Eyed Peas , this Hoppin John recipe, these Butter Beans, these Jamaican Rice and Peas or these Pinto Beans.
If you are craving more cajun recipes, try my Cajun Jambalaya Pasta or try my Cajun Seasoning or these Stuffed Cabbage Rolls.
The BEST Red Beans and Rice Recipe (with Kidney Beans Recipe)
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup finely chopped onions
- ½ cup finely chopped celery
- ½ cup finely chopped bell peppers
- 3 85g andouille sausage links, cut into small pieces
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 5 cups water
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce
- 1 teaspoon creole seasoning
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper up to 1/4 tsp but taste later
- 1 pound dried red beans already soaked overnight and drained
- Cooked rice to serve with beans
- In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add chopped onions, celery and bell peppers and cook about 10-12 minutes or until they begin to caramelize and tenderize. Next add in sausage and brown for about 4-5 minutes. Add in minced garlic and cook for 1 minute making sure not to burn.
- Turn heat up to medium high and add chicken stock, water, worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, creole seasoning, salt and pepper then stir in red beans.
- Bring liquid to a boil then turn heat down to low, cover with lid and cook for 2 - 2½ hours until beans are tender and liquid as thickened. Check flavor of beans and season with salt and pepper to taste, stir and turn off heat.
- Let cool for 15 minutes and allow beans to continue thickening. Serve with rice.
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Making this with leftover Easter ham and canned red beans!
Love this recipe! This was immediately added to my recipe rotation and just hits the spot every time. My husband is a picky eater and was licking the bowl after this one!
So delicious. I’ve made them several times, but keep forgetting to say thanks for the recipe. I grew up on pinto beans in Texas, but these are a *lovely* alternative!
I love this recipe! I never use kidney beans though because I don’t like the skins. Small red beans work great. They soak faster and they come out tender, closer to black bean in texture. They are somewhat hard to find up here in West Michigan though.
Granny Jean says
Order pinto beans online if you have trouble finding them locally. Not wanting to advertise, but Amazon has free shipping if you have prime. I buy a number of food products from them
I am quite anxious to try this recipe. I have yet to find a red bean recipe I have fallen in love with after many years of living where it is served religiously. What kind of hot sauce do you prefer? It’s always Tabasco vs. Crystal – sometimes I will use one while cooking the dish and the opposite to taste on the table afterwards. Same question for creole seasoning. I think I am the only person I know who is not a fan of Tony Chachere’s. I love Kevin Belton’s Creole Kick – warning, powerful stuff. Thanks.
Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes) says
I used Tabasco which I had on hand here. I think you can go with whatever you prefer in terms of creole seasoning but honestly if it is super powerful like the Creole Kick, only add a little and amp up as it comes together if you need more.
lauren Hobson says
We have been making this for 4 years now and man is it always amazing, My husband loves red beans and rice so I was happy to fine and amazing recipe that wasnt super hard.
Made this tonight for the first time…hubby and I loved it! Thanks!
Thank you so much for all the wonderful recipes. I am from the south so I know good food. Some of the recipes remind me of my childhood. My mom was a wonderful cook. Keep up the good work. You are in my prayers.
Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes) says
That’s so amazing! I appreciate the prayers so much!
Great Recipe my red beans with Turkey leg came out amazing Thanks
Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes) says
Hooray I’m so glad!