Red Beans and Rice: A Simple, Frugal Meal That Feeds a Crowd

Red Beans and Rice: A Simple, Frugal Meal That Feeds a Crowd

Red Beans and Rice is a Louisiana staple that everyone should try at least once. This recipe combines the deep, earthy flavors of red beans with the smoky sweetness of Andouille sausage. It also includes the Cajun Holy Trinity: celery, onions, and bell pepper! I amped up the flavor by using two of my best-selling seasonings.

Occasionally, you come across a recipe that reminds you of coming home. I guarantee eating my Red Beans and Rice will be an experience for the senses and the soul. You’ll have a massive vat of beans, so be sure to share with your loved ones. 

Red Beans and Rice | Heath Riles BBQ

Red Beans and Rice was originally a meal that families prepped on laundry day. Traditionally, the beans are soaked overnight and added to the soup pot to simmer all day. This gave clans enough time to finish their chores and still sit down to a hearty feast. 

Try this dish on your next busy day! It’s bound to save you some stress. You can even prep it ahead of time and freeze it for even less work. 

The Ingredients

This recipe uses simple ingredients to create one hearty meal. Here’s what you need to add to your shopping list. 

  • Veggies. This recipe calls for the Cajun Holy Trinity, diced bell peppers, onions, and celery. This combination works great in most soups and stews, giving each dish texture and nutrients. 
  • Meat. I used a traditional Andouille sausage and spiced things up with ham hocks. You should follow my lead if you want ultra-filling Red Beans and Rice. 
  • Heath Riles BBQ Garlic Jalapeńo Rub. My best-selling rub combines salt, pepper, garlic, and a hint of heat. Many pitmasters and backyard chefs have ditched the traditional salt and pepper shakers for this upgrade. Use it on burgers, soups, casseroles, fries, and popcorn. 
  • Heath Riles BBQ Cajun Creole Garlic Butter Rub. This rub will add a taste of NOLA to your matter where you’re located! It makes Red Beans and Rice pop, but you can also add a dash to your meatloaves, salmon, chicken, and pork chops. 
  • Chicken broth. Many Red Beans and Rice recipes call for water, but I prefer chicken broth. It gives the dish a burst of flavor and works great with my signature seasonings. 
  • Red beans. Beans may seem simple, but when simmered, they take on the flavors of the seasonings and meat. You’ll be surprised at how creamy they are! I like using dried beans, soaked overnight, but you can use canned in a pinch. 

The Process for Making Red Beans and Rice

You’ll find a detailed demonstration of this recipe in the video and recipe card. For now, here’s a quick rundown of how I pulled this delicious Red Beans and Rice dish together. 

  • Prep the veggies and meat. I finely diced the onions, celery, pepper, and Andouille Sausage. This creates a delicious, hearty base for the Red Beans and Rice. If using, this is the point where you’d dice your ham hocks, ensuring any bones are removed. 
  • Start cooking. I placed the Andouille into a large aluminum pan, then set my 15-quart McWare pot over the burner. I drizzled olive oil into the pan, and once it was hot, added my sausage, sauteeing until brown. 
  • Add veggies. Next, I added the ham and used a paper towel to sop up the excess grease. I added the veggies to the pot and sauteed them until they were soft and translucent. Watch the video to learn how to make this dish your own. 
  • Season it up. I added a good dash of Heath Riles BBQ Garlic Jalapeńo Rub and Heath Riles BBQ Cajun Creole Garlic Butter Rub. Next, I added ½ cup of chicken broth, which helped deglaze the pan. Then, I let the veggies sweat in for a few minutes before adding the minced garlic. 
  • Add beans. Once the veggies were soft, I poured in the rest of one carton of chicken broth and let it come to a boil. Then, I added the red beans, covering them with another carton of broth and another dash of Heath Riles BBQ Garlic Jalapeńo Rub and Heath Riles BBQ Cajun Creole Garlic Butter Rub, along with the bay leaves. 
  • Let it simmer. I put the lid on the pot, turned the burner to low, and let the beans and veggies simmer for 45 minutes. When simmering red beans, you tend to lose a lot of liquid, so I added another carton of chicken broth. When the red beans were tender, I removed the bay leaves and mashed the beans with a potato masher. This thickens the dish, giving it a creamy texture. 
  • Assemble the beans and rice. I let the red beans simmer for a few more minutes, then took them off the heat. My beans had a total cook time of about 3 hours. To assemble my plate, I laid down a good scoop of white rice, followed by a hefty serving of Red Beans. The only thing left to do was dig in! 

The Results

The Red Beans and Rice had the perfect balance of creaminess, spice, and down-home Louisiana flavor. This meal was filling yet simple. I know it’ll be one of your family’s favorite dishes!

Storing Leftover Red Beans and Rice

You can store leftover Red Beans and Rice in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 5 months. 

Equipment and Tools

15-quart McWare pot, ThermoWorks Hi-Temp Silicone Spatula.

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