Louisiana Red Beans and Rice Recipe

Stove Top – Slow Cooker – Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Instructions

Red beans and Rice is Louisiana’s comfort food.  We are featuring an authentic recipe shared by my daughter’s co-worker, Mary Morgan, who grew up in Louisiana.

It is traditional to cook the beans on low heat all day with ham hock and Andouille sausage to add a nice spicy and flavorful taste to the beans.   A favorite way to serve the beans is over a plate of hot rice.   Do not forget to add a few slaps of hot sauce – but not too much!   Per Mary, “It is a little known Louisiana fact, we like flavor – not heat!”

Check out more delicious Cajun/Creole recipes:  Jambalaya and Gumbo – plus lot more favorite recipes.

 

Red Beans and Rice

 

History of Red Beans and Rice:

In New Orleans, Red Beans and Rice is a treasured Monday tradition, where the aroma of red beans could be smelled drifting through the neighborhoods.  Every household has their own secret list of ingredients and method for cooking the beans.

Beans and rice has always been known to be inexpensive and high on nutritional content.  Latin American countries and Native Americans used beans and rice as a staple long before the European settlers arrived in America.

Red Beans and Rice finds its origins from New Orleans Creole kitchens back in the 1700 and 1800’s.  The flavors of Creole cooking derive from several cultures combining French, Spanish, African, and Caribbean cuisines.  An ancient Haitian recipe “Riz et Pois Rouges” which means Rice and Red Beans contains the same ingredients still found in many Creole cookbooks today.

In New Orleans, Mondays was traditionally known as wash day.  Creole mothers would use the left over ham bone from Sunday night’s supper to cook with the beans to add flavor.  The beans could be left on the stove to simmer unattended for several hours while they tended to the day long task of washing the clothes by hand and hanging them out to dry.  Served with rice, this provided a nutritional meal for growing children and hard working adults.  Many colleges and convents in New Orleans would also serve red beans and rice several times a week to the children and young adults to help them grow into strong men and women.  Even though laundry no longer has to be washed by hand, the Monday tradition continues in New Orleans households.  Many local restaurants will offer Red Beans and Rice as the Monday special.  Red beans and rice is so iconic of New Orleans that the great Jazz musician, Louis Armstrong, would sign his letters as “Red Beans and Rice-ly Yours”

1901 – Early published recipe from Picayune’s Creole Cookbook features seven different red bean recipes and claims, “The beautiful color and excellent flavor of the Red Bean has won for it a place among the most highly esteemed Legumes.”

 

References:
Inside Northside – Red Beans and Rice:  Our Treasured Monday Tradition” by Judy Williamson Blasing, Sept/Oct 2010.
National Geographic – News Watch Red Beans and Rice:  A Monday Tradition” by Carolyn Gerdes or NY Young Explorers, July 2, 2012.

 

Louisiana Red Beans and Rice Recipe:

Louisiana Red Beans and Rice Recipe

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

Yield: serves many

Slow Cooker Cooking Times: High Heat - 4 to 5 hours, Low Heat - 8 to 10 hours

Electric Pressure Cooker Time: 1 hour and 10 minutes

Ingredients:

1 pound dried red beans, soaked overnight in water*
2 (32-ounce) containers of chicken broth**
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound Andouille sausage, sliced against the diagonal into rounds
1 medium onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded, and chopped
1/2 cup chopped celery
6 to 8 cloves garlic, minced
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 teaspoons Creole Seasoning
7 to 8 fresh basil leaves, chopped
1 ham hock***
Salt and pepper to taste
Hot cooked rice****


* Can substitute 4 to 5 (15-ounce) cans red beans, drained of liquid instead of soaking dried beans.

Red Beans and Rice** Check out Chicken Stock - Basic Chicken Stock to learn how easy it is to make your own homemade chicken stock.

*** A ham hock is the lower portion of a hog's hind leg, including meat, bone, tissue, fat, etc.  It is usually cut into 2 to 3-inch lengths and cured or smoked (or both).  Can substitute pork neck, ham bone, or finely chopped pork jowls.

**** Learn how to make perfect Fluffy White Rice.


Garnishment:

Fresh basil or green onion, chopped
Tabasco or Louisiana Hot Sauce

 

Instructions:

Soaking Dried Beans:  

Soaking beans allows the dried beans to absorb water, which begins to dissolve the starches that cause intestinal discomfort.  While beans are soaking they are also double to tripling in their size.  You can cook beans without soaking, but it takes longer, and some people think the beans taste better when soaked.

Soak most beans in three times their volume of cold water for six hours before cooking.  Dried beans are often soaked too long.  Most recipes say overnight.  The best way is to put them in cold water; bring them gently to a boil and then with saucepan off the heat, allow them to remain in the water for 1 to 2 hours only.  If soaked too long, they may ferment, which affects their flavor and makes them difficult to digest.

To help in the digestion of beans, always discard the water in which they were soaked.

Do not add salt or acidic ingredients, like vinegar, tomatoes or tomato juice, as this will slow the cooking process.  Instead, add these ingredients when the beans are just tender.

Speed soaking method for dried beans:  Rinse and sort beans and place into a large pot covering with 1-inch of water.  Over high heat, bring beans to a boil and let continue to boil 5 minutes, uncovered.  Turn off heat and cover beans with lid and let soak for 1 hour.  Drain liquid from beans and set aside pot of beans until ready to use.

 

Stove top Preparation:

Place the dried beans into a large pot or Dutch oven.  Soak the beans overnight in warm water.  This will help to soften them.  In the morning drain off the water and pour in enough chicken broth until the bean mixture is covered by about 1-inch of water.  Note: If you don’t have time to soak beans overnight see instructions for Speed Soaking Method.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, pour in enough olive oil to coat bottom of the pan.  Add the Andouille sausage slices and cook until browned around the edges.  Remove the sausage with a slotted spoon and place in the pot with the beans.  Using the sausage drippings in the skillet, add the onion, bell pepper, celery, and garlic and saute approximately 5 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.  Add the bay leaves, thyme, pepper, Creole Seasoning, and basil leaves to the skillet; stir and saute together for a few minutes to allow the flavors to meld.

Add vegetable mixture and ham hock to the pot of beans and sausage, stirring to combine.  Place the pot of beans on large stove burner over medium-high heat. Bring just to a boil, then reduce heat to medium low, cover with lid, and let simmer for 2 1/2 to 3 hours or until beans are soft and tender.

When ready to serve, take 1 to 2 cups of beans and add to a blender; cover with lid and blend until a smooth puree texture.  Stir bean puree back into pot of beans and cook until heated through.  As an alternative, if you do not have a blender, use a wooden spoon to smash 1/4 of the bean mixture against the side of the pot and stir back into beans.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Serve beans and sausage over plate of hot cooked rice and garnish the top with a little fresh basil.   Add Tabasco sauce to taste and enjoy!

Slow Cooker Preparation:

Place the dried beans into a large pot.  Soak the beans overnight in warm water.  This will help to soften them.  Note: If you do not have time to soak beans overnight see instructions for Speed soaking method.

Pre-heat slow cooker

Drain off the water that beans were soaking in overnight.  Place the beans in the slow cooker and pour in enough chicken broth till the bean mixture is covered by about 1 inch.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, pour in enough olive oil to coat bottom of the pan.  Add the Andouille sausage slices and cook until browned around the edges.  Remove the sausage with a slotted spoon and place in slow cooker with beans.  Using the sausage drippings in the skillet, add the onion, bell pepper, celery, and garlic; saute approximately 5 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.  Remove from heat and add the vegetable mixture to the slow cooker.

Add the ham hock, bay leaves, thyme, pepper, Creole Seasoning and basil leaves to the slow cooker and stir to combine with beans and sausage.  Cover with lid and cook on low heat for 8 to 10 hours or high heat for 4 to 5 hours until beans are tender.

When ready to serve, take 1 to 2 cups of beans and add to a blender.  Cover with lid and blend until a smooth puree texture.  Add bean puree back into slow cooker and stir to combine with bean mixture.  Cook until heated through.  As an alternative, if you do not have a blender, use a wooden spoon to smash 1/4 of the bean mixture against the side of the pot and stir back into beans.  Add Salt and pepper to taste.

Serve beans and sausage over plate of hot cooked rice and garnish the top with a little fresh basil.  Add Tabasco sauce to taste and enjoy!

 

Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Instructions: 

Instant PotThese instructions are using dried beans that have not been pre-soaked. If you prefer to soak the beans overnight (or see instructions for speed soak method) see the notes below for Alternative Quick Pressue Cooking Method.  

Select the Saute button, and High heat setting. Wait until the settings show a "Hot" status. Add olive oil to coat bottom of the inner pot.  Next add the Andouille sausage slices and cook for 5-7 minutes until browned around the edges.  Remove the sausage with a slotted spoon and set aside.  Keep the sausage drippings in the inner pot, add the onion, bell pepper, celery; saute 3 to 4 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.  Then add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds until aromatic.  Press the Keep Warm/Cancel button to turn off.

Place the dried beans in the inner pot with the vegetable mixture and pour in enough chicken stock till the bean mixture is covered by about 1 inch.  Add the ham hock, bay leaves, thyme, pepper, Creole Seasoning and basil leaves to the inner pot and stir to combine with beans.  

Note: Make sure pot is no more than 1/2 full.  You may have to adjust amount of beans and liquid depending on the size of your pressure cooker pot. 

Place the lid on the Instant Pot and close to seal.  Make sure the pressure valve is also closed.  Select the Manual button and High Pressure.  Set the cooking time for 30 minutes and allow the pressure to natural release (about 15-20 minutes) until the pin is dropped and fully depressurized before opening the lid.

Open the lid and stir in the andouille sausage.  Place the lid back on the Instant Pot and close to seal.  Make sure the pressure valve is also closed.  Select the Manual button and High Pressure.  Set the cooking time for 15 minutes. When the cooking time is completed, quick release the pressure valve.

Alternative Quick Pressure Cooking Method:  To use with pre-soaked or speed soaked beans only.

After browning the sausage and sauteing the vegetables, dump all ingredients into the Instant Pot.  Place the lid on the Instant Pot and close to seal.  Make sure the pressure valve is also closed. Select the Manual button and High Pressure.  Set the cooking time to 20 minutes. When the cooking time is completed, allow the pressure to natural release (about 15 to 20 minutes) until the pin is dropped and fully depressurized before opening the lid.

When ready to serve, take 1 to 2 cups of beans and add to a blender.  Cover with lid and blend until a smooth puree texture.  Add bean puree back into Instant Pot and stir to combine with bean mixture until heated through.  As an alternative, if you do not have a blender, use a wooden spoon to smash 1/4 of the bean mixture against the side of the pot and stir back into beans.  Add Salt and pepper to taste.

Serve beans and sausage over plate of hot cooked rice and garnish the top with a little fresh basil.  Add Tabasco sauce to taste and enjoy!

 

https://whatscookingamerica.net/Pasta_Rice_Main/Louisiana-RedBeans-Rice.htm

This is the type of pressure cooker that I prefer to use in my cooking:  I get readers asking which electric pressure cooker brand I prefer to use for cooking.  I personally use the Instant Pot Multi-Use Pressure Cooker.  I love having 7 cooking functions in one space saving appliance – Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Saute Pan, Steamer, Yogurt Maker and Warmer.

Learn more tips on How to Use an Instant Pot Pressure Cooker.

Red Beans and Rice

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Comments and Reviews

5 Responses to “Louisiana Red Beans and Rice Recipe”

  1. James

    This recipe looks delicious! Since I don’t eat pork, what would be a good substitute for the ham hock?

    Reply
  2. Melanie Esqueda

    It is worth noting in the recipe when you soak the beans overnight, you DON’T need 2 quarts of chicken stock in the instant pot. There should be a recipe adjustment. I used about a quart and a half (enough to cover) and it was still about 2 cups too much, maybe more? But I’m new to the instant pot so not super comfortable with making recipe adjustments on my own. That being said, it was delicious in flavor and the beans were cooked perfectly, other than being more of a soup. Thank you!

    Reply
    • Whats Cooking America

      Hi, Melanie – Thanks for your comments, in the Instant Pot instructions it is noted that the dried beans do not need to be soaked overnight. Also, the instructions say to only add enough broth to the Instant Pot so the beans are covered by 1 inch of liquid and to not fill the pot more than 1/2 full since the beans need room to expand. The 2 quarts are listed on the ingredients list to use for all cooking methods, you just need to adjust the broth according to the instructions for the cooking method provided. For the consistency, the instructions provided advised to take out a couple cups of the cooked beans to puree in the blender or mash with a wooden spoon, then stir back into the bean mixture for a thick and creamy consistency.

      Reply

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