New Orleans-Style Red Beans and Rice

Total Time:
4 hr 15 min
15 min
4 hr

8 servings

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 cup chopped onions
  • 1/2 cup chopped bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 pound boiled ham cut, into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 6 ounces smoked sausage, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch slices (1 cup)
  • 1 pound dried red beans, rinsed and sorted through, soaked overnight and drained
  • 3 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 8 to 10 cups water
  • Steamed rice

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Saute the onions, bell peppers, celery, salt, cayenne, black pepper and thyme for about 5 minutes. Add the bay leaves, ham and sausage and saute for 5 to 6 minutes. Add the beans, garlic, and enough water to cover the contents in the pot. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally for about 2 hours. Add more water if the mixture becomes dry and thick. Use a wooden spoon to mash about half of the mixture against the side pf the pot. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for about 1 1/2 hours, or until the mixture is creamy and the beans are soft. Add more water if it becomes too thick. The mixture should be soupy but not watery. Remove the bay leaves and serve with steamed white rice.

View All

Cooking Tips
More Recipes and Ideas
4.6 50
I think canned red beans, in this case is the better option. No one I know in New Orleans cook beans that look like bullets. We creoles like our beans creamy and super tender. Obviously, from the picture, there is NO creaminest and the beans are like mirliton, which Emeril concludes is an alligator pear, for whatever reason. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This is a great recipe! I used Turkey smoked sausage only no ham. It's very tasty and truly a keeper! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Very good recipe. Here's a little trick to cut down on cooking time: rinse beans in cold water, cover, bring to boil, then cut off heat and cover for one hour. In the meantime, prepare your onions, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, parsley. After beans have soaked, turn on fire again and bring to boil. Be sure to add a little olive oil - then all the rest of the ingredients including the pickle meat (See next paragraph. In my family Mom always used pickle meat (look it up sold at most any New Orleans grocery store. Sometimes she would use ham hocks but pickle meat was the favorite. Since Mom would serve fried pork chops or fried smoked sausage as a side to the red beans, the pickle meat would be just enough to flavor the beans. Some folks like their beans like this and prefer to cook the sausage, pork chop, fried chicken on the side. We always did. How about you? item not reviewed by moderator and published
Beans should be soaked overnight. Try and serve meatballs with marinara sauce with the red beans and rice. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I used chorizo, a Spanish sausage and a bit of Canadian bacon. I simmered these beans (small red pinto over low heat for hours. The chorizo gave the beans a spicy, meaty taste. This pot of beans has kept my tummy warm in cold Florida weather(40 degreesfor a couple of days. I even eat them cold when the sun comes out. Laisez les bon temps roulez...merci a mes amis Cajun! Next time I'll use boudin...La prochain fois item not reviewed by moderator and published
Excellent! A hit with my family. When ever I have time, I pre cook the beans in water and store them in the freezer. Then I use them in recipe, which cuts the recipe time by about 2 hours. Now that my son is older and eats it with us, I stopped using the cayenne pepper, and just add a bit of place pepper. The smoked sausages I use are hot enough (for my son and add spice to it. item not reviewed by moderator and published
SOOOO Yummy!! I followed some of the suggestions from reviewers and it came out great. First, I substituted a smoked ham hock for the ham, used canned beans, and used beer and water combo. It cooked in about 2 hours. I also added a little Louisana hot sauce, which gave it a nice kick. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This is one of my favorite recipes! I tend to change up the meat for different effects. Last time I made it, I used turkey "ham" and chicken sausage. I was quite pleased with the results and enjoyed the fact that I was able to reduce the sodium and fat and still have a tasty meal. The turkey ham was made by Jenny-O and held up very well in the dish. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This is a GREAT recipe! This was so easy to make and tasty with a few adjustments. I did not add salt, as the ham provided more than enough : I used fresh thyme in place of dried thyme, so I used triple the amount of fresh to compensate. I added 4 oz more smoked sausage and I added 10 oz andouille sausage which provided quite a spicy kick. The result was delicious and plentiful!! I highly recommend this recipe for game days or cold winter days. Love it and can't wait to make it again. Thanks Emeril! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I have family from New Orleans they will be the judge of this but I enjoyed it. item not reviewed by moderator and published
As someone who grew up in New Orleans I understand what you are saying, but this recipe is actually very good. And the creamier part comes from cooking them longer. Using canned beans would be like eating Taco Bell vs a good freshly made taco. Same thing but no comparison quality wise. item not reviewed by moderator and published

Not what you're looking for? Try:

New Orleans-Style Calas (Rice Beignets)