Any time someone asks the question, 'What exactly is soul food?' the answer should always be 'a comforting bowl of red beans and rice.' Just sit them down, give them a spoon, and when they finish, ask them if they understand. They will.

Chef John
Advertisement

Ingredients

8
Original recipe yields 8 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Place beans in a large container and cover with several inches of cool water; let stand 8 hours to overnight. Drain and rinse.

    Advertisement
  • Heat vegetable oil in a large pot over medium heat. Cook and stir sausage in hot oil until oils slightly release from sausage and edges brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir onion, celery, and poblano pepper into sausage; cook and stir until vegetables soften and start to turn translucent, 5 to 10 minutes. Stir garlic into sausage mixture; cook and stir until fragrant, about 1 minute.

  • Stir red beans, chicken broth, ham hock, bay leaves, black pepper, thyme, cayenne pepper, and hot sauce into the sausage mixture; bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, for 1 1/2 hours. Add salt and continue simmering until beans are soft, meat is tender, and desired consistency is reached, 1 1/2 to 2 hours more. Season with salt.

  • Spoon rice into bowls, ladle red beans mixture over rice, and top with green onion.

Cook's Note:

You can substitute green bell peppers for the poblano pepper, if desired. You can use water in place of chicken broth, if desired.

Partner Tip

Reynolds® Aluminum foil can be used to keep food moist, cook it evenly, and make clean-up easier.

Nutrition Facts

542 calories; 20.5 g total fat; 46 mg cholesterol; 1384 mg sodium. 62.9 g carbohydrates; 25.9 g protein; Full Nutrition

Reviews (139)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
11/26/2015
Like Chef John, I substitute chicken broth for some of the water to give the dish a better flavor. This is what made me want to try his recipe over others. I also like that in his recipe, he doesn't skimp on the Louisiana andouille (pronounced an-du-ae - the ll's are silent) sausage. It really makes the right smokey-hot flavor for this dish. Good andouille tends to be expensive, and an economy version will just be called "hot smoked sausage" links such as Bar-S or Morell. (Do not use polish Kielbasa - totally wrong flavor.) Also, there is a difference between "red beans" and "kidney beans". It is the actual name for a particular type of bean - not just a color. Kidney beans may also be red, but they have a different flavor than "red beans". Here on the west coast, I can always find dried red beans at Safeway, and Walmart sells canned red beans. I serve with greens ("the recipe here for "Kickin Collard Greens is my favorite), some cornbread, and sweet tea. Love your recipe for this classic dish, Chef John! 5 STARS! Read More
(50)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
03/14/2020
I made this vegetarian and it did not come out as well as I had hoped. Read More
183 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 158
  • 4 star values: 21
  • 3 star values: 3
  • 2 star values: 1
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
11/26/2015
Like Chef John, I substitute chicken broth for some of the water to give the dish a better flavor. This is what made me want to try his recipe over others. I also like that in his recipe, he doesn't skimp on the Louisiana andouille (pronounced an-du-ae - the ll's are silent) sausage. It really makes the right smokey-hot flavor for this dish. Good andouille tends to be expensive, and an economy version will just be called "hot smoked sausage" links such as Bar-S or Morell. (Do not use polish Kielbasa - totally wrong flavor.) Also, there is a difference between "red beans" and "kidney beans". It is the actual name for a particular type of bean - not just a color. Kidney beans may also be red, but they have a different flavor than "red beans". Here on the west coast, I can always find dried red beans at Safeway, and Walmart sells canned red beans. I serve with greens ("the recipe here for "Kickin Collard Greens is my favorite), some cornbread, and sweet tea. Love your recipe for this classic dish, Chef John! 5 STARS! Read More
(50)
Rating: 5 stars
11/26/2015
Like Chef John, I substitute chicken broth for some of the water to give the dish a better flavor. This is what made me want to try his recipe over others. I also like that in his recipe, he doesn't skimp on the Louisiana andouille (pronounced an-du-ae - the ll's are silent) sausage. It really makes the right smokey-hot flavor for this dish. Good andouille tends to be expensive, and an economy version will just be called "hot smoked sausage" links such as Bar-S or Morell. (Do not use polish Kielbasa - totally wrong flavor.) Also, there is a difference between "red beans" and "kidney beans". It is the actual name for a particular type of bean - not just a color. Kidney beans may also be red, but they have a different flavor than "red beans". Here on the west coast, I can always find dried red beans at Safeway, and Walmart sells canned red beans. I serve with greens ("the recipe here for "Kickin Collard Greens is my favorite), some cornbread, and sweet tea. Love your recipe for this classic dish, Chef John! 5 STARS! Read More
(50)
Rating: 5 stars
01/03/2016
My first time EVER making red beans and rice, and this was the recipe I chose. I served it with homemade corn bread (also in AR - search for Grandma's Cornbread) How mine differed: 1. Used a ham shank instead of a hock. 2. I forgot bay leaves. 3. Skipped the hot sauce. 4. Used pasillo peppers. 5. Used 14oz of regular old Johnsonville sausage w/pork, beef, turkey, and whatever else is in it. THE VERDICT! Pros: 1. I hate spicy food (and also have a toddler) so my milder version was perfect for us. 2. My house smelled like Louisiana all day. 3. Extremely filling! 4. Huge amount of food and very cheap ingredients! 5. Leftovers! This recipe will feed my family of 2 and a toddler for days! Cons: 1. It took about 4 hours total, so my gas stove was on most of the day and someone had to stay home to man the kitchen. Would have preferred to use a slow cooker, but it gave me a solid excuse to watch football all day. (Also, the toddler can reach those knobs. Luckily, she's an obedient one with no early signs of pyromania.) 2. Can't give the cooked ham bone to my dog, so she was disappointed about that. Overall, it's absolutely delicious. If you have several hours to spare and don't want to cook again for a week (or if you need to feed 10 lumberjacks), this is the recipe for you! Read More
(35)
Advertisement
Rating: 5 stars
12/31/2015
I just made this recipe, and it was delicious!! All of the ingredients came together nicely. At first, I thought I had too much liquid, but I let it cook down a bit without the lid. I put the lid back on and just let it simmer. It began to thicken and became perfection. I can't wait to make this for others...maybe my Superbowl party. I did not use any hot sauce. I'm not a spicy person. Even without it, my husband says it has a nice kick to it. I also added two chicken bouillon cubes for added flavor, so I actually added very little table salt. Chef John has made me look good, once again!! It did not explicitly tell you when to add the beans...add it with the broth. Read More
(22)
Rating: 5 stars
10/09/2018
Amazing. Comfort soul food at its finest. I’ve made this several times and it always turns out fantastic! After sautéing the sausage and veggies, I dump the whole thing in my crockpot, cook on low overnight, 8-10 hours. Winner. The house smells maddeningly delicious in the morning, and I can’t wait to spoon it over rice for dinner! Read More
(18)
Rating: 5 stars
08/13/2016
Delicious. Made this as written when hubby was out of town. The (grown) kids and I loved it. Made it again when hubby was back, but since he doesn't eat pork I substituted chicken andouille sausage and smoked turkey leg for the pork meats. Still very good. Read More
(10)
Advertisement
Rating: 5 stars
02/11/2017
I'm from New Orleans and really don't use a recipe when I make red beans. But since I love Chef John, I wanted to try his way. Outstandingly delicious! Read More
(9)
Rating: 5 stars
11/22/2018
This turned out so well! I made it in the crockpot - I soaked the beans overnight, drained and rinsed in the morning, chopped and sautéed the other ingredients according to instructions, added them to the crockpot, then let it simmer on low all day and then cooked on high for the last hour or so just to make sure the beans were cooked all the way. I served it with brown rice. Thanks Chef John for such an amazing recipe! I’m glad for another crockpot meal. I’ll be making this again for sure. Read More
(6)
Rating: 5 stars
01/14/2019
oh my delicious! everyone in our family (8 total) loved this dish. We had leftovers but they were gone in 3 days. (That doesn't usually happen with leftovers.) I substituted canned red beans rather than soaking beans overnight. I rinsed them first. Worked great. Once all the ingredients were added to my pot, I boiled them for about 75-80 minute. (A lot less than the original recipe calls for.) We all felt the flavors had cooked well together in that short amount of time. About 1/2 way through the cooking time, I mashed the beans down inside the pot. For whatever reason, that really made a nice difference in taste and texture. Loved it! No doubt I'll be cooking this one up again and soon. Read More
(6)
Rating: 5 stars
01/23/2017
Excellent! I used a pound of chorizo sausage soaked some dried kidney beans left out the poblano pepper salt & hot sauce used chicken broth in place of water and didn't have a ham hock. Smelled delicious cooking all day and served up over brown rice was a great presentation. The flavor had a nice spice that wasn't overwhelming. Delicious! Read More
(5)
Rating: 3 stars
03/14/2020
I made this vegetarian and it did not come out as well as I had hoped. Read More