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New Orleans Red Beans and Rice

A NOLA classic, done the classic way. This time without onions and garlic, but there are notes on how to add them in!
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Cajun, Creole, New Orleans
Keyword: Beans, Cajun, New Orleans, Rice
Servings: 10 servings


  • 1 pound dried red beans
  • 1 pound ham hock aka "seasoning meat"
  • 1 cup celery finely diced
  • 1 cup bell peppers finely diced
  • 2 quarts water
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 2 tsp cayenne
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp hot sauce Crystal, Louisiana, or Tabasco!
  • 1 pound cajun andouille sausage
  • 1 stick salted butter
  • Cooked rice, fresh parsley to serve
  • Crispy okra, optional


  • Cover your red beans in water and soak overnight – at least 8 hours, but up to 24.
  • Drain and rinse your beans. Set aside.
  • Brown the ham hock in a large dutch oven or pot on the stock on medium heat.
  • Add in the vegetables and saute until softened – 5-10 minutes.
  • Stir the beans, water, spices, bay leaves, Worcestershire, and hot sauce. Stir well. Bring to a boil and cover. Let it go for 20 minutes.
  • Reduce heat to low, stir, and cover again. Allow the beans to cook for 2-3 hours (the longer, the better!)
  • Once your beans are soft, take a potato masher and mash them all up. This will make them creamy and indicative of New Orleans style. We don’t need to see any individual beans hanging out!
  • Dice up 2/3 of your andouille and brown it in a separate cast iron pan. Stir that into the red beans. Slice the last 1/3 of the andouille into thick slices and brown them – these you’ll serve on top!
  • The crucial secret ingredient: stir in one whole stick of salted butter until it is melted. This is the absolute best.
  • Serve over rice with the thick andouille slices and fresh parsley and enjoy.