Slow-Cooker Red Beans and Rice


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Slow-Cooker Red Beans

© Paden Reich

I have two wonderful Louisiana girls in my life, my sister-in-law Stacy and my dear friend Faith Ford, and both are extraordinarily good cooks who make red beans and rice that has a similar effect on me. Seconds after the spoon goes in my mouth and the red beans and rice settle on my tongue, I have an almost involuntary reaction. My eyes shut, my brain tells my entire body that something incredible is happening, and I moan, “Oh my God, this is good.” The truth is, this is another one of those easy slow-cooker recipes—more assembly than cooking—that not only saves time but uses that time ever so generously in enabling the ham and the andouille sausage and the spices and the beans and the rice to all mingle and absorb the different flavors, producing that OMG effect. This is like gumbo, but easier. Typically, I will serve this to Tom and myself on Sundays as we watch football. Quite often, we will enjoy this as a meal in itself.


1. Combine the ham shank, red beans, andouille, celery, onion, bell pepper, chili powder, salt, cumin, garlic powder, cayenne, onion powder, paprika, and brown sugar in a 6-quart slow cooker. Add the chicken stock, and stir to combine. Cover and cook on HIGH until the beans are tender, 5 to 7 hours. Remove the ham shank; shred the meat, and return the meat to the slow cooker. Discard the bone. Serve the red bean mixture with the rice, and top the servings with the scallions.


1 (3/4-pound) smoked ham shank
1 pound dried red beans
1/2 pound andouille sausage, chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, depending on your spice level
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon light brown sugar
4 cups chicken stock
8 cups cooked long-grain white rice
4 scallions, chopped

serving size

8 to 10

Hands on time

15 Minutes

Total time

5 Hours and 15 Minutes


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