T-Boy’s Red Beans & Rice

This is a traditional Monday food in New Orleans. Everyone has their own recipe for Red Beans & Rice, most of which probably change a little with each cooking. On a Monday the ladies of the house would put on a pot of red beans to cook all day while they tended to the laundry. This inexpensive dish also makes wonderful party food. Don’t forget the Tabasco or Bruce Louisiana’s Red Hot Sauce.


  • 1 quart water
  • 2 smoked ham hocks or shanks
  • 3 cups chopped onions
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 tsp each red, white and black pepper
  • 1 tsp each garlic and onion powder
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic, oregano and thyme
  • 1 tsp or more Tabasco sauce
  • 3 to 4 bay leaves
  • 1 pound Andouille of pork sausage cut in ¼” pieces
  • 3 cups diced ham (preferably Cure 81)
  • 1 pound kidney beans (soaked in hot water while you chop veggies)
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • Salt to taste


Step 1

In a 5 qt heavy pot add the water, ham hocks, onion, celery, bell pepper, peppers, garlic and onion powder, garlic, oregano, thyme, Tabasco, and bay leaves. Cover with cold water and bring to a boil. Cover pot and simmer for an hour until ham on hocks starts to fall off.

Step 2

Remove ham hocks from pot and pull ham from hocks when cool. Add ham and beans to pot. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and bring to a slow boil uncovered. Cook about 1 hour.

During cooking time you may need to add water to pot.

Step 3

Add the sausage. Cook ½ hour more; stirring the bottom of pot about every 15 minutes so not to let beans scorch.

If during cooking time beans stick to bottom of pan do not scrape pan. Change to another pot.

Step 4

Reduce heat to simmer. Cook about 30 minutes more or until beans are soft. When beans are cooked add (soft) butter and turn heat off and stir till butter melts. Add a little salt, let cool. Serve over rice.

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