Quicker (and Lighter) Red Beans and Rice

March 5, 2009 · 18 comments

in beans and legumes,dairy-free,rice and grains

As a food blogger, I get a lot of great comments and emails and I also get a few more interesting ones. So before I get an email telling me I’m the Antichrist for using canned beans, tomato paste or chicken sausage in this dish, I will preface this post by saying that this recipe may not necessarily be 100% authentic.  Thankfully, it’s 100% tasty.

See, it kind of starts when my “holy trinity” is really a “holy quintiply” (?) because of the use of frozen stoplight peppers rather than a green pepper.  And then I used canned beans and chicken andouille sausage.  Oh, the horror!  Actually, now that I think of it, this meal would fit perfectly in the Cooking with Trader Joe’s cookbook, since all the ingredients are from there.

At any rate,  there are two things you already know (or should know) about me: I like quick meals (especially one pot meals!) and my metabolism has waged a war against me, so I need to eat healthy 98% of the time (and that’s just to maintain my weight and complain all the time about how I eat healthy and exercise but don’t lose weight).

This is the first time I’ve used chicken andouille sausage, and it was very tasty. I admit, a few years back I was skeptical about substitutions like this.  To this day, I still won’t use ground turkey in place of ground beef.  But, I’m a convert in other regards – and so is my husband. I have found some really delicious chicken sausage that is a healthy alternative to your typical pork sausage, and now I don’t even think about buying the pork variety most of the time.  My husband commented a couple times about how much he enjoyed this, and how he’s looking forward to the leftovers for lunch.

Red Beans and Rice with Andouille

Serves 4
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1/2 Tbsp. canola oil
1 small onion, diced
2 ribs celery, sliced
1/2 cup diced bell pepper(s)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. creole seasoning, divided
4 links (about 12 ounces) andouille chicken sausage (or pork andouille, of course), sliced
1 heaping Tbsp. tomato paste
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley
2 bay leaves
1 cup rice (and yes, I use brown)
2 cups chicken broth (or water)
1 can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

Heat the canola oil in a large skillet/saute pan (something that has a lid) over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, bell pepper, garlic and 1/2 Tbsp. of the Creole seasoning. Saute until vegetables are tender.

Add the andouille and brown. Stir in the tomato paste, parsley, bay leaves and rice and cook for about a minute.  Add the chicken broth, being sure to scrape up all the browned bits, the remaining 1/2 Tbsp. creole seasoning, and the beans. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and cook until rice is done. Remove from heat and let stand for a few minutes (with the lid still on). Fluff with a fork and serve.

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