There is no denying that life is about to get seriously nuts, especially over the next 6 months, so I’ve been on the hunt for all the simple, quick-fix recipes I can get my hands on.
I’m pumped that this time around we were able to stock the freezer with a ton of easy meals to reheat and eat (I was this close to digging into the Tomato and Turkey Soup last week but somehow found a way to restrain myself – likely I had Ben pick up nachos from Club Car for dinner. On a related note, I really hope I don’t crave nachos as much on the other side of this pregnancy as I have the last 9 months because, nachos. They’re so good though!) I’m also getting pretty good at the whole sheet pan dinner thang but when it comes to seriously quick and seriously simple meals – one pot dinners have got it on lock!
Yep, we’re talking ONE pot to cook the entire meal which means there’s ONE pot to clean at the end. Couldn’t be simpler. That said, One Pot Red Beans and Rice is about to go into heavy rotation at my house!
If you’ve been reading IGE for any length of time than you know that Ben and I are obsessed with the south. From New Orleans, to Savannah, and Charleston, we cannot get enough of the culture and food, and I love to recreate the dishes we’ve had on our travels in my Iowa kitchen. Eating Smoked Sausage and Chicken Gumbo, Smoked Cheddar Shrimp and Grits Bites, Gumbo Fried Rice, Jambalaya Soup, and Mini Muffuletta Meatloaves takes us back to a moment in time that we will never forget (even after several Abitas.)
We’ve been lucky enough to eat Red Beans and Rice at New Orlean’s Desire Oyster Bar and Mother’s Restaurant, and the memories are seared into my brain. Traditionally the dish is slow cooked in a saucy, savory gravy then served over rice but I’ve adapted it to cook in under 30 minutes and in just one pot. I KNOW, southerners, I know. Bear with me though because this version is so, so simple and although it’s nontraditional, it’s incredibly delicious. Plus half the fun is making it your own. I promise you’ll love it!!!
Not only is this one pot meal a super quick fix, but it’s extremely affordable and well balanced, too. We’re talking rice, beans, vegetables, and protein. Hot sauce optional!
Start by draining a 15oz can red beans. Red beans are different than kidney beans, as they come pre-seasoned and are very creamy (one of the reasons I can’t stand kidney beans is because they’re so chalky, right?) Anyway, I like to drain off the packing liquid but keep some of the flavor by not rinsing them off as you’d do with a can of kidney beans or black beans, for instance.
While the beans are draining, add 1 small green bell pepper, 2 stalks celery, and 1 shallot or 1/2 small onion that have been finely chopped to a 6-quart Dutch Oven, or pot with high sides, over medium heat with 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil. Season with Cajun seasoning (I like Emeril’s Essence,) then place a lid on top and saute until the vegetables are nearly tender, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.
Turn the heat up to medium-high then add 12oz sliced gluten-free andouille or kielbasa sausage and saute until the sausage begins to brown and the vegetables are completely tender, another 5 minutes. Add 3 cloves minced garlic then saute for 30 more seconds.
Note: andouille sausage is spicy so if you are wanting to serve this dish to the spice-averse, or kids, I recommend you stick with kielbasa which is a mild sausage.
Next add 1-1/2 cups long grain white rice (I do not recommend using brown rice,) 2-1/3 cups gluten-free chicken broth, the drained beans, and more Cajun seasoning then turn the heat up to high and bring the liquid to a simmer.
Place a lid on top then turn the heat down to medium-low (no higher – the liquid should barely be at a simmer!) and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat then let sit for 5 minutes before taking off the lid and fluffing with a fork.
Last step is to taste then add more Cajun seasoning if you like, then scoop into bowls and dig in!! I’d recommend serving this One Pot Red Beans and Rice with a side salad or gluten-free corn bread. CAN YOU SAY YUM? Yum! There, I took care of it for us. Enjoy, enjoy! ?
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One Pot Red Beans and Rice
One Pot Red Beans and Rice is an easy and affordable one pot dish that the entire family will love. Get a taste of the south in under 30 minutes!
- 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small green bell pepper, finely chopped
- 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
- 1 shallot or 1/2 small onion, finely chopped
- Cajun seasoning
- 12oz gluten-free Andouille or Kielbasa sausage, sliced (see note)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1-1/2 cups long grain white rice
- 15oz can gluten-free red beans, drained (I like Bush's)
- 2-1/3 cups gluten-free chicken broth
- Heat oil in a large, 6-quart Dutch oven or pot with high sides over medium heat. Add bell pepper, celery, and shallots, season with Cajun seasoning then saute with the lid on, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are nearly tender, 5 minutes. Turn heat up to medium-high then add sausage and continue sauting with the lid off until sausage is slightly browned and vegetables are tender, 5 minutes. Add garlic then saute until very fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Add rice, red beans, chicken broth, plus more Cajun seasoning then turn heat up to high to bring broth to a simmer. Place the lid back on top then turn heat down to medium-low (no higher!) and simmer for 10 minutes. Take the pot off the heat then let sit for 5 more minutes, covered, before removing the lid and fluffing with a fork. Taste then add more Cajun seasoning if desired and serve.
- I keep a batch of homemade Emeril's Essence on hand for Cajun seasoning.
- Andouille sausage is spicy so if you are serving this dish to kids or people who are sensitive to spice, use kielbasa instead.
This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.