Slow Cooker Red Beans and Rice

Slow Cooker Red Beans and Rice

This slow cooker version of New Orleans-style red beans requires about 20 minutes to toss together in the morning and can be ready to eat when you walk in the door after work. Creamy and comforting, it is traditionally flavored with a leftover pork bone, so if you happen to have one, feel free to throw that in instead of a ham hock. And if you have a favorite Cajun or Creole spice mixture on hand, use 1 heaping tablespoon of it in place of the sage, cayenne, garlic, onion and paprika powders, and taste before adding any salt, as seasoning blends contain a varying amount of sodium. Adding hot sauce at the end is key: The best kind to use is a vinegary, cayenne-based, Louisiana-style sauce, like Crystal, Louisiana brand or Tabasco. (Here is a vegan version of this recipe.)
  • Total:
  • Serves: 6 persons



  1. Step 1

    Heat the oil in a large (12-inch) skillet over medium. Add the onion, season with salt, and cook, stirring, until the onion is limp and translucent, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the celery and bell pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, 5 to 8 minutes. Add the chopped garlic, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, cayenne and sage (if using); grind in a generous amount of black pepper and add 3/4 teaspoon salt. Stir well to combine all the ingredients, then remove from the heat and scrape the mixture into a 6- to 8-quart slow cooker.
  2. Step 2

    Add the beans, bay leaves, thyme, sausage, ham hock and 6 cups water. Cook on high until the beans are very tender and creamy, about 7 hours.
  3. Step 3

    Before serving, add salt or cayenne to taste. Using a fork or the back of a spoon, mash some of the beans against the side of the slow cooker to make the mixture slightly creamy. (It will continue to thicken as it sits.) Discard the bay leaves and thyme sprigs; you can pick the meat off the ham hock if you like. Top the beans with hot cooked rice and scallions; serve with hot sauce.