Red Beans & Rice (a la Nik)

What a perfect lazy day dinner this makes! I made this last night for the divas and I as we camped on the sofas and watched a marathon of 48 Hours Mystery (is it strange that my children like television news magazine programs?).

Red Beans & Rice (a la Nik)


3 cups of cooked kidney beans (I made my own but you could also use the equivalent amount of canned)
4 slices of bacon (the pork kind folks. The cheaper the better. You are using it for the fat)
1 small onion, finely diced
1/2 package low-fat turkey smoked sausage (or kielbasa), cut into rounds then halved
1 can tomatoes & chiles (whatever heat level you like)
3 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 boil-in-bag of whole grain brown rice
1 tsp Cajun seasoning blend (they sell it for a $1 at my grocery store, but it should have in it cumin, paprika, black pepper and chili powder)
Additional salt and pepper to taste

If you like spicy food:
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper


Put on a pot to boil the rice bag. When the water boils, plop the bag in there and let it cook.

Cook the bacon in a skillet to render the fat. Remove bacon and set aside (or, as I did, yell out “bacon” and watch how fast it goes. If you want to use it in the mixture…I suggest hiding it).

Toss in the sausage and let that crisp up a bit before adding the onions and garlic.

Once the onions are softened, add in the tomato paste, tomatoes & chiles and spices and mix thoroughly. Let it simmer a bit until the mixture gets reddish-brown. Add more water if the mixture is too thick. It should resemble a really nice pasta sauce. Like this.

Meanwhile, drain water from rice pot and transfer rice from bag into pot. Drain off your kidney beans (if using canned, rinse them in a collander) and combine with the rice.

Pour tomato/sausage mixture over the top and stir then simmer to warm through.

This makes a GINORMOUS pot of food (at least for our lil’ family). Now, a word on the rice. You are certainly welcome to make cauliflower rice as opposed to brown rice. Use your own best judgment. I used one boil-in bag (which yields about 2.5 c. cooked rice) and the rice was not the dominant thing in my bowl. I got mostly beans and sausage! But like I said, you do what YOU feel most comfortable doing!

Of course, the divas went all Popeye’s on me and made biscuits (I did not partake but ask me if I DID give them the stinkeye for their efforts).

We have plenty for left-overs today which is good because it’s raining buckets and I don’t feel like cooking!

<< Yesterday’s post: BF Weekly Round-up

Red Beans & Rice (a la Nik)
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Red Beans & Rice (a la Nik)
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  1. What????? You don't feel like cooking??? Is the sky falling???

    Just kidding, Nik! Glad to know that ALL moms need an easy night once in a while and not just me!

    This looks yummy! I will have to give it a try.

  2. mmmm that looks good! I love red bean and rice but I'll have to take a few beano's before eating that…LMBO

  3. i never heard of tomatoes in redbeans, but i am cajun, we dont cook like that but i would try it.

  4. Hi Ria,

    Isn't that the great thing about recipes though? I am African American and I know my version of spaghetti sauce is probably nothing like what an Italian born persion would make, but it's still very yummy! If you give it a try, let me know how it goes!

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