Ms. Clara’s New Orleans Red Beans and Rice

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Today Camila brings you an extra special $20 Tuesday recipe straight from New Orleans and just in time for Mardi Gras!

Having spent a lot of time living and working in New Orleans (or NOLA), I have a deep love for the city and its great culture and food.

We were also fortunate to meet some special people when living there, and Ms. Clara is one of them. Ms. Clara shared her authentic Red Beans and Rice recipe with me and taught me how to make them. Today in honor of Ms. Clara and Mardi Gras, we are sharing it with you! This recipe is delicious and a favorite for my family.

Ms. Clara

Cooking Tip: Very important to note here is that red beans are supposed to have a thicker liquid so if your water starts to run low just add any amount of water slowly, so it doesn’t create the consistency of a soup, these are very creamy beans and taste best like that!

This whole recipe can serve a family of four for just about $20! It’s one of my favorites and I hope you guys like it too.

Ms. Clara’s New Orleans Red Beans and Rice

Servings 4 quarts
Cost $20


  • 1 lb dried red beans (soaked overnight)
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 green pepper seeded and chopped
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 4 stalks of celery chopped
  • 3 quarts of water
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp Creole seasoning
  • 1 lb smoked turkey or smoked andouille sausage cut into bite-sized pieces (smoked sausage is cooked)
Rice (cook time 30 minutes)
  • 2 cup water
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 cup uncooked white rice
Garnish option
  • chopped parsley


  • Pick over red beans, place into a large bowl, and pour in enough water to cover by several inches. Soak red beans overnight.
  • In a large soup pot, add the oil, garlic, green pepper, onion, celery. Sauté for a few minutes.
  • Drain and rinse red beans, add them to the soup pot with the vegetables and cover with 3 quarts of water and cook over medium to low heat.
  • Season pot with salt, black pepper, and Creole seasoning.
  • Reduce heat to low and cook until beans are tender, about 4 hours.
  • When beans are tender add the smoked turkey or andouille sausage that has been cut into bite size pieces to the soup pot. Stir to combine and let the flavors come together over low heat for 15-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
For the rice:
  • Place 2 cups water and butter into a saucepan and bring to a boil.
  • Stir in 1 cup of uncooked white rice and bring back to a boil and reduce heat to medium-low. Cover the pan and slowly simmer until rice is tender and liquid has been absorbed, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from heat and keep covered for 5 minutes. Fluff rice with fork.
  • Serve red beans with cooked rice and optional chopped parsley as garnish.
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If you want more $20 Tuesday recipes you can check them out here! 

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Note: $20 is an approximate cost for this dish. The actual price of all ingredients may vary.

All photos by Lorianne DeVita


by Camila Alves McConaughey