Melissa Clark's Instant Pot Cajun Red Beans & Rice

October 13, 2018

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: Reprinted from Comfort in an Instant. Copyright © 2018 by Melissa Clark. Photographs copyright © 2018 by Christopher Testani. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.Food52

Serves: 6 to 8


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound andouille sausage, sliced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, diced (leaves reserved for garnish)
  • 5 fat garlic cloves, sliced, plus 1 clove, finely grated or minced
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more if needed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 pound dried kidney beans, soaked in water for at least 6 hours or overnight and drained
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • Cooked white rice, for serving
  • Thinly sliced scallions, for serving
  • Hot sauce, for serving
In This Recipe


  1. Using the sauté function, heat the oil in the pressure cooker pot. Stir in the sausage and cook until well browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the sausage to a plate.
  2. Stir in the onion, bell peppers, celery, sliced garlic, 1 teaspoon of the salt, the sage, black pepper, and cayenne. Cook until the vegetables are soft and just starting to brown, about 7 minutes. Stir in the bay leaves, thyme, beans, 31/2 cups water, and remaining 1 ¼ teaspoons salt.
  3. Lock the lid into place and cook on high pressure for 15 minutes. Let the pressure release naturally.
  4. Remove the thyme sprigs and bay leaves. Use a slotted spoon to remove two thirds of the beans, and set them aside. With an immersion or regular blender, puree the remaining beans in the pot to thicken the mixture.
  5. Turn on the sauté function. Stir in the sausage and the reserved beans, bring the entire mixture to a simmer, and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the mixture has thickened to your liking.
  6. Taste and add more salt if needed and season with lemon juice to taste. Serve the beans and sausage over rice, topped with scallions, chopped celery leaves, and hot sauce.

More Great Recipes:
Cajun/Creole|Bean|Rice|Sausage|Instant Pot|Pressure Cook|Weeknight Cooking|Dinner

Reviews (5) Questions (0)

5 Reviews

The R. January 23, 2019
What a great take on red beans and rice. I loved this recipe and I can't wait to make it again. That being said, I think some of the proportions seemed off.

1. I think I needed two pounds of sausage. One left me with just a few pieces for three or four people.
2. I'm not sure about adding three and half cups of water to the pressure cooker. I had so much sauce at the end that I ended up needed to put it in a large hot skillet and reduce it for another 20 minutes. I think that I would reduce the water to 1.5 or 2 cups.
3. I used a 25 ounce can of kidney beans and I think I needed more. Next time I would add two cans.
Robyn L. January 27, 2019
It’s too much water if you're using canned beans! This recipe is for dried beans so if you’re substituting cooked beans then need to decrease water.
Smaug October 22, 2018
RB&R is basically a ham dish. You can, of course, make a perfectly good dish with just the sausage butit's really outside the tradition.
Jennifer B. October 26, 2018
Not sure what part of the country you're in, but red beans and rice is most definitely made with sausage in Texas.
Smaug October 26, 2018
Sausage may be used in Louisiana, too, but the foundation of the dish-a traditional Monday supper- is the leftovers from Sunday's ham- particularly the marrow bone, which provides the sort of texture that runs throughout Cajun cooking. I often make a version at home with just Andouille sausages, but I don't tell people it's Cajun Red Beans and Rice.