Smoked Turkey Red Beans, Spicy Sausage and Rice

It’s still winter where I live and this Smoked Turkey Red Beans and Rice is the perfect dish  to serve on cold days. It’s not a difficult dish and made easily in the slow cooker, but there are several stages of preparation, so it’s best to start a few days ahead of time. First, the smoked turkey parts are roasted in the oven along with onions, carrots and celery, then the pan is deglazed with wine, water added and slow cooked for eight hours. After stripping the meat and skimming fat, the resulting stock is cooled and chilled. Next day, the pre-soaked beans, vegetables and aromatics are combined with the smoked turkey stock, reserved meat, then slow-cooked for 6-8 hours. Lastly, some of the beans are pureed to thicken the stew which is then served over rice. I have made it probably four times in the last few months and it always get rave reviews. A big hunk of hot crusty cornbread completes this satisfying version of red beans and rice.

Smoky Turkey Stock

  • 2 packages smoked Turkey drumsticks or combo wings and drumstick
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 2 carrots, scrubbed and halved
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil for brushing
  • 1 cup  white wine or water
  • 7 cups water
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 10 black peppercorns
  1. Preheat oven to 400° F. Brush turkey drumsticks and vegetables with the olive oil. Place in a roasting pan. Roast for about 20 minutes until turkey parts and vegetables brown. Remove from the oven and place roasting pan over two burners. Deglaze pan with the wine or water. 
  2. Place turkey parts and vegetables in slow cooker. Add the 7 cups water, garlic cloves and black peppercorns. Cook on high heat for 4 hours or low for 8 hours. Remove turkey parts after 2 hours on high or 4 hours on low. Cool to touch, strip meat from bones and reserve. 
  3. When stock is done, strain, discard vegetables and reserve. Cool, then refrigerate for several hours or until cold. Before using in recipe, skim fat solids from surface. Makes about 8 cups stock. You will need about 4 cups for the red beans and rice.

Smoked Turkey Red Beans

  • 1 pound package dried red beans or pinto beans, soaked. I put my beans in a pot of enough cold water to allow the beans to triple when soaked. Bring this to a boil, remove from heat; cover and allow to soak 1-2 hours. Drain, discard soaking water.
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups onions, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, chopped
  • 1 medium green pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme 
  • smoked turkey stock
  • reserved turkey meat
  • 1 pound Andouille sausage, sliced 3/4-inch thick- JohnsonvilleRagin’ Cajun (very hot) or Aidell’s-just to name a few
  • 2-3 tablespoons Creole Seasoning-purchased or homemade (recipe below)
  1. Place the oil in a large saucepan. Over medium heat, sauté onions, celery and green pepper until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic after 4 minutes of sautéing. Place in slow cooker with the bay leaves, thyme, smoked turkey stock, pre-soaked beans, reserved turkey meat, spicy sausage and 2 tablespoons Creole seasoning. Cook on low heat for 6-8 hours. Check beans for tenderness after 4-5 hours. Add Creole seasoning, if desired, plus salt and pepper to taste.
  2.  If desired remove one cup of beans, puree and return to slow cooker. Serve smoked turkey red beans over rice. Garnish with thyme, thinly sliced green onions and sliced jalapeños, if desired. Serves 6-8.

My Creole Seasoning

2 1/2 tablespoons paprika

2 tablespoons salt

2 tablespoons garlic powder

1 tablesspoon ground black pepper

1 tablespoon dried minced onion

1/2 tablespoon cayenne

1/2 tablespoon ground chipotle powder

1 tablespoon dried oregano

1 tablespoon dried thyme

Combine all ingredients. Cover and use within 3 months.

Smoked Turkey Red Beans with Spicy Sausage
Pinto Beans

The two black and white photos above are my contribution to BWW #73 hosted this week by Zorra of Kochtopf. Black and White Wednesday was created by Susan of The Well-Seasoned Cook and is now managed by Cinzia of Cindy Star Blog. Rules and host line-up here.


Please do not use images or text without my permission. 


  1. zorra
    March 6, 2013 / 8:44 am

    A cosy meal that meets exactly my taste. Now I am hungry!

  2. Julia
    March 6, 2013 / 3:29 pm

    yum this looks delicious!! love your presentation and photos too!

  3. Simona
    March 8, 2013 / 6:12 am

    I love the photo of the beans! And even the one of the stew came out really elegant in black and white.

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