Category Archives: Beans

Smoked Sausage with Black Beans

After just having gotten over a cold a few weeks ago, I’m battling another one now!  So frustrating.  My poor red nose can’t handle being blown anymore! I’m thinking I should be good for another few years after these back to back colds.

My appetite is sadly lacking again at the moment, but I do want to quickly share a recipe today that I think you’ll enjoy 🙂

I love the combination of smoked sausage, beans, and rice together.  Red beans and rice is one of my favorite meals.  This recipe has similar ingredients but with a twist.  It has more of a Southwestern flare.

It’s easy to make, calls for just a few simple ingredients, and is delicious!  What more could you ask for? 🙂

I hope you give this a try, and until next time, Happy Cooking!

Smoked Sausage with Black Beans


  • 1/2 lb smoked sausage, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped bell pepper (I used a combo of red and orange)
  • 1 can stewed tomatoes
  •  1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp oregano
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed


In a large skillet, cook the sausage until it starts to brown.  Add in the onion, bell pepper, and garlic.  Cook until the vegetables have softened.  Add in all remaining ingredients.  Simmer for about 10-15 minutes, until heated through.  Serve over rice.


Filed under Beans, Pork, Stove-Top Meals

Black-Eyed Pea Salsa

Here’s a great recipe to make now that warm sunny days are finally arriving.  It’ll still be a while before all the snow melts away where I live, but at least the sun is shining brightly this morning.  And isn’t there just something so uplifting about a sunny day? 🙂

If you’ve never tried it before, black-eyed pea salsa may sound a little strange.  It really is delicious!  And this coming from a girl who really doesn’t care much for black-eyed peas unless they’re fresh, and this recipe calls for canned.

This recipe comes from Cooking Light, so you know it’s also healthy, another bonus.  They refer to it as a “salad” but since it’s meant to be eaten with tortilla or pita chips it kinda seems more like a salsa, wouldn’t you say?  So that’s what I’m gonna call it! I also made just a few tiny changes to the original recipe.

I hope you give this a try and enjoy it!  Until next time, happy cooking 🙂

Black_Eyed Pea Salsa


  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar (regular white vinegar works fine too)
  • 2 Tb olive oil
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 3 cups chopped tomato
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 2 Tb fresh cilantro
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, minced
  • pita or tortilla chips


Whisk together the first 5 ingredients (salt thru cumin).  Stir in remaining ingredients.  Serve with pita or tortilla chips.

I’m sharing this recipe with:


Filed under Appetizers, Beans, Vegetarian

Easy Skillet Chili Mac

Food snobs please exit stage right.  Or left.  I don’t particularly care.  Just get thy snobby pants gone.  Thank you kindly.

For the rest of us, let’s discuss some good ol’ chili macaroni!  I bet most all of you have some version of a skillet ground beef and macaroni dish, whether it be called chili mac, goulash, or what have you. 

And if you do, then I’m sure you’ll also agree with me that we all need some recipes like this in our repetoire.  Go-to recipes that are easy, non-fussy, and can be put on the table quickly.  Maybe not something we’d get much enjoyment out of cooking every night, but that there’s definitely a place in our kitchens for once in a while.

If you’re nodding your head right now (okay, maybe not literally nodding), then here’s a great recipe for you!  It comes from my Pillsbury Favorite Casseroles cookbook.  It easily takes less than 30 minutes to make, start to finish (and unlike a certain someone else’s 30 minute meals, you won’t spend another half hour cleaning up the kitchen afterwards…). 

I couldn’t be bothered getting my cheddar cheese out of the freezer, so I just plopped a dollop of Cheese Whiz on top.  I’m oh so gourmet like that 😉

Happy Cooking!

Easy Skillet Chili Mac


  • 6 oz. uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 can spicy chili beans, undrained
  • 1 can chili-style diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 tsp EACH salt and pepper
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese


Cook macaroni according to package directions.  Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, brown ground beef in a large skillet.  Drain off any grease.  Stir in cooked macaroni, beans, tomatoes, and salt and pepper.  Cook 3-5 minutes, or until bubbly and heated through.  Sprinkle with cheese.

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Filed under Beans, Beef, Stove-Top Meals

“Famous” Baked Beans

Hello everyone!  Today I want to share an easy, delicious crockpot baked bean recipe.  The recipe comes from this cookbook:

I’ve been making these beans for quite a few years, and they really are very good.  Now, I do have my favorite recipe for baked beans posted here, and if you’re looking for a great baked bean side dish I think those are perfect.  This recipe I would consider more of a main dish because it has ground beef in it.  I just make some cornbread or garlic bread and salads to go with and it’s a complete meal.

I know liquid smoke is an ingredient that many of you may not have in your pantry and while I often will just leave an ingredient out of a recipe if I don’t have it or substitute something else, in this case it is the one ingredient that absolutely makes this dish.  Whatever you do, don’t leave it out! 

Are we clear now on the importance of the liquid smoke?  Okay, good 🙂

Yum yumm!

Give these a try, I think you’ll really like them.  And until next time, happy cooking 🙂

“Famous” Baked Beans


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 4 15-oz. cans baked beans
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tb liquid smoke
  • 1 Tb Worcestershire sauce


Brown ground beef along with onions in skillet.  Drain off the fat then transfer to the crockpot.  Stir in remaining ingredients.  Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours (or longer).


Filed under Beans, Beef, Crockpot Meals

Old-Fashioned Lima Bean Soup

Do you say, “Eww lima beans!” or “Mmm lima beans!”?  Well, I happen to love lima beans.  In fact, one of my favorite childhood meals was when my mom would cook up a big pot of lima beans with pork hocks or a ham bone thrown in.  The she would take the bits of ham off the bone and stir them back in the lima beans.  Sometimes she would make rice to spoon it over too.  Oh my, was it ever good.  So my love for those big, creamy beans goes back a long way.

This soup goes beyond just limas and pork hocks, but it’s composed of all simple, inexpensive ingredients.  The recipe comes from one of my favorite cookbooks, the Betty Crocker Old-Fashioned Cookbook.  It’s so tattered all the pages are falling out, but I’d never ever get rid of it.

Instead of the pork hocks called for, I used some chopped ham leftover from Christmas.  I have searched and searched and never been able to find smoked pork hocks around these parts.  If you live in Canada and know where to find them, please tell me!  If I ever do find them I’ll probably clean out their shelves so that I’m stocked up for a long time to come.

If you love lima beans, then I think you’re going to love this recipe!  And really, if there’s another bean you would prefer instead, such as navy beans, by all means use that instead.  It won’t hurt a thing.

Until next time, happy cooking!

Lima Bean Soup


  • 1 lb lima beans, soaked overnight
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 2 1/2 lbs smoked pork hocks or shanks
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 Tb beef buillon
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups mashed cooked potatoes
  • 2 cups shredded cabbage
  • 2 medium carrots, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 2 Tb brown sugar
  • 2 Tb yellow mustard


Add lima beans, water, tomato sauce, pork hocks, onion, beef bouillon, pepper, and garlic to a large pot.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, for about 2 hours or until beans are tender. 

Remove pork hocks from the soup.  Once they are cool enough to handle, remove pork from the bones and chop into pieces.  Stir the pork and remaining ingredients back into the soup.  Cover and simmer for about 45 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.

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Filed under Beans, Soups/Stews

Emeril Lagasse’s Red Beans and Rice

Howdy everyone!  My, what a strange winter this has been.  After super cold temperatures, it’s actually raining today. RAINING in January!  Where I live that’s just crazy.  I had to go out to a doctor’s appointment this morning and didn’t realize that the rain would end up making the packed down snow in the parking lots very slick.  Let’s just say I had several arms and legs flailing everywhere moments as I kept slipping and trying not to fall flat on my behind.  Good thing it was early in the morning and there weren’t many people out and about yet to see me!

Now let’s talk about about this recipe! Cajun cooking is not something we ever had when I was growing up, that’s just not the part of the South my family is from.  But I don’t think I would have complained if they had been because I LOVE Cajun foods.  Jambalaya, gumbo, you name it, I love it.  I love the flavors that go into the foods from that region.

Red beans and rice is probably my favorite Cajun dish, though.  And I just found out something new about Jay after making this.  All this time I thought he just had a general hatred for all bean dishes, but turns out he actually will eat them and (*gasp*) kinda like them when there’s rice mixed in!  I’ll have to keep that in mind for the future.

As you can tell from the title, this is not my own recipe, but it’s my favorite version.  I may not be a big fan of the man himself, but I’ve never met an Emeril Lagasse recipe I didn’t like.  It’s a cinch to make, it’s economical, and if you have a bean-hating family member like I do, they might just actually like it too!

Happy cooking! 🙂

Emeril Lagasse’s Red Beans and Rice


  • 1 lb red beans (or kidney beans), soaked overnight
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 3 Tb minced garlic
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 lb chopped ham
  • 6 ounces smoked sausage, sliced


Cook onion and next 6 ingredients in a large pot until softened.  Add the bay leaves, ham, and sausage.  Cook until the ham and sausage start to brown.  Add the beans and enough water to cover (about 8 cups).  Simmer, uncovered, for 2 hours.  Using a large spoon or a potato masher, mash up about half of the beans.  Simmer, uncovered, for another 1 1/2 hours, adding more water if it starts to get too thick.

This can also be cooked in the crockpot.  If cooking it that way, I like to brown the ham and sausage first still (more flavor that way), but everything else I just throw in as is and let it cook away.

I’m sharing this recipe with:


Filed under Beans, Pork