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Slow Cooker Red Beans, Rice & Tofu

Author - Gena Hamshaw
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 8 hours 10 minutes
Yields: 8 -12 servings


  • 1 lb kidney beans, soaked overnight or for 8 hours and drained
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large or 2 small onions, diced
  • 3 large stalks celery, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 14 ounces Nasoya extra firm tofu, cubed
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 7 cups water + 1 vegan chicken style bouillon cube or 7 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoons fine salt (more as needed; the bouillon or broth will plenty of salt as well, but you can increase the starting amount to 1 1/2-2 teaspoons if you use low-sodium broth)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (this is very mild, which is my style, but feel free to ramp it up if you like a lot of heat!)
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 1/4 cups long-grain white or brown rice*
  • 1-2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, to taste
  • Hot sauce and chopped green onions, for topping


  • Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Boil the beans for 15 minutes. Drain and rinse.
  • Optional: heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, and pepper. Sauté for 5-7 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and the onion is gently browning. Add these ingredients to the slow cooker.
  • Add all remaining ingredients except for rice and vinegar to the slow cooker. If you don't choose to sauté the vegetables, you can skip the olive oil and dump everything but the rice and vinegar into the slow cooker now!
  • Cook the ingredients on low for 6 hours or high for 3 hours. Add the rice. Continue cooking for 2 more hours on low or 1 hour on high (1 1/2 hours if you use brown rice instead of white). Remove the bay leaves. Stir in the vinegar and add additional salt as needed. Serve, with plenty of hot sauce and chopped green onions if desired.