Making traditional Lowcountry red rice in honor of Juneteenth

Red rice is a traditional Lowcountry dish that has its roots in West Africa.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (QC Life) - In honor of Juneteenth, living history interpreter Dontavius Williams is making a traditional Lowcountry red rice.


  • 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
  • 4 slices smoked bacon
  • 1 pound smoked beef sausage cut into ½ inch rounds
  • 1 large onion diced
  • ½ green bell pepper diced
  • ½ red bell pepper diced
  • 1 rib celery
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • *Adam’s Kitchen Pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 (14.5 -ounce) cans diced or stewed tomatoes with juice
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 8 cups hot water
  • Salt and pepper to Taste
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 3 cups long-grain white rice


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Heat oil over medium-high heat. Add bacon, sausage, and onion. Sauté for 1 to 2 minutes and then add bell peppers, celery, thyme, garlic tomatoes, tomato paste, hot water, salt and pepper.
  • Stir well to combine and cook for 20 to 30 minutes stirring occasionally until sauce begins to thicken.
  • Stir in sugar to balance the tartness of the tomatoes.
  • Cook for another 30 minutes stirring occasionally to thicken more.
  • Wash and drain rice twice, then add to sauce and combine well.
  • Transfer mixture to an oven-safe dish and cover tightly.
  • Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, then check the rice, stir and cover again, and bake for 30 to 40 more minutes until the rice is tender and fluffy.

Red rice is a traditional Lowcountry dish that has its roots in West Africa. Red rice is made in many different ways and passed down through generations of cultures from all over the world.

This version has sausage added which makes it different from other meatless versions. This recipe is an adaptation of Sallie Ann Robinson’s Fuskie favorite red rice with sausage and beef.

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