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Cajun White Beans

Fortunately in the places I've lived and worked, I've always been near a Wahoo's Fish Taco. Whether it is for a work lunch or a quick weeknight or weekend dinner, this is a great spot. Their core food is Baja Coastal Mexican fare but they introduce some influences from other cuisines.

One is their Banzai sautéed veggies which uses a light teriyaki sauce giving it an Asian flavor and the other is their Cajun white beans. These are some of my favorite beans. My go-to order is a Banzai burrito with the rice and Cajun beans on the side instead of in the burrito. It's an awesome meal.

I love these beans so much, I've been tempted to get a part time job at Wahoo's just to learn the secret. Doing some Google searches for a copycat recipe has turned up nothing helpful. For now, I'll use this post to track my trial and errors before I finally am able to perfect it.

And if anyone knows the secret recipe and won't get in trouble sharing it or offering some tips and suggestions, I'd love to hear from you.


  • 1/2 pound white navy beans (soaked for 8 hours in 4 cups water and 4 tsp kosher salt)
  • 1 tbsp cooking oil
  • 1/4 yellow or white onion, diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1/4 cup (4 tbsp) tomato paste
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tsp chicken/vegetable buillon or 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1-2 tsp cayenne hot sauce (I think Wahoo's uses Tapatio)


  • Drain the soaked beans.
  • Grab your pressure cooker or a pot. Saute the onion in the oil on medium heat until translucent (about 3-5 minutes).
  • Add the tomato paste and seasonings and cook until fragrant (about 30-60 seconds).
  • Add the remaining ingredients including the drained beans and bring to a simmer. 
  • Cook the beans in a pressure cooker for 30 minutes on the Bean/Chili setting or on the stove top covered for 2 hours.
  • Release the pressure and remove the lid. Stir the beans and continue simmering them on medium heat for about 10 minutes until the liquid has evaporated some and thickened slightly.
  • When beans are tender and liquid has become a loose sauce, serve and enjoy.


  1. I no longer live near a Wahoo's and really miss the spicy Cajun white beans!

    I think they used some diced tomatoes in them. Let me know if you get that part time job and the recipe, LOL!

    1. Thanks for the reply and great suggestion. That's likely what gives the beans the red colored sauce and a bit more tang flavor. I'll try diced tomatoes and also maybe tomato paste. If I think I'm getting closer, I'll adjust the recipe above.

  2. I miss these beans so much! Please update as you work out the recipe. I agree there's a bit of tomato in there. I wonder if they use their pico de gallo, as there's also onion. I feel like you may be missing some of the "cajun" seasoning too. Cajun spices usually have paprika and cayenne.

    1. Hi Kristin - thanks for replying. Great to be connected with another fan of these beans. I think I'm getting really close. The tomato paste seemed to be the missing ingredient which I've now added. You'll see the recipe also has the onion, paprika, and cayenne flavors you suggested. Please test it out and let me know if I'm close.

  3. I am also looking for a Wahoo"s spicy cajun white beans copycat recipe.... best beans ever. Good luck!

  4. AnonymousJune 09, 2022

    hows the recipe search going?

  5. AnonymousJuly 31, 2022

    Wahoo’s Cajun beans also use bay leaves. Now and then I’ll come across small pieces.


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