Cajun Jambalaya

Today is Mardi Gras, which means it’s time for some Cajun Jambalaya!  The observant chef will notice that this dish bears a striking resemblance to paella, but somewhat simpler and with different ingredients.

Recipe Notes: 

  • This dish also works well served over pasta (Pictured).  While not traditional, it’s quite delicious.  Simply substitute the rice for the pasta of your choice, stirring until the pasta is tender and absorbed most of the liquid in the pan.
  • This recipe does involve some vegetable prep, so if you’re in need of a refresher, see this 90 second video on Knife Skills


  1. 1 TBSP olive oil
  2. 2 TBSP butter, divided
  3. 1 TBSP Creole Seasoning (I just use Emeril Lagasse’s version, found here
  4. 2-3 chicken breasts, cubed
  5. 12oz – 1lb Andouille sausage, sliced into 1/4 inch thick rounds
  6. 1/2 lb medium shrimp, peeled and deveined (optional)
  7. 1 large Spanish (or yellow) onion, diced
  8. 1 large green bell pepper, diced
  9. Roughly 1.5 – 2 cups celery, chopped
  10. 4-5 cloves garlic, finely minced
  11. 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  12. 1 tsp hot sauce (any kind will do depending on your flavor preference and heat tolerance)
  13. 1 14oz can petite diced tomatoes, drained
  14. 4 cups chicken stock
  15. 2 cups white rice


  1. Mix about 1/2 TBSP creole seasoning with chicken in one bowl, and in another bowl mix the remaining 1/2 TBSP with the shrimp.  Mix well.  Cover, and reserve in refrigerator.
  2. Heat a medium saute pan or large skillet over medium high heat.  Add 1 TBSP butter and 1 TBSP olive oil to the pan.  When butter is melted, add sausage and brown nicely on all sides, 5-7 minutes.  Remove with slotted spoon and reserve.
  3. In the same pan, add chicken.  Brown nicely all around.  Remove with slotted spoon and reserve.
  4. Reduce heat to medium and add remaining 1 TBSP butter.  Once butter is melted, add onion bell pepper and celery.  Sauté, stirring constantly, until very fragrant and onions are mostly translucent, about 3 minutes.  Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, 1-2 more minutes.   Add hot sauce, Worcestershire sauce and canned tomatoes.  Cook all these ingredients together for about another 7 minutes stirring constantly to ensure nothing burns or gets stuck to the bottom of the pan.
  5. Add rice and continue to stir into mixture for about 1 minute.  Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil, scraping up any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan.  Add chicken, sausage and any drippings back into the pan and give everything a good stir.  This is the last time you’ll stir it.
  6. Cover, and reduce heat to a low simmer, about 30 minutes until the rice has filled the pan and is no longer crunchy.  (You can test the doneness of the rice by removing a grain or two with a spoon – if it’s crunchy but all the liquid has absorbed, add about 2 TBSP of water, give everything a good shake, recover the pan and wait another 5 minutes or so.  Repeat this process until rice is cooked, if necessary).
  7. Once the rice is cooked and has reached the desired consistency, tuck the shrimp into the mixture and cook, covered for about 5 – 7 minutes, until they are a nice orange color and no longer translucent.

Serve in bowls with crusty bread.  Enjoy!


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