Last Updated on October 17, 2023 by Carne Diem
Protein: Chicken and Sausage
Origin: American South, Cajun
Method: Stovetop, Grill or Smoker, Dutch OvenJump to Recipe
This Dutch Oven Jambalaya recipe is based on one of the first Cajun recipes I tried making at home, and a dish that lead to my love of Cajun and Creole food. This easy one pot Jambalaya is packed with flavor but very simple to make. Loaded with browned chicken breast and smoked sausage this Cajun rice dish is sure to become a favorite with your family like it is with mine.
Table of contents
What is Jambalaya?
The history of jambalaya is a bit murky, but it is believed to have originated in the 18th century. Jambalaya is thought to have been created by slaves who combined the ingredients that they had available to them, such as rice, meat, and vegetables. Jambalaya quickly became a popular dish among the slaves and quickly spread to other parts of the United States.
Today, jambalaya is a well-known dish all over the world and is common to find in restaurants and at home. It is a perfect Mardi Gras recipe due to its simplicity and ease of making in large portions, making it perfect one pot recipe to cook up for a crowd.
Is Jambalaya Cajun or Creole?
In short, the answer is both. Jambalaya is a dish that is shared by both Cajun and Creole cultures. While the dish was likely created by the Cajuns, today it is enjoyed by both Creole and Cajun peoples, though there are some subtle differences in how it is prepared.
-Cajun Jambalaya: Cajun Jambalaya is considered to be the original jambalaya and is thought of as a one pot dish. Also known as "brown jambalaya" Cajun Jambalaya does not typically contain tomatoes and only includes ingredients that where readily available to the Cajun population at the time. Frequently, Cajun jambalaya is a "dump and cook" recipe where all of the ingredients are added to a Dutch oven or large pot at one time and slowly cooked.
-Creole Jambalaya: As the Creole population began to make this southern style jambalaya, they began to add more expensive ingredients like tomatoes. Also referred to as "red jambalaya," Creole style jambalaya is more likely to have its flavors layered, by adding ingredients in a stepwise fashion, to build a depth of flavor.
Making the Smoked Sausage and Chicken Jambalaya
This chicken and smoked sausage jambalaya falls into the category of a "red" of Creole jambalaya. While the Dutch oven jambalaya remains a one pot dish, the ingredients are added in stages in order to build up a depth of flavor. Thankfully this Creole style red jambalaya is super easy to make as well.
Prep your ingredients
To prepare the Southern chicken and sausage jambalaya recipe, you first need to prep your ingredients.
In a small bowl, combine the Cajun seasoning and file. Feel free to use your favorite Creole or Cajun seasoning or make our easy Cajun seasoning from scratch. Next, dice the onions, celery and bell pepper and mince the garlic.
Add the Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco sauce to the tomatoes and reserve. Next, cube the chicken and the sausage. You can cut the sausage to your preferred size. I like slices or cutting the sausage cut into halves, but the wife prefers the sausage cut smaller so we typically cube it.
What sausage is best for jambalaya?
Traditionally, Andouille sausage is the go-to sausage for making jambalaya. Andouille is a smoked sausage typically made with pork, garlic, and spices and gives jambalaya a smoky and slightly spicy flavor. If you are unable to find Andouille sausage you can substitute other smoked pork sausages. In a pinch Polish Kielbasa makes a good substitute in this Creole recipe.
Once you have prepped all of your ingredients, it is time to start cooking your Dutch Oven Chicken and Smoked Sausage Jambalaya
Making Dutch Oven Jambalaya
If you are cooking the jambalaya on a grill or smoker you want to be cooking over indirect heat. Allow at least 30 minutes for the Dutch oven to come to temp before your start cooking. If you are cooking on a stove, heat over medium heat. Add a small amount of oil to the Dutch oven and heat over medium heat. Brown the sausage, followed by the chicken.
When the chicken is just browned, add the veggies and sauté until browned. We made this jambalaya on our Big Green Egg grill, but this Dutch oven jambalaya recipe is a great campout or campfire recipe as well or can be made on your stovetop.
Add in the spices and seasonings and stir well to combine. Cook for about 1 minute.
Next, add in the liquid ingredients and the tomatoes. We like crushed tomatoes for this recipe, but diced tomatoes work well too for a little bit chunkier jambalaya. Mix well to combine.
Finally, add in the rice and stir until well mixed. Cover and simmer for about 30 minutes. Stir and simmer for about 30 more minutes covered.
If you are cooking over direct heat, you may want to stir more frequently to keep rice from burning to the bottom of the pot. If the jambalaya seems to be getting too dry you can add in a little more chicken broth or water.
Serving the Creole Style Red Jambalaya
This super flavorful Cajun Jambalaya recipe is great as a standalone meal or as an appetizer for some of our other Cajun and Creole recipes:
- Cajun Crawfish Po' Boy With Spicy Remoulade
- Spicy Cheese Stuffed Smoked Meatloaf
- Cast Iron New Orleans Barbeque Shrimp
- New Orleans Style Chargrilled Oysters
- Grilled Muffaletta: New Orleans Deli Sandwich
- Blackened Chicken a la Mer
- Jalapeno Black Eyed Peas with Smoked Pork Jowl
- Mother's Inspired Double Smoked Black Ham
Enjoy this easy Dutch oven jambalaya with a cold Hurricane or Southern Comfort Blackberry Bramble Style Arnold Palmer. Southern style jambalaya always goes well with some Bourbon Pecan Pie, or Coconut Cream Pie.
Refrigerate any leftovers, and eat within 3 days.
Frequently Asked Questions
Leftovers should be eaten within 3 days of cooking.
While jambalaya was originally a Cajun dish, today the dish is shared by both Cajun and Creole cultures and loved by both Creole and Cajun peoples. There are some variations in how the dish is prepared between the 2 cultures.
In Cajun and Creole cooking the Holy trinity refers to onion, celery, and bell pepper which makes up the base for many Cajun and Creole dishes, including Jambalaya.
Cajun style Jambalaya is considered to be a one pot meal and is a great dish to make in a Dutch oven on your stove or even as a campfire dish. Creole style Jambalaya is more likely to involve layering ingredients with multiple additions to the dish as it cooks.
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Chicken and Smoked Sausage Jambalaya
- Dutch Oven
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 12 Ounces Andouille or Smoked Sausages Cubed
- 2 Chicken Breasts Cubed
- 1 Onion Diced
- 2 Celery Stalks Diced
- 3 Garlic Cloves Minced
- 1 Green Bell Pepper Diced
- 28 Ounce Can Crushed Tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon Tabasco Sauce
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 Tablespoon Cajun or Creole Seasoning
- 1 teaspoon Gumbo File
- 1 Cup Long Grain White Rice
- 2 Cups Chicken Broth
- Prep your chicken, sausage, and vegetables as above.
- Add a small amount of oil to the Dutch oven and heat over medium heat. Brown the sausage, followed by the chicken.
- When the chicken is just browned, add the veggies and sauté until browned.
- Add in the spices and seasonings and stir well to combine. Cook for about 1 minute.
- Add in the liquid ingredients and the tomatoes. Mix well to combine.
- Add in the rice and stir until well mixed. Cover and simmer for about 30 minutes. Stir and simmer for about 30 more minutes covered.