Jambalaya is an American (Louisiana) dish heavily influenced by the Spanish and French cuisine. A dish that have big similarities to paella or arroz con pollo it is also made out of rice cooked with an array of vegetables and meats like chicken, seafood and sausages, the big difference is that jambalaya is flavoured and coloured with tomatoes instead of saffron.

This dish originated around 1700’s in the French Quarters of New Orleans, it was believed that the Spanish attempted to make paella during those times but saffron was scarce, they then used tomatoes as a replacement. During the course of time this dish changed where local ingredients and Creole seasonings were used giving birth a whole new dish we now call the jambalaya. There are three different types of Jambalaya, one is the Creole Jambalaya (Red Jambalaya) where it includes tomatoes, Cajun Jambalaya (Brown Jambalaya) where it does not include tomatoes but the meat is browned to give it the colour needed and lastly the White Jambalaya or the quick version where rice is cooked separately with broth and mixed together with meat before serving, similar to how Chinese serve congee.

This is a complete all in one dish as it contains seafood, chicken, sausages, celery, tomatoes and rice. If you like all in one dishes like this at the same time love hot and spicy food then this is a must try!

Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 6
  • 250 g long grain rice
  • 750 g chicken thigh fillets, sliced into bite sized pieced
  • 15 pcs prawns
  • 200 g chorizo, sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, sliced
  • 1 large green capsicum, chopped
  • 1 400 g can chopped tomatoes
  • 350 ml chicken stock
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 3 pcs bay leaves
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • salt
  • olive oil
  • lemon wedges
  1. Season chicken pieces and prawns with salt and pepper.
  2. In a large pot add oil then brown and cook the chicken on all sides. Remove then set aside.
  3. Add more oil if needed then sauté garlic, onions and celery.
  4. Add the chorizo and capsicum then stir until fragrant.
  5. Pour chicken stock, chopped tomatoes, rice, Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, bay leaves, dried thyme, smoked paprika, cayenne pepper and sugar.
  6. Reduce the heat to medium low and cook rice for 15 minutes while occasionally stirring. Add a bit of water if it dries out.
  7. Add and combine the chicken and prawns and cook for 10 more minutes or until rice is tender.
  8. Season with salt and pepper then serve with lemon wedges.
It should be a little bit soupy so if it dries out try to add a bit of water at a time.


Jambalaya Wide


4 Responses

  1. mjskit says:

    oh how I do love a good jambalya! It’s so easy to make and so very many delicious versions like this one. Love the addition of the chorizo! Now I’m hungry again.

  2. Wow thanks for introducing me to jambalya, I love one-pot dishes because it’s so easy and lesser pots and pans to clean up 😉 Your jambalaya looks absolutely delicious.

  3. Was just saying to mom earlier, we should do a paella. But jambalaya would be heaps better. Thanks for the inspiration. 🙂

  4. This recipe looks SO GOOD. My mouth is watering. Jambalaya is such a great one-pot dish and full of flavor!

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