This easy one-pan meal is packed with flavor! It’s hearty, with both chicken and andouille sausage, and it’s the perfect dinner for a chilly evening.
If you like lots of flavor in your meals, this Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya is for you! It’s a traditional recipe, made with a special seasoning (more on that below!) that adds a zip of spice to the dish.
Best of all, it’s a one-pan meal, so minimal clean-up is needed!
The secret ingredient can be found in the spice aisle of your local grocery store: it’s Slap Ya Mama seasoning. It’s a spicy blend of Cajun seasonings and spices made in Louisiana, and it adds a TON of flavor to this dish.
You can find it on Amazon or in your local grocery store with the other spices. It is seasoned with salt already, so you won’t need additional salt for the dish. If you use an unsalted Cajun seasoning, you’ll need to add up to two teaspoons of salt to the dish.
In addition to the seasoning, here’s what else you’ll need:
- Celery, onion, and bell pepper are also known as the “holy trinity” in Cajun cooking
- Boneless skinless chicken thighs or breasts and andouille sausage make the jambalaya hearty and filling
- Garlic and dried thyme add lots of flavor
- The rice will get cooked in a mixture of water and crushed tomatoes
- Spice lovers will appreciate hot sauce served on the side
How to make chicken jambalaya
Heat oil in a large sauté pan with sides. Cook bite-size pieces of boneless skinless chicken thighs until browned on both sides.
Then, cook half moons of andouille sausage in the same pan until they are golden brown. Both of these steps really build the flavor of the finished dish.
Next, sauté a yellow onion, green pepper, and two stalks of celery in the same pan until soft.
After that step, everything goes into the pan! Cover the pan and cook it for 20 minutes. The rice will soak up the liquid from the stock and crushed tomatoes, and the chicken will finish cooking, too.
The end result is perfectly cooked, Cajun-seasoned rice with chicken and andouille sausage, also known as jambalaya!
It’s great for a weeknight meal, and also for a weekend of football watching! It would be a great substitute for chili on a cozy fall or winter afternoon.
What type of rice is best for jambalaya?
Any long grain white rice would work well for jambalaya. Basmati, jasmine, or anything labeled “long-grain white rice” is a good choice.
Can I make jambalaya ahead of time?
Jambalaya is best enjoyed immediately after cooking. Reheating jambalaya or letting it sit out for a few hours can cause the rice to get mushy.
Can I freeze jambalaya?
Freezing and reheating jambalaya would compromise the texture of the rice (it will get mushy). Enjoy the jambalaya soon after cooking it.
What to serve with jambalaya
Salad and cornbread are the perfect side dishes. I love the boxed cornbread mix from Trader Joe’s (it’s a sweet cornbread). The sweetness pairs really nicely with the spiciness of the jambalaya.
This Church Lady Salad has a sweet dressing that would be a nice complement to it, too.
Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1½ lbs boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon salted Cajun seasoning, divided (I used Slap Ya Mama)
- 12 oz smoked andouille sausage, sliced into half moons (I used Aidells)
- 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
- 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
- 1 green pepper, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1½ cups long grain white rice
- 1 (14.5 oz) can crushed tomatoes
- 3 cups water
- For garnish: fresh chopped parsley, hot sauce
- Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat.
- Sprinkle the chicken with 1 teaspoon of the Cajun seasoning. Place half of the chicken in a single layer in the sauté pan. Cook until light golden brown (about 2–3 minutes), then flip and continue cooking until brown on the other side. Remove chicken from the pan and place on a plate. Repeat with the remaining chicken.
- Add the andouille sausage to the pan. Cook, flipping halfway through, until light golden brown on both sides, about 4–6 minutes. Remove the andouille sausage from the pan and place on the plate with the chicken. There should be some oil still left in the pan. If not, add up to 1 tablespoons of additional olive oil.
- Add the onion, celery, and green pepper to the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent and the celery and pepper are soft, about 4–5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds more.
- Stir in the dried thyme, rice, crushed tomatoes, water, and the remaining 1 tablespoon of Cajun seasoning. Add the cooked chicken and andouille sausage. Turn the heat to high and bring the mixture to a boil.
- Reduce the heat to low and cover the pan. Let cook, undisturbed for 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and let sit for 5 minutes. Uncover and fluff the jambalaya with a fork. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley and serve.
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