Chicken-Sausage Gumbo: With a Homemade Creole Seasoning Blend!
Have you noticed that many spice “blends” have added ingredients in them? Preservatives, MSG, and anti-caking ingredients are very common among those seasonings. I make my own taco seasoning because most commercial blends have added sugar or flour in them, both of which I can’t eat. Same goes with creole seasoning. Now, I wasn’t raised on much Southern-type foods so creole seasoning doesn’t really show its face in my pantry very often. But the main components of creole: paprika, garlic, oregano… now those are staples in my house! So it was super easy to just concoct my own blend of spices for this dish without worrying about finding a commercial blend without added ingredients.
Here’s a money-saving tip for you: buy spices in the bulk section of your local natural foods store! You’ll save so much going this route and you’ll waste less. If you’ve never tried a spice before, you can just get a tablespoon or two to try it out without having to buy a $10 bottle of something you’re not sure of. For example: I needed cardamom for a dish the other day. A bottle of it (non-organic) was over $8 at Walmart. I went to Sprouts and got the same amount of ounces, just without the pretty glass bottle for $2.86. And it WAS organic! Such a deal.
Like I previously said, I didn’t grow up with many Southern-type dishes. Probably because I grew up in the North East! LOL! I don’t think I ever tried gumbo until I was an adult. Boy, was I missing out! HUGE fan of it now! It’s a great weeknight meal as it comes together in under 30 minutes or you could throw all the ingredients into a crockpot and let it simmer away while you’re at work. Boil up some rice once you get home and you’ve got dinner on the table in a flash! This recipe is my own creation, without gluten, soy, added sugar, or shrimp. I’m not a huge shrimp fan so I didn’t add it into my dish but if you like shrimp, feel free to add it back in. It is pretty traditional for this dish. I did serve this on top of rice but if you’re looking to stay away from grains, the gumbo recipe itself contains no grains and you could easily substitute cauliflower rice for regular. Or even mashed sweet potato would be delightful as well! I think the balance of sweet and spicy would be excellent!
- For the Creole Seasoning
- 1 T paprika
- 1 T garlic powder
- 1 tsp black pepper
- ½ tsp white pepper
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 tsps oregano
- 1 tsp thyme
- For the Gumbo
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs- diced into 1-in cubes
- 1 lb Andouille sausage, sliced
- ½ lb cubed ham
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 1 can diced tomatoes, with juice
- 2 T tapioca starch or arrowroot
- 1 T Worcestershire sauce
- 1 T garlic
- 1 Bay leaf
- 1 T Creole seasoning (see ingredients above)
- 2 tsp salt
- 4 C water
- Olive oil, for sautéing
- Scallions and fresh parsley for garnish (optional)
- In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add in chicken breasts and cook 10 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and lightly browned. Remove from pan and set aside.
- Add ham and sausage to pan and cook for 5-10 minutes until lightly browned. Add chicken back in.
- Add a couple more tablespoons of oil to meat mixture and sprinkle tapioca starch over the meat. Stir to combine to create a roux.
- Stir in onions, celery, canned tomatoes and bell pepper. Pour water over the top and bring to a light boil. Stir in spices and simmer for 30 minutes.
- Remove gumbo from heat. Sprinkle chopped green onions and parsley over the top. Serve hot over rice.
- Add extra veggies to the dish if you'd like! I think okra, zucchini, or fresh tomatoes would be really good in this!