One of my favorite Disney movies is The Princess and the Frog. Not only because of the magical storyline but because Tiana is always running around like the queen of the kitchen, cooking or baking something delicious.
Watching the movie recently piqued my interest in recreating a few recipes and the first one is Tiana’s famous Jambalaya.
The thought of making Jambalaya may seem scary to you but once you start, you’ll see it is actually very easy. The best part though is the fact that Jambalaya is a one-pot meal that is the perfect quick and easy weeknight meal.
What is Jambalaya and What Does It Consist Of?
Jambalaya is a well-loved and well-known New Orleans dish with a rich history. It takes heavy influence from Spanish, French, and African cuisines.
Now, everyone has a different way of making Jambalaya. Ingredients and even the method of cooking vary from kitchen to kitchen.
However, some things don’t change. Jambalaya will usually always contain meat or seafood. Chicken and pork are mostly the go-to proteins, while crawfish and shrimp are the most common type of seafood. As for sausages, Andouille, Chorizo, and Smoked Sausage are the popular options.
This hearty and delicious dish also contains the holy trinity, a mixture of onions, bell peppers, and celery. Mix these ingredients with rice, chili peppers, broth, and seasoning to make the perfect Jambalaya.
Cajun vs Creole Jambalaya
There are two styles of making Jambalaya; Creole and Cajun. Creole Jambalaya has a stunning red tinge from the tomatoes in the recipe while the Cajun variety does not contain any tomatoes.
The recipe I’m sharing with you here is tomato-based which means it is a Creole Jambalaya.
What is the Difference between Paella and Jambalaya?
Jambalaya and Paella are pretty similar. Many ingredients found in a Jambalaya are also found in a Paella.
However, one of the key differences between these two dishes is that Paella usually contains Saffron which a Jambalaya does not. Jambalayas also tend to be on the spicier side.
What’s the Difference between Gumbo and Jambalaya?
Gumbo is another famous Louisiana dish that is essentially considered a soup or a thin stew as it is thickened with a roux.
The main difference between a Jambalaya and a Gumbo is the fact that Gumbo is usually served over rice while Jambalayas are usually cooked with rice.
What’s the Best Rice for Jambalaya?
Traditionally, Jambalaya is made with long grain rice. Long grain rice will hold its shape when cooked and will add texture. Personally, I love long grain rice and that is what I always use when making Jambalaya.
Some recipes recommend using Basmati Rice which won’t work as well. The grains are delicate and will easily be overpowered by the seasonings and spices used in this Jambalaya recipe.
Short grain rice is also not suitable as the long cook time will turn it into mush. If required, you can easily use brown rice in this recipe. However, you will have to add more liquid and cook it for a longer time.
Substitutes for Andouille Sausage
Andouille sausage is the best kind of sausage for any Jambalaya because of its chunky texture and smoky flavor. However, if you can’t find Andouille anywhere, you can always use other types of sausage.
One of the best substitutes for Andouille sausage is Mexican Chorizo. While it doesn’t have the exact same texture, it does have a very close flavor profile. You can also use Kielbasa or any other kind of smoked sausage for this recipe.
While traditional Jambalaya is a treat to eat, feel free to add a little variety to this recipe. Below I’m listing all the different variations you can use which I have tried and come to love when I want something a little different.
- Cayenne Pepper
- Firm Tofu
- Vegetable Broth
Jambalaya Recipe Ingredients
If you’re looking to make authentic Jambalaya, you will need the right ingredients. Luckily, this recipe is very easy to make. Once you have your tools, you’re not far from enjoying a delicious bowl of Jambalaya.
Olive Oil – Olive oil is the fat of choice used to sauté the holy trinity.
Holy Trinity – The holy trinity usually consists of celery, onion, and green bell pepper. However, you can also add red or yellow bell peppers.
Chicken Breast – Chicken is one of the most popular proteins for Jambalaya. It adds a meaty feel to the dish and absorbs the flavor of the Jambalaya.
Andouille Sausage- Andouille sausage has a distinct sharp, smoky flavor that works perfectly with the other ingredients.
Garlic– No Jambalaya is complete without tons of garlic.
Salt And Pepper- Salt and pepper make the flavors of the Jambalaya pop.
Tomatoes – Tomatoes add a slightly sweet yet acidic flare to the Jambalaya. It also gives the creole Jambalaya its classic pale red color.
White Rice – Long grain white rice is best for this dish.
Chicken Broth – The chicken broth is the liquid of choice for this Jambalaya. However, you can also use vegetable broth or water.
Worcestershire Sauce – Worcestershire sauce is uncommon in Jambalaya, but I think it adds an umami flavor that takes this Jambalaya to the next level.
Hot Pepper Sauce – I used hot pepper sauce for a touch of mild heat. However, if you want a spicier Jambalaya, you can use 1-2 jalapeno peppers.
More Inspired Princess Tiana’s Dishes
PRINCESS TIANA’S JAMBALAYA
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1/2 Pound Smoked Andouille Sausage, Thinly Sliced
- 2 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, Cut into 1-inch Chunks
- 1 medium Onion, chopped
- 2 large Celery Stalks, chopped
- 1 small Bell Pepper, seeded and chopped
- 1 tsp. Salt
- 1/2 tsp. Black Pepper
- 1 cup Canned diced tomatoes
- 2 tsp. Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 tsp. Hot Pepper Sauce
- 1 cup Uncooked Long-Grain White Rice
- 4 cups Chicken Broth
- ¼ Pound Shrimps (optional)
- Place 1 tablespoon olive oil into a Dutch Oven and set it over medium-high heat.
- Add the Andouille sausage and cook it for 5 minutes, periodically stirring until browned. Remove the sausage from the pot and place them on a plate.
- Add the remaining olive oil and chicken breast and cook for 3-5 minutes, periodically stirring, until slightly golden. Remove the seared chicken breast from the pot and place them on a plate.
- Add the onions, celery stalks, and bell peppers and cook for 3-5 minutes until the onions are transluscent.
- Next, stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute until fragrant.
- Stir in the salt, pepper, diced tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, and hot pepper sauce.
- Add the Andouille back in along with the chicken breast and cook for 5 minutes.
- Stir in the white rice and chicken broth. Allow the Jambalaya to come to a boil, then the heat to medium-low.
- Cover the Jambalaya and cook for 20-25 minutes, occasionally stirring until the chicekn broth is absorbed and the rice is tender.
- Add the shrimps 10 minutes before the rice is tender.
- Serve and enjoy!