Traditional recipes

Smoky Chicken-Hock Gumbo with Andouille Sausage

Smoky Chicken-Hock Gumbo with Andouille Sausage

Ingredients

For the stock

  • 2 1/2 pounds chicken bones, such as wings, necks, and backs
  • 1 ham hock
  • 4 quarts water
  • 1 carrot, sliced
  • 1 stalk celery, sliced
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon peppercorns

For the chicken

  • Oil, for frying
  • 1 whole chicken, or 6 pieces, such as 3 thighs and 3 breast halves (3 ½-4 pounds total)
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons Town Hall Spice Mixture*

For the roux

  • 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup diced yellow onion
  • 1/4 cup diced celery
  • 1/4 cup diced green bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Town Hall Spice Mixture

For the gumbo

  • 4 cups diced yellow onion
  • 1/4 pound andouille sausage, diced
  • 3 tablespoons Town Hall Spice Mixture
  • 2 1/2 cups diced green bell pepper
  • 1 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic, heaping
  • 1 teaspoon diced jalapeño, heaping
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 quarts chicken stock
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 3 cups cooked white rice
  • 2 scallions, green parts only, sliced thinly on a bias

Chicken and Smoked Sausage Gumbo

It’s Fat Monday, ya’ll! Lundi Gras (French for Fat Monday) ramps up the Mardi Gras holiday with a full schedule of parades, balls, and of course, the Courir de Mardi Gras—the rural Cajun celebration before the beginning of Lent.

Chicken and smoked sausage gumbo worth begging for. (All photos credit: George Graham)

Break out your capuchon (a cone-shaped ceremonial hat), don a colorful mask, tank up with your favorite beverage—it’s time to start begging. Explanation needed? The Courir is my favorite of all the Mardi Gras customs seen throughout Acadiana.

Colorfully dressed Mardi Gras revelers beg for Cajun recipe ingredients for their celebration gumbo.

Unlike the lavish parades of New Orleans, this celebration takes place in the small communities that dot the region. It is a family event with just as many kids as adults dressing up and riding (sometimes by horseback) from house to house to beg for Cajun recipe ingredients to make a chicken and smoked sausage gumbo celebration.

The custom dates back to medieval France with its origin in the Catholic religion, and the garish garb is said to mock aristocratic society. Here in Cajun country, troops of revelers, led by Le Capitaine, move from house to house “begging” for ingredients to make a Chicken and Smoked Sausage Gumbo. My wife Roxanne recalls that when she was little, she would hide behind her grandmother Mo Mo Eve when the “beggars” rode up to their house every Mardi Gras. And when her grandmother appeared on the front porch with a sack of onions or such, the masked merrymakers would break into music and dance. The highlight is at the end of the ride when a live chicken is thrown into the crowd, and the chase ensues.

It all culminates at the communal gumbo when the fiddles bow up, and the squeezebox plays chank-a-chank music for the crowd as the black-iron pots simmer away. This is a colorful Cajun tradition that few get a chance to experience. But my Cajun recipe for Chicken and Smoked Sausage Gumbo is one that everyone can enjoy.

Of all the gumbos, chicken and smoked sausage gumbo defines rural Cajun food culture. Deep, dark roux-based flavor is punched with smoky pork andouille sausage, and it’s spiked with just enough heat to make you grab for another beer and beg for another bowl.


Recipe Summary

  • 4 pounds skinned and boned chicken thighs
  • 1 pound andouille or smoked sausage
  • 1 pound tasso or smoked ham
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 large green bell peppers, chopped
  • 2 large celery ribs, chopped
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 (32-oz.) boxes chicken broth
  • 1 ½ teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon ground red pepper
  • ⅓ cup chopped fresh parsley
  • Hot cooked rice
  • Garnishes: sliced green onions, filé powder

Cut first 3 ingredients into bite-size pieces. Place in a large Dutch oven over medium heat, and cook, stirring often, 20 minutes or until browned. Drain on paper towels. Wipe out Dutch oven with paper towels.

Heat oil in Dutch oven over medium heat gradually whisk in flour, and cook, whisking constantly, 25 minutes or until mixture is a dark mahogany.

Stir in onions and next 3 ingredients cook, stirring often, 18 to 20 minutes or until tender. Gradually add broth. Stir in chicken, sausage, tasso, thyme, and black and red ground peppers.

Bring mixture to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer, stirring occasionally, 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Stir in parsley. Remove from heat serve over hot cooked rice. Garnish, if desired.

Shrimp-Tasso-Andouille Sausage Gumbo: Omit chicken thighs and proceed with Steps 1, 2, and Proceed with Step 4, stirring in 4 lb. medium-size raw shrimp, peeled and, if desired, deveined, the last 15 minutes of cooking.


Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

You will keep coming back to our best gumbo recipe: a vegetable-heavy Creole version with chicken and andouille sausage.

Maxime Iattoni

While opinions abound as to which of our classic gumbo recipes is the best, we keep coming back to this popular chicken and sausage version. In fact, this iconic Louisiana stew appeared in our collection of 150 Classic Recipes, which ran in Saveur’s 150th issue in 2014.

The addition of tomatoes and okra suggests that this gumbo is Creole, though andouille sausage is more often associated with Cajun cooking. Don’t sweat the provenance this time and just trust us that this is one of our very best.

During cooking, okra exudes a mucilaginous liquid that lends soups and stews a sumptuous, silky texture, but the backbone of this chicken and sausage gumbo is its roux, which is made by toasting flour in hot oil until it turns a deep red-brown. The roux both thickens the broth and adds a nutty flavor that compliments the smoky pork sausage. A little filé powder (made from dried sassafras leaves) incorporated at the end further enriches the dish and provides a faintly peppery, grassy bite.

Equipment

Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

I always make some fluffy steamed white rice to serve with the stew to make it a full meal. Whipping up some freshly baked cornbread muffins is another tasty option.

It’s hard to resist not gobbling up the whole pot, but trust me, the taste gets even better with leftovers the next day. Make sure that when you’re cooking this, turn on some New Orleans Jazz and “let the good times roll (laissez les bon temps rouler)” in the kitchen!

More Soup recipes


Chicken and Andouille Sausage Gumbo

Everyone needs a recipe for gumbo in their recipe arsenal so today, I&rsquom sharing an authentic gumbo recipe thanks to Sarah, my sister-in-law.

To say this gumbo was a labor of love, would be a huge understatement. I think it was a labor of my entire life. It seriously takes every ounce of energy in you to make this but the results are SO OUT OF THIS WORLD that I would do it all over again. This took so much energy out of me on Saturday, I went to bed at 9:30pm and woke up at 8:30am on Sunday. Yeah, 11 hours of sleep, baby. I&rsquom a wuss.

Sarah was born and raised in Cajun country (more specifically in Baton Rouge, Louisiana) and this is her grandmother&rsquos recipe for gumbo. Now, before y&rsquoall go nutso on me over this gumbo, let me throw this disclaimer out there: yes, I&rsquom sure your mother&rsquos grandmother has a great recipe for gumbo. I&rsquom not stating this is &ldquoTHE&rdquo gumbo recipe. It&rsquos a family recipe that I&rsquom sharing with you. There&rsquos nothing more to it than just that. Also, this is more of a Cajun gumbo rather than the regular Creole gumbo that most are accustomed to. The Creole gumbo would likely have a seafood mix instead of this chicken and andouille mix, hence why this is a Cajun gumbo.

Ok, now that little disclaimer is out of the way, we can get to cooking! The most labor intensive part of this is making the roux, which I highly recommend making the night before. You have to cook it to a chocolate color. Yeah, imagine turning white flour into a chocolate color. Mhm, definitely takes a while. It took me an hour to get it to be a dark chocolate color. Again, WORTH IT. It&rsquos what gives the nutty and smokey taste to the gumbo. Another labor intensive part of this dish is all the chopping and stirring you have to do. I think this gumbo took me a total of 4 hours to make. Would I do it again? Hell yeah! It&rsquos TO DIE FOR. So authentic and so delicious. It fills you up too! This isn&rsquot a light dish at all, but was able to eat this for lunch and skip dinner. That&rsquos how full it kept me! Let&rsquos not mention the two bowls I ate &ndash that might&rsquove helped in the &ldquoskipping dinner&rdquo part.

I&rsquom trying a new thing out with step-by-step photos. You&rsquoll notice some of the newer entries will have them but since I work a month out at a time, the step-by-steps will be few in far between for this month. Look for more in January :)

Anyway, so you see that first picture? That&rsquos how dark my roux was. Gorgeous, huh? So then you move on to browning your sausage, then browning your chicken, then the veggies, then you throw the luxurious roux into the mix, stir it around, add the chicken broth, and let it simmer for at least 2-3 hours. It&rsquos the most marvelous thing when it&rsquos done. Trust me. Serve it over rice and take a nice long nap afterwards.


Ingredients

  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon (250ml) canola or vegetable oil, divided
  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 2 1/4 pounds 1kg total)
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 pounds Cajun-style andouille sausage (680g about 8 links), sliced crosswise 1/2 inch thick
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour (4 1/2 ounces 130g)
  • 2 large yellow onions (about 12 ounces 340g each), cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 2 green bell peppers (about 7 ounces 200g each), cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 4 large celery ribs (9 ounces 260g total), cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 8 medium cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 quarts (1.4L) homemade brown or white chicken stock or store-bought low-sodium chicken stock
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 2 large sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 pound (450g) fresh okra, caps trimmed, pods cut crosswise 1/2 inch thick (optional see note)
  • 1/2 teaspoon filé powder, plus more as needed for serving (optional see note)
  • Warm rice, thinly sliced scallions, and hot sauce, for serving

How to make Seafood, Chicken, and Andouille Sausage Gumbo .

My mom’s parents came from Baton Rouge, so with that being said… We love us some Gumbo! No seriously! In addition to the turkey’s, hams, and roasts – during the holidays you can always count on us making some good southern style gumbo as well. Keep in mind that I said southern style gumbo! I’m talking Seafood, Chicken, and andouille sausage gumbo! Not the gumbo with just chicken and okra, or just sausage, and rice. REAL GUMBO. Honey we go in. Our gumbo consist of shrimp, crab, chicken, sausage, okra, and more. We usually serve it with rice, and cornbread- but of course during the holidays we serve a bowl of our gumbo with everything else such as: super cheesy southern baked macaroni and cheese, southern style green beans, potato salad, and a ton of other things ( somehow people manage to eat it all too!).

To be honest you don’t have to serve gumbo with a ton of other things ( we are just greedy!) You can certainly just make gumbo, and serve it with rice. In this post I’m going to show and tell you how I make MY gumbo.

As much as I love seafood, chicken, and sausage gumbo I usually only make it during the holidays or for other special occasions. Why? Because it can be quite expensive. Unless you live in a area where you can fish and get your own crab, and shrimp – you may end up paying a pretty penny for all of the ingredients for a nice authentic gumbo recipe. Therefore I don’t make gumbo as much as I’d like to!

I use Alaskan King Crab for my gumbo. In my area, a pound of Alaskan King Crab Legs clusters run $15 and up a pound. Depending on how many people you are cooking for, this can get really pricy. If you are on a strict budget stop by your local seafood market and see if the have any crab claws on sale. In the past I have gotten crab claws for as low as $5 a pound. Also, if you have a different crab preference, you can use that as well!

As far as shrimp I use two different kinds of shrimp. One of the shrimps that I like to use is dried shrimp. Dried shrimp is pretty much what is sounds like. It is dehydrated shrimp! The dried shrimp adds a lot of shrimp/ seafood flavor to the gumbo so I try my best not to skip out on it. Some people may have a hard time finding dehydrated shrimp, but I always find my dried shrimp at my local Asian markets.

*** Keep in mind that once you add the dry shrimp into the gumbo, it will hydrate. It won’t remain dry. LOL. *****

The other shrimp that I use in my gumbo recipe is white tail shrimp. I like my shrimp to be on the larger side, but that’s just my preference. Also white tail shrimp is a preference of mine as well, You can certainly use a different shrimp for your gumbo recipe.

Tip: When I buy my shrimp I buy it peeled and de veined. It saves me a lot of time! I freaking hate cleaning shrimp!

Now let’s talk about the most time consuming part of the gumbo… The Roux! In the past I’ve watched several people make their roux different ways. I’ve watched my mom, I’ve watched my aunts, heck- I’ve even watched chefs on tv make their roux. After all that “watching”, no ones roux worked for me. So that’s when I sat down, and said ” DO YOU!”. I make my roux different from a lot of people. I make it thinner than what you may be use to seeing, BUT- just trust when I tell you that it will all come together! I start off with my vegetable oil, and then I heat it up. I then add in my flour, and cook the roux until it is a peanut butter brown color. This step takes about 30 minutes over medium heat! I know.. It’s time consuming! So what I do is, listen to music while make my roux ( usually 90’s r&B). It relaxes me, and it helps me stay awake during the boring roux process.

For gumbo, I like to use a lot of sausage! I prefer to use chicken andouille sausage that I buy from Trader Joe’s. I really love Trader Joe’s andouille sausage. It’s packed with flavor, and it’s nice and spicy. Although I prefer using andouille sausage for my gumbo, some people don’t. My mom is one of those people. My mother prefers to use Louisiana Hot Links in her gumbo. I must admit, that it’s pretty good, but I prefer andouille sausage!

If you can’t or don’t want any spiciness to your gumbo you can use a regular smoked sausage! When I make gumbo for people that can’t tolerate spicy food, I use beef smoke sausage. They also have smoked chicken, pork, and turkey sausage available!

So now that I’ve done all the small talk ( or not so small talk!) let’s get to my recipe!


Cajun Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

  • Quick Glance
  • (5)
  • 2 H
  • 2 H, 45 M
  • Serves 10 to 12

Ingredients US Metric

  • 1 cup vegetable oil or mild olive oil
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped garlic
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme, or 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sweet or hot paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 quarts homemade chicken stock or canned chicken broth
  • 3 1/2 pounds skin-on, bone-in chicken legs and thighs
  • 1 pound Cajun-style andouille sausage, smoked kielbasa, or other smoked sausage
  • 1 cup thinly sliced scallions, plus more for garnish
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • Cooked white rice, for serving

Directions

In a large, heavy-bottomed Dutch oven, preferably cast-iron or enamel cast-iron, heat the oil over medium-high heat until shimmering. When a pinch of flour sprinkled on the oil immediately blooms on the surface of the oil, scatter in the rest of the flour and quickly stir, thoroughly combining the oil and flour into a thick, smooth roux.

Continue cooking the roux, stirring often, as it turns from pale yellow to a rich, deep brown, adjusting the heat as needed to keep the roux slowly darkening without bubbling or burning. This can take anywhere from 20 to 60 minutes, depending on your pot and your stove. The finished roux should be darker than peanut butter and about the color of coffee with a little cream.

Add the onion, celery, and bell pepper to the roux and stir well to coat them. Let them cook, stirring often, until the vegetables are fragrant, softened, shiny, and evenly coated with the roux, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the garlic, thyme, salt, pepper, paprika, and cayenne and stir well and cook for 2 minutes more.

Add the stock, stir well, and bring it to a lively boil, stirring often to dissolve the roux into the stock. When everything is boiling nicely, add the chicken. When the stock returns to a rolling boil, adjust the heat to maintain a lively simmer and cook, stirring now and then, until the chicken is cooked through and very tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Meanwhile, chop the andouille into bite-size pieces, first halving each andouille link lengthwise and then cutting it crosswise into half-moon slices about 1/4 inch thick.

Using tongs or a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken from the pot to a platter and let it cool. When you can handle it, pull the meat from the bones, discarding the bones and skin. Coarsely tear or chop the chicken and then return it to the pot along with the andouille.

Cook the gumbo, stirring now and then, until the sausage has softened and everything has come together into a rich, flavorful, slightly thickened stew, about 30 minutes more.

Remove the pot from the heat. (You can cool, cover, and refrigerate the gumbo for up to 2 days to allow the flavors to meld. Skim any fat from the surface of the gumbo and discard. Warm the gumbo over low heat prior to continuing.)

Stir in the scallions and parsley. Serve the gumbo in bowls over rice or with rice on the side, garnished with more scallions. Originally published September 30, 2015.

Recipe Testers' Reviews

I followed this Cajun chicken and sausage gumbo recipe to the letter and it turned out unbelievably great. The smell in the house as this was cooking was out of this world! I made this, let it rest in the refrigerator for a day, and enjoyed it with the suggested rice. This is a recipe that is worth the effort…your family will think you are AMAZING! Definitely will have this again and again.

The paprika I used was hot, not sweet. I used store-bought chicken stock, and it seemed to be just fine. The roux did not take long (15 minutes tops) to reach a "coffee with creamer" brown. I had to adjust the heat quite often so it wouldn't smoke but no problems at all on the browning of the roux. The chicken actually took a little over an hour, just because I like it fall-off-the-bone tender.

This is a straightforward, real deal Cajun gumbo that everyone loved. The kids ate leftover gumbo for 2 days afterwards. It really kept getting better.

I like that the author labels this Cajun-style as opposed to Creole. Creole cooking is lighter, probably more refined, and possibly might include tomato. This one is a hearty stew that is rustic and utterly delicious.

The most time-consuming step is making the roux. It took an hour or so for me to get it to deep brown without burning it. Be careful with the hot roux, it burns like crazy so don't splatter it around. The cooking time can actually be mitigated in a couple of ways. It could be done way ahead of time and left in the pot with the heat off once it reaches the appropriate color. Just bring it back to temperature of "scalding hot" before proceeding. Another method that I use almost exclusively for making roux is the Alton Brown oven method. Just mix the fat and flour and put the uncovered pot in the oven set to 350°F. It takes about 2 hours for it to get to the almost dark brown stage and requires no constant stirring. Just give it a stir maybe every 30 minutes. This frees you up to get everything else prepared and have a couple beers, too.

I wanted to cut on the level of spiciness in the gumbo for my kiddos, so I used sweet paprika and subbed hot paprika for the cayenne. I added healthy doses of Tabasco to my bowl, though. When the raw chicken is added, make sure to skim all the usual gunk that comes to the surface. The chicken was ready in about an hour since I used the thighs and legs from a large free-range chicken. Smaller hens may take less time.

Ohio does not know gumbo. I don't pretend to. What I do know is that we are on board with this spicy, richly flavored, meal-in-a-bowl chicken and sausage gumbo. If you have a helper in the kitchen with you, pass them a beer and put them on roux-stirring duty so you can do all the chopping while you chat.

It took 30 minutes for our flour mixture to look like café au lait. From that point, there's about 15 minutes of activity until you, too, can relax with a beer while the chicken stews away. Pulling the meat away from the bones and skin was the only grumbly part as I did so, I had to wonder if using boneless, skinless thighs would affect the final product.

Adding the andouille sausage is truly transformative—the entire pot is changed by the smoky, savory sausage. Fistfuls of scallions and parsley and a scoop of bright white rice gives each bowl a photo finish. The perfectionist in me will tinker a bit more, as the stew was a tad greasy for me at the end, bringing me back to the skinless thighs idea. but a rest in the fridge, then scooping the solids off could do as well. Don't forget the hot sauce—Tabasco, Crystal, or any vinegar-and-cayenne-style hot sauce is perfect. I used sweet paprika.

We simply can't wait to enjoy this again! Great recipe!

I love gumbo—any kind—and I really liked this one. It’s very easy and straightforward and affordable. A very satisfying dish.

Since I had just made a roasted chicken stock, I had lots of chicken fat left and used that for this dish. It worked very well. I used some smoked paprika, which is slightly hot already, so I omitted the cayenne. Since I'm still not used to my new stove, my roux was done in just 16 minutes. Next time I will do the roux on a very low flame. After adding the veggies, then the stock, and then the chicken, I let the gumbo simmer for about 1 hour. The chicken was done but not quite falling off the bone. Exactly what I wanted.

After adding back the shredded chicken and the andouille, I let the stew simmer for another 1/2 hour to blend the flavor. I added a bit more salt, and then I was done. Served with white rice and a bit of chopped cilantro and scallions, it's a keeper! I made it ahead of time and let the flavors mingle in the fridge. The fat separated a bit, but a rigorous short boil brought it back together.

If you're expecting a spicy hot gumbo, then this Cajun chicken and sausage gumbo recipe isn't what you're looking for. If you want a gumbo with layers of flavor, then this is the perfect recipe for you. I was concerned about the amount of cayenne pepper, so I used the sweet paprika. Next time I'll opt for the hot because I thought it could use just a little extra kick—not enough where it will sear your mouth but enough to make you sit up and take notice of the flavors.

I also used andouille sausage because I just love it. The directions are very easy to follow, and the timing for me was perfect. It took 20 minutes in my enamel-coated cast-iron Dutch oven to get that beautiful deep brown coloring. When making a roux, you need to remember, the lighter the roux, the thicker it will be. The darker the roux, the more flavorful it is, yet the flour has lost all its thickening power.

It took only 45 minutes for my chicken to cook through. Then, 30 minutes later, I had a very good pot of gumbo ready to eat. This does make a huge batch of gumbo but could very easily be cut in half for a smaller batch.

My husband and I LOVED this gumbo dish. I've tried gumbos before and was never particularly impressed. Apparently, Creole versus Cajun spices make all the difference!

My dish wasn't as dark as the pic with the recipe, but I think that's because I wasn't patient enough to let the butter brown fully. I'll make the effort next time.

I also think that, with this spice blend, you could make a quick "cheaters" version and still have a tasty meal. Subbing boneless chicken cut into cubes would really cut down cooking time although you would lose a bit of the flavor from cooking bone-in.

This chicken and sausage gumbo is a rather more complicated recipe than I usually use, but the end result was perfect. The flavors all come together to make an outstanding full-bodied gumbo.

When making gumbo, the above measurements are usually just a guide. That is the nature of gumbo. Use what you have.

You cannot get a sear on the chicken when you are putting it into the pot with the roux. I have always seen either the chicken just put in raw or either browned before you start the roux. It wasn't seared but was cooked a bit and it was perfect by the end of the cook time.

I didn't find that putting the pot half off the burner accomplished much. the trick is to not raise the whole thing a boil over a high heat. It takes longer to do it on a low flame, but it works in that you have no grunge on top that way, another trick from my BFF's aunt! She had a lot of tricks up her sleeves.

The best part about gumbo is that it gets better and better the longer it simmers and/or sits in the fridge! And it freezes really well. If you have any left. So put a pot on the stove, cook it until you are ready to eat it, and it will be good to go!

I am not sure if the special blend of spices was the secret, but it will be good on fried chicken to use up what's left! And if you want to really eat like down home, put potato salad in that bowl instead of the rice. Either way, this one is a winner. Gumbo is good with everything from iced tea to longnecks to prosecco to a good oaky chardonnay. Or maybe that's just the way we are used to doing things down here around NOLA!

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Comments

DELICIOUS! It needed more cayenne pepper for heat, though.

Thanks, Gunny! I’m so pleased that you enjoyed it.

This is the exact recipe I’ve been making for years, except that I add okra, and let me say– you won’t go wrong! Wonderful!

Thanks, Luna! Glad to hear it.

It was my first attempt at gumbo. It turned out well. My family really liked it. I added okra and gumbo file as well just because I like those flavors. I thought it would be too thick with only 2 Qts liquid but it was just right.

Thanks, Tina! We’re delighted that this turned out so well for you. We can’t wait to hear what you try next.

We love this dish so much we made it twice in ten days. Wouldn’t change a thing except we *might* have used a bit more sausage than called for. After dinner, you will go to bed dreaming about it and wake up in the morning wondering how to justify it for breakfast. It warms the heart, the soul, and the belly. Thank you for sharing this, you’ve given us a new winter dish to look forward to making!

Kate, LOVE your kind note! Everything about it warms our hearts and souls. Thrilled to hear you love this so much and, again, we so appreciate your thoughtfulness!

Though I haven’t made this recipe (I’m born and raised in New Orleans so we can make a gumbo in our sleep), I have a couple of suggestions people might like. First, if you don’t have bacon grease — every good Southern girl has a canning jar of bacon grease in her fridge — use vegetable oil instead of olive oil. If making the roux is too much trouble or scares you, make it in the microwave. Stir oil and flour in large Pyrex bowl (2 quart size is perfect), and microwave on high for 3 minutes. Using potholder, remove roux and stir well, nuking for 30 seconds before removing again to stir. Continue this until the roux is the color of a copper penny. When making a large amount of roux such as 1 cup oil to 1 cup flour, you may be able to get away with stirring every 60 seconds to start. Once roux starts to develop color, go back to stirring every 30 seconds. Trust me on this: NO ONE will be able to tell your roux was made in a microwave as the texture is the same, it acts the same and the resulting flavor (and thickness) is the same. You will also save some energy by not making it in the oven as suggested above, as running an oven for two hours at 350 degrees can sure heat up the place. For better flavor, definitely brown your chicken pieces in a small amount of oil prior to adding them to the gumbo. The nice sear not only helps develop flavor in your gumbo, but also allows you to get some of the fat/grease out of the chicken, hence out of your gumbo. There’s no need to flour the chicken prior to browning but just make sure your chicken pieces have been dried with paper towels first as this will help it brown faster. I also recommend browning the andouille prior to putting it in your gumbo. Bone-in chicken pieces are a must, as the bones do add flavor to your gumbo. We love dark meat around here but usually also cut a couple of bone-in chicken breasts in half to use in the gumbo. No need to remove breasts earlier than the thighs as the breast meat retains its moisture being cooked in the vegetable/stock mixture. My Louisiana-born mom always said that her older relatives said it wasn’t a gumbo unless you used three “meats”! Want to take the flavor of this gumbo to the next level? Add a dozen or more oysters — if they sell freshly shucked oysters near you, a pint of oysters would be perfect. Don’t like the idea of eating an oyster that isn’t fried? Then you can just use the oyster “liquor,” which is the oysters juice the oysters sit in when sold freshly shucked. You would add the oysters at the very end and only cook for about 5 minutes — just until the edges of an oyster get curly and look like a ruffle. Enjoy your gumbo, people!


1 pound smoked sausage, preferably Andouille, cut into 1/2-inch slices
1 cup all-purpose flour, divided
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 pound chicken, cut into bite-size pieces
1 cup vegetable oil, divided
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 or 2 cloves garlic, minced
1 can (28 ounces) tomatoes, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon red pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
7 cups chicken stock
5 to 6 cups cooked rice

Garnish: Parsley and chopped green onion filé powder

In large sauté pan, brown sausage over medium-high heat remove and set aside.

Combine 1/2 cup flour and salt on waxed paper lightly dredge chicken pieces in it.

Add 1/2 cup oil to sauté pan fry chicken until golden, about 7 minutes add to sausage.

Make a roux: In large stockpot, over medium-high heat, heat remaining oil until very hot. Add remaining flour all at once, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium and cook roux until medium in color.

Immediately stir in onion, celery and green pepper turn off heat. (The hot roux will cook vegetables, and the cold vegetables will keep the roux from overcooking.) When vegetables are tender, adjust heat back to medium. Add garlic, sausage and chicken. Stir in tomatoes, remaining spices and chicken stock.