Chicken Jambalaya

Looking for a hearty and flavorful one-pot meal? Look no further than this classic Cajun dish, Chicken Jambalaya. Packed with chicken, veggies, and spicy sausage, this dish is sure to satisfy your taste buds. The secret is in the bold blend of spices, including paprika, cumin, and cayenne pepper, that infuses every bite with mouthwatering flavor. It’s no wonder this dish has become a household favorite and a staple of Louisiana cuisine. Don’t just take our word for it, try making this recipe yourself and experience the deliciousness firsthand!

Here is why you might love this Chicken Jambalaya Recipe

1. Bold and complex flavors: This recipe is packed with flavorful ingredients like Cajun spices, smoked sausage, and bell peppers that create a delicious combination of savory and spicy flavors.

2. Easy one-pot meal: This recipe is a great option for a busy weeknight meal as it requires minimal prep work and can be made in one pot, saving time and effort.

3. Versatility: The recipe can be customized to suit individual preferences or dietary restrictions, making it a versatile option for a variety of people. It can be made with chicken, shrimp, or vegetarian ingredients and adjusted to be gluten-free or low-carb.

Chicken Jambalaya Recipe

Chicken Jambalaya is a classic Cajun dish that originates from Louisiana. This hearty, flavorful one-pot meal combines seasoned chicken, rice, and vegetables, cooked together in a rich tomato sauce. It's a spicy and filling meal that is perfect for feeding a crowd or meal prepping for a busy week.
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Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch, Meal Prep
Cuisine American, Cajun, Creole
Servings4 servings
Calories (per serving)407 kcal



  • Preheat a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat and add 2 tablespoons of butter.
  • Add 1 pound of boneless chicken breasts cut into bite-sized pieces and cook until browned on all sides.
  • Add 1 chopped onion, 2 chopped bell peppers, and 3 minced garlic cloves to the skillet and sauté until tender.
  • Add 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika, 1 teaspoon of thyme, 1 teaspoon of cumin, 1 teaspoon of chili powder, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper to the skillet and stir.
  • Add 1 cup of diced tomatoes and 1 cup of chicken broth to the skillet and bring to a boil.
  • Stir in 1 cup of uncooked long-grain white rice and reduce heat to low.
  • Cover and simmer for 25-30 minutes or until rice is fully cooked and liquid is absorbed.
  • Remove from heat and let stand for 5 minutes.
  • Garnish with chopped fresh parsley if desired.


1. Start by prepping all your ingredients before you begin cooking. This will help you stay organized and make the cooking process smoother.
2. Use a heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven to cook your jambalaya. This will help prevent burning and ensure that your dish cooks evenly.
3. Sear the chicken before adding it to the pot. This will help lock in the flavor and keep the chicken juicy.
4. Use a mix of spices to give your jambalaya a complex and flavorful taste. Some good options include paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, and cayenne pepper.
5. Add the rice to the pot after browning the chicken and sautéing the vegetables. Stir the rice frequently to prevent it from sticking to the pot.
6. Use chicken broth instead of water to cook your jambalaya. This will add additional flavor and make the rice more tender.
7. Add smoked sausage or andouille sausage to the dish for extra flavor and texture.
8. Allow the jambalaya to cook for at least 30 minutes, or until the rice is fully cooked and the flavors have melded together.
9. Garnish your jambalaya with chopped parsley or green onions before serving. This will add a pop of color and freshness to the dish.
10. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge. Jambalaya can be reheated in the microwave or on the stovetop for an easy and delicious meal.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 407kcalCarbohydrates: 48.71gProtein: 30.53gFat: 9.86gSaturated Fat: 4.53gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1.06gMonounsaturated Fat: 2.72gTrans Fat: 0.24gCholesterol: 87.63mgSodium: 798.77mgPotassium: 863.48mgFiber: 3.58gSugar: 5.4gVitamin A: 2738.33IUVitamin B1: 0.19mgVitamin B2: 0.27mgVitamin B3: 14.63mgVitamin B5: 2.43mgVitamin B6: 1.26mgVitamin B12: 0.3µgVitamin C: 89.42mgVitamin D: 0.11µgVitamin E: 2.16mgVitamin K: 39.76µgCalcium: 70.02mgCopper: 0.25mgFolate: 49.77µgIron: 2.63mgManganese: 0.79mgMagnesium: 64.8mgPhosphorus: 357.83mgSelenium: 44.2µgZinc: 1.65mgNet Carbohydrates: 45.13g
Read more nutritional information values.

Data source: USDA

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Main Ingredients Explained

Main Ingredients Description Alternatives
Chicken A protein source used in the dish. Shrimp, sausage, turkey, tofu
Rice The base of the dish, providing carbohydrates. Quinoa, barley, farro
Tomatoes A key ingredient providing acidity and flavor. Canned diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, fresh diced tomatoes

Storage Tips

Cooked chicken and rice dishes like jambalaya can be stored in the fridge for up to 4 days, and in the freezer for up to 3 months.

To store cooked jambalaya in the fridge, transfer it to an airtight container or resealable plastic bag immediately after cooking and let it cool to room temperature before refrigerating it.

To freeze jambalaya, wait for it to cool to room temperature, then transfer it to a freezer-safe container or plastic bag, and label with the date. Store it in the freezer for up to 3 months.

To defrost jambalaya, transfer it from the freezer to the fridge and let it thaw overnight. Alternatively, you can defrost it in the microwave or on the stovetop. Once thawed, reheat the jambalaya until it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F/74°C.

Recipe Variations

1. Shrimp Jambalaya – Replace the chicken with shrimp and use seafood stock instead of chicken stock to make a delicious seafood version of the dish.

2. Vegetarian Jambalaya – Use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth, and swap the chicken with a variety of vegetables such as okra, bell peppers, celery, corn, and tomatoes.

3. Creole Jambalaya – This version uses tomato sauce instead of diced tomatoes, and can include a mix of meat like sausage and ham with chicken.

4. Cajun Jambalaya – Similar to the Creole version, Cajun Jambalaya features more spice and uses Andouille sausage as the main protein.

5. Slow Cooker Jambalaya – Using a slow cooker, this recipe takes the fuss out of making Jambalaya, allowing for it to be cooked low and slow until the flavors are melded together.

6. Smoked Jambalaya – Incorporating smoked meats like chicken or sausage adds an additional layer of flavor to the dish.

7. Instant Pot Jambalaya – Similar to the slow cooker version, this recipe uses an Instant Pot to make the dish quickly and easily, while still producing a hearty and delicious meal.

What To Serve With

Here are some options for what to serve with Chicken Jambalaya:

1. Cornbread or garlic bread
2. Steamed or grilled vegetables like broccoli or asparagus
3. Garden or Caesar salad with a vinaigrette dressing
4. Fried okra
5. Coleslaw
6. Sweet potato fries
7. Cheesy grits
8. Dirty rice
9. Red beans and rice
10. Crab cakes or seafood gumbo for a seafood twist.

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