The Ultimate Gumbo Recipe

It’s starting to get cooler outside, and warm food is about to have its season. One warm food I particularly enjoy is gumbo!

This stew is, of course, popular thanks to Louisiana, but gumbo is universally delicious and easy to make at home. But we don’t just want easy: we want the best! So I’m going to show you how to make the ultimate gumbo.

My grandmother ain’t from New Orleans, no, she’s from Nashville, but she makes gumbo that’ll make you want to slap your mama. Or, you know, slap someone who deserves it. I hope grandma doesn’t mind me sharing!

You’ll need a few things to get started. You’ll need a few cans of chicken and sausage gumbo (what?? canned gumbo to make gumbo?? I thought you were a professional!), just bear with me. You’ll need chicken broth, canned chicken, dry rice, and chili powder. Of course, if you like some heat, bring along some hot sauce too! Shrimp is optional for those who don’t mind some sea critters in their stew.

This recipe is cheap, quick, easy, and tastes great on crackers! I encourage you to try this recipe and see for yourself! I’ll show you how to throw it together real quick.

Get a big ol’ pot and open up your cans of gumbo into it. Turn your heat on medium and let it cook a good while, mainly just until you’ve warmed up the contents. Then empty a tin of chicken broth into the pot. Stir everything up a little to get it all heated and mixed, then upturn the canned chicken into it too!

While that’s all warming up, you’ll need an additional pot to make the dry rice. Of course, the canned gumbo has rice in it, but you’re cooking for 5 people or more, and you need to supplement that stuff! Follow the instructions for the rice; white rice is fine, whatever you prefer works.

Now let’s add the rice to the main pot of stew. Easy does it. When it’s mixed in, you’ll need your chili powder. The canned gumbo should come in a bright orange-ish color. We want it to look like a scarlet sunset. Add chili powder until it reaches scarlet sunset level of redness, then stir it all together once more.

If you haven’t already, turn the burner on high and allow it to bubble and boil for a moment, just to ensure everything is warm and cooked and conjoined.

If you want to add shrimp, simply pan-fry the shrimp (I recommend seasoning it with garlic and/or Worcestershire sauce) and add it like you did the rice and chicken.

Leave a bottle of hot sauce at the table for folks who need some extra fire to take liberty with. You know the scarlet sunset I mentioned? I like to turn that into a rose with some hot sauce. But everyone has their own tastes.

Nashville isn’t quite Louisiana, but my grandmother, feeding 4 kids, single, and broke, was able to afford to bring a hint of Louisiana to her family and, now, I regularly enjoy a bowl with some saltines and hot sauce. I’m a college student now, so affordable, quality food is essential. Try this recipe and see for yourself that my grandmother really was on to something!