This one pan Cajun Rice recipe is flavorful, easy to throw together, and perfect for busy weeknights.
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When we graduated from college, Jordan & I lived right outside of New Orleans, in Biloxi, Mississippi. While we lived on the Gulf Coast we often found ourselves discovering really great dinner recipes that we didn’t have in Ohio…. Like this Cajun Rice recipe!
When we both worked outside most of the day, the last thing we wanted to do was come home and make a big dinner. One pot recipes were a lifesaver because they were easy to make and clean up afterward.
How to Make Cajun Shrimp and Rice
What I love about Cajun rice is that it’s a total pantry clean-out recipe. You’ll start with make-ahead rice (or quick instant rice) and then you can toss in leftover protein and veggies.
If you’re looking for a quick step, skip to the frozen veggies, DO NOT skip browning the Andouille Sausage! Browning the sausage gives it a great texture and provides instant flavor. Once your meat is browned your pan will be left with lots of flavored bot in the bottom—which is a good thing!
While your sausage is browning chop your veggies. Once the sausage is browned, remove it from the pan and set it aside. Add more oil to the hot pan and sauté your vegetables. Cook the vegetables until they are almost translucent. Be sure to scrape up any browned pieces from the sausage and mix them with your veggies. This amps up the flavor of your Cajun rice.
(Have extra peppers, corn, or other vegetables in the fridge? This would be the time to add them if they don’t need much cooking time. Be sure to add an extra splash of Soy Sauce or shake of Cajun Seasoning if you are adding more ingredients)
While the vegetables are cooking, you’ll want to prepare your shrimp with some Cajun Seasoning.
Not using shrimp? Dice up one chicken breast, lightly coat with Cajun Seasoning, and brown the pieces BEFORE the first sausage step. Once they are browned, add in the sausage and continue the recipe steps.
Add another ½ tablespoon of oil to the empty side of the pan. Add the seasoned shrimp and cook 1-2 minutes per side until the shrimp start to turn orange. Combine shrimp and vegetables in the pan. Add minced garlic and cook for another minute. Push shrimp and vegetables to one side of the pan.
Add the remaining oil to the empty side of the pan. Add cold cooked rice and cook for 2-3 minutes. Break up any large chunks of rice with a spoon or spatula while cooking. Combine rice, shrimp, and vegetables in the pan. Add the cooked andouille sausage and soy sauce and cook for an additional minute. Push everything to one side of the pan.
Then, you’ll scramble the eggs in a small bowl. Add scrambled eggs to the empty side of the pan. Stir occasionally until eggs are cooked through. Combine eggs with other ingredients in the pan until evenly distributed through the rice.
Top your dish with sliced scallions, more soy sauce, or Crystal hot sauce. My husband prefers Tabasco’s Chipotle sauce, too!
Dirty Rice versus Cajun Rice
If you’re not from the Gulf Coast or New Orleans it’s easy to mix up Dirty Rice & Cajun shrimp rice. Dirty Rice usually has ground beef as its sole protein and its darker brown in color as Creole Seasoning is traditionally the only spice used.
This Cajun shrimp fried rice recipe is more similar to Jambalaya in my opinion. While there isn’t a tomato ingredient used, this recipe calls for Soy Sauce which gives it a slightly deeper flavor profile, includes scrambled eggs, and has lots of options for proteins.
Cajun Rice Ingredients
- Andouille Sausage
- Green Bell Pepper
- Yellow Onion
- Fresh Garlic
- Medium Sized Shrimp
- Cajun Seasoning
- Cooked White or Brown Rice (chilled for optimal texture)
- Soy Sauce
- Eggs for the Fried Rice
To make prep even easier, you could substitute in a bag of frozen green bell peppers and frozen onions. Frozen onions are one of my unsung heroes during meal prep. They save me so much time.
My little guy loves scrambled eggs in his fried rice so much that sometimes I’ll add in one or two extras. It gives us more protein, he loves the dish even more so, and everyone is happy. For the Cajun Seasoning, I prefer Tony Chachere’s. However, you could use what you prefer and adjust the amount to taste. I recommend starting out with the recipe card and sprinkling on a little more if needed, once everything is tossed together!
Recommended Serving Suggestions
While this dish is truly one pot from start to finish you can still offer a few great sides!
- A ready to eat salad to help cut the starch/rice heaviness (I love the pre-bagged ones from the grocery store)
- Slow Cooker Creamed Corn (a HUGE favorite in our home!)
- Fresh Green Beans sauteed with Olive Oil & Garlic
- Corn Bread (this is my go-to recipe!)
If you’re meal planning, this recipe should stay in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. It’s an ideal freezer meal for busy weeks too. If you are making ahead, skip the dirty dishes and freeze your Cajun rice in an aluminum pan. Reheat in the oven at 350 degrees for an hour or until it reaches at least 160 degrees internally.
Tools Needed to Make Cajun Rice
- 2 tablespoons canola oil (divided)
- 2 andouille sausage links
- 1 green bell pepper
- 1 medium yellow onion
- 3 stalks of celery
- 2 cloves of garlic
- ½ pound of peeled 31/40 shrimp (medium size)
- 1 tablespoon cajun seasoning
- 3 cups of cooked rice (chilled)
- 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
- 2 large eggs
- Slice the andouille sausage in half longways, then in half longways again so each link is cut into four pieces. Cut into small bite-sized pieces (about ¼” in size) and set aside.
- Dice bell pepper, onion, and celery into medium dice (about ½” cubes) and mince garlic cloves. Set aside.
- Heat ½ tablespoon of oil in a large wok or pan. Cook diced andouille pieces until browned (around 3-4 minutes). Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Add another ½ tablespoon of oil to the same pan and saute the diced bell pepper, onions, and celery until onions just start to turn translucent (around 4-5 minutes). Push vegetables to one side of the pan.
- While vegetables are cooking, season the shrimp with the cajun seasoning ensuring an even coating.
- Add another ½ tablespoon of oil to the empty side of the pan. Add the seasoned shrimp and cook 1-2 minutes per side until the shrimp start to turn orange. Combine shrimp and vegetables in the pan. Add minced garlic and cook for another minute. Push shrimp and vegetables to one side of the pan.
- Add the remaining ½ tablespoon of oil to the empty side of the pan. Add cold cooked rice and cook for 2-3 minutes. Break up any large chunks of rice with a spoon or spatula while cooking. Combine rice, shrimp, and vegetables in the pan. Add cooked andouille sausage and soy sauce and cook for an additional minute. Push everything to one side of the pan.
- Lightly scramble the eggs in a small bowl. Add scrambled eggs to the empty side of the pan. Stir occasionally until eggs are cooked through. Combine eggs with other ingredients in the pan until evenly distributed through the rice.
- Enjoy immediately. If desired, top with sliced scallions, more soy sauce, or Crystal hot sauce.
When you make this super easy Cajun fried rice for dinner be sure to tag me, at @ourhomemadeeasy! It reminds me of our time in Mississippi and I hope that you enjoy it, too!