Jambalaya is the quintessential one-pot recipe with chicken, smoked sausage, red sauce, and rice. This stovetop version is overflowing with flavor and perfect for a weekday dinner.

Plate of jambalaya by Red Beans & Eric.

One question I get emailed or messaged a lot is if there is a way to make the Forgotten Once Jambalaya slow cooker recipe on the stovetop?

Of course, there is!

In fact, it’s really easy and pretty fast. I tend to keep all of the ingredients on hand in the pantry, fridge, and freezer just in case I need to whip up a quick and amazing tasting jambalaya. No offense to the boxed versions, but why wouldn’t you make jambalaya from scratch when it doesn’t take that much longer? A Facebook friend of mine, who lived in Louisiana for over 20-some years moved back to his hometown of Vancouver, Canada recently. He says that one of the biggest things he misses is the food. Then, the other day he was out shopping and he was so excited because he finally found a store that sold Zatarain.

I love Zatarain’s just as much as the next guy but why doesn’t he cook the jambalaya or gumbo or red beans from scratch?

It’s not hard. Jambalaya is not as complex as a gumbo can be or it’s not that time-consuming like a pot of red beans.
Sure you can keep some Zatarain’s boxes in your pantry for a quick 20-minute meal, or you can keep some staple ingredients on hand – which you probably already do – and make something built around flavor.

I always keep extra chicken in the freezer along with smoked sausage; I usually always have the trinity on hand plus da pope – you know, onions, bell peppers, celery, and garlic; there’s always rice, canned broth, and Rotel tomatoes in the pantry; then I have a cabinet of herbs and spices for whatever it is I need.

And that’s everything you need for this recipe. So, if you need to plan out a meal and you plan on serving jambalaya for the big game, a potluck, birthday party, holiday party, a family reunion, make the slow cooker jambalaya; or, if you suddenly decided that you crave that Forgotten Once Jambalaya recipe and you want it fast! this recipe is for you and your family!

I mentioned this is the slow cooker version article, but this has some bite to it with the Rotel with chiles, the hot sauce, and the red pepper. If you want your jambalaya on the milder side, don’t include the hot sauce – serve that at the table – and lower the amount of red pepper you put in. Start low then adjust the more often you make this.

The Stovetop Forgotten Once Jambalaya is fast to prepare and cook. It’s easy, tastes amazing, and it’s unforgettable.

Try it and tell me what you think about it in the comment section below. I’m curious to hear what you think. But I think that you’ll enjoy this version just as much as I do.

Stovetop Forgotten Once Jambalaya

Course Main - POULTRY
Cuisine American
Keyword cajun, creole, easy, jambalaya, one pot, weeknight
Servings 6 people
Author Red Beans and Eric


  • 1 lbs boneless chicken breasts or boneless thighs
  • 1 lbs smoked sausage cut to ¼-inch rounds
  • 1 10- oz can Rotel tomatoes with chiles undrained
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 6- oz can tomato paste
  • 1 onion diced
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • 3 celery ribs chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 3 tsp parsley flakes
  • 2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp hot sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups long-grain white rice
  • 1 lbs raw shrimp optional
  • green onion for garnish


  1. In a large heavy pot, heat the olive oil on medium, and add the sliced sausage; saute until the sausage has slightly browned and the edges have a crisp to them. Once done, remove with a slotted spoon. Add the chicken to the pot and saute until the chicken is no longer pink and mostly cooked through; about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the onions, green bell peppers, celery, and garlic to the pot with the chicken and saute for 5 minutes.
  3. Return the sausage to the pot along with the can of Rotel tomatoes and juices, tomato paste, seasonings, chicken stock, rice and stir to combine. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 25 minutes.
  4. Once the rice is tender, if you're adding raw shrimp to the meal, combine the shrimp into the jambalaya making sure that they are covered; cover the pot and cook for an additional 10 minutes, or until the shrimp have turned a pink color.
  5. Season the jambalaya with salt, pepper, or hot sauce if desired and stir well before serving. Serve the jambalaya warm along with hot French bread or cornbread. Garnish with green onions and fresh parsley if desired.
  6. Enjoy this stovetop version of the Forgotten Once Jambalaya!

Plate of jambalaya by Red Beans & Eric.

Here’s how I make this stovetop jambalaya:

Cast iron pot of sliced smoked sausage being cooked

After dicing all of the meats and vegetables, in a large heavy pot, saute the sausage pieces in olive oil. Once the sausage is to your liking – I like mine dark and crisp – with a slotted spoon, remove and set aside.

Cut pieces of boneless chicken breast being cooked in a red cast iron pot.

Add the bite-sized chicken pieces to the pot and saute until it is mostly done and no longer pink.

Diced onions, green bell peppers, and celery are cooked with bite-sized pieces of chicken in a cast iron pot.

Add the diced vegetables and garlic and saute until softened.

A cast iron pot filled with chicken, smoked sausage, onions, bell peppers, celery, and tomato sauce.

Return the sausage to the pot along with the Rotel tomatoes, tomato paste, seasonings, and chicken stock.

A cast iron pot filled with chicken, smoked sausage, onions, bell peppers, celery, rice, and tomato sauce.

Add the rice to the pot and mix it in there really good. Cover and simmer.


I recommend using long-grain white rice when cooking jambalaya. I made this once using brown rice thinking that I was going for a healthier approach but it takes longer to cook and some of the rice will have a crunchy texture to it. When cooking brown rice, you’ll need to double the cooking time for the rice to get tender – i.e. mushy. You’ll still find that some of the rice has a little crunch to it, to fix this, after putting the jambalaya on the plate to serve, I threw it in the microwave for about a minute – problem solved. But to avoid the problems, just use long-grain white rice in the first place.

Jambalaya that has cooked in a red cast iron pot on the stove.

The Stovetop Forgotten Once Jambalaya hot and fresh off the stove!

LAGNIAPPE: If you’re looking for a different way to serve this jambalaya, try my Stuffed Green Bell Peppers recipe that uses jambalaya as the stuffing. Here is the recipe for the popular slow cooker version of the Forgotten Once Jambalaya. There’s also a nice guide to some of the best places to find jambalaya in New Orleans.

Thank you for reading!

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Keep the red beans cookin’!




  1. makeupmuddle

    February 9, 2020 at 7:48 pm

    Wow it looks good! It sounds like the perfect winter meal. Thanks for sharing!


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