Chicken and Sausage Gumbo is a soulful, belly-warming, bowl of perfection. Gumbo is the truest representation of Louisiana cooking – taking simple, inexpensive ingredients and elevating them into something extraordinary. My favorite gumbo is made grain and gluten-free for a Paleo treat that anyone can enjoy.
When I first met Michael, I had a pretty mixed opinion of New Orleans and Cajun food. My first trip to New Orleans was not that great – I was sick for most of the trip and was so stuffed up that food had pretty much no taste.
Michael convinced me to give New Orleans a second chance and now it is one of my favorite places. And the food – well, there’s nothing like it anywhere else.
When you are in New Orleans, seafood gumbo is always a great choice because the seafood is really fresh. When you are landlocked like we are, chicken and andouille sausage will make you less homesick.
How Do You Make Gumbo with Chicken and Sausage?
Begin by chopping your vegetables. Your gumbo will start with the “Cajun Holy Trinity” – onions, green peppers, and celery.
How Do You Keep Okra from Getting Slimy?
While you are cutting up your vegetables, spread out your okra on a baking sheet and bake at 325 F (163 C) until it is slightly dried out. This will dry it out a little and keep it from getting slimy as it cooks.
How Do You Make a Paleo Roux for Gumbo?
To make a Paleo Gumbo Roux, you use the same proportions of oil and flour as regular gumbo – 1/2 a cup of flour to 1/3 cup of oil – but use your favorite Paleo flour (I like Tapioca Starch or Almond Flour) and either Light Tasting Olive Oil or Avocado Oil.
How Do You Know if Your Roux is Cooked Enough?
Once your roux starts to brown and thicken – almost the color of sand – you will know that it is getting hot enough. Immediately add your okra and your “holy trinity” – green peppers, celery, and onion.
Cook until the vegetables are fairly soft and then add your garlic, tomatoes, green onions, and season with marjoram, basil, bay leaves, thyme, and salt and pepper. Cook for a few minutes and then add cooked chicken breast. (I use chicken that I’ve cooked in the instant pot (with salt, pepper, and a few shakes of Tony’s Creole Seasoning) and dump in the juices from the cooked chicken as well.
Cook for a few minutes and then add your broth.
Slowly bring the gumbo to a boil and start cooking your andouille. The timing should coincide for you to add your cooked andouille to the boiling gumbo – turn the heat on your gumbo down to a simmer and wait patiently.
How Long Does Gumbo Need to be Cooked For?
Simmer your paleo gumbo on low heat for an hour at least, but longer if you have time. I usually cook mine for at least 3 hours. The longer you cook your gumbo, the better it will be. If it starts to look like too much broth is cooking off, feel free to add more.
How Do You Serve Gumbo?
When you are ready to eat your gumbo, serve over your choice of rice – white rice is traditional, but if you follow a Paleo diet, gumbo is good with cauliflower rice as well. Season and garnish with salt, pepper, and a splash of Tabasco Sauce.
Paleo Chicken and Sausage Gumbo
- Stock Pot
- Cutting Board
- Measuring Cups
- Measuring Spoons
- 3 lbs Boneless Chicken Breast Cooked and shredded. My favorite way to do this is in an Instant Pot, though you can also bake your chicken on a nonstick cookie sheet (or use a nonstick mat) at 375° F for about 25 minutes.
- 1/3 cup oil Use a light tasting oil. For Paleo - avocado or light tasting avocado.
- 1/2 cup flour Use your choice of flour, for Paleo - tapioca or almond flour is ideal.
First Vegetable Group (Group #1)
- 1 cup onion, diced
- 1 cup celery, diced
- 1 cup green bell pepper, diced
- 24 oz okra, diced, frozen or fresh
Second Vegetable Group and Spices (Group #2)
- 1 cup green onions, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped If you do not have fresh parsley, use 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon of dried parsley.
- 1 tsp thyme, dried
- 1/2 tsp marjoram
- 1/2 tsp basil, dried
- 2 bay leaves, dried
- 28 oz can diced tomatoes with juice
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 2 quarts chicken/bone broth
- 1 quart water
- 1 tsp kosher salt Salt to taste at this point, you may need more depending on your preferences.
- 1/2 tsp black pepper Pepper to taste at this point, you may need more depending on your preferences.
- 1 lb andouille or hot smoked sausage, sliced Gilbert's Andouille is Paleo, as is the Whole Foods Andouille at MOST Whole Foods. Ask the butcher of the ingredients before buying because stores might use different ingredients.
- 4 cups cauliflower rice You can use regular rice if you are able to eat it, but to remain Paleo or Whole30, use cauliflower rice.
- Tabasco sauce to taste
- Begin by getting your chicken cooking. I like to make mine in my Instant Pot so I can be hands-free to cook the rest of the gumbo. You can find instructions here. You can also bake your chicken breasts on a nonstick cookie sheet (or use a nonstick mat) in the oven at 375° F for about 25 minutes with olive oil, salt, pepper, and some Tony's Creole Seasoning on them.
- While cooking your chicken, you can also cook your okra. Baking the okra ahead of time will keep it from getting stringy and slimy when you add it to your gumbo. It requires 15 - 20 minutes to cook, so I usually pop it in the oven at 350° F when I throw the chicken in the Instant Pot and start cutting up veggies. Check on it once or twice and stir to be sure it is not burning.
- Cut up all your vegetables. I separated them into groups because I find it easier to just toss them into bowls by what goes in the pot when. Combine your diced onion, celery, and green pepper. In a separate bowl, combine green onions and garlic.
- Begin your roux. It will take a few minutes to heat up but will start to change quickly once it has heated up. The colors will change from white, to light brown, and then the perfect shade of brown - somewhere between a cardboard box and potting soil. (If you use a tapioca starch, you might not see a drastic color change, so with that - as the mixture begins to thicken and bubble and get a little sticky, you can add your vegetables.)
- Add your first group of vegetables (Group #1) and cook for about five (5) minutes.
- After the onions start to appear translucent, add the second group of vegetables (Group #2) with the spices and your can of tomatoes, and your shredded chicken.
- Cook for another five (5) minutes and then add your chicken stock, water, salt, & pepper. Bring to a boil.
- While coming to a boil, cook your andouille/hot smoked sausage.
- Add to gumbo once boiling and reduce to a simmer. Simmer on low heat for at least an hour, I recommend 3 hours. Gumbo gets better the longer it cooks and even better the longer it sits.
- When I am working from home, I will make it in the morning and let it simmer on low, low heat all day.
- Serve with cauliflower rice if you are strict Paleo or following a Whole30. White rice is fine if you can eat it!
- Salt/pepper to taste and add a splash of Tabasco sauce.