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Chock-full of shrimp, chicken, sausage, okra and tomatoes, this flavorful stew is a staple in Louisiana. Make it a meal and serve with Real Cornbread (see associated recipe).

EatingWell Magazine, January/February 1993

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Recipe Summary

active:
20 mins
total:
50 mins
Servings:
4
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What Is Gumbo?

Gumbo is a stew and the official state dish of Louisiana. While there are some regional variations, the dish typically includes broth, seafood (like shrimp) and/or meat, andouille sausage, a combination of vegetables known as the "holy trinity" (celery, bell peppers and onions) and is thickened either by a toasted roux, fresh okra and/or gumbo filé powder. It is deeply flavorful with its roots combining elements of European, African and Native American cuisines. Gumbo is usually served with rice which helps sop up the rich combination of flavors.

How We Made Chicken & Shrimp Gumbo Healthy

1) Gumbo is often thickened with a roux which is a cooked combination of flour and fat (usually butter). The roux in gumbo is cooked until the color is a deep, dark brown which helps deliver a distinctly nutty flavor to the dish. In our version, we toasted flour without the butter and used it to coat the "holy trinity" of vegetables that cook in just one tablespoon of oil. This helps achieve the classic toasted flavor while slashing saturated fat and calories.

2) Andouille sausage adds that signature, smoky flavor to gumbo, but it also adds a good deal of sodium to the dish. We bulk up the protein in our gumbo with a combination of lower-sodium chicken and shrimp with smaller amounts of andouille sausage. You still get the classic, smoky flavor from the sausage while also keeping sodium in check. To lower the sodium even further, check the label and choose shrimp that hasn't been treated with sodium tripolyphosphate (STP) which can raise the sodium levels by 250 mg per 100g of shrimp. To find out more about what shrimp to buy, check out our shrimp buying guide here.

Additional reporting by Hilary Meyer

Ingredients

Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Heat a heavy cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until the flour turns a deep golden color, 7 to 10 minutes. Transfer the flour to a plate and let cool. (There will be a strong aroma similar to burnt toast. Be careful not to let the flour burn; reduce the heat if flour seems to be browning too quickly.) Alternately, toast the flour in a pie plate in a 400 degrees F oven for 20 minutes.

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  • Heat oil in a heavy stockpot over medium heat. Add onion, bell pepper, celery and garlic; sauté until the onions are lightly browned, about 7 minutes. Stir in the toasted flour. Gradually stir in broth and bring to a simmer, stirring. Add tomatoes, okra, pepper, thyme, oregano, cayenne and bay leaf. Cover and cook for 15 minutes. Stir in rice and cook, covered, for 15 minutes longer.

  • Add shrimp, chicken and sausage; simmer until the shrimp is opaque inside, the chicken is no longer pink and the rice is tender, about 5 minutes longer. Discard the bay leaf and season with salt. Ladle into bowls.

Associated Recipes

Nutrition Facts

301 calories; protein 23g; carbohydrates 38g; dietary fiber 4g; sugars 5g; fat 6g; saturated fat 1g; cholesterol 83mg; vitamin a iu 743IU; vitamin c 49mg; folate 115mcg; calcium 98mg; iron 2mg; magnesium 59mg; potassium 655mg; sodium 634mg.
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