CrockPot Gumbo Recipe

Day 98.

There seem to be a lot of different ways to make gumbo. I've never been to New Orleans, so haven't had real gumbo--I hope to go, soon.
I made jambalaya earlier in the year, and still had many of the ingredients left in the freezer. My only knowledge of gumbo is that it has sausage, shrimp and okra--but I'm not thrilled with the recipes I have on hand, and am not sure exactly what proportion of rice-to-broth is appropriate. Some recipes list NO rice, and suggest ladling the hot soup over rice as a finishing touch.

I like that idea a lot, but I wasn't going to be home to monitor rice-cooking.

After spending way too much time reading recipes online and in cookbooks, I came to the conclusion that there really wasn't a wrong way to make gumbo, so decided to just go for it. I came up with the following:

The Ingredients:

--4 cups of chicken broth
--1 cup of brown rice
--1 cup frozen okra
--1/2 cup frozen corn
--1/2 chopped yellow onion
--1 can tomatoes and juice
--4-5 fully cooked sausages (I used 3 Chicken with garlic and artichokes, and 2 Chicken Cajun)
--1 1/2 cups frozen shrimp

The Directions:

--chop up your vegetables. I was using mostly frozen veggies, so only needed to chop the onion. If you have bell pepper, it would be a very nice addition.

--slice sausage into rounds

--dump everything into the crock, except for the frozen shrimp

--because the sausage has so much flavor, I opted to not season this any further. If you aren't sharing with children, you might want to add some additional cajun seasoning--your choice.

--cook on low all day, or on high for 4-6 hours. The longer soups and stews are cooked, the better. The rice will cook, and absorb a lot of the liquid, but it will still be soup-y. If you are putting this together the night before, don't add the rice until you are going to turn on the crock.
--20 min before serving, stir in the frozen shrimp

--serve with some crusty bread or corn muffins

The Verdict.

We all really enjoyed this! My kids adore shrimp and gobbled every piece that was in the pot, and picked out the not-too-spicy pieces of sausage. I gave a tupperware to my mom, and she liked it. When I had the leftovers for lunch the next day, most of the liquid had been absorbed by the rice, but it was still very tasty. I was impressed at how easy it was to throw together.

I really want to go to New Orleans!

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Posted by: Stephanie O'Dea | A Year of Slow Cooking at April 07, 2008

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What they say about this article

  1. I just found your blog this weekend, and you are my new hero! I adore my crockpot, too, but find that I keep making the same recipes. I tried one of your salmon recipes this weekend and it was delicious! Thanks so much, and I will be a regular reader! (I also think you are hysterically funny. Especially when you talk about your kids and food... I go through the same stuff with mine!)

  2. Anonymous4/07/2008

    We are so eating gumbo this week! Yum!

  3. this looks like the easiest Gumbo recipe ever! I just need to get some okra and shrimp.

  4. In my TWO trips to New Orleans, I have pretty much decided that gumbo has okra, or something as a thickener, jambalaya doesn't. How it is usually served there is the rice is prepared separate, you dish up your bowl of soup, and top it off with a scoop of rice. Keeping the rice separate allows for better leftovers in my opinion. Not always true - just the conclusion I came to after eating my way thru as many gumbos & poboys as possible. Love this site, I check it often!

  5. Lovin that Gumbo! Definitely agree with you that cooking it on low for a longer amount of time makes for much better results. I haven't made anything yet that I think would have been better if I had cooked it on high. I guess it is just more an issue of time, but you really reap the benefits when you wait it out and cook on low.

  6. Found you via Shannon over at Rocks in my Dryer. I, too, have an obsession with my crockpot. When I worked in a bank I was always sharing crockpot recipes with my co-workers until it became a joke. Someone was forever trying to find something that could NOT be made in the crockpot. (Must insert here that I was also the oldest one and the others sort of looked to me to be the 'expert' on stuff. LOL) Anyway, one time the youngest came to work with a laundry problem and was asking how to get a stain out. Before I could answer, one of the other ladies piped up and quipped, "Put it in the crockpot!" And of course everyone cracked up. :-)

  7. bwhahahahhahahaa, Kimberly!

    I think you are right, Jared, just don't do hardboiled eggs... ;-)

    that's the way my mom likes it, tejo. yum.

    ice cream, this was the first time I bought okra. it was right with the other frozen veggies.

    damsel, yay! let me know how it comes out.

    jen, thank you! the kids could seriously live on cereal and mac and cheese.



  8. I just stumbled upon your blog, and you are my hero!!! I am sooo looking forward to trying your recipies. We're doing the chicken terriyaki tomorrow. That gumbo looks good too...Thanks for sharing!

  9. Since I did time in Lousiana in the 1990s I have learned a lot about gumbo. A "purist" (I so hate them) would say you don't mix pork and seafood in a gumbo, you don't add tomatoes, and you don't add corn. Okra is optional for a lot of people, depends if you're cajun or creole. (I lived there from 1992-1996.) I know more than you wanted to know from a friend :-)

    If you want me to let you know how make authentic gumbo, I will. But you know what? This looks yummy. It made your family happy. And I think, "all's right with the world." Another winner! I mean, I put tomatoes in jambalaya -- you don't apparently do that either :-)

  10. Anonymous4/07/2008

    I am so impressed with this blog! I love my crock pot but I don't use it nearly enough. You are inspiring me to do more with it. I'm curious about something else though. I was reading through the recipe archives and noticed that you seem to be following a gluten free diet. Is this for your children or you? Were you diagnosed by a doctor or are you just trying to be healthier on your own? I seem to be hearing a lot about this but don't know much about it.

  11. Anonymous4/07/2008

    Awesome! So happy to find your blog and try a few of these recipes. I do a whole frozen bone in turkey breast (yes, frozen!) in my crock pot and it's extremely good. Good luck continuing with your quest and I look forward to following along. :)

  12. Anonymous4/07/2008

    Not bad for a non-Cajun. In my family we do chicken gumbo, sometimes with sausage and sometimes without. And we never touch okra.

    I guess the whole roux thing would be rough when you're cooking GF, no?

    As a note to the previous comment, too... Creoles put tomatoes in jambalaya, Cajuns do not.

    (as credentials ;-), my family is from Mamou, LA)

  13. Right now have potatoes and breakfast sausage in the pot, and yesterday did the teriyaki chicken (fab, fab, fab!!!!). Will do this today WITHOUT the okra; okra reminds me of, well, I won't say. But I think it will be just fine anyway!!!

  14. mmmmmm.....gumbo!!!

    and sooo simple. thanks stephanie!

  15. Anonymous4/10/2008

    I made this the other night, and it was great! I used your recipe as a base, and added celery, Worcestershire sauce and italian pork sausage. So easy and delicious!

  16. I'm from New Orleans (nola) and a little late, I check in often but never posted. I have never heard of crockpot gumbo and normally it is made 1 of 2 ways...chicken and sausage gumbo or seafood gumbo, but never a mixture. Kind of neat to see here. I will have to check it out. I have a from scratch recipe with a roux if you are intersted.

    PS if you ever get the chance to visit nola it is a must!!!

  17. I made this. I added 2 T. Old Bay Seasoning, a couple dashes of cayenne pepper, and the juice of half a lemon.

    Whoah mama! This dish was so good! My boyfriend is literally begging for more. We were scraping our bowls trying to not go back to the crockpot for more. It was like crack. Seriously.

    We had some the next day, and the rice had absorbed more of the liquid and it wasn't quite as crack like, but I have some in the freezer still, so we'll see what happens.

    Yesterday he bought me a 7qt. Europro slow cooker so I can make even more of this recipe. LOL

  18. vikki d5/24/2009

    awesome..i love all your recipes!!!

  19. Anonymous1/03/2010

    I just got a 4 qt. slow cooker for Christmas. So far I've made pulled pork for sandwiches. I'm trying the gumbo recipe today. It's all combined in the crockpot and cooking on low now. Hopefully I followed the directions :)

    Thanks for doing this site. It's incredibly helpful!

  20. Hi Stephanie. This was the fourth or fifth recipe I have made from your cookbook My Mom gave me for Christmas! I am losing count. We loved this one, too! I used turkey smoked sausage instead of the other sausages (could not find the right ones) and added creole seasoning. It was really good! Thanks for another great one!

  21. Hi Stephanie, I have had your cookbook for a few months and been following your blog for about a year. THANKS for all the fabulous recipes. I have made at least 20 of your recipes and every single one of them have been delicious. I am making the gumbo today as we speak but I used 2 cans of Rotel tomatoes instead of plain - I am so anxious to come home tonight and see how it all worked out!

  22. Anonymous4/13/2011

    I hate to be a party pooper.. Really! This recipe looks GREAT, but it is NOT gumbo. Gumbo is made from reaux (browned flour and oil together), and gumbo does not have tomatoes. This recipe also does not have the cooking trinity. Bell peppers, onion, and celery.

    I live in Southeast Texas, and although NOT Louisanna, this is Cajun country. (less than 30 minutes from the state line and my maiden name was very French)

    I don't use okra, but that is a personal opinion on gumbo.

    I make gumbo in my crock-pot on a regular basis (even have leftovers in the fridge right now)


  23. For those who are overly concerned with semantics, here’s a quick solution: just call this recipe YUMbo!

  24. Cari H.6/05/2011

    Bixby- I love what you said, call it YUMbo!! I think it is funny when people get all worked up over the title of a recipe. There is an enchilada recipe I make (I found it online) and there was a great deal of people online saying it wasn't really enchiladas because it was made with flour tortillas. All I know is they are AWESOME so I don't really care what it is called! :-)

    Anyway, I think I am going to make this tonight or maybe tomorrow.

  25. Anonymous11/23/2011

    hmm, while it might be tasty, this is not gumbo. I lived in Louisiana for 6 years, my grandparents moved to southeast Texas (which is still basically Cajun country as crazyladyx5 said above) from Louisiana in the late 40s and I have quite some experience in cooking (and eating!) gumbo.

    A real gumbo is roux based. And Creole gumbos (which as a Cajun with family from the Acadiana part of Louisiana, I don't consider real :P ), contain tomatoes and okra but you'll never find it in a true Cajun gumbo.

    And corn? Never seen it in ANY style gumbo, Creole or Cajun.

    For good gumbo: make a dark roux (it should look like fudge) and then follow the first recipe on this page:

  26. After reading the previous comment, I realized why I don't like other people's gumbo. I guess I didn't realize the differences. The recipe on this site is more of what I like and close enough to what my dad used to make... with the corn and such :) and it's what I have in the crock pot at this moment. So YUMbo it is! Can't wait to eat.

  27. This looks yummy! I'm relieved to know that I'm not the only one who spends way too much time reading recipes on line and in cookbooks :-)

  28. Oh my, I just can't "do" okra! But there's another Louisiana ingredient that serves the purpose of thickening your gumbo: Filet powder! Not real sure if you can find gluten-free, but for the squeamish like moi, the powder is the way to go.

  29. I just want to say I have done 95% of your recipes in the last 3 yrs and they have been fabulous! This Gumbo may not be for everyone because it isnt authentic..but I say it is delicious and if you want authentic jump on a plane ...My whole family loves it!!