With Creole seasoning, turkey sausage, vegetables, and rice, my Cajun-style easy homemade recipe for dirty rice is the perfect flavorful weeknight supper to make for your family.
Some of the best food comes out of Louisiana, like this recipe for dirty rice, which is a Cajun classic. Now, it’s called “dirty rice” (also known as Cajun rice and rice dressing) because traditionally, it was cooked with minced chicken livers, spices, and vegetables, which turned the white rice “dirty”. Over the years, many versions of this filling Creole supper have sprouted up, so this is my take.
This dirty rice recipe is a great go-to meal for busy weekdays. It also happens to be one of my favorite make-ahead meals to take on camping trips. I always make up a double batch of this recipe for dirty rice ahead of time, refrigerate or freeze it, and have instant comfort food whenever we need it. Since it is so easy to reheat, this is one of those recipes that I suggest always doubling. By simply doubling a few meals from time to time, you can build up a bank of convenience meals and shop your freezer rather than stopping by a drive-through.
Now, I’m bypassing chicken livers in favor of turkey sausage. What else do you need? Rice, Creole seasoning, dried or fresh parsley, onion, bell pepper, celery (a.k.a the Holy Trinity in Cajun cooking), and minced garlic. Weeknight meals don’t get much easier than this. We just have to chop up our vegetables, cook our rice, and slowly add all of the ingredients to a skillet. I can never resist a one-pan meal, how about you? Better yet, it’s ready to serve in 30 minutes.
The Creole seasoning adds so much flavor to this simple Cajun dirty rice recipe. It’s hearty, filling, and a must-make, so let’s go!
- Cooked rice (to decrease carbs you can use cauliflower rice)
- Creole seasoning
- Dried or fresh parsley
- Bell pepper
- Turkey sausage
- Chopped or minced garlic
How to Make The Best Dirty Rice Recipe at Home
Chop all your herbs and veggies: bell pepper, celery, parsley, and onion. You can use dried parsley if you prefer.
Place these in a large skillet along with your sausage and minced garlic.
Chop up your sausage a bit and cook that over medium to medium-high heat.
Cook this until the sausage is cooked through and the veggies are tender.
Stir in your Creole seasoning.
I use two and a half tablespoons and it is perfect for us. You may want to start with a little less and taste it. You may end up using a lot more!
Toss in cooked rice.
Stir that up well and make sure your rice is heated through.
Sit down with a glass of iced tea and a fine meal!
Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 3 months. This dish tastes just like it was freshly made when you reheat it in the microwave or on the stovetop.
- I LOVE Jennie-O turkey sausage. The mild and hot are both really good. That is the main brand I recommend if you can find it. I get it at Publix. If you can only find Butterball sausage, I’d just use ground beef or ground pork instead.
- While long grain white rice is the most popular, you can also use brown rice or wild rice.
Can I use Cajun seasoning instead?
You can! Cajun seasoning is more pepper-heavy and thus spicier than Creole seasoning, which features various herbs like oregano, basil, and thyme. If you want to use Creole seasoning but add a little bit more heat, add 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper (or more to taste).
What is in Zatarain’s Dirty Rice?
Zatarain’s Dirty Rice Dinner Mix is made with long grain rice, onion, garlic, red and green bell pepper, and spices like red pepper flakes and paprika. So our recipe for dirty rice is very similar and a bit of a Zatarain copycat version.
How do you make Popeye’s Cajun Rice?
Popeye’s Cajun Rice side dish is also very similar to our recipe. However, Popeye’s uses ground beef and minced chicken gizzards. They also use more spices than just Creole seasoning, like garlic powder, celery seed, cayenne pepper, and coarse ground black pepper.
What do you serve with dirty rice?
This dirty rice is the perfect main dish as it is. But if you’d prefer to serve it as a side, serve it with some fried catfish, blackened chicken, or fried chicken, Popeye’s style.
You may also like these rice recipes:
Crockpot Fiesta Chicken and Rice
Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Rice Casserole
Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole
- 4-5 cups cooked rice
- 1 pound uncooked turkey sausage or ground beef
- 1-3 tablespoons Creole seasoning* I use Tony Chachere's
- 1 celery stalk, chopped
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1/2 bell pepper, chopped
- 2 tablespoons chopped or minced garlic
- 4 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley or 2 tablespoons dried parsley
- In a large skillet over medium heat, place celery, bell pepper, garlic, onion, parsley, and sausage. Break up the sausage and cook all, stirring regularly, until sausage is fully cooked and vegetables are tender.1 pound uncooked turkey sausage, 1 celery stalk, chopped, 1 small onion, chopped, 1/2 bell pepper, chopped, 2 tablespoons chopped or minced garlic, 4 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley
- Add the Creole seasoning and stir. Then stir in the rice and continue cooking over medium heat until rice is heated through, stirring well the whole time.4-5 cups cooked rice, 1-3 tablespoons Creole seasoning*
I know all too well about that “no refund” policies. We lost a week’s rent at a condo in FL last fall due to family circumstances.
This recipe sounds tasty. I love good rice recipes. They are so versatile. I’ve got a veggie rice recipe that I created and it goes with lots of dishes, especially my chicken in mustard cream sauce.
i like dirty rice the only diference is i add ground beef and chopped up chicken livers it really gives it that dirty look
I loved watching the Tennessee Pride commerical, even remembered all the words….brings back good memories……
Happy belated Birthday Christy, Thank you for such a wonderful message I’m so thankful you let God use you and your site to spread such inspirational/educational messages. Sorry to hear that your mountain holiday was a bust(the kids in Wears Valley have missed 9 days of school due to the snow)We are the only Floridians to own snow chains and keep them with us at all times because you never know when you may need them our cabin is on Hatcher mountain in Wears Valley. Hold off as long as you can and go up when the weather isn’t so iffy unless you love to ski and tube that is..
Loved your story! I am sitting here at work trying not to cry. We had a trip to the beach planned this weekend, and ended up spending the day (13 hours) in the airport, watching the snow fall on the planes! The bonus was, we got to spend a special day w/ our son, who is away at college. So we made the best of it! My toes weren’t in the sand, but alas, some day they will be! :o) Thanks for your inspirational words about squeezing the most out of EVERY day, and for your wonderful web site. You are a blessing!
I’ve never heard of dirty rice but it looks good, and so easy!
I’m glad you all were safe during the snow.
You are more than the recipe queen, you are a gift from God. The message in your words was just what I (and apparently others) needed to hear. I think most of us are guilty of wishing our lives away.
Keep up the good work, and by the way, the recipe sounds great, I can’t wait to try it.