What is Cajun Seasoning? I am pretty sure most of us know what it is but I would like to find out, what spices are in it? If you know, would you make your own? Or for the sake of convenience, grab one from the grocery store. Still have a bottle in your pantry? If yes, let’s find out how to use Cajun Seasoning before it expires. If no, and you don’t have the spices to make your own, is there a substitute for it? Many question marks here. Worry not. Let’s take this one at a time.
Cajun Seasoning is a spice blend that contains several types of spices. Its flavour is full-bodied and pungent.
Cajun food comes from the deepest Southern parts of Louisiana and Mississippi.
In “The Holy Trinity of Cajun cooking”, bell pepper, onion and celery are used to provide the base flavour for many dishes.
What Spices are in Cajun Seasoning
There are many variations of Cajun Seasoning recipes. Depending on own preference, if we make our own, OR depending on the companies who produce it, the ingredients include any of the following.
Can I substitute Cajun Seasoning
Pretty sure that there is a bottle of Cajun spice in the pantry. But, turns out not. What do you do? Rush to the grocery store or forgo the dish you were supposed to cook or find a substitute for Cajun Seasoning.
The simplest substitute is chilli powder. Most of it contains cayenne pepper, cumin, garlic powder and oregano which are often found in Cajun seasoning.
Else, consider to…
Make Your Own Cajun Seasoning
Check your spice rack. If you have the following spices, there is a chance you can make a simple homemade Cajun Blend.
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Black Pepper
To add more heat – add cayenne pepper.
If you have dried herbs – add dried thyme and/or dried basil.
Use an equal amount of the mentioned spices and herbs. Mix them thoroughly. Put into an airtight container and store in a dark cool place where it can be kept for several weeks.
You may adjust the amount used based on your preferred taste. Or change the types of spices and herbs, depending on what you have in your pantry.
There is no right or wrong blend. Just go with your taste buds.
Advantages of Making Your Own
You create your blend based on your desired palate.
Also, salt can be reduced or omitted when making your own. It is much healthier compared to store bought which contain a high amount of sodium, MSG and other synthetic substance.
Waste not – make a small batch and use it up. It is definitely fresher than using from a bottle that was bought long ago.
Now you have your seasoning, the next question is
How to Use Cajun Seasoning
Without much mentioning, this seasoning is very much associated with gumbo and jambalaya. And it goes well with chicken, fish, shrimp, pork and vegetables too.
There are hundreds of recipes using Cajun seasoning published in the www which you can easily access. Google it!
If you have some leftover after cooking a dish, here are 5 simple ways on how to use Cajun Seasoning
- Sprinkle over freshly popped popcorn
- Spice up your sauce. Add to tomato sauce or meat sauce for pasta.
- Blend into Greek yoghurt. Use as a dip for baked potatoes or veggies.
- Forget the salt. Spice up your fried French Fries with Cajun Seasoning.
- Blend into ranch dressing, enhancing the flavour and add some colour to it. Serve over grilled chicken or cold meat salad.
With these 5 simple ways plus the main dish, the seasoning will be used up in no time.
While we can choose to make our own, we may also opt to buy off the shelf. In fact, I will buy if I do not have most of the spices and herbs in hand.
Where can I find Cajun Seasoning
I frequently visit my neighbourhood store which sells baking ingredients and supplies, including herbs and spices in smaller jars/bottles/packets, compared to those sold in supermarkets.
During my last two visits, the Cajun Seasoning was out of stock. Now, you know why I decided to write this article. Yes, it was to find out what spices are in Cajun Seasoning. So now I know and so do you, we can make our own.
But then, if it is a hassle, worry not. There is a good range to choose from to suit your palate. Ranging from mild to flaming spicy.
Just to name a few brand names here.
Slap Ya Mama is a popular blend, No.1 Best Seller on Amazon. It gives a solid mixture of heat and flavour that consist of red pepper, black pepper and garlic. Available in both Original Blend and Hot Blend. For those who love the intense blast of spiciness, go for the Hot Blend.
Louisiana Fish Fry provides a good balance Cajun Seasoning mixture – vibrant flavour with plenty of red pepper, garlic and paprika.
Or opt for a healthier version – without salt.
Sensational Seasonings has a Salt-Free Cajun Blackening Seasoning that combines the flavours of healthy spices and herbs while allowing you to add your own salt separately.
Visit Amazon for more varieties.
Make your own or to buy? As for me, I’ll need to check my pantry for available spices and herbs. If you cook often and have a well-stocked kitchen, I am sure you have most of them.
Refer to the chart above – Spices in Cajun Seasoning to create your own signature blend.
It is a great idea to make a homemade Cajun Blend and give it as a gift. I always love homemade items.
Do you have any other ways to use this seasoning? Or a particular brand or homemade blend that you can share with us? Please leave them in the comments section below. I like to know more.
Before you leave, you may be interested to read a related article – About Spice Rub. Click here to find out.
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