Sausage dirty rice is a delicious one-pot Southern Louisiana dish made with jasmine rice, cajun seasoning, chopped bell peppers, celery, onion, broth, and ground sausage. This version of dirty rice calls for simple ingredients that can be made in one large pot or skillet for easy weeknight dinners.
Serve your cajun dirty rice with a sprinkle of fresh parsley and a side salad.
Ingredients For Dirty Rice
- Pork breakfast sausage - I’ve used Cumberland breakfast sausage, but you can use something similar such as ground pork, bulk pork sausage, ground beef, Italian sausage, cajun sausage, turkey sausage, or beef sausage. Make sure to have the skins removed for this recipe. Gluten free note: different brands vary. Whatever sausage you use, check the ingredients to make sure it is gluten-free or use ground meat instead.
- Onion - I’ve used brown onion, finely diced, but you could also use yellow onion.
- Bell pepper - Green bell peppers are excellent, but you can use red bell pepper or yellow bell pepper as well. Dice the bell pepper into small pieces but not very fine otherwise, it will wilt while cooking.
- Celery - You’ll need 2-3 stalks, diced.
- Garlic - Using garlic cloves will offer the best flavor. I’ve used 4 garlic cloves which is about 1 teaspoon's worth. Pre-minced garlic or garlic powder could also be used.
- Seasoning and spices - This dish includes cajun spice, salt, and black pepper.
- Herbs - Thyme (2-3 sprigs or 1 teaspoon of dried thyme) and 2 large bay leaves.
- Broth - I’ve used chicken and veggie broth, beef or just vegetable broth is totally fine too. If you use store-bought, then opt for low sodium if possible. This way you can regulate the amount of seasoning and salt.
- Rice - Long grain rice such as basmati or jasmin is ideal. We are cooking everything in one pan, including rice, so it should go in uncooked. I do however rinse it before. Brown rice is another option although it will require additional cooking time.
- Garnish - Use green onions, scallions, chopped parsley, or cilantro as garnish.
The full recipe and ingredients can be found in the recipe card below this post.
How To Make Dirty Rice
In a large skillet, cook the sausage meat over medium-high heat, breaking it down into small pieces with a wooden spatula.
Cook until no longer pink. Drain the fat and remove it to a side plate.
In the same skillet, saute onion, bell pepper, and celery. When the onion is becoming translucent add garlic, cajun, salt, and pepper.
Cook for another 30 seconds.
Stir in uncooked rice (I washed and rinsed it prior), pour in the broth, add bay leaves, and thyme, and return the meat to the skillet.
Bring to a boil, cover with a lid and reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for 18 minutes until all the water has evaporated and the rice is cooked.
Fluff the rice with a fork, remove the thyme, and bay leaves and serve with green onions.
I recommend rinsing the rice before adding it to the skillet to eliminate debris. Rinsing the rice also removes some excess starch which helps prevent the rice from clumping.
Usually, breakfast sausages come with seasoning and herbs, so you are getting plenty of flavors! Also, even low-sodium broth will add a lot of flavors. This means you don't need to add any salt or pepper. Add it to taste toward the end of cooking, if needed at all.
- You can use leftover rice for this traditional dirty rice, but then reduce the cooking time when adding the rice to the skillet otherwise, the rice will become mushy.
- Pork breakfast sausage provides delicious flavor from the fat content. You could also use ground hamburger or another sausage, such as chicken, turkey, or even plant-based smoked sausage.
- This rice dish can easily be doubled if you plan on serving a larger crowd.
- This delicious dish isn’t overly spicy, the heat will depend on which sausage you are using and the amount of cajun seasoning. I have added just a little of the seasoning as mentioned in the recipe and it is well seasoned and not spicy.
The dirty rice is very fulfilling on its own!
I prefer serving this with a very simple garden salad or cucumber and tomato salad. These are our family's favorite and so easy to whip up!
Freezing And Storing Instructions
- To store, allow the dish to cool and store in the fridge for 2-3 days. When reheating add some warm water or broth so it's not dry.
- To freeze allow the dirty rice to cool completely. Transfer to a freezer-friendly container and freeze for up to 2-3 months.
- To reheat, thaw it in the fridge and warm in the skillet or in the microwave.
More Rice Recipes
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How To Make Dirty Rice
- 11 oz Pork breakfast sausage, I used Cumberland or similar, the skins removed
- 1 cup brown onion, finely diced
- 1 cup green bell pepper, medium small dice, not very fine it will wilt during cooking
- ¾ cup celery about 2-3 stalks, diced
- 4 garlic cloves, about 1 heaping teaspoon
- 2 teaspoon cajun spice
- 1 cup long grain rice such as basmati, uncooked
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 2-3 thyme sprigs or dried thyme 1 teaspoon
- salt to taste, seasoning will depend on which broth is used, best to use low sodium and add salt just a little, this dish has plenty of flavor and seasoning from the broth and sausages
- 2 large bay leaves
- green onion, scallions, or cilantro for garnish
- black pepper to taste
- In a large skillet, cook the sausage meat over medium-high heat, breaking it down into small pieces with a wooden spatula. Cook until no longer pink. Drain the fat and remove it to a side plate.
- In the same skillet, saute onion, bell pepper, and celery. When the onion is becoming translucent add garlic, cajun, salt, and pepper. Cook for another 30 seconds.
- Stir in uncooked rice (I washed and rinsed it prior), pour in the broth, add bay leaves, and thyme, and return the meat to the skillet.
- Bring to a boil, cover with a lid and reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for 18 minutes until all the water has evaporated and the rice is cooked.
- Fluff the rice with a fork, remove the thyme, and bay leaves and serve with green onions.
ADD YOUR OWN PRIVATE NOTES
Note: Nutrition information is estimated and varies based on products used.
Full Nutrition Disclaimer can be found here.