by Nicole Kirkvold, Dietetic Intern [University of Minnesota Medical Center – Fairview]
In the wintertime I love to eat hearty jambalaya, with chicken, sausage and enough Cajun seasoning to add a little kick!
I have a soft spot for a particular canned version from Campbell’s, but knowing that canned soups are often high in sodium and preservatives, I decided to try to make my own jambalaya a few months ago.
By pumping up the veggies, swapping in brown rice, and cutting back on the sodium content, this version is just as comforting with a healthy boost. The combination of lean chicken, brown rice, and vegetables provides the basis for a balanced, well-rounded meal. All of these components work together to supply the body with necessary nutrients like protein, whole grain fiber, and vitamins and minerals to promote overall health and well-being.
Because I usually double this recipe when I make it, I have also found that this recipe works great when frozen and reheated!
- 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth (may need an additional ½- 1 cup)
- 1 cup brown rice
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- ½ cup onion, diced
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 cup red and green bell pepper, diced
- 1 cup carrots, diced
- 1 cup celery, diced
- 15 oz. cans no salt added tomatoes
- 2 tsp. paprika
- 1 tbsp. Italian seasoning
- 1 tsp. chili powder
- 1 tsp. onion powder
- 1 tsp. cayenne
- Red pepper flakes to taste
- 1 cup cooked chicken breast, diced
- ½ cup smoked turkey sausage, sliced
- Bring chicken broth to a boil and add brown rice. Simmer for 10 minutes.
- Sauté onion and garlic powder in olive oil for 3-4 minutes. Add bell pepper, carrots, and celery.
- In a large pot, mix tomatoes with seasoning and chili powder. Add sautéed onions, chicken, turkey sausage, and rice. Simmer for 30- 45 minutes. Add additional chicken broth as necessary.
Per serving: 340 calories, 9 gm total fat, 45 gm carbohydrate, 3 gm fiber, 18 gm protein, and 680 mg sodium.