Jambalaya Z’Herbes

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Jambalaya Z’HerbesI spend plenty of time in New Orleans. When I’m there, I’m not officially present until I find the nearest bowl of gumbo z’herbes, a luscious stew of smoked meat, silky broth, and lovely, tender greens. When I try to serve this style of gumbo at home, I tell my jambalaya-obsessed kids that gumbo is just like jambalaya if you take out the rice and serve it on the side! Well, that didn’t fly … So, I started making this hybrid, equally delicious version of jambalaya to everyone’s content.

  • Yield: 6 Servings
  • Total Time: 1 Hour 20 Minutes


  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • ½ lb bacon, diced
  • ½ lb smoked ham, diced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 3 stalks celery, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp ground cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 12 oz spinach, Swiss chard, or other tender green, rinsed,trimmed, roughly chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1¼ cups chicken stock or broth
  • 1 cup jasmine or other long grain rice, uncooked
How to Make It
  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F.
  2. Place a skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil. When the oil begins to shimmer, add the bacon to the skillet and sauté, stirring often, until the edges of the bacon are brown, about 3–4 minutes. Add ham, onion, bell pepper, celery, cayenne, cumin, paprika, salt, pepper, and sauté with the
  3. meats until the onion becomes almost translucent, about 6 more minutes. Add the chopped greens and sauté for an additional 4-6 minutes, or until the greens wilt completely.
  4. Add in the garlic and sauté for one more minute. Add oregano, tomatoes, and stock to the skillet and bring to a boil. Pour in the rice and stir to distribute throughout the skillet. Cover and move the skillet to the oven for 30 minutes.
  5. Remove the skillet from the oven. Allow the jambalaya to rest for 15 minutes. Remove the lid and serve directly to bowls.

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