Thursday, June 1, 2017

Homemade dirty rice

I have a fondness for Zatarain's Dirty Rice.

The boxed version is easy to make. Brown a pound of ground beef or ground pork, add the dirty rice mix, add 2.5 cups of water, cover, and simmer until done.

It's so easy, in fact, that I knew I had no excuse to buy the boxed stuff, and should look for my own recipe instead.

Recipes for dirty rice abound on the internet, some of which had ingredients I didn't care for (notably chicken livers), so after a bit of poking around I cobbled together my own version as follows:
1 lb pork sausage (or ground beef), cooked
1 onion, chopped and cooked with the pork (or ground beef)

2 tablespoons rehydrated red bell peppers, soaked in chicken broth (enough water and chicken broth to make 2.5 cups)
1 tablespoon garlic (or rehydrated garlic)
1 1/2 teaspoon crushed red cayenne peppers
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1 cup rice
I had dehydrated garlic and dehydrated red bell peppers from last year's garden, but fresh versions can be substituted. I also had crushed cayenne peppers from the garden. We have pork in the freezer after we swapped beef for pork with some neighbors. I used chicken stock I canned up from a chicken carcass following a meal last year.

I started by soaking the dehydrated red bell pepper and garlic in the chicken broth (which I eventually supplemented with water to make 2.5 cups).

While the pork and onions were browning, I mixed rice with the rest of the spices...

...then added it to the browned pork.

Pouring in the chicken stock with rehydrated veggies.

Next step, bring it to a boil, cover, let it simmer.

VoilĂ .

I always like to add a shake of Montreal steak seasoning, even to the boxed version.

This was a simple recipe, but I'm absurdly pleased to be able to eliminate another boxed item in favor of a homemade version. Ah, the little things in life.


  1. Wow...this looks great. I'm going to file this one to try out. Thanks!

  2. I tried this tonight :) added a few things, but my family gobbled it down.

  3. We love the Zatarain's mix, so I'm eager to try out this $$-saving recipe. We like to add a can of rotel tomatoes for a little extra chunk and spice. Also really good with spicy sausage too. Thanks for this!!

  4. I made this Friday night. Since the bypass, and the corresponding sodium restriction, we are always looking for interesting homemade. Since I already had a red bell pepper waiting for something to do, this was timely. It tasted great. One of the differences between men and women is, voila actually translates to simmer about 15 minutes, remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes. I used Tony Chacheres Spice 'n Herbs, instead of Montreal steak at the end.

  5. Careful Patrice lest you be accused of cultural appropriation...

    PS- I like that rice too

  6. I will definitely try this, but with the boxed version (which I really like) I will usually add maybe 1/4 cup extra rice and 1/2 cup extra water. This stretches it further and the boxed variety is quite salty, so I think this makes it better. If necessary I add a little garlic powder, paprika, etc.