Cajun vs Creole

I admit it. I use them interchangeably, and I am sorry. Cajun. Creole. Aren’t they the same thing? Apparently not.

In an article on the Huffington Post back in 2012, Jay Ducote walks us through the differences that seem subtle to an outsider, but may seem large to a true Louisianan. Here are some of the keys to understanding the differences:

  • Geneology – Cajuns are descendants from French settlers in the Acadia region in northeast Canada. They often were from the “lower classes” and became outdoorsmen, such as fur trappers. The Creole are descendants front he French and Spanish merchant and upper classes that settled in Louisiana.
  • Location – Creole = city. Cajun = country. Creole is the French Quarter. Cajun is deep in the bayou.
  • Ingredients – Cajun uses anything, and everything that could be found wild. All parts of animals are used and only local vegetables. Creole cooking will use spices and ingredients that are sourced around the world. According to Ducote, no tomatoes in Cajun cooking.
  • Class – Creole is refined. Cajun is not.

Cajun Jambalaya

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I am much more of a Cajun guy. While not looking very refined, it is delicious!

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OK. There are two little tomatoes and a few drops of Worcestershire sauce, but the rest is Cajun-like!

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I used chicken thighs. So much more flavor than breasts.

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Getting the aromatics going.

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Cooking the rice.

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With the andouille.

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I can just imagine eating this sitting’ by the bayou, watching the gators swim by.

Cajun Jambalaya

prep 15 min ∙ cook 35 min ∙ makes 4 servings ∙ source


  • 12 medium shrimp, peeled, deveined and chopped
  • 4 ounces chicken, diced
  • 1 tablespoon Creole seasoning, recipe follows
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped celery
  • 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 3/4 cup rice
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 5 ounces Andouille sausage, sliced
  • Salt and pepper

Creole Seasoning Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme


Combine all ingredients for the Creole seasoning thoroughly.

In a bowl combine shrimp, chicken and Creole seasoning, and work in seasoning well. In a large saucepan heat oil over high heat with onion, pepper and celery, 3 minutes. Add garlic, tomatoes, bay leaves, Worcestershire and hot sauces. Stir in rice and slowly add broth. Reduce heat to medium and cook until rice absorbs liquid and becomes tender, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. When rice is just tender add shrimp and chicken mixture and sausage. Cook until meat is done, about 10 minutes more. Season to taste with salt, pepper and Creole seasoning.

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Categories: Cajun, Chicken2, Main Dish 3, Pork2, Recipes, Seafood

Author:The Ranting Chef

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6 Comments on “Cajun vs Creole”

  1. lorieb
    February 20, 2015 at 11:39 am #

    thanks for the clarification, never realized creole and cajun were not one and the same. The recipe sounds great, will have to give it a try!


  2. February 20, 2015 at 11:45 am #

    Reblogged this on So, I Read This Book Today and commented:
    Yummy!!!!! Mardi Gras may be over, but you can still enjoy the FOOD!!!


  3. February 20, 2015 at 11:52 am #

    thanks for the clarification, but I laughed when you called the recipe Cajun Jambalaya and then made it with a recipe for Creole seasoning? I love the recipe anyway.


  4. February 20, 2015 at 12:18 pm #

    I think your food will look more delicious if you take a better photo


  5. Gregory Jevyak
    February 20, 2015 at 10:45 pm #

    Reblogged this on Gregory Jevyak – Greg Jevyak.


  6. jetr1
    June 3, 2015 at 8:59 pm #

    since my husband is from New Orleans I had to show him this recipe


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