The first cousin of traditional Cajun jambalaya, my gluten free shrimp and sausage pastalaya is easier than the original. But, it still holds true to my Cajun mom's waaaayyyy down south Louisiana flavor roots. A caramelized Cajun trinity base, green onion sausage, and seasoned fresh shrimp are cooked down in a light yet feisty tomato gravy that coats every strand of fresh-cooked gluten free spaghetti with just the right amount of perfectly seasoned meat, seafood, and veggies. Yep and yay...
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Gluten Free Shrimp and Sausage Pastalaya Sure is South Louisiana Special...Yep...
Growing up in the traditional Cajun culture, it was more common to see rice on my mom's table than pasta. Since she cooked south Louisiana beans, stews, smothered meats and gumbos almost every week, she usually gave her rice pot a daily workout.
From time to time, though, if I begged hard enough, my mom would oblige me and I would get my personal noodle fix, plain old spaghetti with meat sauce. I was over the moon these fateful nights, eating my fill of the pasta, and secretly hoping that my brothers wouldn't eat much of it so I could have the next-day leftovers all to myself. Yep.
Well, now that I'm way too old to freely say how old I really am, I still find myself craving pasta just as often as I did when I was a kid. But, I don't always want pasta with meat sauce. Nope. More often than not, I want pasta with something south Louisiana special.
Some time ago, I published my Paleo jambalaya pasta with zoodles recipe. It's one that I'm still very proud of, and one that I do looooovvveee for its low carb jambalaya oh-sooo satisfaction. I crave this version sometimes, when my body needs its south Louisiana food fix light and easy.
But, last week, my tummy started to rumble over visions of really hearty jambalaya pasta with long, skinny noodles that I could spiral around my fork while I indulge in my usual favorite Cajun flavors. So, I made this part kid/part adult food craving come to life with my gluten free shrimp and sausage pastalaya recipe that I developed years and years ago off of my mom's perfect base recipe.
How to Make This Yum-Delicious Gluten Free Shrimp and Sausage Pastalaya, Y'all...
What I love most about this gluten free shrimp and sausage pastalaya is that it's impressive. Whether you're eating it by yourself on the couch, or over a candlelit white tablecloth with three dinner party guests, you'll find that there's just something about tossing pasta into traditional jambalaya ingredients that's, well, fancy. Yep.
I start the dish by boiling a pot of water for the gluten free spaghetti. Then, I peel, devein and season the fresh shrimp and set them aside.
I chop the Cajun trinity, then put them in a cast iron skillet along with a couple pats of butter or olive oil. Once that gets going, I add sliced Manda chicken sausage, then cook it all down for just a few minutes, til the edges start to brown. Then, I add tomato sauce, sliced mushrooms and more seasonings, and cook the red jambalaya gravy down for about 30 minutes.
When the red gravy is to my liking, I add the shrimp and cook for another five minutes or so. Finally, I add the freshly-cooked gluten free spaghetti to the pot, tossing lightly until all of the individual ingredients come together into one cohesive gluten free shrimp and sausage pastalaya.
Since I've been eating my mom's red jambalaya gravy all of my life, this recipe is the perfect mix of old meeting new for me. And her gravy, y'all!! Rich and earthy, with pops of tender shrimp and sausage, and bits of perfectly caramelized onions, green bell peppers, celery and mushrooms for added texture and taste.
Share this gluten free shrimp and sausage pastalaya with those who'd have just as much fun eating with you on the couch as they would at a fancy dancy dinner table. And see y'all on the yum side...
For the Pasta
- 8 ounces gluten free spaghetti
For the Cajun Seasoned Shrimp
For the Gluten Free Shrimp and Seafood Pastalaya Gravy
- 2 tablespoons butter or oil
- 1 chopped onion
- 1 chopped bell pepper
- 2 chopped celery stalks
- 12 ounces Manda Green Onion Chicken Sausage, sliced
- 8 ounces sliced mushrooms, optional
- 1 15 oz. can gluten free tomato sauce
- ½ tsp. hot sauce
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper to taste
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Drain and set aside.
- Season the shrimp with the hot sauce, zest, onion powder, paprika and dried parsley flakes. Set aside.
- Heat a well-greased 12-inch cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add the butter or oil, onion, bell pepper and celery.
- Brown the vegetables for about 10 minutes, or until they start to soften and char around the edges.
- Add the sliced sausage, and cook for about 5 minutes, or until the sausage browns lightly. If you are using mushrooms, add the mushrooms to the skillet with the sausage.
- Stir the can of gluten free tomato sauce into the skillet. Add the remaining parsley flakes, hot sauce, paprika and salt, pepper and cayenne pepper to taste.
- Turn heat to medium-low, cover, and cook down for 30 minutes, stirring often.
- Add the seasoned shrimp to the skillet. Stir, and cover for 5 additional minutes.
- Stir the pasta into the gravy in batches, ensuring that each piece of spaghetti is well-covered with the shrimp and sausage pastalaya gravy.
- Serve immediately, or refrigerate for up to 3 days.