We love jambalaya, but it takes a while if you bake it in the oven. I’ve tried making it in the slow cooker, but that didn’t turn out very well.
Then I realized that it could be made in a skillet, using a similar method that I use for fried rice. The rice cooks separately, in chicken broth instead of water. Once it’s added to the ingredients in the skillet, it all comes together similar to a traditional jambalaya.
The bonus, of course, is that it’s much faster to make on the stove top. If you use jasmine rice, it will only take 15 minutes for the rice too cook and the whole dish is done in short order. Jasmine is my favorite rice for this reason. With other long grain rices, I’ve found it takes closer to 30 minutes for it to get tender.
Start the rice, then beginning chopping and cooking the other ingredients in the skillet. To keep this in the 15-20 minute range, you’ll also need to use chicken that’s already cooked. I keep rotisserie chicken in the freezer for quick meal prep.
If you want to cook the chicken from raw, you can still have a quick meal by following the instructions on Basic Chicken Skillet. This recipe is a take on that basic recipe.
Here’s what you’ll need for Skillet Chicken Jambalaya:
The bag on the left, behind the onion is the frozen chicken. I open the bag and microwave it for one minute. Then if it’s still very frozen, I give it another minute in the microwave. By that point, it’s ready to chop and add to the ingredients. So simple and such a time saver!
For this recipe, I start the rice then start chopping the other ingredients, adding them to the skillet as soon as I’ve got them ready. It saves time to chop as you go, during the time the cooking is going on.
Serves: 6-8 servings
- 2 cups uncooked jasmine rice
- 3 cups chicken broth (or 1 can, plus enough water to equal 3 cups)
- 1 Tbs. olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 green pepper, diced
- 2-3 cups chopped cooked chicken
- 1 Tbs. Cajun seasoning
- 1 can diced tomatoes with juice
- Bring broth to a boil in a 3 quart saucepan.
- Add rice, cover loosely and turn heat to low. Cook over low heat 15 minutes.
- Put olive oil in large skillet and heat over medium heat.
- Add onion and garlic. Cook 2-3 minutes.
- Add green pepper to skillet and continue cooking vegetables.
- Add chicken, Cajun seasoning and tomatoes to skillet.
- Cover and cook over low heat while rice finishes.
- Stir finished rice into the skillet.