Backpacking Dinner Recipes: Smoked Sausage Jambalaya

Jambalaya is one of the most known Creole dishes with a beautiful mix of strong flavours and great textures. There are many versions about the origin of the name “jambalaya”. The one commonly repeated is what this name derives from the combination of the French word  “jambon” meaning ham and an African word for rice (variously given as ya, aya, or yaya).  In fact, jambalaya is usually made with ham or different kinds of sausages, but can also be prepared with chicken, shrimps or oysters, depending on what ingredients you have on hand.

This smoked sausage jambalaya recipe is so quick and easy to do and makes a really tasty dinner on the trail.

Smoked Sausage Jambalaya 

* Serves 1 * Easy * 20 min * One-Pot * 179g (6.31oz) * 569kcal *

You’ll need:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small shallot, diced
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 handful (about 50g/1.76oz) smoked sausages, sliced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/2 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
2 tablespoon canned pimentos, drained and sliced (or red bell peppers)
1/3 cup quick-cooking rice


On the trail:

1. Heat the olive oil in a pot, add onions and garlic; cook until onions are soft.

jambalaya step 1

2. Add sausages and sauté until browned.

jambalaya step 2

3. Stir in tomato paste, Cajun spice mixture and pimentos. Cook for another 1–2 minutes, and then pour in rice and 2/3 cup water.

jambalaya step3

4. Bring to a boil. Season to taste with salt.

jambalaya step 4

5. Simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until rice is done and all liquid is absorbed.



  1. Anonymous on February 28, 2020 at 3:15 am

    Check on line you can find freeze dried sausage crumbles you can also get freeze dried chicken

  2. HyeYoon Song on July 16, 2016 at 5:12 am

    Hi there, I’m trying this recipe for my trip to JMT. I’m worried about dehydrating my sausage and it becoming rancid while on the trail. We are only on the trail for 4-5 days, but I’ll be keeping this dehydrated meal in a zip loc bag. I’ve sauteed the sausage and boiled it before adding it with the rest of the ingredient. Do you have any tips or advice for keeping the sausage as fresh as possible while on the trail?

    • Tanya Krezevska on July 19, 2016 at 9:21 am

      Hi! Thank you for your comment and sorry for late reply – we have been out for the OutdoorShow16. I’d not recommend you to dehydrate sausages due to high fat content in them. If you are on the trail for 4-5 days maximum, you can take the shelf-stable salami or other smoked sausages and cook them first, then add dehydrated rice&vegetables or follow original recipe.

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