With cooler weather on its way, these 14 unforgettable gumbo recipes will be perfect to have up your sleeve. Gumbo embodies the diverse cultures of south Louisiana with seamless perfection and brings us together around the table. These gumbo recipes are pure comfort over rice, and nourish the soul right down to the last inexplicably opulent bite.
There is perhaps no dish considered more emblematic of Louisiana than gumbo. Tell anyone you are from or visiting the state, and the next thing they say typically has something to do with gumbo. They might proclaim their favorite place to eat gumbo or explain why their grandmother’s recipe is better than yours—though you won’t believe them.
But gumbo comes in many varieties, as diverse as those who prepared it before us and those of us preparing it today. Each approach to the dish tends toward any combination of what may be considered proper ingredients, though opinions of what deems it a proper gumbo differ from region to region and person to person. Yet it manages to unite the historical and cultural influences of Louisiana: Western Africa, Indigenous America, and Western Europe.
As for the ingredients that may be found in gumbo, the trinity is a given, and generally, gumbo is thickened with a roux of varying shades, okra, and/or filé. It may include seafood or meat, though some incorporate both. A more rebellious gumbo might even embrace the fiercely debated tomato, and what can or should be served as a side could warrant a separate discussion altogether.
Each one of our favorite gumbo recipes represents the distinct appearances, ingredients, and history of the dish. Try one or try them all and see why we think these are some of Louisiana’s best gumbo recipes.