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Whether you’re a beginner cook or a seasoned veteran, you’ll find many reasons why a Dutch oven is perfect for every kitchen. From stove to oven, you won’t find any piece of kitchen equipment more versatile. Here I’m sharing how to make a smoky and slightly spicy Smoked Sausage and Seafood Gumbo with my Cocinaware Dutch Oven.
If I had to pick a favorite piece of kitchen equipment, I would have to say it’s my Dutch oven. You won’t find anything more versatile. From the stove to the oven, a Dutch oven is perfect for every kitchen.
What Is A Dutch Oven?
A Dutch oven is simply a large, heavy, thick-walled pot with a lid that is suitable for stovetop or oven use. The heavy lid locks in moisture and flavor and is fantastic for slow-cooking.
Besides the fact that a Dutch oven can go from stovetop to oven, it is also ideal for braising meat, cooking soups, stews and sauces, frying and even baking bread.
Most people think of a Dutch oven being extra heavy and super-expensive. While you can spend over a hundred dollars for one, there are also very affordable, high-quality Dutch oven options as well.
Take this beautiful bright red Cocinaware 5.2 QT Dutch oven, for instance. This Dutch oven is made of durable cast iron with a beautiful enamel coating. It is the perfect cookware for creating delicious and healthy slow-cooked meals at a very affordable price.
I also love the 5.2 quart size. It’s the perfect size for cooking a whole chicken, a boneless pork shoulder or braised beef short ribs. It’s ideally suited for making meals for more than two people but if you are one of my single serving readers, I know you’ll love the fact that you’ll have such delicious leftovers.
Cocinaware Dutch Ovens are made in Texas and if you live in the Lone Star State, you can find them at H-E-B stores. If you don’t live in Texas, you can easily purchase one online.
Now that the weather is turning colder, I find myself turning more and more to warm, hearty comfort foods. The low and slow method of cooking with a Dutch oven is perfect for delivering wonderful cold-weather meals.
A Dutch Oven Recipe
I’m originally from New Orleans and love making gumbo. I usually make a strictly seafood gumbo so I was excited to try a recipe made with sausage too.
This recipe starts out with a roux made with equal parts flour and vegetable oil. The secret to a great gumbo is the roux and the heavy bottom of a Dutch oven allows the roux to cook perfectly. The roux requires constant stirring so that it doesn’t burn and although this means about 10 minutes of stirring and standing, it’s so worth it! Perfectly browned roux is magical – it’s slightly nutty, it’s thick and it smells heavenly.
Once the roux begins to cook and is the color of a penny, the “trinity” of vegetables is added – onions, celery and chopped bell peppers.
From there, the gumbo begins to take shape. Garlic, canned diced tomatoes, chicken broth, the sausage, okra and spices are added and simmered. Finally, the shrimp gets added to the pot and cooks in the hot liquid in minutes.
Serve over rice and enjoy!
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of the H-E-B. As always all opinions are 100% mine.
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Smoked Sausage and Shrimp Gumbo
- 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup H-E-B Chopped Celery and Onion
- 1 cup H-E-B Diced 3-Color Bell Pepper
- 4 cloves garlic crushed
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves
- 1 tbsp Chef Paul Prudhomme’s Seafood Magic
- 28 ounces diced tomatoes canned
- 14 1/2 ounces chicken broth
- 1 pound H-E-B Premium Beef Links Smoked Sausage cut into 1/4-inch cubes
- 2 cups H-E-B Cut Okra
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 pound H-E-B Wild Gulf Brown Shrimp frozen, peeled and deveined
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp gumbo file’
- Combine flour and oil to make a roux in a heavy 5‑quart Dutch oven or stockpot; stir constantly over medium heat for 10 minutes, or until flour turns a deep golden brown color.
- Add celery, onions and peppers to roux, and sauté 5 minutes; add garlic, thyme, and Seafood Magic, and sauté 1 minute; stir in tomatoes with juice, chicken broth, sausage, okra, and bay leaf; bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium‑low, cover and simmer 20 minutes.
- Add shrimp, pushing them down into liquid; simmer 4 minutes until shrimp turn pink; season with salt and pepper.
- Remove from heat, and stir in gumbo filé.