Cajun Dirty Rice

cajun dirty rice in a white bowl with green onions, yellow onion, garlic and fork

Dirty Rice is a traditional Cajun/Creole dish which combines browned meats and liver with onions, peppers, Cajun/Creole spices and cooked white rice. It gets it’s “dirty” description from the color of the browned meats and particularly the chicken liver. Dirty Rice is too bold and delicious to label it just a side dish, but it is a very popular accompaniment with meats, fowl and seafood. A version of this dish, and there are endless versions, will always be found at family gatherings and holiday celebrations in South Louisiana.

cajun dirty rice in a white bowl with green onions, yellow onion, garlic and fork
Sweet Daddy D's Cajun Dirty Rice
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Rating: 5
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A traditional Cajun/Creole dish which combines browned meats and liver with onions, peppers, Cajun/Creole spices and cooked white rice. It gets it’s “dirty” description from the color of the browned meats and particularly the chicken liver. Dirty Rice is too bold and delicious to label it just a side dish, it is a very popular accompaniment with meats, fowl and seafood. A version of this dish, and there are endless versions, will always be found at family gatherings and holiday celebrations in South Louisiana.
Servings Prep Time
12 Servings 30 Minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
57 Minutes 391
Servings Prep Time
12 Servings 30 Minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
57 Minutes 391
cajun dirty rice in a white bowl with green onions, yellow onion, garlic and fork
Sweet Daddy D's Cajun Dirty Rice
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
A traditional Cajun/Creole dish which combines browned meats and liver with onions, peppers, Cajun/Creole spices and cooked white rice. It gets it’s “dirty” description from the color of the browned meats and particularly the chicken liver. Dirty Rice is too bold and delicious to label it just a side dish, it is a very popular accompaniment with meats, fowl and seafood. A version of this dish, and there are endless versions, will always be found at family gatherings and holiday celebrations in South Louisiana.
Servings Prep Time
12 Servings 30 Minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
57 Minutes 391
Servings Prep Time
12 Servings 30 Minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
57 Minutes 391
This is What You Need
This is What You Do
  1. Place chicken livers in water to simmer until tender, about 20 to 30 minutes. Let them cool then give them a rough chop and set aside; reserve the cooking water.
  2. In a dutch oven, melt the bacon grease over medium high heat.
  3. Maintaining a medium high heat, brown the beef and pork in the bacon grease; when the redness is gone (about 5 minutes), add the chopped chicken livers and mix well; cook together for another 5 minutes.
  4. Add the yellow onions, bell peppers and celery to the meats and saute until the onions are starting to brown, about 8 minutes.
  5. Stir in about half the green onions and then the garlic and continue to sauté for a couple of minutes until the garlic is aromatic.
  6. Add the creole seasoning and the Worcestershire sauce and mix well, continuing to sauté.
  7. Add the stock and a little of the reserved water from boiling the chicken livers; mix together well and bring to a high simmer, uncovered, until the liquid is reduced by a little more than half-about, 20 to 30 minutes.
  8. Mix in the cooked rice and blend well to incorporate all the ingredients. Taste and add kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste. Mix in the parsley and remaining green onions and cook on low another few minutes uncovered until all the liquid is absorbed.
  9. Sprinkle some of the reserved green onions on top when served.
Recipe Notes

For this recipe I use a combination of ground chuck (80/20) and ground pork. If you prefer to use one or the other, that's fine.

The chicken livers are an essential part of Dirty Rice. Many recipes call for using the gizzards also, so that is certainly an option.  Don't go overboard on the livers because they can certainly take over the flavor profile.  They should be a subtle background flavor, like all the other ingredients.

Remember that most commercial creole seasonings and commercial stocks have high salt content, so make sure that you taste as you cook before you add any more salt.

Nutrition Facts
Sweet Daddy D's Cajun Dirty Rice
Amount Per Serving
Calories 391 Calories from Fat 189
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 21g 32%
Saturated Fat 8g 40%
Trans Fat 0.01g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 123mg 41%
Sodium 543mg 23%
Potassium 203mg 6%
Total Carbohydrates 30g 10%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Sugars 4g
Protein 20g 40%
Vitamin A 53%
Vitamin C 35%
Calcium 6%
Iron 25%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Cheesy Broccoli and Mushroom Casserole

Broccoli and cheese casserole with mushrooms

Not your neighbor’s broccoli casserole. Fresh broccoli mixed with sauteed mushrooms and Gruyere and cheddar cheeses melted into a creamy bechamel sauce. Put away the cream of mushroom soup…this will change the way you look at broccoli casseroles from now on!

Broccoli and cheese casserole with mushrooms
Cheesy Broccoli and Mushroom Casserole
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
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Rate this recipe!
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Not your neighbor's broccoli casserole. Fresh broccoli mixed with sauteed mushrooms and gruyere and cheddar cheeses melted into a creamy bechamel sauce. Put away the cream of mushroom soup...this will change the way you look at broccoli casseroles from now on!
Servings Prep Time
16 Servings 25 Minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
55 Minutes 221
Servings Prep Time
16 Servings 25 Minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
55 Minutes 221
Broccoli and cheese casserole with mushrooms
Cheesy Broccoli and Mushroom Casserole
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
Not your neighbor's broccoli casserole. Fresh broccoli mixed with sauteed mushrooms and gruyere and cheddar cheeses melted into a creamy bechamel sauce. Put away the cream of mushroom soup...this will change the way you look at broccoli casseroles from now on!
Servings Prep Time
16 Servings 25 Minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
55 Minutes 221
Servings Prep Time
16 Servings 25 Minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
55 Minutes 221
This is What You Need
This is What You Do
  1. Steam or boil the broccoli florets for 3 minutes, place in an ice bath and set aside. Don't overcook the broccoli.
  2. After about 5 minutes, drain broccoli in a colander.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  4. Melt butter in a saute pan over medium high heat until bubbling.
  5. Place sliced mushrooms in the pan with a pinch of salt. Saute until browned, about 5 minutes. Set aside.
  6. Make béchamel sauce according to the recipe.
  7. Add the sautéed mushrooms into the bechamel sauce and mix well.
  8. Maintaining a very low heat, add the grated gruyère and cheddar cheeses to the béchamel and stir until melted and mixed well.
  9. Place the drained broccoli in a prepared casserole dish and pour the béchamel and cheese over the broccoli. Stir completely to blend all the ingredients.
  10. Sprinkle some extra gruyere and cheddar cheese on top, then sprinkle some Romano cheese on top of that.
  11. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes, until bubbly and browning on top.
Recipe Notes

See complete recipe for bechamel sauce here. Basically, a light roux made from 4 tablespoons of butter and three tablespoons of flour. Whisk that over medium heat for two or three minutes, then remove from heat and slowly add warm whole milk, whisking in a little at a time until it is all incorporated and creamy. Then simmer over medium heat for a couple of minutes until the sauce thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Salt and pepper to taste and you are ready to go.

You want to net about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds of broccoli florets, so buying two pounds should give you that when you cut off the stems.

Frozen broccoli florets can be substituted for fresh.  Thaw the broccoli before using, but no need to cook further.

A jar or two of sliced mushrooms can be substituted for the fresh mushrooms.

It's always best to grate your own cheese, but if you're in a crunch for time, just pick up some grated cheese.

The casserole can be frozen after cooking if wrapped tightly and placed in a freezer-proof container.

Nutrition Facts
Cheesy Broccoli and Mushroom Casserole
Amount Per Serving
Calories 221 Calories from Fat 144
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 16g 25%
Saturated Fat 10g 50%
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.5g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 50mg 17%
Sodium 252mg 11%
Potassium 130mg 4%
Total Carbohydrates 7g 2%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Sugars 2g
Protein 12g 24%
Vitamin A 16%
Vitamin C 26%
Calcium 34%
Iron 2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Roasted Carrots with Cane Syrup

Roasted carrots with cane syrup and thyme

Roasting will bring out the natural sweetness of the carrots. Add some butter and cane syrup and sprinkle in a little thyme and you have a wonderfully special side dish that’s perfect for any entree.

Roasted carrots with cane syrup and thyme
Roasted Carrots with Cane Syrup
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
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Roasting will bring out the natural sweetness of the carrots. Add some butter and cane syrup and sprinkle in a little thyme and you have a wonderfully special side dish that's perfect for any entree.
Servings Prep Time
6 Servings 20 minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
30 minutes 269
Servings Prep Time
6 Servings 20 minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
30 minutes 269
Roasted carrots with cane syrup and thyme
Roasted Carrots with Cane Syrup
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
Roasting will bring out the natural sweetness of the carrots. Add some butter and cane syrup and sprinkle in a little thyme and you have a wonderfully special side dish that's perfect for any entree.
Servings Prep Time
6 Servings 20 minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
30 minutes 269
Servings Prep Time
6 Servings 20 minutes
Cook Time Calories per Serving
30 minutes 269
This is What You Need
This is What You Do
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Prepare a shallow baking sheet by covering with aluminum foil and a coating of non-stick oven spray.
  2. Clean and slice carrots in about 1 to 1 1/2 inch lengths; half or quarter thicker pieces.
  3. Add the carrots to about 4 to 5 cups of boiling water with a pinch of salt and the sugar. Parboil for about 3 minutes (after water comes back to a heavy boil) until they just start getting soft.
  4. Drain off the water but leave the parboiled carrots in the same pot. The pot should still be warm, so add the butter and mix well until all the carrots are liberally coated. Don't skimp, use a little more butter if you need to.
  5. Add the thyme, kosher salt and fresh ground pepper and mix well.
  6. Pour the carrots onto the prepared baking sheet; spread out until the carrots are in a single layer, add the fresh thyme sprigs on top of the carrots.
  7. Place the baking sheet in the preheated oven and roast for 15 to 20 minutes or until the carrots are beginning to brown and the butter is getting a little bubbly.
  8. Remove them from the oven and pour the cane syrup over all the carrots and mix well with a rubber spatula or spoon, careful not to break the carrots.
  9. Return the carrots to the oven and roast for 5 to 10 minutes, until the cane syrup and butter begin to form a glaze.
Recipe Notes

Roasting really brings out the natural sweetness in the carrots, adding sugar to the parboiling water and the honey at the end really plays well against the thyme.

If you choose not to parboil the carrots, increase the roasting time-start out the first 10 minutes or so covered with aluminum foil to get a little steaming action going. Make sure to check them for tenderness after about 20 minutes.

If you don't have cane syrup, you can substitute maple syrup or honey.

Nutrition Facts
Roasted Carrots with Cane Syrup
Amount Per Serving
Calories 269 Calories from Fat 144
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 16g 25%
Saturated Fat 10g 50%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol 43mg 14%
Sodium 342mg 14%
Potassium 288mg 8%
Total Carbohydrates 31g 10%
Dietary Fiber 4g 16%
Sugars 21g
Protein 1g 2%
Vitamin A 106%
Vitamin C 9%
Calcium 5%
Iron 7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.