37 Spicy and Authentic Cajun Recipes

By Jess

Cajun food is some of the best food on the planet if you ask me. It’s hot, spicy, flavorful, and richly varied, and the spice level can be adjusted to meet what you prefer (or what you can handle!). I’ve included a handful of different types of recipes here for Southern Cajun classics like shrimp and grits, gumbo, Cajun noodles, and other favorites. Some are super simple, while others are a little bit more complex. But they’re all delicious, they’re all Paleo, and they’re all highly recommended. Give ’em a try and find a new dinner favorite for your family tonight. Go on, check them out!

These Cajun dishes are spicy, full of flavor and so comforting. I love Cajun food! Try at least 3 of these and you will be hooked.

1. Crispy Cajun Chicken With Parsnip Puree

This chicken is cooked with chicken fat or butter/ghee/coconut oil, and is super crispy and flavorful with Cajun seasonings, garlic, and coconut cream. Yummy! Swiss chard and mashed parsnips complete this easy Southern meal with a Paleo twist.


2. Hearty Paleo Jambalaya

This Cajun style jambalaya has the meat and vegetables separate from the rice and packs so much flavor you’ll wonder how it can be considered “diet food”. That’s why the Paleo diet is more than a diet and more of a way of life.

3. Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya With Cauliflower Rice

This dish reminds me of a jambalaya a friend of mine used to make, which she learned while living in New Orleans. This Paleo version, with the same fantastic chicken and sausage, is a close approximation and while it’s different, it’s just as good.

4. Cajun Chicken With Zoodles

When you pile on the Cajun seasonings, you won’t even realize you’re not eating regular noodles in dishes like this one. Coconut oil, tomatoes, red onion, bell pepper, and chicken ensure that you get the full Cajun experience in this dish, and it isn’t even hard to make.

5. Cajun Chicken and Pesto Paleo Pasta

This dish uses a packed pasta made from almond flour. You’re going to cook it up and top it with a homemade delicious pesto sauce, and then pile it with Cajun seasoned chicken for a creole-inspired meal that whips up pretty quickly with a bit of help.

Slow Cooked Creole Pulled Chicken
Photo: Plated With Style

6. Slow Cooked Creole Pulled Chicken

If you don’t want to use the seasoning suggested, feel free to use your own Cajun spice blend. Any will work! This pulled chicken is delicious and practically melts in your mouth. I love the addition of melted ghee for healthy fats and extra-good flavor.

7. Cajun Garlic Shrimp Noodle Bowls

No, not flour noodles. Zucchini noodles! You could really use any vegetables you have on hand for this recipe, including replacing zucchini with something else. It’s all about the shrimp and that Cajun seasoning here. This one’s hot and buttery.

8. Blackened Cajun Salmon With Mayo Free Avocado Caesar Salad

In this recipe, you can replace the Worcester sauce with coconut aminos—you’ll get a similar flavor, but it’s Paleo-friendly. I also love the Brazil nut “Parmesan” in this one, which is completely dairy-free but has a lovely cheesy flavor to add to the blackened salmon and Caesar salad.

9. Cajun Zucchini Noodle Pasta

I love the variations on these Cajun noodle dishes, because changes in the ingredients and seasonings can really make a difference! This one is super hot and spicy, and includes a Cajun spice mix that you can make and have on hand when you want the heat.

Big Easy Sloppy Joes With Cajun Zucchini Fries
Photo: What Is Cooking Now

10. Big Easy Sloppy Joes With Cajun Zucchini Fries

These sloppy joes are big and they are easy, but their name really comes from THE “Big Easy” and the Cajun seasoning cooked with the ground beef. Serve them up with Cajun zucchini fries breaded in almond flour, egg whites, and spices.

11. Cajun Beef Chili

You can have the spicy flavors of Cajun cooking in your Paleo chili using this simple recipe with onions, garlic, tomatoes, bell pepper, and beef/beef broth. If you make your own bone broth, you’ll get the added benefits of good-for-you gelatin.

12. Blackened Salmon With Mango-Avocado Salsa

This salmon is seared for a crispy outer crust and a flaky, tender inside. The blackening seasoning does its job and makes this dish spicy and hot, but don’t worry—the mango and avocado salsa have a sweet, creamy, cooling effect on your precious taste buds.

13. Cajun Burgers With Caramelized Onions

These burgers are hot and spicy with plenty of Cajun seasoning (a homemade mix with the recipe included) and are served with deliciously sweet caramelized onions, with the power to slightly (and I do mean slightly!) mellow the spice of the burgers.

Spicy Shrimp and Kale With Creamy Rutabaga
Photo: A Calculated Whisk

14. Spicy Shrimp and Kale With Creamy Rutabaga

This spicy shrimp dish is all about the marinade, so make sure to leave yourself enough time for that when you get started on dinner (at least 30 minutes). I’m loving the creamy rutabaga for its ability to replace mashed potatoes in a delicious, nutritious way.

15. Easy Cajun Chicken

This chicken really is unbelievably easy, particularly if you use a pre-made Cajun seasoning mix from a store. Of course, you can always make your own, and the recipe for that is included here. Use whatever chicken parts you wish, and use homemade Paleo ranch if you need the dressing.

16. Creole Chicken With Sauteed Kale

This chicken-and-greens Southern dish is a healthy version of a classic meal. You can get a lot of kale into one bite when you cook it down this way, which is great for your body! And the creole seasoning is for a big batch that you can store away and use whenever.

17. Spicy Creole Pulled Pork

This pork can be used in any dish you like, or just eaten on its own. It’s super easy to make, because you’ll just be roasting your peppers, rubbing your meat, and then letting the slow cooker do the rest of the work for 8-10 hours. It’s that simple!

Shrimp Po Boy Salad
Photo: Peachy Palate

18. Shrimp Po Boy Salad

This salad is made with a base of roasted red bell peppers, tomatoes, pickles, and romaine lettuce, and it’s topped with hot and spicy Cajun shrimp. You can also make an avocado mayonnaise sauce for the top, and the recipe for that is included.

19. Chicken Smoked Sausage Gumbo

Gumbo is a Cajun staple, and fortunately, it’s very easy to turn it Paleo (some traditional recipes may even be Paleo on their own!). This one is fantastically delicious, with the traditional andouille sausage, chicken, vegetables, smoked paprika, chili flakes, and other seasonings.

20. Simple Jambalaya

This Cajun classic is made with boneless, skinless chicken thighs, chorizo sausage, shrimp, onion, garlic, and plenty of seasonings. You’ll need to make yourself some cauliflower rice for this one, because the texture it adds just can’t be beat.

21. Cajun Chicken

This simple Cajun chicken recipe is served with delicious garlic-seasoned bacon and saucy, brothy vegetables like onion, bell pepper, celery, and jalapeno. The seasonings are just right, and the process is easy!

Creole Sirloin With Romesco Sauce
Photo: Civilized Caveman Cooking

22. Creole Sirloin With Romesco Sauce

These sirloins are perfectly cooked and seasoned with black pepper, dried sage, mustard, cayenne, and other creole seasonings, and they’re topped with a creamy, veggie-packed romesco sauce made from cherry tomatoes, almonds, peppers, and other flavors.

23. Cajun Gumbolaya

This dish is made extra easy by using frozen vegetables, which are at least as fresh as fresh ones, since they’re frozen at their peak. The cauliflower becomes bright and okra helps to thicken up the gumbo and soaks up those luscious, spicy flavors.

24. Cajun Grilled Okra

Speaking of okra, this Southern staple is a delicious vegetable that can be really amazing when cooked the right way. One of these right ways is to grill it like this, with plenty of seasonings and a touch of melted coconut oil.

25. Slow Cooker Cajun Beef Chili

My favorite slow cooker recipes are the ones that don’t really require any preparation before dumping it all in. You know what I’m talking about: no pre-sauteing anything. This recipe is perfect without any work from the chef!

Blackened Halibut With Creole Sauce
Photo: Pure And Simple

26. Blackened Halibut With Creole Sauce

This fish is tender and delicious, with a kick of spice from the blackening powder and creole sauce. The sauce is smooth and silky with chopped tomatoes, garlic, celery, carrots, bell pepper, and a host of fantastic creole seasonings.

27. Roasted Cajun Cauliflower With Poached Egg

Cauliflower can make a decent substitute for meat when you want something a bit lighter, as long as you season it well. This spicy cauliflower “steak” is given a Cajun seasoning makeover and topped with a perfectly poached egg so you won’t miss out on your protein.

28. Spicy Cajun Pork Medallions

These beautiful pork rounds are seasoned with spicy cayenne pepper, black pepper, oregano, and paprika, and fried in coconut oil or butter (I would use butter—yum). You can serve them with cauliflower rice, spiced vegetables, or just on their own.

29. Cajun Mini Meatloaf

This easy meatloaf is so easy to make, but it happens to come with its very own instructional cooking video in case you want to check out the specifics of the technique. Plenty of flavor is packed into this mini meatloaf, and if that isn’t enough, you get a sauce to go with it!

Cajun Chicken Pasta
Photo: Plaid And Paleo

30. Cajun Chicken Pasta

Cajun meats do go very well with noodles, hence all the noodle-including recipes. This one isn’t spiralized noodles; instead, we’ve got spaghetti squash in this one. With coconut milk and ghee, it becomes incredibly creamy and the perfect base for spicy chicken.

31. Cajun Collard Chips

You’ve heard of kale chips, right? Well, what about collard chips? Because collard greens are thick and sturdy, like kale, they make great chips, too. These are seasoned with Cajun seasoning mix, and you can rub them with olive oil if you don’t have a Paleo-friendly spray.

32. Chicken and Sausage Gumbo

This gumbo recipe certainly likes to show off all those beautiful and tasty seasonings, and if you take a taste, I’m sure you’ll know why. Spicy, savory, and totally delicious. You even get to make a (Paleo) roux this time!

33. Lemon Garlic Shrimp With Celeriac Grits

This is another tasty version of shrimp and grits, this time with grits made from celeriac root, which hardly gets any love because it’s so ugly. But it’s so good! Don’t forget those lemony shrimp, though, with their rich garlic taste and smoked paprika.

Cajun Shrimp and Grits
Photo: Paleo Cupboard

34. Cajun Shrimp and Grits

Obviously grits, being made of corn, aren’t Paleo. But when we’re talking Cajun, or Southern food at all, we can’t leave them out. So we make them with cauliflower and almond meal! Perfect. Don’t forget the spicy shrimp, bacon, and all the right fixings.

35. Smothered Cabbage

This cabbage recipe is one of the best I’ve seen, mainly because it has bacon and apples cooked into it. How else do you give cabbage such a fantastic flavor? Plenty of cracked black pepper and apple cider vinegar balance out the flavors, along with the requisite garlic.

36. Easy Chicken Gumbo

If you don’t have one already (and maybe even if you do), this is about to become your go-to gumbo recipe. The pumpkin in this gives it an extra creamy texture, while onion, celery, cabbage, chili, tomatoes, and other seasonings give it the perfect gumbo spice.

Cajun Sweet Potato Noodles
Photo: Gi 365

37. Cajun Sweet Potato Noodles

These sweet potato noodles are made with a spiralizer and are packed with Cajun spices and flavors. Crimini mushrooms add a protein-rich power boost, while boneless, skinless chicken thighs are also along for the ride. Super filling, super delicious.


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