Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Jumpin' Jack Jambalaya

Ben and I sat down one day last week and looked through the Southern Living for Kids cookbook together so he could plan a meal to prepare. He picked Jumpin' Jack Jambalaya (with a little influence from his brother). 

1 2/3 cup uncooked long grain rice
2 T olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 red or green bell pepper, chopped
8 green onions, chopped
2 celery ribs, chopped
3 cups chopped ham
1 pound smoked sausage, sliced
1 14 oz can chicken broth
1 8 oz can tomato sauce
1 tsp creole seasoning
  • Cook rice according to package directions, omitting salt.
  • While rice cooks, heat oil in a big skillet over medium heat. Add onion and next 3 ingredients; saute until tender. Stir in ham, sausage, broth, tomato sauce, and Creole seasoning. Bring mixture to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes. Stir in hot cooked rice. Makes 8 servings.

He was excited to help and really wanted to do everything on his own. He chopped all of the veggies and meats using one of Luci's new nylon knives for kids. (We made just a couple of modifications to the recipe: we used smoked turkey sausage to reduce some of the fat and calories, and we replaced half of the diced ham with chopped chicken in order to reduce the sodium.)

 Ben did nearly all of the cooking on his own while I stayed by his side supervising. The only thing I had to help him with was moving the rice from the rice cooker to the pot with the meat/veggies. 

This photo looked way better on my iPhone than it does here!

One of the best parts of having the kids in the kitchen is that they are more likely to eat what they've cooked! This was gone in no time! 

The Jambalaya has 449 calories when made according to the recipe. I'm not sure how many calories we saved by using turkey instead of regular sausage and by replacing half of the ham with chicken, but I'm sure it made a difference. This meal definitely comes in under 500 calories!

Kid Rating: 6 Thumbs Up! (Although on this one they wished they had more than 2 thumbs each!)


  1. This looks great! I have some turkey in the freezer I'm wanting to use for jambalaya. I may give this recipe a try! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Can't wait till our next get together,,,Lots of new foods to try...Tell all your new Cooks to keep up the good job...Gramps

  3. This may be the solution for picky eaters....get them involved in the cooking and they might be more willing to try different foods. We'll definitely have to try some of Ben's Jumpin' Jack Jambalaya when we come your way. :-) Glad Luci's knives are getting a work out by Ben, as well as Luci! He sure looks busy in the photos!


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