Zatarain’s Gluten-Free Rice Mixes

By | May 16, 2011

Jambalaya MixCeliac Awareness Month (May) is in full swing.  Which means the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) is busier than ever raising awareness, celebrating the gluten-free lifestyle,  & working to further improve the quality of life for the diagnosed and undiagnosed too.  NFCA’s website is just one example of this effort.

With weekly news, updates, and blog post CeliacCentral.org, the official website of the NFCA, is in a constant state of growth. Along with a ton of updates the NFCA puts a lot of effort in expanding the many resources available the celiac community on celiaccentral.org. One of the most recent additions to Celiaccentral.org’s Gluten-Free Food pages is the Zatarain’s Gluten-Free Recipe Box.

Zatarain’s is the maker of more than 200 food products from Rice Dinner Mixes, Frozen Entrees, Pasta Dinner Mixes, Breading, Seasonings and Spices and more. All of their products are based on authentic New Orleans–Style recipes. Even if you have not had the opportunity to try any off the products they offer, odds are you are at least familiar with their “Jazz it Up” with Zatarain’s slogan. Still you may not have been aware that many of their rice mixes are gluten-free.  If you didn’t know don’t worry you are not the only one.  Since this was not common knowledge, I’m very glad that Zatarain’s has taken some very positive steps to share the news of their gluten-free options with the celiac and gf community.  In addition to teaming up with the NFCA, Zatarain’s has also gone through the process of becoming certified gluten-free by the Food Allergy Research and Resource Program, an extension of the University of Nebraska (http://farrp.unl.edu/home).

CarnivalFor this review I decided to try out the first recipe offered in the recipe box, Carnival Jambalaya, to discover how Zatarain’s could “jazz up” a gluten-free dinner. For the full recipe, visit the Zatarain’s Guten-Free Recipe Box found on the NFCA’s official webpage celiaccentral.org. This recipe used Zatarain’s Original Jambalaya rice mix. The rice mix itself consisted of long grain rice packaged with pleasant yet somewhat spicy blend of Cajun spices.

The recipe was pretty simple and only requiring oil (oil is optional but does add to a more authentic texture), water, chicken and smoked sausage to be added to the rice mix.  The finished dish ends up being extremely hearty and flavorful which is very impressive from a meal that takes a little of 30 minutes to make. The meat choices worked very well with the rice mix. The sausage added a nice smoky flavor while the chicken picked up the flavor from the rice mix and made the dish even heartier. Though the spice combination did pack some heat I felt it was far from being overly fiery and should still be enjoyable to those who have a lower spicy food tolerance.  However if you want to try out this recipe but would prefer a milder option, Zatarain’s provides tips on how to make the rice mix with a milder flavor and also provides a Mild Jambalya rice mix .
Want to try out this recipe your self? Visit Zatarains.com to learn more about this product as well as all of the gluten-free products Zatarain’s has to offer. Then stop by www.CeliacCentral.org to get the recipe.

1 Comment so far
  1. Bill Chappelear February 14, 2013 2:32 pm

    My favorite rice had always been Zatarain’s since I lived in NewOrleans in 1970.
    I cannot find bags of plain rice anymore …..at least in the Birmingham area I cannot.
    Is it still available ?
    Sincere regards,
    Bill

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