13 Classic New Orleans Dishes
Take a culinary tour of the Big Easy with these New Orleans favorites, including bananas foster, gumbo, and crawfish étouffée.
Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya
This hearty one-pot meal will transport you to New Orleans on the busiest weeknight. Like it spicy? Serve with hot sauce on the side.
Bananas Foster with Pound Cake
The quick dessert popularized in New Orleans in the 1950s features bananas warmed in a dark-brown-sugar caramel sauce. It’s even better made and eaten outdoors.
Louisiana Hot Crab Dip
Fresh crab meat is the star of this classic New Orleans appetizer.
Instant Karma Fizz
This variation on the Ramos Gin Fizz combines the cocktail with a Mango Lassi. The heavy cream that bartenders hate is swapped out for yogurt liqueur.
Chocolate Buttermilk Beignets
Just about nothing is easier than eating beignets, but making them is fully within reach. And if you’re jonesing to be down in New Orleans right now for Mardi Gras, they’re just the thing. Make the dough the day before you plan to fry them up, go out Mardi-Gras-ing wherever you are, and know that they’re simple enough to make even if you’re powerfully hungover.
Savory Crawfish Beignets with Cayenne Powdered Sugar
Louisiana’s favorite fritter isn’t limited to the sweet morning variety. These beignets incorporate jalapenos, crawfish, and a kicky dusting of cayenne-powdered sugar, perfect for commencing any Big Easy feast.
There are so many variations of this one-pot soup. Start with a classic roux of oil or flour and butter. Then add the "trinity"–green bell pepper, celery, and onion–before stirring in the meat and other vegetables and spices. Serve with rice, or over potato salad for authentic southern Louisiana presentation.
Recipe: Chicken-and-Sausage Gumbo
New Orleans Red Beans and Rice with Pickled Peppers
In New Orleans, red beans and rice are traditionally served on Mondays because the dish uses up leftover Sunday ham. Grace Parisi likes making the recipe any day of the week, and she replaces the ham with smoky bacon.
5 to Try: New Orleans Classics
BBQ Shrimp takes just 5 minutes to prepare, plus 35 minutes of bake time that you can spend whipping of a quick side of cheese grits or salad. This simple dish gets its flavor from ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, Old Bay seasoning, and dried rosemary and thyme.
Recipe: BBQ Shrimp
Grilled Seafood Po'Boy
Stuff a French sandwich roll with grilled shrimp and catfish for a lighter version of this traditional New Orleans sandwich.
Recipe: Grilled Seafood Po'Boy
Étoufée is an elegant, yet earthy, example of New Orleans home cooking. Thicken sautéed onion, celery, bell pepper, garlic, and shallots with flour, then simmer with chicken broth, seasonings, and cooked crawfish tails. Serve over hot cooked rice.
Recipe: Crawfish Étoufée
Brennan's Bananas Foster
This super-sweet dessert features bananas smothered in a sauce made from melted butter, brown sugar, banana liqueur, cinnamon, and dark rum. Served with creamy vanilla ice cream.
Recipe: Brennan's Bananas Foster
Cajun Bloody Mary
For a pretty presentation, rub the rims of glasses with lemon wedges, and dip in a mixture of black pepper and coarse salt.