Shrimp and Okra Gumbo
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
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Serves: 6 to 8
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 2 cups diced yellow onions
  • 2 cups diced green bell pepper
  • 2 cups diced celery
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • ½ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 cup chopped tasso or smoked ham
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 12 cups shrimp stock or seafood stock, plus water if needed
  • 1 cup dried shrimp
  • 2 cups sliced okra
  • 1 ½ cups dark roux, such as Rox's Roux
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 pounds fresh large Louisiana shrimp
  • Dash of hot sauce
  • 8 cups cooked Louisiana white rice, for serving, such as Supreme
  • 1 cup diced green onion tops
  • Filé powder
  1. In a large cast-iron pot over medium heat, add ¼ cup of canola oil. Once sizzling hot, add the onions, bell peppers, and celery. Sauté until the onions turn translucent. Add the garlic, parsley, and tasso, and sauté until combined. Add the tomato paste and stir to combine.
  2. Add the shrimp stock along with the dried shrimp. Add the sliced okra. Bring to a boil and add the roux. Lower the heat to a simmer and season with cayenne pepper. Cover the pot and let cook for 1 hour.
  3. After 1 hour, lift the lid and skim the surface of any excess oil. Taste the gumbo. If you prefer your gumbo thinner, add more stock or water. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add the shrimp, cover the pot and simmer for 20 minutes more. Turn off the heat.
  4. Uncover the pot and skim the surface of any excess oil. Sample the finished gumbo and season with hot sauce to taste.
  5. Ladle the gumbo into large bowls over a mound of rice and garnish with diced green onion tops. Have filé powder and hot sauce on the table for adding. Serve with hot French bread.
You can buy Rox's Roux online or you can make your own roux by reading my wife Rox's story here. I prefer using shrimp or seafood stock to build flavor in this gumbo. For even added flavor, buy a small bag of dried shrimp and add to the stock. In this gumbo, the rich Creole flavors come from adding tomato paste and fresh okra – both of which are important in tying the cultures together. Along with roux, okra is a natural thickener in this gumbo. Some folks like to saute their cut okra to eliminate mucilage (slime), but with a long cooking time, it should be minimal.
Recipe by Acadiana Table at