In this article, we'll be discussing Cajun seasoning. We'll tell you all about what it tastes like, how you can use it in your vegan cooking, and what makes it different from a similar seasoning you may have heard of.
Let's get started...
What Does Cajun Taste Like?
The spice blend known as Cajun seasoning is great for summer recipes. It's smoky, garlicky and peppery in a way that will remind you of barbecue and grilling (sprinkle it on some tofu and you'll see what we mean).
Some Cajun seasoning blends are spicier than others, but they all have a bite. The flavor is powerful, and the more you use, the hotter your food will be.
What’s Cajun Seasoning?
Cajun seasoning is popular in southern Louisiana. It's sometimes strictly made of spices, but it can also contain small bits of fresh or dried veggies like onions and peppers.
The spices that aren't usually left out of Cajun seasoning are garlic, paprika, cayenne, black pepper and herbs like thyme and oregano. Sometimes smoked paprika is used, which will deepen the flavor.
What Is the Difference Between Cajun and Blackened Seasoning?
Hearing Cajun seasoning and the blackened cooking technique used separately can be confusing. To explain the link between the two, it's easiest to first understand what blackening is.
Although it's not usually a vegan process, blackening can be veganized. It's when something you're about to fry up is first dipped in butter (you can use vegan butter) and Cajun seasoning and then fried until charred-looking.
So you see, there is a difference between Cajun seasoning and blackened flavor. You don't need to blacken everything with Cajun seasoning, but if you order a vegan entree in a restaurant that's described as blackened, it's probably Cajun seasoned.
What Can Replace Cajun Seasoning?
If you don't have any prepared Cajun seasoning, you can whip up a quick recipe with minced garlic, onion, black pepper, paprika (smoked or regular) and Italian seasoning, thyme or oregano.
Creole seasoning is close to Cajun seasoning, just sweeter and with less of a spicy kick. If you have some of this in your spice rack, you can use it in place of Cajun seasoning.
You may even be able to use chili powder if you don't have any of these replacements, but it will slightly alter the flavor of your recipe.
Cajun Seasoning Tips
First, we'll show you how the pros make Cajun seasoning from scratch. You might find all of the ingredients already in your kitchen. After that, you can get to the good part—cooking with Cajun seasoning vegan-style.
Making your own Cajun seasoning is the way to ensure the freshest, most vibrant flavors. This video will guide you through making it with the following ingredients:
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Cayenne pepper
- Red pepper flakes
- Black pepper
- White pepper
Here's a recipe for vegan jambalaya, an absolutely delicious Cajun-spiced rice dish. Here are all the ingredients you'll need:
- Bell pepper
- Vegan butter
- Vegan bouillon
- Cajun seasoning
- Bay leaf
- Veggie sausage (the chef uses Field Roast, but you can use any brand)
Smoky, savory and spicy Cajun seasoning is perfect for grilled tofu, tempeh and mock meats. But you don't have to stick to grilling. Add homemade Cajun seasoning to roasted veggies, pasta dishes and even salad dressings, and definitely go for the vegan jambalaya to spice up your dinner routine.