One of the signature dishes in traditional Cajun and Creole cuisine and the official state food of Louisiana, Gumbo is a hearty stew consisting of sausage, shellfish, chicken, onions, celery, bell peppers, and okra simmered for hours in a thick, flavorful stock and served with a big scoop of white rice. But what if I told you that you could make a delicious gumbo recipe in a fraction of the time with a pressure cooker?
Ingredients for Gumbo
One of the best parts about gumbo is that the ingredients can be adjusted to fit your preferences, tastes, or grocery lists. While a traditional gumbo includes a combination of chicken, sausage, and a type of shellfish such as shrimp, you can include or omit any or all of the animal protein if you prefer. Gumbo makes a tremendous vegetarian stew since the veggies at the base make it hearty enough to stand on its own.
In order for all the flavors to blend together, gumbo is usually made in a heavy pot and allowed to simmer for hours on the stove. However, this Instant Pot version gives you all the tastes of the traditional gumbo in half the time.
How To Make Gumbo in the Instant Pot
Before you start adding all your gumbo ingredients, set yourself up for success and prepare your white rice first according to the package ingredients. You can also do this in your pressure cooker. Remove the rice and rinse clean before starting with the gumbo.
Set the Instant Pot to "Sauté" and add the olive oil. Sprinkle in the flour and stir together until smooth. Cook, stirring constantly, until flour is medium brown in color, about 8 to 10minutes.
Similar to other Cajun and Creole dishes such as jambalaya or etouffee, the key to a good gumbo is the herbs, spices, and the roux. A roux is a combination of oil and all-purpose flour that creates a thickening agent, giving this dish its special rich sauce.
A dark roux usually takes about 45 minutes to make, however, we opted to use a light roux in this instant pot gumbo recipe for the sake of time. Cooking the roux to the dark stage brings out a nutty and tobacco note which plays harmoniously with the holy trinity (onion, celery, bell pepper) and smoked sausage. Simply cook the roux longer (20-30 minutes) to achieve, making sure to stir periodically to prevent burning on the bottom of the pot. You want dark brown, not burnt.
Once the roux is cooked, Add the onion, bell pepper, celery, and garlic into the Instant Pot and sauté until softened then add the stock, diced tomatoes, chicken, sausage, okra, Creole seasoning, oregano, thyme, basil, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, okra, Worcestershire sauce, and bay leaf to the Instant Pot and stir. We used frozen okra instead of fresh okra to help prep go along a bit quicker.
Close the pressure cooker and cook on high pressure for 8 minutes. Quick-release, making sure to use a spoon to release the vent, and stir in the shrimp and season with salt and black pepper. Cook on the "saute" setting until the shrimp is fully cooked. Serve over rice and garnish with parsley, green onion, and your favorite hot sauce.
Set the Instant Pot to "Sauté" and add the olive oil. Sprinkle in the flour and stir together until smooth. Cook, stirring constantly, until flour is medium brown in color, about 8 to 10 minutes.
Add the onion, bell pepper, celery, and garlic into the Instant Pot and sauté until softened, about 3 to 5 minutes.
Select “Keep Warm/Cancel” and add the stock, diced tomatoes, chicken, sausage, okra, Creole seasoning, oregano, thyme, basil, salt, pepper, cayenne, okra, Worcestershire sauce, and bay leaf to the Instant Pot and stir.
Close and lock the lid of the Instant Pot. Set the steam release to "Sealing", then select “Manual” and adjust the time to 8 minutes. Let cook until timer the beeps.
When finished, select “Keep Warm/Cancel” and then turn the valve to "Venting" for quick release. Carefully open the lid and stir in shrimp, salt, and black pepper. Select the "Sauté" and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until shrimp are cooked through. Turn off the Instapot and remove the bay leaf.
Serve in a bowl, topped with rice and garnished with fresh parsley, sliced green onion, and hot sauce, if desired.