Difference Between Gumbo and Jambalaya

Food is the major component of life and worldwide there are many different types of food grown and eaten. Thus there are multi cuisines that are famous representing their regions like – Indian, Chinese, Continental, Italian, Thai, Mexican, and many others. Alongside these cuisines, there are traditional dishes that are popular and have somewhat get their fusion in the ingredients and have to make back among people.

Gumbo vs Jambalaya

The main difference between Gumbo and Jambalaya is that how the rice is included in the dishes. The dish Gumbo makes sure that the rice is served alongside it and is also cooed in a separate utensil whereas comparatively, on the other hand, the dish Jambalaya involves the rice within the dish and is also cooked in the same utensil.

Gumbo and Jambalaya

Gumbo is a dish that is made with a variety of vegetables in it and some of them are – celery, okra, green pepper, meat, and thick stock. The variety or say the type of meat changes with the place or region where it is been made and that may include – chicken, ham, sausage, shrimp, etc. The dish originally comes from Louisiana.

Jambalaya is also a dish that has been originated in Louisiana. The traditional dish is made with lots of vegetables in it that include – celery, onions, etc. The vegetables are mixed with meat, rice, and stock. The smoky flavors of the meat make it more delicious also, the key point of the dish is that all the ingredients are cooked in the same utensil.

Comparison Table Between Gumbo and Jambalaya

Parameters of ComparisonGumboJambalaya
What it is?Appears like a soup with riceMore like a casserole dish and rice is served within it
ConsistencyIt appears to be thickIt appears to be thin and less of a liquid
Presence of Rice Cooked in different utensilCooked in the same utensil
Total CaloriesLowHigh
Ingredients Vegetables, meat, stockVegetables, meat, stock, rice
Fats and ProteinLowHigh
Different TypesCajun gumbo, creole gumbo, gumbo z’herbsCreole jambalaya, cajun jambalaya, white jambalaya

What is Gumbo?

Gumbo is a dish that appears to be like a soup or stew and is served along with rice cooked separately in the utensil. There have been varied stories related to the origin of the dish but the most common and accepted story is that it has been originated from Louisiana, Africa by the slaves living there around the year 1764 and they used to cook okra with rice to make the dish.

Over the time the ingredients and variety of them changed and now the basic ingredient of the dish includes the – celery, okra, thick stock, peppers, onion. The varied type of meat is used depending on the region or the place it is been cooked – chicken, sausage, shrimp, ham, etc.

Roux or okra is the common ingredient added to make it more thickened inconsistency. The total calories intake of the dish for a cup of gumbo with rice and meat is around 193. Also, three different types of Gumbo dishes can be prepared and these are – Cajun gumbo, Creole gumbo, Gumbo z’herbs (vegetarian).  

What is Jambalaya?

Jambalaya is a dish that appears to be like a casserole dish and is also served with rice but the difference is that the rice is been cooked within the same utensil as in which other vegetables and meat are cooked or prepared. There are three different methods or ways to prepare the dish Jambalaya and that are – Cajun jambalaya, Creole Jambalaya, and White Jambalaya.

The origin of the Creole Jambalaya dish is from New Orleans while the rest of the two dishes are originated from Louisiana. In the Creole Jambalaya method, tomatoes are replaced by saffron, Cajun Jambalaya includes meats and seafood in good quantity, while White Jambalaya doesn’t include tomatoes and thus the dish has a brown color because of the meat.

The ingredient of the dish is more like same as of Gumbo thus includes vegetables like- celery, onion, peppers, rice, stock, meat – ham, smoked sausage, chicken, seafood. The total calories intake for the dish is huge as it nearly has 393 calories in just a cup of bowl served with meat and rice.

Main Differences Between Gumbo and Jambalaya

  1. Gumbo is a traditional dish that appears to be like a soup or stew after completely cooked and is served with rice additionally whereas comparatively, on the other hand, Jambalaya is also a traditional dish that appears to be more like a casserole dish with somewhat fluid retain in it and is served with service cooked with the same utensil. 
  2. The consistency of the dish Gumbo is more often very thick whereas comparatively, on the other hand, the consistency of the dish Jambalaya is thinner and more of it seems like a liquid.
  3. The dish Gumbo includes rice in serving thus the preparation for the same is done in a different utensil than that of in which other ingredients are been cooked whereas comparatively, on the other hand, the dish Jambalaya also includes rice serving and the preparation for it is done unlike Gumbo in the same utensil within which the other ingredients are been cooked. 
  4. The total calories intake of the dish Gumbo is quite low it has somewhat 193 calories when a bowl of it is served with rice whereas comparatively, on the other hand, the total calorie intake of the dish Jambalaya is quite high and is nearly about 393 for a single bowl of it including rice and meat. 
  5. The major ingredients of the dish Gumbo include different vegetables like – celery, onion, peppers, etc along with a variety of meat that depends on the region in which it is been cooked and thick stock whereas comparatively, on the other hand, the major ingredients of the dish Jambalaya include – vegetables, different variety of meat, thin stock, and rice.
  6. The amount of consumption of fats and proteins from the dish Gumbo is less whereas comparatively, on the other hand, the amount of the consumption of fats and proteins is more. 
  7. There are different ways or varied ways of preparing the dish Gumbo and that includes – Cajun gumbo, creole gumbo, and gumbo z’herbs whereas comparatively, on the other hand, the different varied ways of preparing the Jambalaya dish is – Cajun jambalaya, white jambalaya, and creole jambalaya.


Food is the basic amenity of life and provides nutrients and energy to the body to function properly. Different dishes and meals have different origins worldwide that have traveled to different continents and sub-continent. Among these are the two traditional dishes of Louisiana – Gumbo, and Jambalaya. Both of these are the traditional dishes of the place and are nicely cooked with a variety of vegetables like – celery, onions, peppers, etc. They have a combination of meat and seafood that can be seen besides this there is one vegetarian version of Gumbo – z’herbs. With all the other similarities apparently, the major difference lies in the role of rice in the dish. Gumbo is served alongside rice while Jambalaya is served with rice already cooked within it. Contrastingly, the level of consistency of the dish also shows a slight difference between the two.


  1. https://www.proquest.com/openview/2af65736471fc5d184a5ee59169843eb/1?pq-origsite=gscholar&cbl=36490
  2. https://www.jstor.org/stable/540800
  3. https://books.google.co.in/books?hl=en&lr=&id=5p3JazHY4UgC&oi=fnd&pg=PR9&dq=difference+between+jambalaya+and+gumbo&ots=co0oO9onLT&sig=1TuNYA_QUifCYsZVsr9j2_9Rq70&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=difference%20between%20jambalaya%20and%20gumbo&f=false
  4. https://www.culinarymedicine.org/moodle/upload/Publications/Monlezun%20et%20al%202014%20MANUSCRIPT%20Salt%20%20vP.pdf
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