Facebook LinkedIn Email Pinterest Twitter Instagram YouTube Icon Navigation Search Icon Main Search Icon Video Play Icon Plus Icon Minus Icon Check Icon Print Icon Note Icon Heart Icon Filled Heart Icon Single Arrow Icon Double Arrow Icon Hamburger Icon TV Icon Close Icon Sorted Hamburger/Search Icon

Gumbo Ya Ya

Brian Hagiwara

Servings: eight as a main course or twelve as an appetizer.

Bone-in chicken gives the stew more flavor; the meat becomes so tender that it falls from the bone. If, however, you don’t feel like fishing out the bones later, you can use the same amount of boneless thighs; they will likely take less time to cook, so check for tenderness sooner.


  • 3 Tbs. plus 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2-1/2 lb. skinless chicken thighs, preferably bone-in
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 medium bunch celery, thinly sliced
  • 4 large onions, diced
  • 4 green or red bell peppers, diced
  • 2 Tbs. minced garlic
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp. cayenne or 5 fresh cayenne peppers, diced
  • 3/4 tsp. dried oregano
  • 3/4 tsp. dried basil
  • 3/4 tsp. dried thyme
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 8 cups homemade or lower-salt chicken broth or water
  • 1-1/2 lb. andouille sausage or other spicy smoked sausage, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 Tbs. filé powder
  • 6 cups cooked white rice
  • Chopped scallions for garnish
  • Tabasco or other Louisiana-style hot sauce

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Sample Size main course serving
  • Calories (kcal) : 910
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 420
  • Fat (g): 47
  • Saturated Fat (g): 11
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 15
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 17
  • Cholesterol (mg): 95
  • Sodium (mg): 1020
  • Carbohydrates (g): 83
  • Fiber (g): 4
  • Protein (g): 35


  • In a heavy-based soup pot, heat 3 Tbs. of the oil over high heat until almost smoking. While the oil is heating, season the chicken generously with salt and pepper, dust it with 1/4 cup of the flour, and shake off the excess. Sear the chicken in the hot oil until golden brown, turning once to brown both sides, 4 minutes on each side. Remove the chicken and set aside.

    Let the oil reheat for a minute and then reduce the heat to medium high and add the celery, onions, and peppers and cook until soft, 10 to 12 minutes, stirring to prevent scorching. Remove the vegetables and any liquid from the pan and set aside. Add 3/4 cup oil to the pot and let it heat up for a minute over medium heat. Slowly add the remaining flour to the pan and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is the color of chocolate, 10 to 20 minutes. Stir carefully, being sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the pot to prevent scorching. Pay attention not to burn the roux; if you do burn it, you’ll have to start over.

    When the roux has reached a good mahogany brown, return the cooked vegetables to the pot, along with the garlic, cayenne, oregano, basil, thyme, and bay leaves. Stir to scrape the bottom of the pot and cook until well combined, 3 to 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

    Slowly add the broth while stirring until smoothly blended. Add the chicken and the sausage. Bring to a simmer and skim off excess fat. Simmer uncovered, skimming any foam or fat that rises to the surface, until the chicken meat is so tender that it falls easily from the bones, about 2 hours (begin checking earlier). Remove the bones from the pot and discard.

    Return the soup to a boil and stir in the filé powder, stirring vigorously to avoid clumping, until the filé powder is dissolved. Taste for seasoning, adding salt and pepper as necessary. Serve the gumbo in bowls over the cooked white rice with chopped scallions and Tabasco to taste.


Rate or Review

Reviews (7 reviews)

  • LaMere | 02/27/2020

    Very delicious! I also left out the file powder and no one seemed to miss it.

  • joyfullady | 09/25/2017

    This is a family favorite and truly a superior gumbo.

  • Virgie | 09/13/2010

    This is excellent. Great to make ahead and reheat. As others have mentioned the Roux takes time and care, but the overall effect is great. My only issue is the amount of oil in this, but it does make alot!

  • stellarbabe7 | 05/29/2010

    Super Delicious! I cut the recipe in half and it served 4 (although 3 had seconds). It is a little time consuming because of the roux, but well worth it! I used chicken on the bone and it was very flavorful. Also, I don't know what file powder is and so I just left it out and it didn't seem to make a difference. Will definitely make it again.

Show More

Rate this Recipe

Write a Review

Delicious Dish

Find the inspiration you crave for your love of cooking

Fine Cooking Magazine

Subscribe today
and save up to 50%

Already a subscriber? Log in.


View All


Follow Fine Cooking on your favorite social networks

We hope you’ve enjoyed your free articles. To keep reading, subscribe today.

Get the print magazine, 25 years of back issues online, over 7,000 recipes, and more.

Start your FREE trial