Gumbo Z'Herbes [Recipe]


Bowl of Gumbo Z'Herbes

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A couple of months ago, we featured a recipe for savory seafood-andouille gumbo. It’s officially soup weather, so we decided to check out some of the different varieties of gumbo that are out there for the tasting. Here’s a recipe for gumbo z’herbes, submitted by Amanda Boling, that got our attention because it is easily customizable for our vegetarian friends by simply leaving out the sausage.

Alternatively, vegetarians may want to use Tofurky-brand Andouille Sausages, but if you do, we recommend that you cook the sausage separately and add once you serve.



  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1 small tomato, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tablespoon Cajun seasoning (Essence is always a safe bet)
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 bottle dark beer (Left Hand Milk Stout is a favorite)
  • 1 pound assorted greens (turnip, mustard, collard, and cabbage were used here), chopped
  • Salt to taste, if needed
  • Filé powder to taste
  • 1/2 pound andouille sausage (optional)



  1. Make a roux with the flour and oil in a large pot or Dutch oven, stirring constantly over medium heat until it turns a bit darker than peanut butter.
  2. In a separate saucepan, heat the water to a simmer.
  3. When the roux is dark enough, add the chopped vegetables (but not the greens yet) and garlic.
  4. Let the veggies cook about 5 minutes, then slowly stir in the simmering water. Stir until everything is well mixed and you have a smooth, thick gumbo base.
  5. Add the bay leaf, Cajun seasoning, and greens.
  6. When the pot is lightly bubbling and the greens have softened a bit, stir in the beer and add salt to taste if necessary.
  7. Cover the pot and simmer gently 1 hour.
  8. If you wish to add sausage, throw it in and cook about 15 minutes more.
  9. Serve with steamed rice and a pinch of file sprinkled on top. Serves 2.


Amanda Boling is a legal assistant and pub trivia maven from Houston. She loves one-pot recipes that can simmer while she captions pictures of dogs, crashes parades and acts out scenes from "Game of Thrones." Her spirit animal is a poodle.