This easy and tasty dirty rice is the perfect flavorful dish that is bursting with incredible seasoning!
I’m proud to be partnering with Princess Cruises to bring you these amazing vacation memories plus sharing this tasty dirty rice recipe.
Looking for a quick, colorful, and yummy meal? I have it for you with this classic dirty rice — it’s the best!
Simple and authentic but full of spicy seasoning, this dirty rice recipe can be a side dish or made into a one-pot dinner.
This from scratch, homemade comfort food is the best in Southern cooking.
For this recipe, we’re using brown or white rice and beans along with spices. Green peppers and onion join the mix as well. You can keep it vegetarian or make it with ground beef, pork, sausage, with chicken or with shrimp.
No matter the mix, this tasty and easy flavorful dirty rice will be a favorite with your gang.
If you’ve been following along, we’re in the middle of a menu that was inspired by our recent Caribbean cruise.
Our trip was filled with many first time adventures and incredible experiences.
Each day we had amazing food and when I got home, I got busy recreating my favorites.
Our third port was Belize. Let me just say…. this day will go down in our history book as one of the best days we’ve ever had.
We hopped off the ship first thing in the morning. Our OceanMedallion™ meant that getting on and off the ship was a simple process every time.
We had a quick boat ride from the ship to the harbor and then got a bus with our tour guide. I loved our tour guide, Big Bruce, in Belize. He was friendly and passionate about his country. He kept us entertained throughout our ride and gave us so much amazing information about his culture.
Once we arrived, it was a full day of cave tubing and ziplining ahead.
I’ve done my fair share of ziplines and through the jungle in Belize is definitely the best! We hiked up the mountainside once we got our gear on and then made our way down through five stations of zipline. It was a breathtaking and incredible experience.
I’ll add: I’m scared of heights and ziplining scares me every single time. But it was SO worth it — it was AMAZING!! There is something to be said for getting over your fears and just going for it.
The staff was friendly, kind, and knowledgeable. I felt totally safe the entire time. Despite the fact that I was suspended and dangling on a little contraption as I flew hundreds of feet in the air through the jungle. 😉
It’s a must do lifetime experience!
After ziplining, it was time to break for lunch: ice cold bottles of Coca Cola and dirty rice with chicken and fresh, homemade coleslaw.
I was in some kind of heaven. It was some of the best food I’ve ever had. There was music, sunshine, and laughter. The entire afternoon felt like it was sprinkled with magic.
After we ate, it was time for cave tubing.
I’ll admit, I felt a little nervous… but it turned out to be one of the most incredible adventures EVER.
We each had a life vest and tube, plus a guide. We headed down into the cave on a path and then hopped into the water. Inside the cave, it was completely dark. The water was cold and crystal clear. At first, I felt a bit worried about bats or what was in the water. But I cast those thoughts aside and got lost in the adventure and I’m so glad I did.
Our guide showed us various formations as we floated around. We were able to get out of the water and hike a bit inside the cave, too.
At the end of our time in the water, there was a huge 100-foot deep pool. We were given the option to free swim across this area or use our tubes. I chose to swim. Weeks later, I am still totally giddy at the experience. It was one of the absolute coolest things I have ever done in my life.
I truly cannot recommend this adventure enough. If it was the only thing we did the entire cruise, this day alone would have been worth it. That’s how amazing it was!
Of course, once we returned home, our day in Belize has been a regular topic of conversation. I was determined to recreate the dirty rice we ate for lunch because it was so tasty.
I’m pleased to share this incredible, homemade, Southern comfort food with you today — you’ll love it!
What is Dirty Rice?
Dirty rice is a traditional Creole dish that is made from white rice which gets “dirty” from being cooked with pork, beef, or with chicken. It’s combined with green bell pepper, celery, and onion plus spices. Parsley and chopped green onions are a common seasoning as well. The result is tasty and colorful!
It’s not just a Cajun specialty from New Orleans though — versions of this meal are prepared from scratch other places in the world, as we found out in Belize.
Dirty Rice Ingredients
- 4 cups long grain rice (you can use white or brown)
- 1 lbs uncooked Italian sausage or ground beef (or ½ and ½ )
- 1 green bell pepper, diced
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup green onions, chopped
- 3-4 chopped whole Italian sausage, cooked and sliced in half moon shapes
- 1 10.5 oz can of diced tomato and green chiles, undrained
- ¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
- 4 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 2 Tbs Creole or Cajun seasoning
I’ve heard you can make this with chicken liver or serve with shrimp as well. If you do it that way, please tell me! You could also leave the meat out and make this vegetarian style as well. You could make it with beans if you’re leaving out the meat.
I love that for this dish, you can make the recipe more spicy if that’s your thing. Just add a little more seasoning and a few more onions if that’s how you like it.
Now that you have your ingredients gathered, it’s time to get cooking this flavorful classic.
How to Make Dirty Rice
This easy one-pot recipe is simple, hearty, and authentic. Perfect for a family dinner or to take along to a potluck with friends. You’ll love how quick it is to make and the flavor is the best.
You’ll begin by cooking your rice according to the package directions and then set aside. Make sure to cook rice to al dente and don’t overcook it, which can lead to mushy rice.
While the rice is cooking, brown the Italian sausage and place in a separate bowl. Wipe the skillet, leaving about a tablespoon of leftover grease.
Combine the green peppers, onion, and garlic in a large skillet or dutch oven and cook until softened, about five minutes.
While cooking, warm the whole sausage according to package directions. Slice into half-moon shapes once cooked through and set aside.
Once all ingredients are cooked, combine tomatoes, sausage, rice, Worcestershire sauce, chicken broth, green onions, and creole seasoning. The Creole/Cajun seasoning is very salty, so make sure that you are using low-sodium chicken broth and tasting the rice before adding any kind of salt to it.
On medium-high heat, bring mixture to a boil and cover with a lid. Once boiling, turn the heat down to low and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
What Do You Eat with Dirty Rice?
You can enjoy with a protein of your choice.
In Belize, we ate it with chicken, so that’s how I made it at home as well. It would also be delicious with shrimp.
How to Store Dirty Rice
You’ll want to leave in the fridge in an airtight container for up to a week.
More Recipes You’ll Love
- Ambrosia Salad
- Chocolate Lasagna
- Cherry Dump Cake
- Pineapple Upside Down Cake
- Chocolate Peanut Butter No Bake Cookies
No matter how you serve it, imagine you’re in the jungle of Belize, surrounded by friends and incredible music. This dirty rice will be a family favorite for years to come — just like the memories from our day of adventure.
- 4 cups long grain rice
- 1 lbs uncooked italian sausage or ground beef or ½ and ½
- 1 green bell pepper diced
- 1 onion diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ½ cup green onions chopped
- 3-4 chopped whole Italian sausage cooked and sliced in half moon shapes
- 1 10.5 oz can of diced tomato and green chiles undrained
- ¼ cup worcestershire sauce
- 4 cups low sodium chicken broth
- 2 Tbs Creole or Cajun seasoning
- Cook rice according to package directions and set aside.
- While rice is cooking, brown Italian sausage and place in a separate bowl.
- Wipe pan, leaving about a tablespoon of leftover grease. Combine bell pepper, onion, and garlic in a large skillet or dutch oven and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
- While cooking, warm whole sausage according to package direction. Slice into half-moon shapes once cooked through and set aside.
- Once all ingredients are cooked, combine tomatoes, sausage, rice, Worcestershire sauce, chicken broth, green onions, and creole seasoning.
- On medium-high heat, bring mixture to a boil and cover with a lid. Once boiling, turn the heat down to low and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Enjoy with a protein of your choice!