Homemade Cajun Seasoning Recipe - Leelalicious (2024)

See Recipe Pin Recipe

With this homemade Cajun Seasoning you'll have your favorite Cajun dishes on the table in no time.Making this Cajun spice mix at home is economical and chances are you already have all the ingredients in your spice cabinet.

Homemade Cajun Seasoning Recipe - Leelalicious (1)

My Experience with Cajun Food

Growing up in Germany I had never heard of Cajun cuisine. My first exposure to Cajun foodwas after my family moved to Canada.

We started eating out more, where I saw things like 'Blackened Cajun Chicken' on restaurant menus. I remember one time my husband and I were arguing about how to pronounce Cajun- until we asked a waitress, who of course sided with him.

Later at home, I had to get to the root of this mystery word. Thanks to trusty Google I learned about the French-speaking 'Acadians' and their long journey from the Canadian Maritimesto Southern Louisiana.

Suddenly the odd-to-me pronunciation totally made sense. What also made sense was the flavor of the amazingCajun spiced chicken. It wassuper hot but very delicious!

Fast forward many years to now where I am a food blogger who loves to travel and discover cultures through food. Always fascinated with ethnic cuisines and always trying to recreate everything at home.

Homemade Cajun Seasoning Recipe - Leelalicious (2)

Blogging in Mexico

While also trying to do so from wherever we are currently based in the World. We've chosen Mexico as our current home base and are loving it through and through.

Adjusting to food blogging in a new country always takes a while and can be anywhere from easy to quite challenging. Mexico has been great for food blogging; from all of the fantastic fruit and vegetables in the markets to spices, coffee, and chocolate! I have also loved the convenience of modern supermarkets and tiny specialty stores.

One of my favourite little shops has an extensive bulk spice section. When I saw itfor the first time, it confirmed for me that I could do food blogging from here.

Homemade Cajun Seasoning Recipe - Leelalicious (3)

They may not have all the specialty seasoning mixes one could wish for, but with all the individual spices available it has been no problem (and very economical) to mix up whichever seasoning blend I currently need or want.

From gingerbread spicefor holiday baking to garam masala and even chai spice mix - I've been able to find every single ingredient I wanted.

And right now I needed Cajun seasoning!

What is Cajun Seasoning?

Cajun seasoning is a unique spice mix consisting of salt and several peppers (black pepper, paprika, or even white pepper). Dried thyme and oregano make up the European influence of the Cajun spice blend. Meanwhile, chile powder (I used cayenne pepper) gives it the famous heat, while garlic powder and onion powder add a great savoury flavor. Cayenne pepper is basically the dried version of the fresh pepper.

It differs from Creole seasoning in terms of heat. While Cajun seasoning can be classified as quite hot, Creole spice uses more herbs like basil, bay leaf, or rosemary, which makes Creole food well seasoned but not necessarily overly spicy.

Cajun food as a whole originated with the Cajun Acadians who experienced deportation from Canada to Louisiana during the 1700s. These people were French Canadian in origin, but they quickly took elements of other people's cuisines into their own once they were in Louisiana. For example, while traditionally they might have cooked with more potatoes, they started using rice.

Their cuisine was very rustic with a combination of Spanish, West African, and French influences, which is why the seasoning blend is so unique. Some staple dishes of cajun cuisine include gumbo, jambalaya, and rice and gravy. There are plenty of dishes that include andouille sausage and seafood like crawfish as well. If you are new to cajun seasoning, this spice mixture is exceptional dusted on potatoes, fries, or infused into rice. However, you might want to dive straight into cajun food and try a few of these intriguing dishes as well.

Homemade Cajun Seasoning Recipe - Leelalicious (4)

How to Make Cajun Seasoning?

DIY Cajun seasoning is as easy as it gets. Check the list of ingredients in the recipe box below, then walk over to your spice rack, cabinet, or drawer to see if you have all of them on hand. Chances are highthat you do in fact have all of them already there.

If not, put the missing ingredients on the shopping list for your next trip to the store. Once you have all your spices together, just measure them out and mix them together. Alternatively, you could even just fill everything right into an empty spice jar or other airtight container, close it tightly and then shake until everything is fully combined.

Next, you can place the mixture in a storage container to keep for whenever you need it. I recommend storing the cajun seasoning in a cool dark place such as a cupboard so that it retains its freshness. When spices experience exposure to sunlight, they can sometimes clump together or become pale in colour. This can, in turn, impact how they flavour your dishes. Altogether, you should be able to store your homemade cajun spice mix for up to 2 years provided you keep it in the right conditions. Of course, the length of time will also depend upon the freshness of the spices and herbs you start with.

Quick and Easy Uses for Cajun Spice Mix

The benefit of having homemade spice mixes on hand is they can add flavour to dishes very quickly. This cajun seasoning recipe is delicious when you dust it on food at the end of cooking. Try it on these foods:

  • French fries - Toss with your fries at the end of baking or frying. You may also want to add a little sea salt at this point. A little fresh thyme also jazzes up fries cutting through their richness.
  • Popcorn - Along with some melted butter, this cajun seasoning is perfect for those who love savoury popcorn. However, if you are someone who enjoys a savoury and sweet combination, consider stirring a little brown sugar into the spice blend before adding it to your popcorn.
  • Eggs - Sprinkle it on fried or scrambled eggs. Alternatively, you can slice up hardboiled eggs on sourdough toast and add a dusting of this spicy seasoning at the table.
  • Dip - Stir into Greek yogurt and/or sour cream for a dip. You could even add it to store-bought dips for a little extra flavour.
  • Grain bowls - This spice mix would be equally wonderful dusted on top or infused with a creamy avocado yogurt sauce.

It is also wonderful in simple cooked preparations like these:

  • Rubbed onto pork for pulled pork or on ribs.
  • Tossed with vegetables for roasting.
  • Tossed with bread cubes for homemade croutons.
  • Added to cornbread stuffing for your holiday bird.

Recipes with Cajun Seasoning that you'll love:

Here are some fantastic recipes using Cajun seasoning

  • Cajun Chicken and Rice
  • Cajun Chicken Pasta
  • Cajun Fries (use about 3 teaspoons cajun spice blend instead of the individual spices listed)

Homemade Cajun Seasoning Recipe - Leelalicious (5)

Homemade Cajun Seasoning

4.86 from 7 votes

With this homemade Cajun Seasoning you'll have your favorite Cajun dishes on the table in no time. Making this Cajun spice mix at home is economical and chances are you already have all the ingredients in your spice cabinet.

Print Recipe Pin Recipe Save Recipe

Prep Time 5 minutes mins

Total Time 5 minutes mins


  • 2 teaspoons paprika powder
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper


  • Gather all your spices and grind or crush all that aren't already.

  • Measure each ingredient into a bowl and stir to combine. Or fill directly into an empty spice jar or container with a tight fitting lid, then shake until everything is fully combined.

  • Store in a dry and cool place (with your other spices).


Nutrition Facts

Homemade Cajun Seasoning

Serving Size

1 tablespoon

Amount per Serving



% Daily Value*






Saturated Fat

































Vitamin A





Vitamin C















* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Tried this recipe?Please leave a comment below! Share a picture on social media with tag #leelalicious !

Pin for later?

Homemade Cajun Seasoning Recipe - Leelalicious (6)

Random Questions

What is Cajun seasoning made of?

Cajun seasoning typically includes salt, various peppers (black, paprika, or white), dried thyme, oregano, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder, creating a flavorful blend.

What can I use if I don't have Cajun seasoning?

Create a makeshift Cajun blend with paprika, cayenne pepper, black pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder. Adjust proportions to taste.

Is Cajun seasoning the same as Mexican seasoning?

No, Cajun seasoning is distinct, rooted in French Acadian cuisine, while Mexican seasoning is influenced by Mexican culinary traditions.

What is the difference between Creole seasoning and Cajun seasoning?

Cajun seasoning is spicier, featuring peppers, while Creole seasoning uses more herbs like basil, bay leaf, or rosemary, offering a well-seasoned but less spicy flavor.

Homemade Cajun Seasoning Recipe - Leelalicious (2024)


What is the closest seasoning to Cajun seasoning? ›

If you're in the middle of a Master Chef moment but you just ran out of your favorite Cajun seasoning blend, you can easily substitute a combination of cayenne pepper, garlic powder, and paprika to achieve an “I-can't-believe-it's-not-Cajun” experience.

What does Cajun seasoning contain? ›

What Is In Cajun Spice Mix? Typical Cajun seasonings (including store-bought like Slap Ya Mama and Tony Chachere's) are made with black pepper, white pepper, cayenne pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and paprika. For different flavors, some Cajun spice mixes include salt, mustard powder, chile peppers, or cumin.

What is the difference between Creole seasoning and Cajun seasoning? ›

The main difference is the spice factor present in the Cajun seasoning, which makes Creole seasoning a great alternative for someone hoping to try their hand at shrimp étouffée, but can't handle the heat. Spiceography notes the extra heat of Cajun seasoning may be considered too strong, though, for some Creole dishes.

Can I substitute Old Bay for Cajun seasoning? ›

Old Bay and Cajun seasoning do have differences, but in many cases they can be used interchangeably. The ingredients in the foundation of each spice make them easy to incorporate into various recipes.

Which is hotter Cajun or Creole seasoning? ›

While spicy dishes are found in both cuisines, every dish isn't necessarily spicy…it all depends on how much cayenne pepper is used in the recipe. Cajun dishes tend to be a bit hotter than Creole.

Is Cajun and Louisiana spice the same? ›

Cajun seasoning is a blend of spices that originated in Louisiana (which is why it's also sometimes known as Louisiana cajun seasoning). It typically contains a mix of peppers (paprika, cayenne, black pepper) and garlic powder.

What are the three ingredients of Cajun? ›

The "holy trinity" in Cajun cuisine and Louisiana Creole cuisine is the base for several dishes in the regional cuisines of Louisiana and consists of onions, bell peppers and celery. The preparation of Cajun/Creole dishes such as crawfish étouffée, gumbo, and jambalaya all start from this base.

What spices are in McCormick Cajun seasoning? ›

Our Cajun-style spice brings robust flavor to your cooking with herbs and spices like paprika, thyme, garlic, celery seed and red pepper. Taste our seasoning and dive into Cajun culture, even if just for a moment. It's a flavorful, spicy way to serve chicken, shrimp, fish, rice and more with Louisiana-style flair.

Can I use paprika instead of Cajun seasoning? ›

If you only have a few ingredients 1 tablespoon Paprika, 1 teaspoon of mixed herbs, and a pinch of chilli flakes or powder and salt and pepper could work well.

Is slap ya mama and tony's the same? ›

Q: Is Slap Ya Mama and Tony's the same? A: No, Slap Ya Mama and Tony Chachere's are different brands of Cajun seasoning. While both are used in Cajun cuisine, each brand has its own unique blend of spices and flavor profile.

Is Gumbo a Creole or Cajun? ›

Gumbo is perhaps the signature dish of both cuisines. Creole gumbo has a tomato base and is more of a soup, while Cajun gumbo has a roux base and is more of a stew.

Which is better, Old Bay or Zatarain's? ›

We all prefer Zatarain's boil over home mixes or Old Bay. It is spicy and infuses a lovely flavor in foods. I even add a little of the boiled water to gumbos and jambalayas as it enhances the spices I add myself.

Do Cajuns use Old Bay? ›

While Old Bay seasoning may add a delicious flavor to your Cajun-style seafood dish, it is not considered authentic Cajun seasoning. Authentic Cajun seasoning typically includes a mix of spices such as paprika, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper.

What is so special about Old Bay seasoning? ›

According to McCormick, Old Bay is a blend of 18 herbs and spices, making it versatile for use on fish, chicken, vegetables, and soup. The unique blend of spices includes (but is not limited to): celery seed, paprika, mustard, salt, red pepper, and black pepper.

Is paprika close to Cajun seasoning? ›

Cajun seasoning is primarily salt, cayenne (red pepper), and garlic powder. It is hot and salty. Paprika can be mild, hot, or smoked but is predominantly a mild red colored pepper in dried and powdered form. It contains no salt and has a very mild flavor (except for the hot variety).

Can I substitute Creole seasoning for Cajun seasoning? ›

So can you replace Cajun seasoning with Creole seasoning? The short answer is yes, MasterClass explains, as they feature many of the same ingredients. However, with Cajun seasoning being spicier and Creole more earthy, there will be a slight difference in flavor.

Is Cajun seasoning similar to paprika? ›

Cajun seasoning has paprika in it, but it's got a whole bunch of other tasty stuff too like garlic, onion, thyme, and cayenne. It's got a nice flavor that's a bit more complicated than just paprika.

What's the difference between Cayenne and Cajun seasoning? ›

Cayenne is hot chili pepper made from the Birdseye pepper usually, though others are often blended in. Cayenne pepper is normally rated at 30,000 to 50,000 Scoville units and considered a moderately hot pepper. Cajun seasoning is a spice blend of these primarily: paprika/or/smoked paprika.

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Jerrold Considine

Last Updated:

Views: 6552

Rating: 4.8 / 5 (78 voted)

Reviews: 93% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Jerrold Considine

Birthday: 1993-11-03

Address: Suite 447 3463 Marybelle Circles, New Marlin, AL 20765

Phone: +5816749283868

Job: Sales Executive

Hobby: Air sports, Sand art, Electronics, LARPing, Baseball, Book restoration, Puzzles

Introduction: My name is Jerrold Considine, I am a combative, cheerful, encouraging, happy, enthusiastic, funny, kind person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.