• STEP 1

    Dry chicken with kitchen paper, then cut diagonal slashes over the smooth side. Mix spices with seasoning, then tip onto a plate.

  • STEP 2

    Brush the chicken on both sides with the oil, then coat all over with the spice mix. Heat a barbecue, griddle pan or grill, then cook the chicken for 5-6 mins on each side until cooked through. Serve each portion with a dollop of guacamole.

What is Cajun seasoning?

This versatile seasoning blend originates from Louisiana, the home of Cajun cuisine. The ingredients used can vary widely; our version uses a simple combination of paprika, cayenne pepper, onion flakes and thyme, but you could also add in garlic powder, oregano, black pepper and chilli powder, amongst other spices.

Tips for making the best Cajun chicken

  • Cutting diagonal slashes in the chicken will help to absorb the flavours of the seasoning whilst cooking. You could also marinade the chicken in the spices overnight to allow them to infuse even more. Make sure to cover the chicken in foil or wrap and refrigerate, if so.
  • If you have large chicken breasts, slice them lengthways into smaller strips, which will allow them to cook faster and more evenly so they stay tender.
  • If you want to add more spice, then increase the cayenne pepper up to 1 tsp or more. Equally if you find the seasoning too spicy, then leave it out altogether.
  • Do not miss out the oil as this will help distribute the spice rub over the chicken and allow it to permeate the meat. It also helps to prevent the chicken from sticking whilst cooking.
  • As well as being delicious on chicken, Cajun seasoning also works well with other meat and seafood. Try our Cajun fried shrimp, Cajun turkey steaks, Cajun spiced salmon and Cajun prawn pizza. Or, if you are on a meat-free diet, this Cajun grilled halloumi is a great option, combining salty and spicy flavours.

What is the best way to cook Cajun chicken?

Pan frying the chicken in a large non-stick griddle pan for 5-6 minutes should result in a perfectly crispy outside and tender, juicy centre. You can also achieve a similar result under the grill on a medium-high heat, or over barbecue coals.

What to serve with Cajun chicken

Cajun chicken is suited to a range of dishes. Here, we’ve gone for a simple side of guacamole, but for more of a feast, try our fully loaded Cajun chicken burgers or this Louisiana-style Cajun chicken gumbo. It also works well in healthy dishes such as this spicy Cajun chicken quinoa and Cajun chicken traybake as the seasoning provides plenty of flavour. If you are cooking the chicken on the barbecue, corn on the cob goes really well with it. Brush the cobs lightly with oil (but don’t use seasoning as salt will toughen the corn), then cook for 5-7 mins, turning frequently, until lightly charred.

How to store cooked chicken breasts

Allow the chicken to cool completely before storing in an airtight container. These will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Can you freeze cooked chicken breasts?

Wrap the chicken breasts individually with several layers of wrap and an outer layer of foil to seal them. Place them in a freezer bag, and store in the freezer for up to 2 months.

For more information, read our guide on how to cook chicken breast.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, September 2007


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