The Store-Bought Creole Seasoning That Every Southern Cook Needs In the Spice Cabinet

It's time to get acquainted with this staple.

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If anything can be said, it's that Southern cooks aren't shy with the spice cabinet. Our recipes aren't made to be bland or forgettable, but to be memorable and packed with butter, salt, cream, and (of course) enough dashes of whichever and whatever from the spice cabinet to really make the dish sing for the family supper. We use Old Bay, Lawry's Seasoned Salt, and Cavender's with wild abandon—because they just make everything taste a whole lot better.

As far as capturing that signature Cajun flair in the spice cabinet, we don't only rely on widely loved Slap Ya Mama, but also a lesser-known store-bought seasoning that originated with a renowned Cajun chef and a recipe found in his first cookbook. If you haven't tried Tony Chachere's The Original Creole Seasoning yet, it's time to get acquainted.

Creole Shrimp and Sweet Potato Grits

Iain Bagwell

This Creole-inspired seasoning blend goes well on anything from meat to vegetables to stews to French fries—and trust us, we've had it on all of those things and can't get enough. We almost always turn to this shaker when we're trying to jazz up a store-bought or frozen side dish, as well as when we're grilling out with chicken or beef. It's extremely versatile and doesn't have too much of a kick to take over the flavor of your dish.

The creator of the seasoning blend, chef Tony Chachere, was once referred to as the "Ole Master" of fine Cajun cuisine, and in his first-ever cookbook published in 1972, the recipe that would later become his Original Creole Seasoning was a clear standout amongst home cooks. The family business, Tony Chachere's Creole Foods, is now owned by Chachere's remaining descendants and is run by his grandson.

So snag a container of this great-on-everything Cajun seasoning blend on your next trip to the grocery store and get to experimenting. We doubt you'll go wrong.

From Old Bay to Slap Ya Mama, Southern cooks know the power of a good dash of seasoning to any crab boil or one-pot supper.

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