15 Fat Tuesday Recipes That'll Let The Good Times Roll
At its core, Mardi Gras is essentially a reflection of New Orleans’ ancient traditions and diverse culture; however, most of us have to come to appreciate it as a celebration of pure indulgence. Beyond Bourbon Street, colorful beads, and lavish balls and parades lies a deep connection to food—rich, dense, and satisfying dishes to sustain revelers before Ash Wednesday marks the start of the fasting season of Lent. Thus, the aptly named Fat Tuesday is the last day to enjoy all the meaty and fatty delicacies you can muster up. Because, frankly, 40 days is a long time to go without eating our Southern favorites.
We couldn't let the good times roll without offering some New Orleans-inspired meals to prepare you for the ultimate cheat day of decadence. Whether you call it Mardi Gras, Fat Tuesday, or Shrove Tuesday, here, food and religion marry together for one last pre-Lent hurrah. Feel free to take your pick from these 15 recipes—just indulge responsibly.
Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya
Recipe: Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya
Jambalaya is a quintessentially Creole dish that's typically filled with meat, rice, and various spices any Cajun food lover would enjoy. Here, our version is packed with chicken and sausage for the perfect hearty approach to Fat Tuesday.
Recipe: Crawfish Étouffée
The French word étouffée means to smother or braise. During crawfish season, you can't go wrong with étouffée, a popular stew common of southwest Louisiana that's served over a bed of fluffy rice. This hearty dish will satisfy any seafood lover.
Chicken and Sausage Gumbo
Recipe: Chicken and Sausage Gumbo
Sausage, chicken, and creole seasoning combine together for a delicious dish that will keep you coming back for more.
Recipe: King Cake
The flavor of New Orleans is baked into this round pastry dessert that's decorated in colorful icing reminiscent of the purple, green, and gold spirit of Mardi Gras. It wouldn't be Carnival and Mardi Gras season without king cake and its lucky surprise inside.
German Chocolate Pancakes
Recipe: German Chocolate Pancakes
Pancakes are practically synonymous with Fat Tuesday, just like king cake. We transformed classic layered German chocolate cake into irresistible flapjacks that are worth waking up early for.
Shrimp and Okra Gumbo
Recipe: Shrimp and Okra Gumbo
Serve this Louisiana favorite over rice for an authentic one-dish dinner that will wow your guests.
Recipe: Crawfish Boil
A sink, stove, and one big pot is all you need to make this authentic Louisiana dish. But we love a crawfish boil because it gives us an opportunity to gather with family and friends in the backyard over crawfish, corn, potatoes, and all the delicious fixings.
Grilled Shrimp Po’Boys with Quick Rémoulade
Tender shrimp is grilled and seasoned to perfection in this recipe, and stuffed into split baguettes to make a Fat Tuesday-worthy sandwich.
Praline Bread Pudding
Recipe: Praline Bread Pudding
This is the epitome of comfort food and southern indulgence. It's full of pecans, brown sugar, and nutmeg. The praline sauce drizzled on top offers the sweetest ending to a feast.
Sheet Pan Shrimp and Vegetables with Rice
A whole seafood dinner in under 30 minutes? We didn’t think it could be done—until we met this Sheet Pan Shrimp.
Praline-Cream Cheese King Cake
Recipe: Praline-Cream Cheese King Cake
King Cake is a dessert that requires no introduction. While we rarely ever advocate for changing up such classic recipes, this pretty praline-cream cheese version is undoubtedly an upgrade on the Mardi Gras staple.
Cajun Chicken Cassoulet
Recipe: Cajun Chicken Cassoulet
Shake things up with an easy one-pot Cajun chicken dish that doesn't disappoint. Unlike the slow-cooked French version, this meal cooks up much quicker.
New Orleans Beignets
Recipe: New Orleans Beignets
Soft, light, and pillowy—need we say more? You don't have to travel to New Orleans to enjoy bite-sized, powdered sugar-coated beignets. No, your search for the revered pastry ends here with this tasty, fool-proof recipe.
Classic Baked Macaroni and Cheese
You can never go wrong with a dish of classic mac and cheese—plus, this recipe is one of our resounding all-time favorites.
King Cake Monkey Bread
Recipe: King Cake Monkey Bread
This year, we’ll take our King Cake in shareable, tear-able form, thank you very much.