Cajun Spice Mix

Cajun Spice Mix Recipe

When I’m at home and want to cook something quick and easy, I love having this Cajun spice mix in my cabinet so I don’t have to fish out a bunch of spices. There’s no salt in this mix, so be sure to add salt to whatever you are cooking. (I do the salt separately because some foods need more of it than others.) I use this mix for everything from fish fillets to jambalaya. 
For the record, I let a few people call me Donnie—my cousin Billy Boy, Richard Reddington, Grandma Hammack, and my coauthor, Paula. It was the latter who named this recipe.–Donald Link

LC At a Loss for Words Note

We’ve got nothing to add to Donnie’s charmingly practical note about this Cajun spice mix. Not a word. There’s no time for it. Not when there’s jambalaya waiting to be made. (Tony Chachere, look out!)

Cajun Spice Mix Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 5 M
  • 5 M
  • Makes scant 1 cup


  • 2 tablespoons cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon ground white pepper
  • 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 4 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder


  • 1. Combine all the spices in a small bowl. Store in a cool, dark place in a tightly sealed container for up to several months.
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Recipe Testers Reviews

Natalie Reebel

Sep 27, 2011

This spice rub is pretty wonderful. Not only does it come together in a flash, but the myriad ways in which it might be applied make it the perfect homemade pantry spice. In addition to the fantastic flavor it gives the Chicken and Sausage Jambalaya, it tastes wonderful on eggs, hash browns, beef, chicken, and fish (especially fish tacos). Also in soups and chilies. I use 1/2 teaspoon to give an dish some background warmth and 1 teaspoon for a spicy kick. It's a great all-around seasoning.

Larry Noak

Sep 27, 2011

I enjoy this spice mix very much. I love it in jambalaya and I love to put it in the water when making rice. If you're in a hurry and need some flavor, having a spice mix like this on hand is quite nice.


  1. Which kind of red chili powder are you supposed to use in Donnie’s spice mix. I used fresh pure red chili powder and pure red cayenne pepper that is always used in Indian food. The two made quite a kick!

    Would it have been better (more authentic) to use regular chili powder from the store for a more earthy flavor? Did not know.

    Also is this the right type of spice mix for blackened chicken or fish. Should I use Donnie’s for a rub? or are these completely different?

    Many Thanks!

    1. Hi Brambo, I’d be inclined to use store bought chili powder. This seasoning mixture is a great rub for all meats but may not produce the blackened finish. Rubs for blackened fish or chicken usually contain additional oregano, thyme and onion. Of course you could play around with this rub as a starting point and create your own. Let us know if you do!

      1. Just to echo Beth, a store bought chili powder blend will work, although this is one of those recipes that takes well to being creative. If you have a pure ancho or chipotle or any other straight-up chili powder of your preference, feel free to swap it for the chili powder blend here…and do let us know what you find!

          1. Actually, jmk, chili powder as in the bottled blend of ground spices that you find labeled “chili powder” at any grocery store in the spice section. Love to hear what you think of the recipe when you’ve made it…

            1. Very good blend. It leaves out the herbs, so you have to add those to suit the dish. By chance I just used this blend tonight for a terrific gumbo z’herbes.

              1. Terrific to hear, Jmk! And yes, we find that most recipes calling for a Cajun spice mix call for herbs separately, so we were okay with that omission. We love this on fish, on fries, on seafood, on so many things…

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