Boudin is an uber-famous sausage from Louisiana that is known for its smokey, earthy, and mildly spicy flavors. It is perhaps the best and most prevalent type of Cajun sausage and is cooked and served in several ways!
Boudin offers a hearty texture, loads of flavor, and sheer versatility due to the numerous ways it can be prepared – but how does one prepare boudin at home?
How to cook boudin? Boudin can be boiled, steamed, fried, baked, or be cooked using any heating method. The meat inside the sausage casing is usually pre-cooked and the casing itself needs to be cooked using any available heating method.
Read below to learn more about boudin, how it is made, how to cook it, and some of the best ways to have it!
Boudin is a sausage made from pork meat, rice, vegetable, and spices. It is widely available in the southwest side of Louisiana where it can be seen marketed on billboards, street corners, restaurants, and more!
Back in the day, meat was considered to be a scarce resource so butchers would try out different ways to completely use every part of the animal to produce more products and to sell them to locals at a reasonable price.
It was through this zero-wastage philosophy that boudin was created. It was the perfect way to both, efficiently use the entire animal and to make a product that would last without the need for refrigeration.
Keep in mind, the inception of boudin took place around the 17th century, long before refrigeration. Also, this sausage has a mix of French and North American cuisine in it!
As mentioned, boudin was first made using trimmings, organs, and unwanted parts of a hog but with time, this changed due to the increasing demand for boudin in younger people who disliked the use of organ meat.
In fact, it was because of this reason that restaurants and sausage makers started to slowly change the definition of boudin, but kept the underlying recipe intact.
What was once a sausage made from scraps is now largely made from shoulder meat or other prime cuts!
After the meat has been cleaned and trimmed, it is then further cut into cubes and then processed with several ingredients.
Perhaps the most notable ingredient in boudin is rice! Rice adds bulk and gives the sausage a starchy and delicious flavor. It is partly what makes boudin such a fantastic snack, appetizer, and dinner food!
It is also widely consumed as a comfort food by many people and is paired with a lot of different vegetable sides as well.
Finally, the pork, rice, and spice mixture are then cured (if required, not necessary) or smoked depending on the type of boudin, and is then sealed in a casing.
Boudin has a varied taste depending on where you buy the product. This is the type of sausage that everyone adopts as their own which is why you will find regional taste differences.
However, the base flavors usually remain the same! Boudin is a mix of mildly spicy, starchy, earthy, and umami-laden flavors. Depending on the type, you can also find boudin with spring onions and other vegetables too.
There is also a variety called “blood boudin” that includes processed pork blood which gives the sausages a crimson and dark color and a very rich flavor.
During the turn of the 21st century, the sales of boudin had steadily been increasing, which also brought upon many interesting food innovations.
For example, boudin pie was a special delicacy that was caught on by some restaurants in Scott, LA.
Boudin can also be topped with Cajun spices or salt and pepper to further enhance its flavor.
This is a common practice while poaching the sausage, but it is largely optional, especially when it comes to blood boudin sausages that are usually the only variety of boudin that is sold uncooked.
Boudin can be cooked in numerous ways. Usually, the sausage is cooked with the casing on. The casing itself is edible and can be cooked via steaming or by applying direct heat.
However, there are a few things to keep in mind to prevent the sausage casing from bursting. Here are a few common methods for cooking boudin:
Microwaving is a convenient way to enjoy hot boudin any time of the day! To microwave, make sure that you add just enough links to fill the microwave chamber, do not overcrowd it or the sausages may not cook properly.
Using the oven to cook boudin is great because it both slowly cooks the boudin from the outside which gives it a crisp exterior, and it thoroughly cooks the meat while keeping the inside moist and succulent.
Remember, while the meat may already be cooked, the casing still needs to be rendered before consumption.
Poaching is the default and perhaps the most popular method of cooking boudin. This method allows for a large number of links to be cooked at the same time using one large pot.
Boudin can be streamed on any conventional steamer! This allows the sausages to retain most of their flavor and gives them a very moist texture as well.
This is our favorite way of cooking boudin and if you have a steamer handy then we highly recommend that you give this method a try!
You can use a double boiler, an electric rice cooker, or a steamer to cook the boudin. We recommend going with a double boiler as it is usually the most readily available option.
You can also cook the sausages in oil by cooking each side for about 5-8 minutes at medium heat.
This may seem like a redundant method of cooking since the sausages are usually already precooked.
However, when it comes to several niche varieties of boudin, especially the uncooked ones, you will need to use a smoker!
This method of cooking will add a lot of flavor to the sausages and will also thoroughly cook them over an hour.
As mentioned, cooked boudin can be used in several ways. While you can have boudin as it is, we recommend getting creative and using a bit of your imagination to cook this sausage and its meat!
For example, boudin meat can be topped with many gravies. You can try all sorts of pork, beef, and even chicken gravies to see what fits the best.
The meat can also be paired with rice dishes and can also be served as a side for several savory recipes too.
Our favorite is the unique boudin pie that is made with delicious yams, a crispy yet doughy crust, and lots of boudin meat! Some restaurants even serve deep-fried boudin balls with cheese in the middle!
Finally, it goes without saying but boudin also makes for a delicious breakfast item. Like with every meal of the day, there are hundreds of different methods you can use boudin.
Boudin is famous and well-known for a reason. It is simply one of the most versatile foods in Louisiana and has already spawned a billion-dollar industry that is set to grow tenfold in the coming decade!
Now that you know what boudin is and how it is cooked, here are a few related questions!
How Do You Cook Boudin In A Cast Iron Skillet?
To cook boudin in a cast iron skillet, you can pretty much do the same as you would in any other pan!
Just make sure that your cast iron is well-cleaned, seasoned, and otherwise ready to go! Let it heat up before adding the sausages, then just cook them like described above.
When cooking boudin on the stove, regardless of whether or not it’s in a skillet, you only want to get it till the sides are caramelized and brown and the skin is crispy.
In most cases, this takes around 5 minutes.
How To Cook Boudin In The Oven
To cook boudin in the oven, just follow the same method as used on the grill!
You can either grease a baking tray and cook your sausages directly on the bottom, or put a grill above it and cook them there.
Again, make sure to flip them halfway through the cooking process.
Is boudin supposed to be mushy?
Boudin is a lower-fat variety of Cajun sausage that may have a mushy texture.
Unlike most sausage, boudin is made primarily of rice and various other ingredients.
To heat boudin, preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Once the oven is ready, cut the casing off of the sausage.
Place sausage into a casserole dish with salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder and pour enough chicken broth or water over top it to come about halfway up sides of the boudin. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 1 hour.
Yes. To pan-fry boudin, cut the sausage casing off and par-boil for 20 minutes.
Add vegetable oil to a pan over medium heat and brown for 10 minutes on each side.
Boudin always goes well with some plain salads, cold fruit salads, scrambled eggs, meats of any kind and vegetables.
If you want to go for a more traditional type of side dish then baked macaroni and cheese or red and green baked beans are good options. You can also drink beer while eating your boudin in between bites!
To cook boudin in the air fryer, prepare the boudin as you would with an oven. Air fry at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes.
How long does it take to cook boudin on the stove?
How do you cook boudin in a pan?
Do you boil boudin before grilling?
- Preheat oven to 275 to 300 degrees F. Lightly oil a sheet pan and place the links on the sheet pan.
- Bake slowly for 25 to 30 minutes until the boudin is golden brown on the outside. Serve boudin on a platter with your favorite pickled okra and good whole grain mustard.