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Gumbo Mardi Gras Cupcakes Now Exist

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I was alone in the kitchen when these gumbo Mardi Gras cupcakes came out of the oven.  Although I had loaded them with big chunks of smoked andouille sausage and prepared them using a roux (the traditional method for making gumbo), I wasn’t sure what to expect.  Like you, I’d never tried a gumbo cupcake.  Would the cupcake taste vaguely spicy, or perhaps like a cupcake version of pigs in the blanket?

What I tasted as I popped a warm gumbo cupcake bite into my mouth blew my mind.  I tasted gumbo!  “These cupcakes actually taste like gumbo!”  I exclaimed aloud to no one but the masked ghosts of Mardi Gras past, present, and future who were giving me quizzical sidelong glances.

I served up these Mardi Gras gumbo cupcakes to several friends (trying to contain my excitement, lest they think me bonkers for proclaiming that the taste was so similar to the Cajun classic). To my relief and joy, they all agreed with me! One of my friends even went so far as to say that my cupcakes tasted like the gumbo made by one of the best chefs in town – huge happy dance time!

Are these gumbo cupcakes wacky? Oh, yeah!  Are they worth making for Mardi Gras?  You betcha!  Laissez les bons temps rouler!

Everything You Need to Know About Mardi Gras Gumbo Cupcakes

  1. I put a shrimp on top of the cupcake.  It’s a nice touch, I think, but there is no fish in the cupcake.  If you want to try a version with fish in the cupcake, go for it!
  2. Some gumbo has okra, some doesn’t.  I made my gumbo cupcakes sans okra.  I may be the only cupcake baker on the planet who opted against using okra in a cupcake recipe because she already has a recipe for okra cupcakes.
  3. There’s sugar in these cupcakes, but they are definitely savory.  It really confuses people if you try to call them dessert.  I’d suggest serving them as an appetizer.
  4. Serve the cupcakes warm.  They are much better that way.  You can reheat them in the microwave (in ten second bursts).
  5. The glaze works well on the cupcakes and makes them look more like cupcakes, but it’s totally superfluous.  The cupcakes are just as good without the glaze.
  6. Did I mention that these cupcakes taste just like gumbo?!?!

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Gumbo Mardi Gras Cupcakes Now Exist


Roux Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour

Cupcake Ingredients:

  • roux from above
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon file powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground paprika
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons tomato paste
  • 6 ounces andouille sausage cooked and roughly chopped

Glaze Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons chicken broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon file powder
  • 12 grilled shrimp optional

Roux Directions

  • I used the oven method for the roux because I clearly prefer baking to cooking. This roux will come out much thicker than a traditional roux. This is intentional.
  • Preheat oven to 350 F.
  • Place oil and flour in an oven-safe skillet.
  • Bake for ninety minutes stirring every twenty minutes. The end result should be thick and medium brown.
  • Remove from oven and cool to room temperature before using in this cupcake recipe.


Cupcake Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, mix roux, sugar, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and spices.
  3. Mix in eggs, one at a time.
  4. Mix in chicken broth.
  5. Mix in tomato paste.
  6. Fold in sausage.
  7. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full.
  8. Bake for 20 minutes or until cupcakes bounce back when lightly touched.
  9. Glaze Directions:
  10. Mix all ingredients.
  11. Spread over warm cupcakes. (If not serving immediately, refrigerate until ready to serve, and reheat in the microwave in ten second bursts.)
  12. Optionally, top with a grilled shrimp.
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