If you love to BBQ and need another go to rub recipe in your back pocket, then this spicy homemade Cajun seasoning recipe is calling your name. Learn to combine your favorite Cajun spices and herbs for the perfect combination that puts any store bought version to shame.
We love our BBQ here at Bon Appeteach, that is no lie! Whether it’s crispy chicken wings, homemade slow smoked pork shoulder, or a good slab of hot and fast ribs, you can find some kind of smoked deliciousness going down on the grill on a regular basis.
While I have already covered the basics for general BBQ spice blends with my All Purpose BBQ Dry Rub recipe (perfect for those also watching their sugar too), this Cajun dry rub brings the heat and packs a flavorful punch using common spices you already have in your pantry.
I know it can be convenient to buy your own spice mix, but if you find yourself missing out and need to whip some up, this is the perfect go-to recipe. Not to mention, I really believe this is genuinely a delicious spice rub that’s unique enough it’s worth whipping up a batch.
This is a simple recipe to follow. I will give you a few helpful culinary tips and techniques to walk you through it below. Let’s dive in!
- Mixing Bowl
- Measuring Spoons
- Spice Grinder (or a whisk)
- Jar (for storage)
There honestly isn’t too much to “teach” you about this spicy Cajun style rub, but I do want to share a few tips, go over the ingredients and substitutions, and share some background information on what foods to pair with this rub.
What is in A Cajun Spice Blend:
Cajun spices are a standard blend of popular household spices most people already carry in their cabinet or pantry. There are several varying recipes out there floating across the internet, but I am very biased and believe this flavor combo is the best.
Here is what I use:
- Salt (of the sea variety)
- Celery Salt
- Black Pepper
- Smoky Paprika
- Red Pepper Flakes (can sub with cayenne pepper)
- Onion Powder
- Garlic Powder
This combination of flavors is honestly my favorite. What really makes this blend feel authentic? The combination of garlic powder, onion powder, and using celery salt in this recipe. Those combos give me a little bit of a “Cajun mirepoix” vibe and work really well together.
The red pepper flakes add a decent amount of heat. If you don’t like as much spice, limit how much you use. No red pepper flakes? Swap it out with cayenne pepper.
While all these spices are pretty standard, the only one you may not know a lot about is celery salt. If you’re from Chicago and know how to make an authentic Chicago Hot Dog, then celery salt is definitely a pantry staple.
While it may be tempting not to add this to your blend if you don’t have it on hand, I will definitely say it really ties all the flavors together nicely. So make sure you don’t overlook this spice!
Finally, my only other note is to use a spice grinder to create a finer rub and to thoroughly combine an emulsify the flavors together. A spice grinder with this mixture makes all the difference so give it a few pulses if you can!
What Can I Use the Cajun Dry Rub On?
The options are truly versatile when it comes to using this spice. I really love it on the following proteins:
- Chicken (whole birds, thighs, wings and chicken breasts)
- Flank Steak or Skirt Steak
- Salmon (or other fish)
- Seared Tofu
While you can really use it on any protein, It’s also extremely delicious when paired with:
- Roasted Vegetables
- Mixed into BBQ Sauces
- Mayo Based Aioli
- Sweet or Regular Crispy Potatoes/ Fries
- Mixed Into Rice or even Cauliflower Rice (like in this Cauliflower Dirty Rice Recipe)
- Mix With Sour Cream (as a dip or for baked potatoes etc.)
Right now you can try it out on my shrimp po’ boy salad recipe, my addictive almond flour Cajun chicken tenders, on making crispy chicken quarters, or on my spicy smoky sweet potatoes. Grab the full recipe and nutritional info below!
Spicy Cajun BBQ Dry Rub Recipe
- 1/2 tsp. Salt
- 1 1/2 tsp. Celery Salt
- 2 tsp. Red Pepper Flakes
- 1 tbsp. Smoky Paprika
- 2 tsp. Thyme
- 2 tsp. Parsley
- 1 tbsp. Garlic Powder
- 1 tbsp. Onion Powder
- 1 tsp. Black Pepper
- Combine all the spices together in a bowl.
- You can whisk everything to combine, but the best way to combine them is to grind everything together into a finer powder in a spice grinder.
- Pulse a few times and then pour into a spice jar to store and use as needed.