jam·​ba·​laya ˌjəm-bə-ˈlī-ə How to pronounce jambalaya (audio)
: rice cooked usually with ham, sausage, chicken, shrimp, or oysters and seasoned with herbs
: a mixture of diverse elements
curious jambalayas of competing elementsNeil Hickey

Examples of jambalaya in a Sentence

its jambalaya of widely diverse nationalities and races gives the urban neighborhood a rich vitality
Recent Examples on the Web If too many cooks on TV, factual or fictional, have led you to expect a steaming jambalaya of shouts, showoffs, panic stations, and free-range oaths, Trần’s film will come as a calm and clear surprise: a consommé devoutly to be wished. Anthony Lane, The New Yorker, 5 Feb. 2024 Our chicken jambalaya recipe showcased each Dutch oven's stovetop and slow-cooking capabilities, while our simple rice recipe revealed if the sides of the Dutch oven cooked the rice at a higher temperature than the center and vice versa. Rennie Dyball, Peoplemag, 20 Oct. 2023 In our jambalaya, the chicken thighs browned very well and came out nice and crispy with sufficient heat — no sticking and crowding. Rennie Dyball, Peoplemag, 20 Oct. 2023 In addition to plush suites, the property also offers ample opportunity to explore classic Mississippi cuisine, with fried catfish, jumbo shrimp, and jambalaya all gracing the hotel restaurant menu. Jared Ranahan, Travel + Leisure, 19 July 2023 The jambalaya was well-seasoned and the chicken was crisp. Nathan Diller, USA TODAY, 29 June 2023 On the menu is crawfish, potatoes, corn and sausage for $35 per pound and jambalaya with chicken or sausage for $28 per quart. The San Diego Union-Tribune Staff, San Diego Union-Tribune, 23 May 2023 Enjoy the jambalaya, Kim. Kevin Sherrington, Dallas News, 27 Apr. 2021 Her songs are a celebratory musical jambalaya of boogie-woogie, blues, swamp-rock and New Orleans R&B. San Diego Union-Tribune, 3 Mar. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'jambalaya.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Louisiana French, from Occitan jambalaia

First Known Use

1872, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of jambalaya was in 1872

Dictionary Entries Near jambalaya

Cite this Entry

“Jambalaya.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/jambalaya. Accessed 28 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


jam·​ba·​laya ˌjəm-bə-ˈlī-ə How to pronounce jambalaya (audio)
: rice cooked with ham, sausage, chicken, shrimps, or oysters and seasoned with herbs
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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