Louisiana Cajun Boudin Balls Recipe
I’m a sucker for anything that comes with a French word in the name. And since boudin is a French sausage, I knew I had to make it.
What is boudin?
Boudin (pronounced “BOOD-in”) is a sausage-like meatball that can be found in nearly every Cajun kitchen. It’s made with pork and rice, but it’s also uniquely spiced.
A recipe in bullet point form for Cajun Boudin Balls
- 1 pound ground pork (mild or medium)
- 1 pound ground beef (skirt steak)
- 1/2 cup finely minced onion, fresh or frozen will work well here too. You can also use a food processor to chop up the onions if you’re not into hand chopping or slicing them.
- 3/4 cup of your favorite boudin recipe — this is where you take your favorite recipe and add it right in! For example, if you love Cajun Boudin Balls with dirty rice and gravy, then use the same ingredients as that recipe would use but add them in different portions than they were listed. Or if you want to make it different from what I’m used to eating when I get Cajun Boudin Balls at restaurants here in Louisiana, then by all means go for it! The sky’s the limit here!
Cajun cooking is a blend of French and Spanish influences, but it’s also influenced by Native American and African styles. The result is food that’s spicy, smoky, and bold. The word “cajun” comes from the term “les habitants,” which means “the settlers.” It started out as an insulting term for rural French-speaking Louisianans who refused to assimilate into Anglo culture after the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. Today it’s considered an acceptable ethnic identifier; if you want to identify yourself as cajun or creole, feel free!
It’s important to note that there are two distinct cuisines: Creole cuisine (which uses tomatoes) and Cajun cuisine (which does not). I promise that this recipe doesn’t use any tomatoes—it’ll still taste just fine!
To make Cajun Boudin Balls:
- Mix together all ingredients except the pork.
- Add the pork and mix well until fully incorporated.
- Shape into balls (the size of your choice).
To fry in a skillet or air fryer, heat olive oil over medium-high heat and add boudin balls to pan/air fryer basket. Cook for 3 minutes on each side, flipping once, until browned and crispy. To bake, preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and bake on an ungreased baking sheet lined with parchment paper for 15 minutes, turning once after 10 minutes to cook evenly on both sides; if desired use nonstick spray or oil to prevent sticking (add more as needed).
Frying Boudin Balls
Heat your oil to 350 degrees F.
Using a spoon, carefully drop the balls into the pot of hot oil so that they don’t stick together. Fry them for 3 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove them from the oil and drain on paper towels; then serve immediately with crackers or breadsticks and a variety of sauces!
Directions for Air Fryer (or conventional oven)
- Cook in the air fryer for 12 minutes at 350 degrees.
- After 10 minutes, turn the boudin balls over and cook for another 2 minutes.
- Remove from air fryer and let cool for 5 minutes before serving. If you are not using an air fryer, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and bake for 20 minutes until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees F.
That’s it! Cooking boudin balls is a snap. You can also make them ahead of time and fry when needed. They are delicious with a sprinkling of fresh herbs, or served up with some tabasco sauce for an extra kick.