Some side dishes that may complement jambalaya well are okra and tomatoes, black-eyed peas, dirty rice and Creole eggplant. Other Creole and Cajun inspired side dishes that pair well with jambalaya include fried frog legs, savory crêpes, crayfish étouffée, seafood pie and potatoes.
Jambalaya is a widely known as a Creole dish, but according to Cooks.com, it originated with the Spanish when they came to Louisiana in the 1700s. It is usually made with rice, lots of spices, a thick sauce, mixed vegetables and some type of sausage or seafood. It is a popular dish in the US partly because it is fairly easy and inexpensive to make.
There are two types of jambalaya, according to About.com. There is Creole jambalaya, sometimes also referred to as red jambalaya, that is made by cooking the vegetables and meat together. Once done, tomatoes are added along with rice and meat or vegetable stock. The addition of the tomatoes give Creole jambalaya a reddish color.
The second type of jambalaya, Cajun jambalaya, has a more brown color because the meat is cooked alone first and browned. The vegetables are cooked afterwards and by the time the stock is added, the brown meat bits give the Cajun jambalaya its brownish color.
Creole jambalaya tends to be found more often in New Orleans, whereas Cajun jambalaya is more popular in the rural areas of Louisiana.