Jollof Rice (Vegan African Rice Dish)

March 10, 2021
A friend of mine recently moved back home to her parents, who follow a non-vegan diet. To cater to her preferences, her dad has been trying to make more plant-based meals for them to enjoy together. She kept insisting that I try jollof rice, a popular African dish. I made a few different attempts at perfecting this recipe before I finally settled on this one.

This rice is so tasty and full of spice. The rice absorbs all of the different flavors while it is cooking. This goes perfectly well when served with plantains but feel free to serve it with whatever veggies you like. I do recommend using a scotch bonnet pepper in this recipe, but you can try to substitute a habanero or a jalapeño if you can’t find them. You could also omit it all together if you are not a big fan of spice, as this is very spicy!
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Jollof Rice (Vegan African Rice Dish)

utensils YIELDS 2–3 servings
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  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 scotch bonnet pepper
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 1/4 cup long grain white rice
  • 1 1/4 cup water
  • 1 veggie cube
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup canned peas
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1. Heat oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, and ginger and sauté for a couple minutes.

2. Add the spices and stir to coat well.

3. While this is sautéing, blend together the tomatoes, bell pepper,and scotch bonnet pepper. Set aside.

4. Add the tomato paste to the pan and coat veggies. Sauté for a minute.

5. Pour the blended tomato mix into the pan and let this sauté for about ten minutes, for the flavors to infuse.

6. Add the water, rice, veggie cube, and bay leaf and stir well. Bring to a boil.

7. Reduce to a low simmer and cook for about 45 minutes, until rice is cooked through. Add salt and pepper to taste. 

8. Remove from heat and stir in the peas.

Also by Lauren: Vegan Chickpea Flour Frittata Muffins

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Photo: Lauren Sacerdote

Lauren is a homebody who likes to spend time with her cat, explore new ideas in the kitchen, relax in the sun with a good book, and promote healthy living to friends and family.


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