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Nigerian Jollof Rice

Submitted by:

Aminatu Bello-Martin



Country of Origin:


Cook time:

1 hour




4 medium tomatoes, roughly chopped (about 5 ounces each)
1 small can of tomato paste
1/2 medium Scotch bonnet pepper, stem removed (optional)
1 medium red onion (julienne cut)
3 small red bell peppers, roughly chopped (about 5 ounces each)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons seasoning salt, or if preferred, use 2 to 2 1/2 bouillon seasoning cubes
1 teaspoon curry powder
1 1/2 teaspoons hot ground chili pepper, such as African dried chili or cayenne (optional)
2 garlic cloves (minced/finely ground), or 2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon dried thyme
3 to 4 cups chicken/beef broth (store-bought boxed broth is okay)
1 1/2 cup peas and carrots (optional)
3 cups parboil grain rice


1. Purée tomatoes, tomato paste, Scotch bonnet pepper, onions, and bell peppers in a blender; blend until smooth.
2. In a large pot over medium heat, add blended sauce mixture along with curry powder, ground chili pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, julienne-sliced onions, bay leaves, thyme, and seasoning (or salt) to taste.
3. Add vegetable oil and cook down on medium to low heat for 12 to 20 minutes to remove excess water.
4. Wash rice to remove excess starch (until water is somewhat clear); add rice into sauce mixture and stir until well mixed, then reduce the heat to low.
5. Add 1 1/2 to 2 cups of chicken or beef broth to sauce mixture. (Add optional peas and carrots.)
6. Cover pot and let cook on low heat until rice is al dente (about 45 minutes; check after 30 minutes).

Note: If rice is sauce-logged, remove lid to cook off excess sauce. If rice seems dry or hard, stir in 1 to 2 cups of chicken/beef stock or water. The Jollof rice is ready when rice is no longer sauce-logged.

What makes this recipe special?

Family favorite!

Additional notes:

Serve with a side of fried plantains and meat (sauced beef tips or chicken). Enjoy!