jollof rice served
African Dinner Lunch Recipes Rice

Nigerian Jollof Rice

Nigerian Jollof Rice is one of the popular food eaten in parties in Nigeria, it’s mostly families favorite at home too. I don’t know of anyone that doesn’t like jollof rice, it is people’s favorite and crowd-pleasing. Jollof rice is popular in West African countries but the method of preparing it is different and definitely there’s different in the taste too. Each country has different names for it too.

Jollof Rice can be prepared with long grain rice, basmati or any type of rice of your choice, and it can be eaten with any sides and protein of your choice. I like a day old jollof rice the flavor and the aroma seems to be absorbed by the rice and make it taste better. Try this recipe for your recipe dish for Christmas and you will be glad you did. Let’s get started.

Nigerian Jollof Rice
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: African
  • 4 Cups Long Grain Rice (you can use any type)
  • 2 Red Bell Pepper
  • 2 Habanero/Rodo (you can use more or less)
  • 2 Onions
  • 3 Tomatoes (Divided)
  • 6 Ounce Tomato Paste (170 g)
  • 2 Teaspoons Minced/Grated Ginger
  • 2.5 Cups Chicken Stock/water (use your choice)
  • 1/2 Cup Vegetable Oil (your choice)
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 2 Teaspoons White pepper (divided)
  • 1 Tablespoon Curry powder
  • 1 Tablespoon Thyme
  • Seasoning Cubes/powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Onion powder
  • Salt
  1. Remove the pepper stalks and deseed the red bell pepper (tatashe), blend 2 red bell peppers, 2 rodo, 2 tomatoes and half of the onion until smooth.

  2. Pour the blended pepper mixture into a saucepan or pot and boil over a medium heat until the pepper reduces and the water dries.

    Jollof rice pepper
  3. In a large saucepan or pot, add vegetable oil and heat over medium-high heat, let the oil get hot and add sliced onion and fry.

  4. Add half of the ginger, half of the white pepper, curry powder and thyme and fry until the onion is softened and the seasonings release their flavors.

    Jollof rice fry onion
  5. Add tomato paste and fry until you can't taste its sour taste. Stir continuously so it doesn't burn.

    Jollof rice fry tomato paste
  6. Add the boiled pepper mixture, stir and fry until you can see the traces of the oil floating. 

    jollof rice fry boiled pepper
  7. While the pepper is frying, wash rice until the water runs clear. If you like to parboil your rice parboil to al dente (firm to the bite). If you're not parboiling wash and set aside.

  8. When the pepper has fried add bay leaves and the washed or parboiled rice. This step could be done in two ways; add stock or water first before rice or add rice then the stock/water.

    Jollof rice add rice
  9. Combine thoroughly.

    Jollof rice combine rice
  10. Add the chicken stock or water enough to cover the rice. Depending on the type of rice you're using you might need to add more or less water to the rice mixture while cooking (I used 2.5 measuring cups), or if you're not sure, add the liquid as you cook. Add seasoning cube and salt.

    If you're using chicken stock be gentle with the seasoning so you don't over seasoning the rice, also if you're using water you need to add more seasoning.

    Jollof rice add stock
  11. Cover with foil to trap in the steam (you need mostly steam to cook the rice and not the liquid) then cover with the pot cover and cook. (Mine took 25 minutes in total)

  12. In the final two minutes add butter, sliced onions, sliced tomatoes the remaining white pepper, and ginger. If it is not soft enough add a little bit of stock or water.

    Check for the seasoning, readjust it needs more.

    Jollof rice add sliced onion and tomato
  13. Combine thoroughly, cover and continue cooking. You might notice the rice is burning, it's not a problem you want it to burn a little to give the smoky flavor.

  14. When it's done, combine again but be careful not to scrap the burnt part with the rice. Turn off the heat and let it simmer on the residual heat.

    Jollof rice in a pot
  15. Serve

    Jollof rice in a plate
  16. Enjoy

    jollof rice served

I have Coconut Jollof Rice and Nigerian Fried Rice with Shrimps on the blog, you might want to try it.

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