West African Jollof Rice

"West African Jollof Rice is superb! My parents are nigerian. I grew up eating this rice and every eaten at every party where the host is west african. Every west african country has its own version, however this is the best! Enjoy!"
photo by DianaEatingRichly photo by DianaEatingRichly
photo by DianaEatingRichly
photo by Sharon M. photo by Sharon M.
photo by mrsmond1021 photo by mrsmond1021
photo by DianaEatingRichly photo by DianaEatingRichly
photo by DianaEatingRichly photo by DianaEatingRichly
Ready In:




  • Method.
  • Add oil and butter in a heat resistance pot, then add the chicken breast, paprika, cayenne, onion, celery, green pepper, garlic and ginger. Saute for about 3 minutes.
  • Add the chopped carrots next and saute for a minute with little salt.
  • Add the tomato paste, tomatoes along with curry powder, bay leaf & thyme. Cook until tomatoes get slightly soft. For about 3 minutes until you see the oil getting red. Then add frozen veggies. . Add the rice next. Saute for another 2 minutes or so.
  • Add 3 cups of vegetable stock/water, bouillon cube, required salt,close the lid and cook until 90% cooked, for about 30 minutes.
  • Allow the rice to continue cooking until the rice is soft. If it is not dry at this point, then switch the heat to low to allow it to dry the excess water without making the rice much softer.
  • If rice is still lil hard, add 1/4 cup water and cover with foil, which will allow it to steam through. Check back at 5 min and It should be ready. You want your rice not too soft.
  • Garnish with cilantro/parsely and serve.

Questions & Replies

  1. Have you tried making it in the Insta Pot? if so, is there any difference in water and time?
  2. This recipe looks delicious but I'm scared of so much cayenne pepper. Is it really 2 tablespoons?
  3. Is Minute Rice acceptable? Does it work with the same amount of rice?
  4. What is a heat resistant pot?


  1. Recently moved in with my fiancé who loves to cook & is such a pro at it- he caters! I really wanted to cook him something nice & tasty to thank him for just being so amazing- he's Bajan, I'm Zimbabwean so this was the perfect option as we both love the dish but neither of us have ever made it before. I followed the recipe to a T and it turned out perfectly. The only disappointment (I jest!!) was that the smell attracted his Trini & Chicagoite housemates and dad to the table where it got polished off!! Made the chicken free option and had it with steamed pork belly. Thanks you for the extra fiancée points x
    • Review photo by Sharon M.
  2. I've lived in Nigeria for 9 years and this is a good recipe! To make it more "central" Nigerian, reduce the tomato paste to 1-2 Tbsp., increase the curry powder, and rather than paprika, if possible, use fresh pimiento (known as "tatase" in Jos). In general, it is more authentic to use chicken parts (cut small) rather than breast, since chicken is seldom available in anything but whole (usually still clucking!) chickens.
  3. Wow! I understand why people get cravings for this dish! I backed off the curry and when it was first done cooking it was really spicy but after it rested in the pot for maybe 20 minutes the flavors started to marry and we were left with a dish that I will make over and over. I served it with plan yogurt and I used marinated turkey breast that I cut up into about 1 inch pieces. The only thing that I would do differently when writing this recipe is that I find it easier to follow when the ingredients are shown in the order that you put them in the pot. Otherwise, great job and thank you for sharing this amazing staple recipe!
  4. Is cooking part of culture appropriation? I am in love with the Nigerian culture. I had Jollouf from my boyfriends friend, and snail from a Nigerian restaurant. I am totally in love. It truly impacted me. I am from the Dominican Republic, and I'm slowing becoming divided. My people don't eat spicy, I am in love with spicy now. I am in love with everything Nigerian, specially because my boyfriend is Nigerian. Thank you for this amazing recipe, it is amazing. By the way Frank D, a heat resistant pot is a regular pot that you can place in the stove. Best of luck.
  5. Aallyah, I perfectly understand that your parents are from Nigeria thereby making your recipe so-so. Jollof rice is never a dish that you over-spice. There are way too many spices in this recipe. Veggies in Jollof rice are supposed to go in last as any veggie eater knows: you don't want to overcook veggies. MY Tweak: Saute the garlic, and add onions in oil until soft (not brown); add the tomato puree and keep stiring every few minutes until dry (yes, it's possible). Then add fresh tomatoes, if using, keep stiring every few minutes until dry. Add enough liquid stock (chicken, vegetable, of fish) for the qty of rice; stir, and leave to boil for 3-5 mins. Add curry, thyme, bay leaves, salt, stock cubes, and cover for a few mins. Add your fried/baked/boiled chicken breast/leg/fish/prawns or any type of meat, of choice. Then add already parboiled rice; mix it up and cover on high heat for the initial 10-15 mins; reduce heat and check on water level and the "done-ess". 5 mins to end of cooking, add your veggies and cover and let the water dry gradually. Turn off heat, fluff/mix and leave on the stove covered and allow to cool down a bit. This is best enjoyed the next day. Store in the fridge. *** Adding chicken/meat in jollof rice during cooking is optional. Mostly it is served alongside fried chicken/fish/beef/sausages/pork-chop/anything.


  1. To tweak this slightly I removed the celery, peppers and mushrooms. I also used tinned chopped/plum tomatoes and around 3 tablespoons of passata.
  2. A queation.
  3. I used 1 teaspoon of cayenne, it was too hot for me with too much cayenne



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