Nigerian Jollof Rice

Let one of D.C.'s top chefs teach you about this one-pot side
32 Ratings
100% would make again
Nigerian Jollof Rice Recipe
Photo: Tasting Table

That side of rice at dinner is about to get a lot more interesting. Kwame Onwuachi, the former Top Chef contestant who recently opened Kith and Kin in Washington, D.C., shares his recipe for jollof rice, a Nigerian dish amped up with dried crayfish, curry powder and habanero chile. It’s flavorful and spicy with vibrant color, thanks to a mix of puréed tomatoes, peppers and onions.


Jollof Rice

Recipe adapted from Kwame Onwuachi, Kith and Kin, Washington, D.C.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour


1 tablespoon minced ginger

1 tablespoon Jamaican curry powder                       

1 teaspoon dried crayfish

10 garlic cloves

3 Maggi beef bouillon cubes

2 medium plum tomatoes, cored and diced

1 red bell pepper—stemmed, cored and roughly chopped;

1 red onion, roughly chopped

1 habanero, stemmed

3 tablespoons red palm oil

3 cups purée

4 cups basmati rice

2 teaspoons kosher salt

6 cups water


1. In a blender, purée the ginger, curry powder, dried crayfish, garlic, bouillon cubes, tomatoes, red pepper, red onion and habanero until smooth.

2. In a medium saucepan, heat the palm oil over medium heat. Add the purée and bring to a simmer. Slowly cook until most of the liquid has reduced and the sauce has developed a sweetness, 20 minutes.

3. Add the rice and salt, and cook, letting the rice begin to absorb the purée, 5 minutes. Add the water and bring to a boil, then reduce to a low simmer. Cook, covered, until all of the water has absorbed and the rice is fully cooked, 20 to 25 minutes.

4. Remove from the heat and fluff with a fork, then serve.

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