Hoppin John Recipe

Hoppin John = Black Eye Peas

What is Hoppin John?

By: Beryl Stokes

My friends always ask me, "What ya makin dis weekend?" We are making Hoppin John. "What the heck is Hopping John?" they say. Well I didn't know what in the world Hoppin John was either. It could have been a form of Mexican Jumping beans for all I knew.

Well thanks to the wonderful world of Internet search engines I got to the bottom of the meaning of Hoppin John. Hoppin John is just a term used to describe a southern dish from the South Carolina/Georgia region that is merely Black Eyed Peas and rice. Now who would have thought that from the name.

Anyway, Thanks to Dennis in Irvine, CA for requesting Cajun Cooking TV to make Hoppin John. We are always "hoppin" to have a good time at the Stokes house.

Here's How to Make Hoppin John...

Colorful Ingredients

Let's Make Hoppin John...

You will need the following:

  • 1 lb package dry or frozen Black Eye Peas
  • Seasoning meat like ham, thick bacon or sausage - cooked
  • 1 medium diced onion (1 cup)

  • 1 bell pepper (1 cup)
  • 3 stalks diced celery
  • 1 jalapeno (diced & no seeds)
  • 1 can Rotel Tomatoes
  • 1 t Cajun seasoning
  • 1/2 t ground Thyme
  • 1/2 t ground cumin
  • 4-6 cups stock (vegetable or chicken)
  • Chopped green onions for garnish
  • 2 T canola oil
  • 2 cups cooked long grain white rice (1 cup rice, 2 cups water, 20 mins on low heat)

The Finished Dish

Hoppin John with Fresh Pork Sausage and Rice
Hoppin John with Fresh Pork Sausage and Rice

Putting it all together...

The night before cooking Hoppin John, soak the dry Black Eye Peas in a bowl of water. Cover and set aside until you are ready to cook. Then drain the peas in a colander.

Prepare all of your ingredients - choppin, dicing and measuring.

In a 6 quart pot, heat the 2 tablespoons of canola oil on medium high heat (#6). Sauté the onion, bell pepper, garlic and celery. Add the 4-6 cups vegetable or chicken stock. Add the Rotel tomatoes, seasonings, jalapeno, black eye peas, and cut up seasoning meat. (We slowly cooked 3 links of sausage on the grill the night before. You can also sauté in a skillet.)

Make sure the mixture is covered with water. Add water if needed. Bring to a boil. Cover and lower the heat to medium low (#3). Simmer for 1 1/2 hours stirring occasionally.

In the last 1/2 hour, cook the rice according to package directions.

About ready to serve - spoon out a couple spoonfuls of black eye peas in a bowl. Smash with a fork. This will act as a thickener for the Black Eye Peas gravy. Pour back in the pot and stir.

Spoon out some rice in a deep bowl. Ladle on the Hoppin John and ENJOY!

This is a great dish for New Years Day or anytime of year. What a great comfort food. Also see our recipe for Turnip Greens that we cooked the same night.

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Comments 8 comments

moonlake profile image

moonlake 8 years ago from America

This sounds really good. I love black eyed peas. Nice hub.


Dennis Absher 8 years ago

Beryl, that Hoppin' John looked so good after watching the show I set in motion the cookin' process for me to make some.

Thanks Dennis (Absher) from Irvine Ca. A Transplanted RedNeck.

I love Hoppin John! Thanks again Mike and Beryl! Your West coast Horizon!


marisuewrites profile image

marisuewrites 7 years ago from USA

This looks wonderful, we LOVE black eyed peas and I have eaten this years ago, but had forgotten it...thanks for the recipe!! Great lay out!!


Sara 7 years ago

I'm from Charleston, SC and that is not the actual way to make hoppin' john. The pictures look more like a gumbo and hoppin' john is slightly moist never soupy. Also, it's not originally made with jalapenos, pepper, celery, sasauge or bacon. It's cooked with hamhocks, onions, black eyed peas and rice. I can never figure out why these food shows make things wrong all the time. Anyway, try making it the way I said sometime, I'm sure you'll enjoy it. Only use enough liquid from boiling the hamhocks to cook the rice. When you cook the rice chop up the ham in bite size pieces and add the onions, ham, BEP's and reserved liquid to with the rice to cook. It's delicious! Also for some spice to it add some red pepper.


dpocius 6 years ago

For New Year's hoppin John, I like to save a bit of the champagne we toasted in the new year the night before and add it to the cooking liquid. Adds a nice flavor and an extra dash of good luck for the coming year. I'm a bit superstitious that way.


Gene 5 years ago

I have to agree with Sara, from Charleston, S.C., regarding all the extras for Hoppin' John. I am over 70 years old and have lived in the lower area of Alabama-NW corner of Florida, all my life. I've never had all the additions in Hoppin John. Only Ham hocks, blackeyed peas, onion and rice. After cooking,shred the meat from the hocks in peas, onion and rice; sprinkle a little chopped green onion on top for garnish. Pass the Tabasco for those who desire a bit of heat. Serve with a big chunk of cornbread and a serving of greens. A great Southern New Year's Day dinner. Can't be beat.


James 4 years ago

The beauty in cooking is that there is always more than one way to make a dish. I'm from New Orleans and we definitely know a thing or two about cooking. There is nothing wrong with adding your own twist, flavor or experience to a dish. Most of the famous dishes from southeast Louisiana came about because of people bringing there creativity and experiences to traditional foods.


Susan 4 years ago

Extra sharp white cheddar cheese on top with the green onions....m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m-m good!!HAPPY NEW YEAR

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