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Hoppin' John (Carolina peas and rice) Recipe

Updated on June 19, 2017

A History of Hoppin Johns

In cookbooks that date back all the way to the 1840's, you will read some of the first Hoppin' John Recipes. Originating in the Low-country of South Carolina, Hoppin' Johns included a mixture of pork, rice, and dried peas. Many plantation owners searched for a flourishing crop that would withstand the muggy and humid weather. Since the rice grew rapidly near the river streams, it was a natural choice. Any dried pea may be used for your Hoppin' Johns, but black-eyed peas are the preferred choice. Having been domesticated in West Africa, it is said that the African-American slaves took the peas and planted them in their new found territory. The famous Hoppin' John dish would remind them of their long lost home they were stolen from.


Cook Time

Prep time: 11 min
Cook time: 30 min
Ready in: 41 min
Yields: 8-10

Cooking Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 350°.
  2. Heat bacon in a 6-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat; cook, stirring, until fat renders, about 4 minutes
  3. Add garlic, celery, onion, and pepper, salt, and pepper, and cook, stirring, until soft, about 4 minutes.
  4. Add rice, thyme, cumin, coriander, cloves, cinnamon, and bay leaf, and cook until rice is lightly toasted, about 3 minutes.
  5. Add stock and bring to a boil.
  6. Cover pan with lid and place in oven; bake until liquid is absorbed and rice is cooked through, about 20 minutes.
  7. Stir in black-eyed peas and nutmeg and let sit, covered, for 10 minutes.


  • 2 strips thick-cut bacon, cut into 1⁄2″ pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 rib celery, finely chopped
  • 1/2 large yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 large green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and finely chopped
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup long-grain white rice
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 1 (15-oz.) can black-eyed peas, rinsed
  • Freshly grated nutmeg, to taste
Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1 cup
Calories 419
Calories from Fat180
% Daily Value *
Fat 20 g31%
Saturated fat 7 g35%
Unsaturated fat 2 g
Carbohydrates 48 g16%
Sugar 3 g
Fiber 6 g24%
Protein 11 g22%
Cholesterol 20 mg7%
Sodium 844 mg35%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.
5 stars from 1 rating of Hoppin Johns


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