Cooking for Wellness

Smoky Hoppin' John

Jan. 3, 2017

Hoppin’ John is a southern dish traditionally served on New Year’s Day to bring prosperity. This plant-based version contains black-eyed peas which represent coins, and are complemented with brown rice. Cayenne pepper and smoked paprika bring the rich flavor to this dish, instead of the usual cured meats. A quick and easy weeknight entrée that can be prepared in one pot!

hoppin johnServes:

  • 4


  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups yellow onion, chopped (about 1 large onion)
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 cup thinly sliced celery
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup uncooked instant brown rice
  • 1 cup vegetable broth (preferably low sodium)
  • 1-14 oz can diced tomatoes, preferably no salt added
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp fresh thyme
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ground red pepper
  • 2 cups cooked black-eyed peas, rinsed


  1. Heat a large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil; swirl to coat.
  2. Add onion, bell pepper, and celery; sauté 5 minutes.
  3. Add garlic; cook 30 seconds. Add rice, stirring to coat.
  4. Add broth, diced tomatoes, salt, smoked paprika, paprika, thyme, black pepper, and ground red pepper. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 12 minutes.
  5. Add black-eyed peas; stir; cover. Turn off heat and let stand for 5 minutes.