Mouth-Watering Vegetarian Hoppin’ John Recipe

As the season changes and the new year horns sound, there is a recipe that deserves to be on your table – Vegetarian Hoppin’ John! It’s a savory Southern dish made with black-eyed peas, rice, and vegetables that is believed to bring good luck for the new year. This vegan meal is not only tasty but also packed with nutrients. As an articulate assistant for a vegan chef, I assure you that you won’t be able to resist this plant-based version of the classic Southern recipe.

Traditionally, it was the slaves who developed this iconic recipe in the southern United States. Because black-eyed peas were abundant and easy to store, they became an essential part of their diet. The dish eventually became widely popular and now holds an important place in American cuisine.

Not only is hoppin’ John deliciously satisfying, it’s also incredibly easy to make! Brown rice pairs perfectly with the flavor of black-eyed peas while adding a subtle nuttiness. The veggies give this meal amazing texture: celery brings crunchiness while tomatoes and diced green chilies offer a mild sweetness and subtle spice respectively. The garlic adds a depth of flavor along with dried thyme to balance everything out.

This recipe is perfect as a main course or side dish for those who want to share its history & flavors with others. It’s also an excellent dish to prepare for a large party as it can easily feed our friends and family without breaking our wallet! So let’s get ready to rock New Year’s with a smoky vegan Vegetarian Hoppin’ John Recipe that everyone will enjoy!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Vegetarian Hoppin’ John
Vegetarian Hoppin’ John

Allow me to convince you why you should definitely add this Vegetarian Hoppin’ John recipe to your go-to list of meals. First and foremost, this Southern dish is a plant-based treasure that will not only nourish your body but also satisfy your cravings. By substituting meat with protein-rich black-eyed peas, you’ll enjoy a guilt-free meal that is equally delicious and filling.

In addition to being a perfect vegan meal, this Hoppin’ John recipe is very versatile and easily adaptable to fit your preferences. You can tweak the ingredients or change up the spice level by adding diced green chilies or adding fresh-ground black pepper.

Furthermore, this recipe makes for an excellent comfort food staple that is ideal for family get-togethers, celebrations such as New Year’s Day, or even busy weeknights when you want something healthy and flavorful on the table quickly. It is an all-around crowd-pleaser that will have everyone coming back for more.

Ultimately, whether you’re a loyal vegan or not, this recipe is a must-try. The smoky and hearty flavors of the black-eyed beans combined with brown rice, tomatoes, celery ribs, garlic cloves, and onion result in one of the most satisfying dishes ever. So why not give it a go? You are guaranteed culinary satisfaction like never before!

Ingredient List

 Rich, savory Vegetarian Hoppin' John ready for a celebration!
Rich, savory Vegetarian Hoppin’ John ready for a celebration!

Here is a comprehensive list of ingredients you will need to create this tasty Southern delight:

For the Hoppin’ John:

  • 2 cups of black-eyed peas, soaked overnight
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 celery rib, finely diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon of dried thyme
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

For the Rice:

  • 1 cup of uncooked long-grain rice
  • 2 cups of water
  • A pinch of salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Optional toppings:

  • Diced tomatoes
  • Chopped scallions
  • Sliced avocado

Make sure you have all the ingredients listed above before you start cooking!

The Recipe How-To

 Dazzle your taste buds with this vibrant, satisfying dish.
Dazzle your taste buds with this vibrant, satisfying dish.

Now that we have all the ingredients set, it is time for the magic to happen! Can you feel the excitement? It’s time to cook up this soul-warming comfort food, Vegan Hoppin’ John.

Cooking Instructions:
1. Prepare The Rice

We will start with 1 cup uncooked long-grain rice. Rinse it well and then place it in a rice cooker. Add 2 cups of water, vegetable broth, or a mixture of both for added flavor. Press the ‘ON’ button and let it cook until done.

Alternatively, prepare 2 cups uncooked brown rice in a separate pot by adding 4 cups of water or vegetable broth to the rice. Bring it to a boil and then reduce the heat to low. Cover it and let it simmer for about 40-45 minutes until cooked through.

2. Cook The Peas

Take 2 cups of Dried Black-Eyed peas soaked overnight and rinse them under running water. Add them to your pressure cooker with enough water to cover them completely. Cook on high heat until they whistle once, then reduce the heat and cook for an additional 10-15 minutes or until cooked through.

Alternatively, cook the peas in a pot on medium heat in some vegetable broth or water. Let them simmer for about 1 hour or until fully cooked.

3. Saute The Vegetables

In a large skillet over medium heat, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil divided and allow it to warm up. Add 1 medium diced yellow onion and 1 celery rib chopped finely along with 2-3 minced garlic cloves. Stir occasionally and cook until they are tender.

4. Combine The Cooked Rice And Peas

Add the cooked peas along with their liquid to the skillet with vegetables. Mix them well and add seasonings including 1 teaspoon dried thyme, ½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper, and 1 teaspoon salt (or adjust to taste).

Next, add the cooked long-grain rice (2 cups) and mix everything together so that they’re evenly combined.

5. Serve

Serve hot on a platter with fresh collard greens or kale on top for added color nutrition!

Enjoy this delicious smoky vegan meal that’s sure to satisfy your soul!


This Vegan Hoppin’ John dish can be made ahead of time and even stored in an air-tight container in your fridge or freezer for later consumption! So go ahead and make extra portions that will help you enjoy this classic Southern dish again when you’re pressed for time yet craving comfort food!

Substitutions and Variations

 Simplicity meets robust flavors in this healthy, nutritious recipe.
Simplicity meets robust flavors in this healthy, nutritious recipe.

Ah, the art of substitutions and variations. As a vegan chef, I know this all too well. Luckily, this vegetarian Hoppin’ John Recipe is perfect for experimenting with different ingredients without losing its essence.

For the black-eyed peas, you can substitute them with field peas or butter beans. The result will be equally delicious, but the flavor will be slightly different due to the texture and taste of these beans.

For those who like a bit of heat, you can add diced bell peppers or jalapeños instead of diced green chilies. It’ll give that Southern smoky flavor that pairs well with the veggies and spices.

If you’re not a fan of rice or want to opt for something more nutritious, you can switch it up by trying quinoa or couscous. Make sure to adjust the cooking times accordingly.

For a complete plant-based meal, serve this dish with some collard greens. They are perfect for soaking up the juices from the Hoppin’ John and complementing its flavors.

Lastly, if you’re short on time, you can use a pressure cooker to cook the black-eyed beans within minutes rather than soaking them overnight.

Remember, creating variations in your food is all about exploring your creativity and personal tastes! So feel free to play around until your heart’s content!

Serving and Pairing

 Fill your plate with this colorful blend of black-eyed peas, brown rice, and fragrant spices.
Fill your plate with this colorful blend of black-eyed peas, brown rice, and fragrant spices.

As a vegan hoppin’ john aficionado, I can surely attest that this dish is just heavenly on its own, but if you are looking to add some extra pizazz to your mealtime, there are plenty of serving and pairing options you can try.

One of my favorite ways to serve hoppin’ john is to top it with some fresh and cold diced tomatoes or cilantro. These garnishes not only pack some extra flavor into the dish, but they also add a pop of color to your plate!

If you’re looking for a more substantial meal, adding some collard greens as a side dish not only ups the nutritional value of the meal, but also adds exciting textures and colors. And who doesn’t love a healthy dose of greens?!

To really take your vegan hoppin’ john on an adventure, you can also get creative with pairing options. This smoky vegan dish complements well with some crusty bread or cornbread muffins, which are perfect for sopping up all the flavorful juices.

For those who prefer something more filling, consider pairing this rice and peas recipe with plant-based sausages or roasted bell peppers for added protein and texture. Or perhaps enjoy it with a crisp green salad drizzled in a tangy vinaigrette dressing for some freshness and crunch.

Regardless of how you serve it, this black-eyed peas recipe makes for a satisfying and hearty vegan meal that will leave you feeling nourished and contented!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Bring the taste of the South to your table with this scrumptious vegan treat.
Bring the taste of the South to your table with this scrumptious vegan treat.

As a busy chef, I know how helpful it can be to make meals ahead of time. That’s why this Vegetarian Hoppin’ John Recipe is perfect to prepare in advance. After cooking the dish, let it cool down before storing it in an airtight container. You can store the Hoppin’ John in the fridge for up to three days or freeze it for up to three months.

When reheating, add a small amount of water or vegetable broth as it tends to thicken while being stored. Depending on how much you’re reheating, you can use the stove or a microwave for reheating. With every use of reheating the dish, I would recommend mixing well so that all components heat up evenly.

This recipe is perfect not only for those who enjoy Southern dishes but also for those who want a plant-based vegan meal. And because it’s easy to store and reheat, you can enjoy it throughout the week without any hassle. So go ahead, make a big batch of Hoppin’ John and have some ready for when you need a quick and nutritious meal!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Unleash a world of taste with our hearty, packed-with-protein recipe.
Unleash a world of taste with our hearty, packed-with-protein recipe.

Ensure the rice:water ratio is just right to achieve perfect results in making vegan Hoppin’ John. As a general rule of thumb, the proportion of long grain rice to water should be 1:2. For even better results, use vegetable broth instead of water to add extra flavor to your dish.

Another way to elevate the taste of this classic Southern dish is to cook it with some diced green chilies or bell peppers. It will add a smoky and slightly spicy flavor to your dish that would make it even more delicious.

The seasoning is equally essential when it comes to making the perfect Hoppin’ John using black-eyed peas. Add salt and fresh ground black pepper according to your taste buds while cooking. This will ensure that your dish tastes great and is well-seasoned.

To ensure that the beans are perfectly cooked, consider soaking dried black-eyed peas overnight in cold water. Doing so will quicken their cooking process and ensure they are cooked evenly.

While preparing Hoppin’ John, adding finely chopped herbs such as parsley or cilantro can add an extra flavor layer to your vegan meal. Incorporating dried thyme during cooking can also bring out additional flavors in your dish.

Furthermore, consider adding a bit of olive oil during cooking for a creamy texture and richness. Not only would it add healthy fats but also contribute an incredible flavor profile to your recipe.

Lastly, if you want to save time and still enjoy this tasty meal, try using a pressure cooker or an instant pot for faster cooking times. And you can pair your vegan Hoppin’ John with some collard greens or other veggies like tomatoes or celery ribs for a well-rounded plant-based meal.

Follow these tips and elevate your vegan Hoppin’ John dish into a perfect, nutritious meal you’ll love.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this vegetarian Hoppin’ John recipe is an excellent choice for anyone who wants to enjoy a delicious meal without any animal products. This recipe is rich in plant-based protein and fiber, making it very nutritious and satisfying. With the right combination of ingredients, you can create a meal that’s both healthy and delicious.

Furthermore, this recipe is also very adaptable, providing endless possibilities for experimentation with different spices and vegetables. It is also easy to adjust the ingredients according to your preference, making it suitable for everyone.

Whether you’re craving soulful southern flavors or seeking a vegan meal with bold and smoky flavors, this recipe has got you covered. It’s perfect as a side dish or a main course, and pairing it with collard greens or roasted vegetables would make an amazing meal.

Finally, with some simple preparation tips and option to use pressure cookers, you can easily make this vegan Hoppin’ John recipe ahead of time for the exciting festive new year. I urge you to try this recipe in your next kitchen adventure; let’s create healthier diets and reduce our carbon footprint together.

Vegetarian Hoppin’ John

Vegetarian Hoppin’ John Recipe

For my veggie head friends
No ratings yet
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 6 hrs
Course Main Course
Cuisine Southern American
Calories 580 kcal


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 celery rib, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 (15 1/2 ounce) cans black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (14 1/2 ounce) can tomatoes, drained and finely chopped
  • 1 (4 ounce) can diced green chilies, drained
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • salt
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • 8 ounces vegetarian sausages, crumbled
  • 3 cups cooked long-grain brown rice (or white rice)


  • Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a skillet over medium heat; add in onion and celery; cover, and cook about 5 minutes, until softened.
  • Add in garlic and thyme, stirring to bring out their flavors.
  • Transfer mixture to a slow-cooker; add in black-eye peas, tomatoes, chiles, and stock; season to taste with salt and pepper; cover and cook on LOW for 4-6 hours.
  • About 15 minutes before serving, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a skillet over medium heat; cook sausage until browned all over; add sausage to slow cooker along with rice; stir to combine.
  • Taste and adjust seasonings.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 401gCalories: 580kcalCarbohydrates: 78.7gProtein: 26.4gFat: 20gSaturated Fat: 3.3gSodium: 1521.6mgFiber: 13.8gSugar: 5.5g
Keyword Vegan
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