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  • Writer's pictureJeff & Jo's

Arroz con Gandules

Updated: Jul 16, 2020

Nothing says Christmas in Puerto Rico like "Arroz con Gandules" or rice with pigeon peas. This dish is one of Puerto Rico's best known secrets and in this recipe Jo's grandpa joined us to share his secrets with us! Don't want to miss this one!


1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/2 green bell pepper, chopped

1 medium white onion, chopped

12 olives

1 cup turkey ham, cubed

1 cup sofrito

8 oz tomato sauce

1 pkt Sazon Accent, w/o achiote

24 oz water

2 cans of gandules (pigeon peas), washed and drained

5 tsp salt

2 lbs rice, washed (jasmine)


Start by cutting the green peppers into really small pieces. Then cut the onions into very small pieces as well.

The next step is to cut the olives in half, followed by cutting the turkey ham into 1/2 inch cubes.

Once we have the peppers, olives, onions and ham all prepped then we are ready to start cooking.

Add the 1/4 cup of oil to a large pot and saute the peppers, onions, turkey ham and olives on medium for 2 - 3 minutes.

Add the sofrito and the tomato sauce to the pot and saute altogether for another 2 - 3 minutes.

Then add the water, sazon and salt to the pot and mix. Once the water starts bubbling, add the pigeon peas and let it cook for 4 - 5 minutes with the lid on.

Open the lid and add the rice and mix it altogether. Then add the remaining 1/4 cup of oil and mix again.

Put the lid on and keep the stove on medium.

After 5 - 7 minutes, open the lid and mix the rice. Once the water has mostly been absorbed, then lower the heat to low and let it cook for another 20 minutes.

Open the lid and mix the rice one last time and cook for another 10 minutes or until the rice is thoroughly cooked.

Check out our instructional video, showing how to make this recipe step-by-step HERE.

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