top of page

African Jollof

by Temitope Enigbonjaiye

     Native Jollof Rice, the Nigerian Fried Rice is a rich and incredibly tasty West African meal. It is a very versatile dish and it is usually made from scratch using Rice, Tomatoes, Bell peppers, Tomato paste, Habanero peppers, Onions, Salt and other spices. Other seasoned Rice based meals in Nigeria include Jollof Rice or Jellof rice of indigenous ingredients.


     This meal is one of the most common West African dish eaten in the regions of Nigeria, Ghana, Togo, Senegal, Gambia, Mali, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast, Cameroun, and Liberia. However, each of these West African countries has their own variation of this meal.


     The African Jollof is usually served with Chicken, Turkey, Beef, Lobster, Goat Meat or Fish and sometimes with a side of fresh creamy Coleslaw. In Nigeria, a party such as wedding ceremony or naming ceremony is not complete without this meal. In Nigeria, a party such as wedding ceremony or naming ceremony is not complete without this meal. It is a sure party pleaser. Trust me you will know but just in case, you are still in doubt, I would say maybe 10 to 15 minutes depending on the quantity of water in your blended pepper.


  • 3¾ cups (750g) long grain parboiled rice

  • 2-3 cups Tomato Stew

  • Chicken (whole chicken, drumsticks or chicken breast)

  • Pepper and salt (to taste)

  • 2 medium onions

  • 3 Knorr cubes

  • 2 teaspoons thyme

  • 2 teaspoons curry powder (Nigerian curry powder)

Steps to Cooking Jollof Rice



  1. Preheat the cooking Oil in a pot

  2. Sauté the Onions, Garlic, and Ginger for about 1 minute

  3. Add the Tomato Paste. Fry for few seconds then, add the blended peppers.

  4. Allow the pepper to cook until the water is totally reduced, and the oil is seen floating on the fried pepper.

  5. Season with Thyme leaves, Curry powder, Cayenne pepper, salt to taste and Knorr Cube

  6. Stir in the Parboiled rice until it is well coated with the sauce then add the Chicken stock and water then cover it with a tight-fitting lid and allow it to come to a boil.

  7. Once it starts boiling, reduce the heat immediately to medium low and cook until the rice is done.

  8.  Turn off the heat and add the sliced Tomato and Onions, stir together briefly and cover it up immediately so that the heat remaining in the Rice can steam up the vegetables a little bit.

  9. You can serve with Plantains, Chicken, Vegetables or as desired. ENJOY!


  • Jolly Cafe & Restaurant 5399 Annapolis Rd Bladensburg, MD

  • De’Ranch Restaurant and Bar 3511 Maryland Avenue, Cheverly Maryland 20785

  • Enjera Restaurant 549 23rd St S, Arlington, VA 22202

  • Calabash African Cuisine and Bar 514-c Van Dorn St, Alexandria, VA 22304

  • Sumah’s West African Restaurant 3158, 1727 7th St NW Washington DC 20001

  • Zion West African Restaurant 1805 Montana Ave NE B, Washington, DC 20002.

bottom of page