How To Make Jollof Rice

Jollof rice which doubles as Nigeria’s most popular food and also the national dish of Nigeria is actually one of the easy ones.

Jollof rice which doubles as Nigeria’s most popular food and also the national dish of Nigeria is actually one of the easy ones.

I want to show you how to cook jollof rice, the way I do it in my own kitchen. If you can lay your hands on the right ingredients and this recipe, you will have it ready in just a few minutes.

What are the secret jollof rice ingredients? I have made a list below. Spices like curry, thyme, and ginger are unique for jollof rice.

Jollof Rice Secret Ingredients

4 cups of rice
1kg Chicken

1000ml of Ground Fresh red tomatoes.

50ml Ground shombo/tatashe peppers

fresh red pepper to taste.
1 Teaspoon Curry powder
1 teaspoon Thyme

1 teaspoon Nutmeg powder
3 seasoning cubes
2 cups of sliced onions

300ml vegetable oil
2 cloves of garlic
2 fingers of ginger
salt to taste.

Preparation time: 80 mins

Serving: 8 Persons.

These are some fresh ripe tomatoes and pepper (tatashe for red color).

Any species of tomato would probably serve the same purpose.


Step 1

This is just for display, you will need more tomatoes. You need around 1000ml of ground tomatoes for 4 cups of rice.

Just wash, squeeze out water inside the tomatoes, combine with the fresh red pepper and tatashe, and blend, then set aside.

Step 2
Wash the chicken and precook using a teaspoon each of ginger and garlic powder, 2 seasoning cubes, a teaspoon of chicken seasoning spice, half a cup of sliced onions, and a teaspoon of salt.

Add one cup of water and allow to sit and marinate for 20-120mins.

Cook the meat till it becomes soft. Using a kitchen fork, pick out the meat and set it aside.

Set aside the chicken stock too. 

Fry or grill the chicken.

Step 3
Parboil rice the normal way, boil about 7 cups of water in a pot, add the four cups of rice and allow to boil for 3 minutes.

Then pour out and wash thoroughly with clean water, then set aside in a bowl or plastic sieve.

How To Make Jollof Rice

Step 4
Once you are done with frying the beef, reduce the oil to 250ml (1 cup) or use fresh oil, just add the remaining one cup of sliced onions, stir for 1-2 minutes, and add the ground tomatoes.

Frying the tomatoes would take about 20 minutes.
Fry until when you lift a portion with your frying spoon you will notice the oil continues to boil in the spoon.
You also notice the tomatoes turning dark.

Step 6
Once the tomato is well fried, add the meat water to the fried tomato in the pot, the ground ginger/garlic, a teaspoon each of curry and thyme, and two teaspoons of salt then add 3 cups of water and a seasoning cube.

Step 7
Stir, taste for salt, you can add a little more. it should taste overly spiced (the rice will absorb the excesses).

Then add the rice.

Step 8
Then cover and let the jollof rice cook till it becomes soft for consumption, remember that you can add water occasionally.

Let it dry properly then turn and serve with the fried meat, salad, and maybe a bottle of your favorite drink.

In this case, I grilled my chicken.

That’s how to make jollof rice using my secret ingredients. I guess you can now make yours by using this same step-by-step recipe.

Note: If you don’t have fresh tomatoes, you could use canned tomatoes (tin tomato) or even a combination of both fresh and canned tomatoes.

Would love to see your comments below.


  • 4 cups of rice
  • 1 kg beef
  • 1000 ml of Ground Fresh red tomatoes.
  • 50 ml Ground shombo/tatashe peppers
  • fresh red pepper to taste.
  • 1 Teaspoon Curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon Thyme
  • 1 teaspoon Nutmeg powder
  • 3 seasoning cubes
  • 2 cups of sliced onions
  • 300 ml vegetable oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 fingers of ginger
  • salt to taste.


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