Southwestern Hoppin’ John

Are y’all ready for a little taste of the South today? Alright then, getchyer peas a soakin’ and your rice a cookin’ and get ready for the new year! Yeehaw!

Southwestern Hoppin John

Okay, I really have no clue what I’m talking about. I may have been raised in the South but we never ate black eyed peas on New Years Day. Actually, I didn’t even know what Hoppin’ John was until I saw it on a food blog a few years ago. But I’m glad I found out when I did because it sure is tasty!

Oh, and it’s supposed to bring you good luck or something like that.

Southwestern Hoppin John

Traditional Hoppin’ John is made with a ham hock which I think is some part of a pig’s bone? Not exactly my style.

But if you add greens to it then it supposedly means you will be prosperous and lucky in the new year. I’m hoping a green bell pepper and a few jalapenos do the trick!

Southwestern Hoppin John

It’s true, I might be a little superstitious at times.  Like if we have something big on the books, I refuse to talk about how great it’s going to be for fear that I will jinx it.

Brandon, of course, is the exact opposite. If I’m worried about our plans getting ruined, he will purposely say, “There’s no way such and such is going to ruin our plans”, which causes me to immediately start fuming and claim that if anything does happen, he will be the one to blame…for an eternity.

Southwestern Hoppin John


Hoppin’ John.  No ham hock. A few superstitions.

And lots of Southwest flaverr with cilantro lime rice.


Southwestern Hoppin’ John

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 60 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Yield: 6-8 servings

Southwestern Hoppin’ John


2 cups dried black eyed peas, soaked overnight (yields about 4 cups cooked)

3 cups vegetable broth

1 and 1/2 cups brown rice (I like to bake it using this method)

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 bell pepper, cored and diced

1 medium size yellow onion, diced

2 jalapenos, cored and diced

2 garlic cloves, minced

3/4 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped

Juice of 3 limes

15 ounces diced tomatoes

1 teaspoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon cumin

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 cup shredded monterey jack and/or cheddar cheese


  1. *If you are going to bake the brown rice using the method I listed then start cooking it in the oven before you begin preparing the peas.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat then sauté onion for a few minutes, until just translucent. Add the bell pepper, garlic, jalapeno, and seasonings then cook for about five more minutes.
  3. Pour in the diced tomatoes, vegetable broth and black eye peas and bring to a boil.
  4. Once the liquid starts to boil, turn the heat down to low and cover the pot with a lid. Allow the peas to cook for about 30 minutes. They should be slightly tender but not mushy. Cook longer if needed. There might be some extra liquid left over after cooking but you can use a straining spoon to scoop out the peas and vegetables, if needed.
  5. Once the rice is done cooking, transfer to a bowl and toss together with chopped cilantro and lime juice.
  6. Scoop about 1/2 cup of the cooked rice into a bowl and then top with cooked peas and vegetables. Sprinkle with cheese or add diced avocado then serve.


*time doesn't include soaking peas overnight

Use certified gluten-free ingredients for gluten allergies

Southwestern Hoppin John

Do you eat black eyed peas on New Years Day?

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{ 14 comments… add one }

  • Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) December 26, 2013, 9:46 pm

    This looks great! I’ve never made Hoppin’ John before, and I’d never heard of it before Eat, Live, Run but I’m definitely going to try this out.
    Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) recently posted…Happy Holidays!My Profile

  • Consuelo @ Honey & Figs December 27, 2013, 4:54 am

    I’d never heard of Hoppin’ John, but you made it look and sound super delicious! Definitely much better than the pork version ;–) Gorgeous pictures, by the way! x

  • Daniela @ FoodrecipesHQ December 27, 2013, 5:06 am

    Here in Italy people give same meaning to lentils, we eat them to wish ourselves the best of luck in a new year. Very professional pics, Sarah, well done!
    Daniela @ FoodrecipesHQ recently posted…Tabasco Double Bean Veggie BurgerMy Profile

  • Sam @ Better With Sprinkles December 27, 2013, 5:12 am

    I’ve heard of Hoppin’ John, but I’ve never made it/black eyed peas on New Years…I don’t ever really remember making them, to be honest! But of course, this is going on my list for future veggie recipes ;-)
    Sam @ Better With Sprinkles recently posted…Atticus says…My Profile

  • Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl December 27, 2013, 8:29 am

    I have never heard of Hoppin’ John, but I definitely want to try it now. I didn’t try black eyed peas until this year and I LOVE them, so I get excited whenever I see new recipes that call for them.
    Hannah @ CleanEatingVeggieGirl recently posted…The BEST Chocolate Pie Ever…No, Seriously!My Profile

  • Melanie @ Beautifully Nutty December 27, 2013, 8:31 am

    I so wish you could cook for me. I LOVE your recipes, now I just need to get cooking myself!

  • Ang @ Nutty for Life December 27, 2013, 9:39 am

    My dad always made what I am going to deem poor man’s hoppin’ john, which was frozen peas, white rice and sausage. While it probably has nothing on the recipe above (which looks so so so good), it was still pretty alright for being what it was!
    Ang @ Nutty for Life recently posted…I Had Myself A Merry Little ChristmasMy Profile

  • Davida @ The Healthy Maven December 27, 2013, 12:43 pm

    Andddd today I discovered people eat black eyed peas on New Years Day…I am as superstitious as they come so it’s probably I good thing I didn’t know about this. Looks like Curt is going to have to talk me out of another irrational fear haha. Thank for reasonable men in this world to keep us sane lol
    Davida @ The Healthy Maven recently posted…Best of THM 2013My Profile

  • Judit + Corina @WineDineDaily December 27, 2013, 2:40 pm

    Yes we do eat black eyed peas for New Year Eve and love everything with ham hock. This Hoppin John sounds very gratifying!
    Judit + Corina @WineDineDaily recently posted…Happy HolidaysMy Profile

  • Julia December 27, 2013, 8:07 pm

    Zippity do dah, this hoppin John looks like a real hustle and bustle! Seriously, I need to cook some black-eyed peas stat to bring me luck in the new year…and then cover them in delicious cheese! I had better get my peas a soakin!
    Julia recently posted…Eggplant CaponataMy Profile

  • Rachael@AnAvocadoADay December 29, 2013, 9:16 am

    Living in South Carolina, we’ve got all sorts of black-eyed peas and similar peas at the farmers market (pink-eyed peas, lady peas, cow peas), so we end up making Hoppin’ John all the time. Don’t worry about not being “authentic.” My favorite version was Vietnamese inspired with lemongrass and coconut. Your southwest take looks delicious!
    Rachael@AnAvocadoADay recently posted…Seven Types of New Years Resolutions Destined for FailureMy Profile

  • Alex@Veggin' Out December 29, 2013, 2:42 pm

    I’ve never tried Hoppin’ John!! But boy I think I need to because it looks goooood! Especially with all that cheese on top. Cheese seriously makes EVERYTHING better! I only had black-eyed peas once on New Years, and they were from a can… I made a delicious black-eyed pea salad with them though! I usually have very non-traditional food for New Years – tamales, pizza, sushi. Luckily I haven’t had too much bad luck yet ;)
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  • Katherine December 29, 2013, 6:49 pm

    My Mom does all of those silly New Year’s traditions! While I’ve had my fair share of Hoppin John’s, this one looks exceptional!
    Katherine recently posted…Stuck in Holiday Purgatory!My Profile

  • Ruta @ The Smart Cookie March 4, 2014, 9:06 am

    Can’t wait to try this. I do love black-eyed peas.


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