Make authentic Jamaican Peas and Rice at home in a flash with your Instant Pot! This recipe follows a nontraditional way to get a traditional taste.
What Makes Jamaican Peas and Rice So Good?
- Fast. Ready to eat in under 30 minutes.
- Easy. A simple pour and cook Instant Pot recipe.
- Authentic Tasting. Though the method of cooking isn't authentic, all of the flavors are.
- Vegetarian. A fantastic vegetarian main course.
Why Do Jamaicans Call It Rice and Peas?
This is a common question for people who are unfamiliar with Jamaican cuisine. There are no "peas" in this recipe. It's actually customary in the Caribbean to call beans peas. Jamaican Rice and Peas actually has kidney beans in it, but Jamaicans call them peas so the title of the dish is rice and peas.
If you're looking for a recipe that is traditional rice and peas, you might enjoy this Indian Pilau.
What Is Jamaican Rice and Peas Made Of?
- Jasmine Rice
- Scotch Bonnet Pepper
- Dried Thyme
- Kosher Salt
- Ground Allspice
- Canned kidney beans
- Full-Fat Coconut Milk
What are Scotch Bonnet Peppers?
In America, we refer to this pepper as a habanero. It's a very hot pepper and has a very high Scoville rating. In the Caribbean, they're simply called Caribbean Red Peppers and are used in recipes often.
Scotch Bonnet peppers have just as much flavor as they do spice and are an excellent way to infuse spice and flavor into a dish at the same time. In this dish, we use a whole pepper so as to add a little heat without really blowing the roof of your mouth off.
More Jamaican Recipes
- If you like Jamaican food, check out my recipe for Jamaican Jerk Chicken! It would go great with this recipe!
- Another great Jamaican dish is my Instant Pot Jamaican Chicken Curry. This spicy, authentic Jamaican recipe is done in just 20 minutes!
How To Make Jamaican Rice and Peas
- Dump. Place the rinsed and drained rice into the inner liner of your Instant Pot.
- Add. Put the scotch bonnet pepper (left whole), thyme, salt, allspice, and water and mix well.
- Pour. Add in the ghee or vegetable oil and stir lightly.
- Layer. Add the kidney beans on top and do not stir.
- Cook. Set your Instant Pot to high pressure and cook. Let it release all remaining pressure naturally.
- Mix. Add 1/2 cup of light coconut milk, mix well, and close the lid again. Allow the rice and peas about 10 minutes to absorb the coconut milk.
- Remove. Open the pot, remove the sprigs of thyme and the scotch bonnet pepper, and serve.
Why Do You Add Coconut Milk At The End?
Okay, listen to me. If I tell you an unconventional way of making this dish, you KNOW I've tried it the conventional way. I absolutely did try mixing the rice, beans, coconut milk etc.
And when I opened the pot, I had an unappetizing looking mess with coconut milk separated and floating on top in a web, the beans were mush, and the rice had stuck to the bottom.
So I redid everything. I ask you to put the rice at the bottom, cooked beans on top, I added ghee to keep it from sticking, and then added the coconut milk afterward. I realize this isn't the conventional way of doing it, but you get great results doing it this way.
Can I Make Easy Jamaican Rice and Peas With Dried Beans Or Brown Rice?
Maybe? But I didn't try it so I won't comment on it. The issue will be getting the water proportions exactly right which I haven't played with, so please don't ask me how, as I will TOTALLY be guessing.
For now, just enjoy this Pressure Cooker Curry recipe the way it's written.
Want More Instant Pot Recipes?
- Instant Pot Butter Chicken is an easy 30-minute dinner and you can make rice on top of it, as the video shows.
- Pressure Cooker Rice and Dal is a great vegetarian rice dinner.
- This Lebanese Lentil and Rice dish is another great Vegetarian Instant Pot recipe.
- Instant Pot Indian Khichadi is comfort food in a bowl!
- Instant Pot Risotto with Shrimp is another one-pot comfort meal.
- Buffalo chicken casserole for the days you want low carb recipes
- You might also like low carb Chicken Biryani that uses riced cauliflower.
- Chicken and Mushrooms are a great combo.
- My kids love Instant Pot Pork Chops with Rice and Vegetables
- Zucchini Lasagna- You won't even miss the pasta.
- Haluski Recipe - A wonderful cabbage and noodles recipe.
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- 1 cup (185 g) Jasmine Rice, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup (250 ml) Water
- 1 tablespoon (1 tablespoon) Ghee, coconut oil, or vegetable oil
- 1 (1 ) Scotch Bonnet Pepper
- 3 sprigs (3 sprigs) Dried Thyme
- 1 teaspoon (1 teaspoon) Kosher Salt
- 1/2 teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) Ground Allspice
- 1 cup (177 g) canned kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup (113 ml) Full-Fat Coconut Milk
- Place the rinsed and drained rice into the inner liner of your Instant Pot.
- Add the scotch bonnet pepper (left whole), thyme, salt, allspice, and water and mix well.
- Pour in the ghee or vegetable oil and stir lightly.
- Add the kidney beans on top and do not stir.
- Cook at high pressure for 4 minutes and let it release pressure naturally for 10 minutes. When 10 minutes are up, release all remaining pressure.
- Add 1/2 cup of light coconut milk, mix well, and close the lid again. Allow the rice and peas about 10 minutes to absorb the coconut milk.
- Open, remove the sprigs of thyme and the scotch bonnet pepper, and serve.
- Unfortunately, I do not know how to make this with brown rice and/or uncooked kidney beans so please don't ask me to guess as that recipe is untested.
- Please read the post to understand why I ask you to layer the ingredients and why the coconut milk is added after cooking.
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Originally published February 8, 2018