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I used long grain rice here, you can also use basmati or short grain. Then I also made my coconut milk from scratch. Rice cooks in coconut, and tomato sauce and boom, done! This dish sis so flavorful, you have to try it!

Tastiest Nigerian Coconut Jollof Rice

  • Author: Nkechi Ajaeroh
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 - 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hr 5 minutes
  • Yield: 10 - 12 persons 1x
  • Category: Entrees/Lunch/Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Nigerian
  • Diet: Vegan


There are plenty of ways to cook coconut rice, but this recipe stands out, any time, any day. And don’t forget to finish up with some mixed veggies, and your choice of protein. This chicken breast was a perfect accompaniment.


  • 3 cups of rice
  • 1 whole big Red bell pepper
  • 45 oz. Tomato paste;
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 bulb of onions (divide into 2; blend half & sauté half)
  • 2 cups of fresh homemade coconut milk or 1 (13 oz.) Can of unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 cups of broth
  • 1½ cups of water
  • 3 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • ½ teaspoon of grated fresh Nutmeg
  • ½ of dry Thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon of crushed red pepper
  • 2-teaspoons of salt
  • 3 Maggi or Knorr cubes (or 3 teaspoons of seasoning powder)
  • Spring onions (sliced; for garnishing. Optional)


  1. Parboil rice in boiling water for about 5 minutes, wash with cold water until the water becomes clear, then place in a colander and set aside.
  2. In a blender, add bell pepper, 1/2 onions bulb, tomato paste, and garlic, blend with a half cup of water, rinse the blender with half a cup of water, and set aside. Chop the other onions half and set aside.
  3. Set a clean pot on the stove, add coconut oil. Add a dash of salt as it heats, then chopped onions; cook/stir for 2 minutes or until it softens.
    Add the tomato blend above. Stir, cover, and cook the mixture for at least 10 minutes (stirring every now and there)
  4. Stir, cover, and cook for an additional 8 -10 until the water/liquid visibly reduces. Add salt and curry. Then pepper, dry thyme, seasoning powder (reserve one cube for later), add the half cup of water from rinsing the blender and allow to simmer.
  5. Give the pot a good stir, add the broth, and grate in fresh nutmeg. Then stir in the coconut milk, cover, and simmer. Taste the sauce, and adjust flavor.
  6. Add the rice. Make sure that the stove is on medium-low before adding the rice. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to ensure that the rice is evenly distributed, then crush in that last seasoning cube.
  7. Cover and cook for the next 30 – 35 minutes.
  8. 20 – 25 minutes into cooking, check the rice; stir very lightly (barely). Press one or two rice in between your fingers to check tenderness.
  9. Taste for flavor, and adjust accordingly. Cover and cook for the next 10 minutes or until the rice is tender and have absorbed all the liquid and smells divine.
  10. Enjoy warm, garnish with green onions, serve with avocado, beans, and your choice of protein.


Be sure to watch the video to see all the step in action (except parboiling rice)

Do not be tempted to add too much water to this coconut rice recipe. Remember that the steam cooks the rice, not the flame, so little water/liquid (and low heat) as recommended is enough. Too much water could make it mushy. Start by add 1 cup of liquid (water & broth), and then add a little if you need it.)

Any color of bell pepper would work but remember the colors you choose will affect the color of the rice. And this type of coconut rice needs to look a bit like Jollof or reddish or tomato-ish. I would use red or orange bell pepper for this purpose.

By the time you blend the onions, bell pepper, tomato paste, and garlic, you will have about 2½ cups of the blend.

Don’t worry if you do not have bell pepper on hand. Tomato paste would work just fine. I have done it over and over with only tomato paste, and it would end up fantastic as well.

I would use about one and a half cup of water to rinse the blender after blending (the bell pepper, onions, tomato paste, and garlic). That becomes the entire water that this recipe needs.

I like using long grain rice for this recipe am sure any other type of rice would work.

If you parboil the rice for a long time, it may shorten the cooking time of the rice, and if you are not careful, it might become mushy.

Don’t want “coconut rice”? Easy – do not use coconut milk substitute with more broth. And use olive oil instead of coconut oil. Easy Peasy!

Keywords: Rice, Coconut Rice, Nigerian Coconut Rice, Rice recipe, Coconut Jollof Rice, Easy Coconut rice, coconut milk recipe, Coconut recipe, Jollof rice, West African Jollof Rice, Nigerian Recipe, Rice and beans

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