The staple carb of Jamaica is rice n peas. The type of ‘pea’ can vary, some people use gungo peas, others pigeon peas. We like the rice with red kidney beans as it adds a rich red flavor. The addition of coconut makes a rich creamy tasty rice.

Cook this up with delicious Ital jerk tofu kebabs (the perfect recipe to use up leftover veg).

 Ingredients (serves 4 generously)

  • 400 grams can of kidney beans
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 onion
  • 200 millilitre coconut milk (you can freeze the remainder in tupperware ready to add to a Thai green curry)
  • 200 millilitre water
  • ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
  • 300 grams white rice (brown rice also works and is healthier)
  • 2 sprigs of thyme (or 2 teaspoons of dried thyme)
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
  • 1 scotch bonnet chilli
  • Sea salt and cracked black pepper


  1. Rinse the rice.
  2. Chop the onion and garlic into thin pieces. You can lightly sweat them or leave to add in raw.
  3. Add the rice, onion and garlic to a warm pan, followed by the coconut milk and water, kidney beans (including juices from the can) and allspice.
  4. Next add the thyme and scotch bonnet. You can either add sprigs of thyme and remove both after cooking, or, add the thyme leaves to the pot and, put the scotch bonnet in whole as it is for gentle warmth not fiery heat (you can wash off and use again).
  5. The liquid should come about 3 centimetres above the level of the rice and beans. Bring to a simmer, then cover with a lid, turn the heat right down and cook for about 10 to minutes (don’t stir the rice, but you can scrape the bottom of the pan from time to time, to ensure rice on the bottom isn’t burning.)
  6. Locate and carefully remove the chilli and thyme sprig if you’ve gone for that method. Fork through the rice to fluff it up.

Food savvy tip

If you have any left after eating, serve up the next day with a fresh salad.

Hungry for more

Check out our other fakeaway recipes to get that delicious high street flavour in your own home.