Vegan Arroz Con Gandules with Brown Rice Vegan Recipe

Vegan Arroz Con Gandules with Brown Rice Vegan Recipe

Prep30 minutes
Cook55 minutes
Ready75 minutes


  • 2 Cups brown rice (I prefer short grain, but you can use any kind you like.)
  • ½ Cup tomato sauce
  • 2 Cups of water
  • ½ Cup chopped onion
  • 2 Minced garlic cloves
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil (You can also use coconut or walnut oil as well.)
  • ¼ Cup of pitted manzanilla olives (Optional)
  • ½ Cup chopped cilantro
  • ½ Tablespoon oregano
  • ½ Tablespoon of ground turmeric (You can also use fresh turmeric, adjust amount to taste.)
  • ½ Tablespoon of ground annatto
  • 1 Teaspoon of ground coriander
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1 Cup of gandules (I prefer dry gandules, but you can also use canned.)
  • Vegetable bouillon cube (Optional. Use an all natural bouillon cube that can be at health food stores.)
  • Salt to taste


  1. Heat oil in pot, add onions. Saute until onions become translucent, then add minced garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Once the garlic starts to become aromatic, add salt, cilantro, oregano, turmeric, annatto, and coriander. Mix together and allow to cook on a low heat for another 2-3 more minutes. Then add gandules, tomato sauce, water, bouillon cube, olives and bay leaf.
  2. Bring to a boil.
  3. Once liquid is boiling, add rice and salt (to your taste). Bring mixture to a boil again, lower heat and cover. Cook for 45 minutes on low heat. After 45 minutes, fluff rice with a fork and cook on a low heat for 10 minutes more. Serve arroz con gandules with the vegan or vegetarian version of my famous pastelon recipe. Garnish with cilantro. Bonus: I love drizzling a little olive oil on top of my rice for some added flavor!

Buen Provecho!

Traditional Puerto Rican food, also called “comida criolla,” is my ultimate comfort food. Nothing says “home” to me like a fresh pot of arroz con gandules (rice with pigeon peas). But “healthy” is not the first word that comes to mind when you look at the arroz con gandules recipe from my abuela’s cookbook.




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