Vegan Arroz con Guandules (Rice with Pigeon Peas)

arroz con guandules in white bowl topped with cilantro on tan placemat

4.9 from 7 reviews

Creamy, hearty, and flavorful, this Vegan Arroz con Guandules is a classic Puerto Rican dish. Perfect as a side, but also delicious enough for a main!


  • 2 tbsp Neutral Cooking Oil (can sub with Water or Veggie Broth)
  • ½ Yellow Onion, diced
  • ¼ each Red, Yellow, Green Peppers
  • 3 cloves of Garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp Tomato Paste
  • 1 cube of Vegan Chicken-Flavored Bouillon
  • 2 tsp Capers
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 1 tsp Salt-Free Seasoning Blend*
  • 1 tsp Cumin
  • ½ tbsp Badia’s Sazon Tropical
  • 1 tsp Goya’s Sazon con Azafran
  • 2 tbsp Tamari
  • 1 15.5 oz can Guandules Secos, with liquid (“Dry Pigeon Peas,” NOT Green!)
  • 1 13.5 oz Can Full-Fat Coconut Milk
  • 2 cup White Rice
  • 1 bunch Cilantro, coarsely chopped
  • Black Pepper and Oregano, to taste (Optional)


  1. First, add the cooking oil to a medium pot and raise to medium-high heat. Add the Onion, diced Bell Peppers, ½ of the bunch of chopped Cilantro, Bay Leaves, and Garlic to the pot. Sauté until the Onions are translucent, about 3-5 minutes. Use a wooden spoon to cook everything; plastic and metal affect the final flavor of the dish!
  2. Add the Vegan Chicken-Flavored Bouillon and Tomato Paste to the pot and use the spoon to “mash” them into the Vegetables. Sauté for an additional 2-3 minutes.
  3. Then, add the Capers, entire can of Guandules Secos, Tamari, Cumin, and Sazon con Azafran. Sauté until the spices are fragrant and evenly distributed, about 3 minutes.
  4. Add ½ of the remaining Cilantro to the pot along with the can of Coconut Milk and remaining spices, then bring everything to a simmer over high heat.
  5. Rinse the Rice under cold water, then immediately add it to the simmering mixture. Once a few grains of rice start to float to the top of the mixture, add the rest of the Cilantro, mix well, and cover. Reduce the heat to low and let simmer for 20 minutes. Fluff with a fork, serve, and enjoy! Leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.


  • Coco uses and recommends the 21 Seasoning Salute from Trader Joe’s
  • You should be able to find the Sazon Tropical and Sazon con Azafran in the Hispanic food section of most grocery stores, but you can also purchase them online.

Keywords: arroz con guandules, arroz con gandules, puerto rican rice, pigeon peas, pigeon peas with rice