Hoppin’ John by Martina McBride

by Cindi SutterChief Communicator & Editor of Spirited Table® - Excerpted from Martina’s Kitchen Mix by Martina McBride. Copyright © 2018 Oxmoor House. Reprinted with permission from TI Inc. Books, a division of Meredith Corporation. New York, NY. All rights reserved.

photo by Caitlin Bensel

photo by Caitlin Bensel

I had never heard of Hoppin’ John until I moved to the South. I love the meaty flavor of black-eyed peas, and made with garlic, shallots, and bacon, this is rich and tasty. It’s a Southern tradition to eat black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day for luck in the year to come. For a traditional Southern New Year’s Day meal, make this Hoppin’ John with the Quick Collard Greens (page 203). Add a glass of sweet tea and you have a truly Southern meal!



1⁄2 lb dried black-eyed peas, sorted and rinsed

7 1⁄2 cups chicken broth

1⁄2 lb bacon, chopped

1 medium shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons)

1 Tbsp minced garlic

1 cup uncooked long-grain white rice

1⁄2 tsp kosher salt

1⁄4 tsp black pepper

Garnish: chopped green onions


  1. Combine the black-eyed peas and 6 cups of the broth in a 3 1⁄2-quart saucepan, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until tender, about 30 minutes. Drain, reserving cooking liquid; set aside. 

  2. Cook the bacon in the same saucepan until browned and crisp, about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove the bacon, reserving the drippings in saucepan. Add the shallot and garlic, and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 1 minute. Add the rice, salt, and pepper, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.

  3. Measure the reserved cooking liquid, and add enough remaining stock, if necessary, to make 2 cups. Add the stock mixture to the rice mixture, and stir well. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat, and simmer over medium-low, without stirring, until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender, about 20 minutes.

  4. Remove from the heat and let stand, covered, 10 minutes. Fluff the rice with a fork, and add the black-eyed peas and bacon, stirring to mix. Garnish with chopped green onions just before serving, if desired. This is great with hot sauce!