Vegan Arroz con Gandules​ | Puerto Rican Rice and Pigeon Peas

If you haven’t already, you should definitely check out my sofrito before you make this recipe, however, you still can make this recipe without having to make my homemade sofrito. There are store-bought options that should be able to you in the Spanish aisle at your local grocery store.

Arroz con Gandules is a very popular rice dish in Puerto Rico. This recipe is usually made with either ham or bacon, but since I no longer eat pork, I decided I would veganize this dish and use portobella mushrooms instead.

Mushrooms Cooking in Oil

Portobella mushrooms are a good source of protein and B vitamins and are low in carbohydrates and calories. It is also a great substitute for meat when you are going plant-based.

Mushrooms with Sofrito

Usually, this dish is also made with chicken broth or ham broth which is another ingredient I had to change and I substituted this with vegetable bouillon base instead.

Pigeon Peas

And for the star ingredient, I used pigeon peas. Pigeon peas are very healthy and nutritious. They contain an array of B Complex Vitamins and vitamins C and K. Pigeon peas are used in many Hispanic dishes.

Rice and Seasonings

For the full recipe scroll down below!

Healthy + Vegan Puerto Rican Arroz con Gandulez​ (rice and pigeon peas)

>>> Vegan, Vegetarian, & Healthy

Servings 4


  • 1 Tablespoon of Avocado Oil
  • 2 Cups of Diced Portobella Mushrooms, about 175 grams
  • 6 Tablespoons of Sofrito
  • 1/2 Cup of No Salt Tomato Sauce*
  • 1 Teaspoon Vegetable Bouillon Base or 1 Vegetable Bouillon Cube
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoons of Sazon (I prefer the Loisa brand)
  • 1 Teaspoons of Oregano
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 1/4 Teaspoon of Adobo (I prefer the Loisa brand)
  • 1 Can (15 ounces) of pigeon peas or 1 1/4 Cups of Green Peas
  • 2 Cups of Rice
  • 2 Cups of Water or 2 Cups of Low Sodium Vegetable Broth (omit 1 teaspoon of vegetable bouillon if used

Health Tip:

*It is always best to make your own tomato sauce, however, most of us do not always have the time or resources to do this. Save some time and purchase no salt tomato sauce instead at your local grocery store. This way you can control how much sodium you intake without having to scarfice your diet.

If no salt tomato sauce is not available than your next best option is to go for low sodium tomato sauce. Be sure to look out for any added sugar.

Toppings (optional)

  • Slices of Avocado
  • Spanish Olives
  • Pimientos
  • Ketchup


  • Heat oil in a dutch oven or stainless steel saucepan on medium-low heat. Cut mushrooms into small pieces and add to the pan. Cook for about 8-12 minutes until all the liquid that was released from the mushrooms has been evaporated.
  • While the mushrooms are cooking, drain pigeon peas and set aside. You will also want to rinse your rice, drain, and set aside making sure there is no water left.
  • Next, add sofrito, tomato sauce, vegetable bouillon, sazon, oregano, bay leaves, and adobo into mushroom mixture and stir for about 30 seconds.
  • Add the rice and pigeon peas to pan and stir until all of the ingredients are mixed together. Add 2 cups of water and turn heat up to medium-high.
  • Once the rice begins to boil, cover the pan with a lid and turn the heat down to low. Allow the rice to cook for 20 minutes.
  • After 20 minutes, check on the rice. You do not want to check on the rice before this time.
  • Once cooked, set aside and serve immediately. This recipe will stay good for up to 5 days if fridgerated properly.

Related Links

Published by choosegreens

A plant-based blogger living in Boston.

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