Vegetarian Three Beans Cook-Up Rice is a perfect way to enjoy Guyanese cook-up rice. It’s packed with flavor and protein and is a great beginners dish. Use this as a base for other cook-up versions. Use different combinations of peas and beans or add some vegetables to take this one pot meal to new heights.

Peas and beans

For the stove top version I used canned peas and beans to make it easier but for the instant pot version I used dried peas and beans. I used some of may favorites, blackeyed peas, chick peas (channa) and kidney beans. But you can use pigeon peas, black beans, red beans even split peas. They all work with this recipe.

To soak or not to soak

When using dried beans I prefer to soak my beans first. Even you soak them for just a few hours! However, soaking over night is even better. Here is a great NY Times article on how to soak beans and why soaking beans is important. If using the same combination of beans that I used, kidney beans and chick peas require a bit more cooking before they are tender enough to eat so I always soak those two together and my black eyed peas separately. I also pressure cook the kidney beans and the chick peas first until they are a little tender, then I add the black eyed peas.

Mix it up

This three bean cook-up rice is a perfect base for so many delicious cook-up rice combinations:

  • Switch up the peas and beans for a different flavor profile. Split peas works really here.
  • Add some pumpkin, okro/a and callaloo (spinach) for a delicious I-tal cook up
  • Skip the peas and beans all together and add callaloo and pumpkin for some delicious callaloo cook-up rice
  • If you are not vegetarian you can add any protein or combination of protein. Some great protein for cook-up rice are pig tails, salt beef (corned beef), salt fish, beef, chicken, lamb. Seriously, anything!

Make it in the Instant Pot

I’ve been really enjoying how quick and easy the instant pot makes life! I’ve been making all of my cook-up rice dishes in there and it cuts out a lot of stress standing stirring a pot. For the instant pot you can even cook peas and beans that aren’t soaked, although I prefer soaking my peas and beans. For this recipe I recommend cooking the kidney beans and chick peas in the instant pot first. Then adding all the other ingredients. Kidney beans and chick peas take a longer time to pressure cook than black eyed peas and this method ensures all the ingredients are evenly cooked for best results.

The Vegetarian Three Bean Cook-up Rice (stove top version) Video (an oldie but a goodie)

Vegetarian three bean cook-up instant pot recipe:

5.0 from 1 reviews
Instant Pot Vegetarian Three Bean Cook-up Rice
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A wonderful one pot dish that comes together easily in the instant pot!
Recipe type: Instant Pot
Cuisine: Guyanese
Serves: 4-6 servings
  • ¼ cup of dried kidney beans
  • ½ cup of dried chick peas
  • ¼ cup of dried black eyed peas
  • 2 cups of water
  • 2 cups Jasmine Rice, washed and drained
  • 1 cup of canned coconut milk, diluted with 1 cup water
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped or ½ tablespoon of garlic powder
  • ½ can of petite diced tomatoes or 2 large tomatoes, finely chopped
  • ½ tbsp dried thyme (Guyanese thyme preferably)
  • ½ tbsp dried basil
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ¼ cup of coconut aminos
  • Pinch of Cayenne Pepper
  • 2 tablespoon of oil
Special Equipment
  1. Set instant pot to sauté and when it is hot add the oil and bring up to temperature
  2. Then add the onion, garlic and tomatoes and sauté for about 1 minute
  3. Then add the kidney beans and the chickpeas, salt and 2 cups of water
  4. Next take the instant pot out of sauté mode by hitting the cancel button, seal the instant pot up and pressure cook on high for 30 minutes
  5. Once the pressure cooking cycle completes vent the instant pot for a rapid release of pressure
  6. Next add all of the remaining ingredients: black eyed peas, rice, coconut milk, basil, thyme, bay leaves, coconut aminos, cayenne pepper.
  7. Seal up the instant pot and pressure cook on high for another 30 minutes
  8. Once the pressure cooking cycle completes vent the instant pot for a rapid release of pressure
  9. Then fluff the rice with a fork and mix together well so that all of the ingredients are evenly distributed and serve hot
Preparing the dried peas:
I wash and soak my peas in boiling hot water for at least 2 hours (or overnight if time allows) before cooking. You can make this dish without soaking your peas if you like, but be sure to wash your peas first.
Adding Additional Vegetables:
If you want to add additional vegetables to this dish, add them in when you add the black eyed peas and other ingredients


The Printable Vegetarian Three Bean Cook-Up Rice Stove Top Recipe:

5.0 from 1 reviews
Vegetarian Three Bean Cook-up Rice
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A wonderful one pot dish that can serve as the foundation for many other cook-up rice dishes.
Recipe type: Vegetarian
Cuisine: Guyanese
Serves: 8 servings
  • ½ can of black eyed peas (about 1 cup of cooked peas)
  • ½ can of chick peas (about 1 cup of cooked peas)
  • ½ can of kidney beans (about 1 cup of cooked peas)
  • 2 cups long grain parboiled rice
  • 1 can coconut milk, diluted with 4 cups water
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • ½ can of petite diced tomatoes (or 2 large tomatoes, finely chopped)
  • 1 tbsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tbsp dried thyme (Guyanese thyme preferably)
  • ½ tbsp dried basil
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp casareep
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • Pinch of Cayenne Pepper
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 tps salt or salt to taste
  1. Add oil in a large (heavy bottom) stock pot, on medium heat and bring up to temperature
  2. Then add onion and garlic and sauté until onions are soft and slightly brown
  3. Next add the tomatoes, thyme, basil and ½ the granulated garlic and cook down until all the water from the tomatoes evaporates. Then add the black eyed peas, kidney beans and chick peas
  4. Add the remaining granulated garlic, sugar, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper.
  5. Followed by the rice and mix together
  6. Next add the coconut milk and water mixture, then the cassareep
  7. Mix together well, the increase the heat to high and bring up to a roaring boil
  8. Boil uncovered for 10 minutes. Then reduce the heat to lowest possible heat, cover and continue to simmer until the rice is fully cooked. This should take about 30 minutes
  9. Then fluff the rice with a fork, mix everything together well and serve.
I used canned products in this recipe for a quicker alternative to soaking dried peas overnight. If you prefer to soak dried peas, use a ¼ cup of dried peas/bean for each of the peas/beans listed above.

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  1. Nicola Williams January 23, 2020 at 8:44 am

    Do you have this recipe for the instantpot?

    1. Althea Brown January 23, 2020 at 2:13 pm

      Check out my instant pot rice and peas recipe. Instead of a can of pigeon peas use the peas listed in this recipe. You can even use the seasonings listen in this recipe. Just the use the amount of coconut milk and cook time from the instant pot rice and peas recipe.

  2. Carolyn July 27, 2020 at 12:02 pm

    I found this cook up recipe years ago! I’ve been vegetarian for 8-9yrs and miss eating the things I grew up on! I love this recipe so much and my family of meat eaters always are in my plate when I cook it!

    1. Althea Brown July 27, 2020 at 2:57 pm

      It’s a great classic. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Marissa September 15, 2020 at 9:38 pm

    What can you use instead of cassareep?

    1. Althea Brown September 15, 2020 at 10:47 pm

      You can use coconut aminos (my recommendation) burnt sugar (also called browning), soy sauce or teriyaki sauce or just skip it all together.

  4. Lisa March 27, 2021 at 10:31 pm

    This looks so good! I only have canned beans but would love to use the instant pot instead of stove top method. Have you ever tried that? Thanks!


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