Hoppin' John A New Year Tradition - Dee Dee's

Diane Hopson Smith


As long as I can remember, we had black-eyed peas & greens on New Year's Day.

Throughout the coastal South, eating Hoppin' John on New Year's Day is thought to bring a prosperous year filled with luck.

The peas are symbolic of pennies or coins, and a coin is sometimes added to the pot or left under the dinner bowls.

Collard greens, mustard greens, turnip greens, chard, kale, cabbage etc. along with this dish are supposed to also add to the wealth since they are the color of money.

Another traditional food, cornbread can also be served to represent wealth being the color of gold.

Blue Ribbon Recipe

We loved Diane's version of this classic New Year recipe. It's a great way to use a leftover ham bone. Adding Rotel gives the dish a punch of flavor so go easy on the seasoning until you taste it. There's a great balance of fresh vegetables in this recipe. Even though they are added towards the end of the cooking process, they are cooked nicely and have a slight crunch. This hoppin' john recipe has a few steps. If you follow Diane's instructions, you'll have a great New Year's dinner. The Test Kitchen


★★★★★ 8 votes

2 Hr
25 Min
Stove Top


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1 bag(s)
dried black-eyed peas, 16 oz.
1 large
carrot (optional)
1 to 2 tsp
baking soda (optional)
meaty ham bone (I used a ham bone I had in the freezer from our Thanksgiving ham) you can use ham hock or chopped ham
2 medium
onions, chopped and divided
3 to 4 clove
garlic, minced
bay leaf
1 c
long-grain white rice (not minute rice)
1 can(s)
Rotel tomatoes, 10 oz.
1 large
bell pepper, chopped
2 to 3
ribs of celery, chopped
1 large
jalapeno pepper, minced
2 tsp
Cajun seasoning
1/2 tsp
dried thyme
Everglade seasoning to taste
salt and pepper, to taste (I used cayenne pepper)
3 to 4
green onions, sliced
red pepper flakes to taste, optional

How to Make Hoppin' John A New Year Tradition - Dee Dee's


  • 1Soak peas. I used the 2-hour method for soaking peas; rinse and sort peas. Combine 8 to 10 cups of cold water, carrot, baking soda, and peas in a large pot.
  • 2Bring to a vigorous boil; boil for 2 minutes and remove from heat. Let peas soak for 2 hours.

    NOTE: The carrot and baking soda is a little trick that was passed on from my grandmother and mother. They both believed that this will reduce gas. Not sure this is true but I have been cooking dried peas and beans this way for years without a problem.
  • 3Once peas have soaked, add meaty ham bone, 1/2 of the chopped onions, garlic, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to a med-low and simmer 20 to 30 minutes until peas are tender but not mushy.

    NOTE: If necessary, add additional water to cover peas.
  • 4Remove the ham bone, cut off meat. Dice and set aside.
  • 5Drain the peas and set aside.
  • 6Add 2 1/2 cups of water to the pot and bring to a boil; add rice and bring to boil; reduce heat, cover and simmer for 10 to 12 minutes.
  • 7Add remaining onion, peas, Rotel tomatoes (with juice), bell pepper, celery, jalapeno pepper, and seasonings to rice. Bring to a simmer and cook an additional 5 to 8 minutes until rice is tender.
  • 8Stir in sliced green onions and ham. Serve with hot cornbread.

Printable Recipe Card

About Hoppin' John A New Year Tradition - Dee Dee's

Course/Dish: Vegetables, Other Soups
Main Ingredient: Vegetable
Regional Style: American
Other Tag: Healthy

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