instant pot arroz con gandules (rice with pigeon peas)

Arroz con gandules is just one of those things that screams comfort food to anyone with a Hispanic background. A classic mixture of rice, pigeon peas and olives, this is a go-to side dish for any holiday or just on a day you’re craving some rice. Made vegan-style here with the omission of the traditional ham, we’ve cut down on the cooking time, too, thanks to an Instant Pot. Go ahead and give this classic Puerto Rican dish a try!

Instant Pot Arroz con Gandules (Rice with Pigeon Peas)

A Puerto Rican classic, vegan style!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Servings 4


  • Instant pot


  • 2 tbsp olive oil can substitute water
  • 1 small onion diced
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • ½ green pepper diced
  • ½ red pepper diced
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • 1 tsp ground oregano
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 8-10 green olives diced
  • 15 oz. green pigeon peas I use Goya or Jibarito brand
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups white rice I prefer jasmine or basmati


  • Set your Instant Pot to the saute mode and add in the olive oil, onion, garlic and peppers. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes. (Add in a tablespoon or two of water if the vegetables start sticking to the bottom.)
  • Still on the saute mode, stir in the rest of the ingredients except the rice. Allow the ingredients to cook for a few more minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Add in the water and rice, stir once more, then seal the Instant Pot.
  • Manually set the pressure timer for 12 minutes.
  • Once the Instant Pot beeps at the end of the 12 minutes of cooking, release the pressure immediately.
  • Allow the rice to cool slightly before serving.

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