Waakye

Beans & Rice from Ghana

Waakye, a Ghanaian dish with beans & rice is a meal of itself or the center of a large number of side dishes. It’s very popular all over Ghana. 

“Waakye”​

The name derives from waakye leaves that are typically used to turn the color of the dish to reddish-brown. Baking soda has the same effect. Try this basic dish with side dishes of your choice.

Grains of the Paradise

The spice kit includes grains of paradise. They are native to West Africa, mainly from Ghana, and a mild but pungent alternative to black pepper.

Variations
  • Waakye as a meal of its own  (first recipe below).
  • Chicken Waakye (second recipe below).

Add a side dish: 

  • Sour cabbage salad: see the recipe in the Currywurst recipe.
  • Fried plantain  Peel and slice a plantain. Sprinkle it with salt and fry in some oil until they are soft inside and golden brown outside. 
The Waakye Culinary Spice Kit includes the following spices:
[1] Smoked paprika, thyme, bay leaves

[2] Grains of paradise

Grains of Paradise
Grains of Paradise
Print Recipe
Ghanaian Waakye
Cuisine Ghana
Servings
3-4
Ingredients
Shopping list
  • 1 can Kidney beans rinsed
  • 1.5 cups long grain rice washed
You might have
  • 1 onion peeled and roughly cut
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and roughly cut
  • 1 inch ginger peeled and roughly cut
  • baking soda
  • oil
  • salt & pepper
Culinary Spice Kit
  • Pouch [1] Smoked paprika, thyme, bay leaves
  • Pouch [2] Grains of paradise
Cuisine Ghana
Servings
3-4
Ingredients
Shopping list
  • 1 can Kidney beans rinsed
  • 1.5 cups long grain rice washed
You might have
  • 1 onion peeled and roughly cut
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and roughly cut
  • 1 inch ginger peeled and roughly cut
  • baking soda
  • oil
  • salt & pepper
Culinary Spice Kit
  • Pouch [1] Smoked paprika, thyme, bay leaves
  • Pouch [2] Grains of paradise
Instructions
  1. In a FOOD PROCESSOR, blend onion, garlic, and ginger with 1/2 cup of water until smooth.
  2. In a large POT, heat 2 tbsp oil over medium heat.
  3. Careful of splatters, add beans, Waakye Spices [1], 1 tsp baking soda, and the liquid from the FOOD PROCESSOR.
  4. Cook for 5 minutes over medium-low heat.
  5. Stir in rice and 2.5 cups of water. Add salt to taste. Mix well, cover, and bring to boil.
  6. Reduce heat to low. Cook for 15-20 minutes until rice is cooked.
  7. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.
  8. On the plated dish, sprinkle Waakye Spices [2] to taste from a grinder or the whole peppercorns.
Optional
  1. Serve Waakye with fried plantains, boiled eggs, sour cabbage salad, grilled meat, and/or sausages.
Print Recipe
Chicken Waakye
Cuisine Ghana
Servings
3-4
Ingredients
Shopping list
  • 1 lb chicken breast cut in 1 inch
  • 1 can Kidney beans rinsed
  • 1.5 cups long grain rice washed
You might have
  • 1 onion peeled and roughly cut
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and roughly cut
  • 1 inch ginger peeled and roughly cut
  • baking soda
  • oil
  • salt & pepper
Culinary Spice Kit
  • Pouch [1] Smoked paprika, thyme, bay leaves
  • Pouch [2] Grains of paradise
Cuisine Ghana
Servings
3-4
Ingredients
Shopping list
  • 1 lb chicken breast cut in 1 inch
  • 1 can Kidney beans rinsed
  • 1.5 cups long grain rice washed
You might have
  • 1 onion peeled and roughly cut
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and roughly cut
  • 1 inch ginger peeled and roughly cut
  • baking soda
  • oil
  • salt & pepper
Culinary Spice Kit
  • Pouch [1] Smoked paprika, thyme, bay leaves
  • Pouch [2] Grains of paradise
Instructions
Waakye
  1. In a large POT, heat 1 tbsp oil over medium heat.
  2. Careful of splatters, add beans and fry for 2 minutes.
  3. Add 1 tsp baking soda, rice, 3 cups of water, and salt to taste.
  4. Mix well, cover, and bring to boil.
  5. Reduce heat to low. Cook for 15-20 minutes until rice is cooked.
Chicken
  1. In a FOOD PROCESSOR, blend onion, garlic, and ginger with 1/2 cup of water until smooth.
  2. Season chicken with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. In a large PAN, heat 2 tbsp oil over medium heat.
  4. Add chicken and fry until it turns brown on all sides.
  5. Careful of splatters, add the liquid from the FOOD PROCESSOR and Waakye Spices [1].
  6. Cook for 10-15 minutes over medium-low heat until chicken is cooked. Add some more water if necessary and salt to taste.
  7. On the plated dish, sprinkle Waakye Spices [2] to taste from a grinder or the whole peppercorns.
Optional
  1. Serve Waakye with fried plantains, boiled eggs, and/ or sour cabbage salad.
  2. Enjoy!