Black-eyed Peas and Greens for a Healthy New Year

by on December 30, 2012
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Black-eyed Peas

Black-eyed peas and greens are the traditional New Year’s Day meal in the South. Supposedly, the peas bring you good luck and the greens bring you money in the coming year. Or maybe it’s the other way around. Either way, I think it’s a great tradition because beans and greens are about the healthiest thing you can eat, and what better way to start your year off right. But don’t settle for plain old peas and greens! Here are some of my favorite ways to kick off the new year with lots of flavor.

Creole Black-eyed Peas

One of my favorite dishes, Creole Black-eyed Peas are full of flavor without being spicy–unless you want them to be. Do start with dried peas–they taste 10 times better than canned.

Black-eyed Pea Masala

You don’t have to prepare black-eyed peas in a Southern style to reap all the benefits they bring. This Black-eyed Pea Masala is an adaptation of a traditional Indian dish, full of the flavors of cumin, cinnamon, and ginger. It’s amazing!

Black-eyed Pea Gumbo

Black-eyed Pea Gumbo is a great way to warm up your chilly new year. It’s also an easy dish to make using canned black-eyed peas and frozen okra. Add some greens if you like and get your luck and money taken care of in one dish!

Black-eyed Pea Chili with Quinoa and Corn

Bold flavors, including chile powder and chipotle, balance out the earthiness of black-eyed peas in this incredible Black-eyed Pea Chili with Quinoa and Corn.

Korean-Inspired Blackeyed Peas and Kale Bowl

Ginger, garlic, and hot sauce are perfect accompaniments to black-eyed peas and kale, and if you’re a fan of Korean food, you will love this Black-eyed Peas and Kale Bowl.

Spicy Collard and Black-eyed Pea Soup

One of my favorite soups, Spicy Collards and Black-eyed Pea Soup is another great way to combine your greens and peas into one dish. If you have a pressure cooker, you can cook this from dried peas in under an hour.

Collards Stuffed with Red Beans and Rice

Substitute cooked black-eyed peas for the red beans, and Collards Stuffed with Red Beans and Rice will be the hit of your New Year’s Day dinner.

Texas Caviar (Black-eyed Pea Salsa or Salad)

If you like the idea of getting in your black-eyed peas right at the stroke of midnight, serve up some Texas Caviar and tortilla chips at your New Year’s Eve party. Your guests will love it and leftovers make a great salad the next day.

Black-eyed Pea Hummus

Blackeyed Pea Hummus is another non-traditional dish that makes a great party food or appetizer.

Barbecue Black-Eyed Pea Burgers

These Barbecue Black-Eyed Pea Burgers are a delicious alternative to traditional New Year’s dishes.

Quick and Delicious Collards

Get out your pressure cooker and make Quick and Delicious Collards using any green you like.

New Southern Greens

Traditionally, Southerners cook greens by simmering them in ham-seasoned water until very tender, often an hour or more, and with older greens, I do a similar, vegan version using caramelized onions and hickory salt. But fresh greens of any kind from kale to turnip can be quick-cooked in a skillet like these New Southern Greens with cranberries and smoked paprika.

Moin-Moin (Savory Nigerian Black-eyed Pea Cakes)

Finally, if you’re looking for something a little different, you have to try Moin-Moin, a savory Nigerian cake that can be eaten as part of a meal or as a snack. I’m told that you can make Moin-Moin much more easily if you use black-eyed pea flour instead of dried beans. It’s definitely worth looking for!

Happy, healthy New Year, y’all!


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{ 31 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Selma December 30, 2012 at 1:25 pm

I love your site and recipies. Have a grand new year year.


2 Susan Voisin December 30, 2012 at 2:43 pm

Thanks, Selma! You too!


3 Ben Swan December 30, 2012 at 1:35 pm

Hi Susan, I wanted to wish you and your family a Happy New Year for 2013. I’ve been following your blog for several years and appreciate your creative twist on just about everything. I love your photography and writing and have even purchased a couple of cookbooks you recommended.
Wanted to thank you again for today’s twist on the New Year’s Day classic, black-eyed peas and greens. It’s been a delicious tradition for many years for my family and while I don’t think it’s improved our bank account or luck it does leave everyone satisfied (except the dogs)! You can’t start the new year off in a better way! Blessings.


4 Susan Voisin December 30, 2012 at 2:44 pm

Thank you so much, Ben. Happy 2013 to you and your family!


5 kimthevegan December 30, 2012 at 2:03 pm

What great ways to incorporate black eyed peas into so many dishes! I’m super looking forward to trying these out as I’m always stuck on what to do with black eyed peas =)


6 Susan Voisin December 30, 2012 at 2:46 pm

I’m happy to help, Kim. Have a happy new year!


7 Courtney December 30, 2012 at 2:20 pm

Susan, I have been making your Texas caviar for years and it is SO good. I take it to just about every single potluck meal I go to and it is always a hit!

Happy New Year!



8 Susan Voisin December 30, 2012 at 2:46 pm

I’m so glad to hear that, Courtney! I haven’t made it in a while, but I’m thinking I’ll have it again this year. Happy 2013!


9 slywlf December 30, 2012 at 2:41 pm

Don’t be surprised if you find yourself with some new fans – this post has so many wonderful images and links (which led to still more wonders) that I had to share it on Facebook 😉


10 Susan Voisin December 30, 2012 at 2:45 pm

Thank you, slywlf! I appreciate the support and look forward to new readers.


11 jodye @ chocolate and chou fleur December 30, 2012 at 6:43 pm

I’ve honestly never cooked with black-eyed peas, but they always seem so alluring. I have never known what to do with them, but thanks to think post I have tons of ideas. I don’t know what I’ll make first! Thanks for all the great recipes!


12 Lois December 30, 2012 at 9:25 pm

Well, for pity’s sake! We stopped at the store tonight to run in for a couple things we had to have and right in front of me as I walked in were cans on sale. The black-eyed peas and collards caught my eye and I decided to just grab one each for some “fast food” emergencies. (never had collards canned before) We moved to the south a year ago. I had no clue why these items were right there on sale and then I read your post tonight. 🙂 Your recipes look wonderful. I can’t wait to try them (with some dried beans!). Thanks!


13 Barb C December 31, 2012 at 9:44 am

Glad to see your recap of the blackeyed peas recipes! I was just thinking I needed to go to your site to see what to make for tomorrow, as I have just set my peas to soak. I think it will be the creole recipe. thanks for all you do and all the best in 2013!


14 Cynthia L. December 31, 2012 at 2:09 pm

Great list of Black Eyed Pea recipes. I will be making some for New Years day and will keep your recipes in mind! Thanks for sharing.


15 moonwatcher December 31, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Hi Susan,

Thanks for this wonderful reminder! I forgot all about the good fortune of black eyed peas and greens! Just what I need right now. I will put some dry ones to soak for tomorrow.

Thanks!! And Happy New Year!




16 moonwatcher December 31, 2012 at 6:42 pm

ps: just wanted to add that I love the photo of the dried black-eyed peas. They remind me of dice, and taking a chance on the new year, and feeling lucky!




17 groovymuse January 1, 2013 at 9:49 am

Happy, Healthy, Beautiful New Year! ☮ & ♥ & ☼


18 Natalie January 1, 2013 at 8:40 pm

I love beans! Such healthy meals 🙂


19 Laura January 2, 2013 at 10:15 am

I made your black eyed peas masala yesterday. Wow was it great! I through in a little spinach at the end and added some steamed broccoli and beans and baked acorn squash on the side. Great way to kick off the new year! Oh, and this was my first time ever making black eyed peas, I really like them! I’m sure they will become a new staple in my house. Thanks Susan!


20 Brigid of Vegging Out January 2, 2013 at 2:51 pm

I remember my parents trying to convince me to eat black-eyed peas as a kid, and I just couldn’t stand them. Apparently I just didn’t like the typical Southern style. We always make a variation of Madhur Jaffrey’s Black-Eyed Peas with Herbs, and this year I served them alongside a beautiful bunch of sauteed Swiss chard (something else I would never have touched as a kid). I’m going to make your BEP hummus in my brand-new food processor with the leftovers!


21 Liese January 2, 2013 at 3:13 pm

Susan, I’ve loved your recipes for ages! For New Year’s, I made the spicy black-eyed pea and collards soup for the very first time. My son (24 and not vegan) had two bowls with me and really enjoyed it, too. The spices are just perfect. Thank you for sharing your wonderful recipes with us, and happy new year!


22 Alicia January 2, 2013 at 8:45 pm

I have been vegetarian for about 15 years, but am not vegan. I was recently hospitalized for nearly a week with Acute Pancreatitis, caused by a physical abnormality of my pancreas (this was the first time anything had ever happened due to this). I am still healing, and have to eat a very low-fat diet. And for the rest of my life, I will need to make some major dietary changes. This including elimination of eggs and cheese, eating very low-fat, and eliminating any alcohol.

My husband found your blog while looking for some fun new recipes for us to try. And I must tell you that I am so thrilled with all of the knowledge and ideas you have in your blog for maintaining a healthy, low-fat diet that it brought tears to my eyes. Everyone makes dietary changes for their own reasons. And my change must be made to try to avoid future hospital stays. People with this condition are frequently hospitalized for up to a month, and many have a very hard time making the proper changes in their eating habits.

Thank you for helping me understand the limitless possibilities available with my new lifestyle and diet. Happy New Year!


23 Stephen@HappyHeart January 3, 2013 at 7:45 am

Great post and a wonderful array of recipes to choose from! The Nigerian cake is something new to me, I think iHerb have the black eyed pea flour but I could be wrong…


24 SG January 3, 2013 at 9:42 am

the anthropology of this tradition stems from enslaved africans in the south. it is not so much a “southern” traditional meal as it is an african tradition. the reason white southerners know about it is the same way they know about all of these african traditions– because black women in servitude ran managed their households and fixed all their meals.


25 Radhika Sarohia January 5, 2013 at 3:48 am

Never bought black eyed peas, will have to purchase some next time I’m at the grocery store. Great post as usual. Happy New Year!:)


26 Radhika Sarohia January 5, 2013 at 3:49 am

Didn’t mean to reply to the post above mine there…just meant to place another comment in the thread


27 jo @ including cake January 8, 2013 at 2:40 am

Hello! I’ve been a long time reader…but until now haven’t commented. I’ve always been curious about the need for a fat free diet, even though I eat plant based I was under the impression that ‘good fats’ were very important as a healthy part of the diet, so nuts, seeds, and coconut oil in particular featured quite heavily in my menu. However over the last few weeks I have been studying T. Colin Campbell’s Plant Based Nutrition course, and have just covered a lecture by Dr Esselstyn about the benefits of a fat free plant based diet and why oils/fats are not required, it has given me a lot to consider and I may well be changing my approach to this way of thinking. Thank you for inspiring me.


28 Lynn January 1, 2014 at 1:46 pm

This may be on your site someplace but I am unable to locate it so here goes! How much do you typically count as a “serving”? For example, with the Creole Blackeyed Peas, is the typical serving 1 cup, 1/2 cup, etc. this would help me out tremendously.

Thank so much!


29 Rick Wargo January 2, 2014 at 7:52 pm

Another excellent recipe, Susan. This was delicious! I often recommend your site to vegans and non-vegans alike as the source of many delicious recipes; it is my favorite place to go to for a great meal. I appreciate your sharing and your beautiful pictures of these wonderful dishes. Happy New Year!


30 calabarlife February 2, 2014 at 4:23 pm

Thank you so much for all theses ideas!!!! I never knew how versatile black eyed beans were.


31 Airyfairycelt January 3, 2015 at 6:40 pm

Oh these beans look lovely!
I will be getting a note of these recipes alright.
I agree with you, the dried are much better than the tinned, I soak overnight and then the cooking is so much quicker.
Any chopping or mashing is done by these wonderful machines for they have brought independence back in many things.
I was given a sort of electric plate thing and a wipe of oil,is enabling wraps, pancakes and veggie burgers to be made so I am thrilled with it!
I think the new year now means soup and fritters in a wrap!


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