Delicious Vegan African Cuisine

Fish Free Thieboudienne – The Canadian African

This fish-free teyboudienne is a 100% plant-based alternative to Senegalese tiboudienne. Flavorful and definitely delicious.

Most people know thieboudienne (pronounced cheebu jeen) as Senegambian fish-based red rice. The fish flavor (fried fish or fermented salted fish) is usually emphasized as the star of the dish. As a vegan (and an experienced cook), there is no 100% substitute. Nor can I claim that this is a genuinely traditional recipe. No plant-based meats or substitutes, just vegetables, herbs and lots of love.

What is tea boudienne?

Thieboudienne is Senegalese jollof rice (in Gambia it’s made much the same way, but called benatine). Thiep/ceeb means rice in Wolof and dienne/jën means fish. Traditionally, Thieboudienne is made by frying fish seasoned with green herbs and then cooking it in a tomato-based stew loaded with vegetables such as cabbage, carrots, cassava, okra and eggplant. Once the vegetables are cooked, all are removed, leaving the flavorful tomato soup in which the rice is cooked.

This fishless tiboudienne recipe is a labor of love with many ingredients that give it a delicious flavor. are very different. For more information, see my blog post dedicated to all kinds of West African Jolof his rice.

Why is Tiebudien so important?

Thieboudienne is touted as the original Jollof Rice. Although not named Jolof, it is widely understood that the name Jolof is based on the name Wolof, from which this rice was derived.People say that in the 1800s, a chef in St. Louis Senegal, she was named Penda Mbaye. I admit that I made this dish. Personally, I am not sure how chronologically accurate the history of this dish is, but there is little doubt that Jolof came from the Senegambia region. Known for its power, rice-based cuisine originating in Senegal truly highlights the agricultural practices of this part of West Africa. It celebrates different cultures and culinary traditions.

What you need for this fish-free thiboudienne

Full Disclaimer: This Fish free Thieboudienne is not an easy recipe. It is a labor of love, as it is made for festive events and eaten communally.


nokosu ingredients

  • green bell pepper
  • garlic
  • small bunch of parsley
  • onion
  • Ginger
  • garlic and onion powder
  • grains of paradise or black pepper
  • 1 vegetable bouillon cube (I used Go Bio Organic Mushroom Bouillon)
Ingredients for jollof rice

stew base

  • Vegetable oil
  • Aroma: Onion, Garlic, Scotch Bonnet Pepper
  • Tomatoes: tomato paste and fresh tomatoes
  • miso
  • Dawa Dawa
  • Nokos from above
  • broken rice
  • Spices (garlic powder, seaweed, mushrooms, aniseed seeds, coriander seeds, rosemary, grains of paradise, sugar)
  • water
Seb Jen


  • Mushroom (oyster)
  • aubergine or garden egg (if large, consider slicing into long, thin slices)
  • cabbage
  • Carrot
  • Cassava Yucca (peeled and cored)
  • 5 okra
  • Sweet potato (coarsely chopped)

How to make thiboudienne without fish

  • make nokos
    • Blend the nokos spices first before mixing with the rest of the nokos ingredients.
  • stew
    • Fry the onions in oil until softened.Next, add miso and dawa dawa.
    • Add the tomato paste, then the mixed tomato mix
    • Once boiling, add the spices and nocos.
    • Cook over low heat until the oil separates from the stew
  • vegetables and rice
    • Add water and bring to a boil, then add root vegetables (carrots, sweet potatoes, yucca) and carrots first.
    • Stir-fry the eggplant and mushrooms and put them in the pot with the okra
    • Remove the vegetables while cooking and set aside.
    • Add the washed rice and cook until soft.
    • Put together on a plate.

Frequently Asked Questions + Substitutions

  • What to do with the remaining Nocos? You can use it to make tofu like my nokosu tofu recipe. It freezes very well, just leave it for a few hours to thaw before using.
  • Can I use brown rice? You can also use short grain brown rice. You may need an extra quarter, up to half the water. You can also soak the brown rice when you start cooking the stew and keep the same amount of water in this recipe. I haven’t tested this before, so adjust accordingly.
  • Can I use long grain rice? You can pulse the long grain rice in the blender 2-3 times to make a crumbly rice in the blender or put it in a plastic bag and beat it a few times. of water may need to be added to adjust the water ratio.
  • Can I use any vegetables? You can use any kind of carrot, any kind of cabbage, any kind of root vegetable. You can omit the ones you don’t care about and replace them with alternatives like zucchini, squash, or bell peppers.
  • I want to add protein, do you have any recommendations? I have made this dish with tofu before. I recommend cooking the tofu separately using the nokosu tofu recipe.
  • Can I make it in an oven or instant pot? Given all the moving parts, an Instant Pot or Oven is not recommended.
  • I can’t get some ingredients (dawadawa, miso, seaweed), do you have any suggestions?
    • Dawa Dawa has a rather unique flavor. Although it may not be present in traditional tiboudiennes, the aroma of dawa dawa adds depth of flavor to traditional recipes. Can be deleted.
    • Miso adds a fermented, salty flavor to dishes. You can remove it and substitute with a little sea salt.
    • Wakame is a Japanese dried kelp with a light fishy flavor and umami added. You can use sushi seaweed or not.
If you like this recipe, leave a comment below! thank you!

Fish Free Thievedienne

This recipe is a plant-based/vegan friendly alternative to the original Senegalese Jollof rice.

preparation time30 minutes

cooking time3 time

total time3 time 30 minutes

course: main course

cooking: Senegalese

keyword: jollof rice, plant-based african food, tayboudienne

Serving: 6 people


  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 green bell pepper
  • 1 small bunch of parsley Contains 1.5 cups
  • 1/2 onion
  • 1 thumb size of ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dawa Dawa Powder fermented locust beans
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon grain of paradise You can use black pepper instead
  • 1 vegetable bouillon cubes I used go bio mushroom bouillon

rice stew

  • 1/3 cup oil with avocado oil
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon miso
  • 1 teaspoon Dawa Dawa
  • Five cloves garlic
  • 1 small can of tomato paste
  • 2 medium tomato
  • 1/2 cup Nokos from above.
  • 1.5 scotch bonnet pepper I like spicy but feel free to skip it
  • 2.5 cup of broken rice I used white rice from West Africa this time, but you can use crushed jasmine as well. See the FAQ for alternatives.
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon seaweed Kombu seaweed
  • 3 Dried shiitake mushrooms dried shiitake
  • 1 teaspoon anise seed
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seed
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon grain of paradise Black pepper can be substituted
  • 1/4 teaspoon of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 mushroom bouillon cube i used go bio brand
  • 2 3/4 cup Water


  • 1 big king oyster mushroom
  • 1 Small garden eggs of medium-sized eggplant work well here
  • a quarter of a cabbage
  • Five Okra
  • 1/2 big sweet potato 1 small sweet potato
  • 1/2 big cassava Freeze the other half for bangu or fufu


  • Mix Nokos spice first

  • Combine the spice blend with the rest of the nokos ingredients and blend in a food processor or blender. For a smoother texture without adding water, place the onion near the bottom or blade of the blender.


  • First, heat the oil over medium heat and fry the onions until soft.

  • Add the tomato paste and simmer for 5 minutes, then add the miso and soy sauce and simmer for another 5 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, combine tomatoes with garlic and Scotch bonnet peppers. Also grind whole spices (garlic powder, wakame seaweed, dried mushrooms, aniseed seeds, coriander seeds, dried rosemary, grains of paradise, sugar, nutritional yeast).

  • Add the blended tomato mixture along with the ground spices, bouillon cubes and nocos. Do not over season the sauce as the rice and water will dilute the flavor.

  • Cook the stew over medium-low heat until the oil separates to the top, about 30 minutes. Check it regularly so it doesn’t burn.

  • While the stew is cooking, prepare the vegetables (carrots are peeled and cut into 3 pieces, sweet potatoes and cassava are peeled and roughly chopped, eggplants are sliced).

  • After 30 minutes have passed for the stew to cook, remove about 1 cup of stew and set aside.

vegetables and rice

  • When the stew is cooked, put the pot on medium heat, add water and bring to a boil.

  • Start by adding vegetables, specifically root vegetables (carrots, sweet potatoes, yucca) and cabbage first.

  • Optional Lightly fry the eggplant and mushrooms in a pan with a little oil until crisp.

  • After about 15 minutes, add the eggplant, mushrooms and okra.

  • Remove vegetables while cooking and set aside. This will take about 30 minutes, so cover the vegetables so they don’t cool down too quickly.

  • Add the washed rice and bring to a boil. Check salt content and adjust to personal taste. When the rice boils, reduce the heat to low and cover with aluminum foil. It takes about 30-40 minutes until the rice is cooked.

  • Put together on a plate. Place the rice on the bottom and layer the vegetables on top.

  • Serve with nokosu tofu for a dose of plant protein.

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