Healthy Quick Dinners | Black-Eyed Pea Fritters

Healthy Quick Dinners | Black-Eyed Pea Fritters

Grain-Free | Plant-Based | Dairy-Free | Sugar-Free | Vegan | Gluten-Free

Healthy Quick Dinners | Black-Eyed Pea Fritters (Acarajé) 

Go to Northeast Brazil and you won't get enough of these babies! This is as iconic to the region as rice and beans is to Brazil as a whole or pizza is to New York. Acarajé is a yummy snack made from black-eyed peas, fried until golden and then stuffed with filling.

I'm not going to lie, there is nothing that compares to the ones you get freshly made in the street by a baiano. If you go to Brazil, try it properly! However, my recipe is a tasty option that is much healthier and relatively easy + quick to make. The original is neither; we're talking deep fried and hours to create (from soaking the beans overnight to continually shelling the skins before you even begin cooking!)

Instead in this recipe, we use canned beans which have already been soaked and bake or sauté the acarajé. It's less authentic but otherwise we maintain the overall integrity of the classic dish.

This recipe is also vegan and vegetarian making it suitable for all dietary needs!

Makes: 8 acarajé fritters
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes (if baking)

Total Time: 25 minutes  


  • Fiber (Black-Eyed Peas, Onion)
    Nutrient Dense Carbs (Black-eyed Peas, Salsa Topping)
    Protein (Black-Eyed Peas)

Healthy Quick Dinners | Black-Eyed Pea Fritters


Black-eyed Pea Fritter Ingredients 

  • 1 can of black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained 
  • 1 yellow onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 tbsp chia seeds
  • Salt to taste (optional max 1 tsp recommended)

Salsa Topping Ingredients 

  • 2 red bell peppers de-seeded and chopped bite-sized
  • 3 large tomatoes chopped bite-sized
  • 1 white onion chopped bite-sized
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 handful parsley chopped loosely 
  • Juice 1/2 lime
  • Salt to taste (optional)

    Equipment & Extras

  • Skillet (optional, used if pan-frying)
  • Parchment/Baking Paper (used if baking)
  • Food processor 

  • PREP

    Decide how you want to cook your acarajé. You can:

    Bake them which is healthier but won't get you that golden brown finish and crispiness.

    Skillet fry
    them with two spoons of oil, which may make them less ball-like and more pancake style. Skillet frying is the fastest route.

    Or do both
    (my personal preference) by baking them first and finish them for the last five minutes on a skillet to get the best of both worlds!


    If you're going down the baking route. Begin by pre-heating your oven to 400F/200C and lightly grease a baking tray with oil. For skillet frying, just have the pan greased ready to go.


    Recipe Steps

    1. Combine fritter ingredients in a food processor until a rough paste forms (not to gooey - still with some chunks.
    2. Spoon out mixture onto parchment paper if baking or on medium hot skillet with dollop of oil if frying.
    3. Bake 20 minutes or fry either side until firm.
    4. Place finished acarajé carefully on a plate to cool and firm up for a couple minutes. 
    5. Mix salsa ingredients in a bowl and then top acarajé! 


      Bom apetite! 

       Healthy Quick Dinners | Black-Eyed Pea FrittersHealthy Quick Dinners | Black-Eyed Pea Fritters 

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