Nigerian soups
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Most popular soups in Nigerian soups

Soups prepared and served in Nigeria differ significantly from those in other parts of Africa and even the world. A bowl of soup can make a complete meal for others, but not for Nigerians. The most common trait of Nigerian soup is that we pair them with fufu or swallow.

10+ most popular soups in Nigerian

  • Afang soup
  •  Banga soup
  •  Okra soup
  •  vegetable soup
  •  Edikang Ikong soup
  •  Egusi soup
  •  Ora/Oha soup
  •  Pepper soup
  •  Bitterleaf soup (Ofe Onugbu)
  •  Ofe Nsala
  •  Efo riro
  •  Ogbono soup
  •  Groundnut soup
  •  Okoho soup
  •  Beans soup
  •  Dry Okro soup
  • Akparata

Afang soup

Afang soup is a Nigerian delicacy popularly enjoyed by the Efik and Ibibio people of Cross River State, Nigeria. You will find relishes like waterleaf, okazi leaf, Kpomo (cow skin), and Periwinkle in a typical Afang soup.

Banga soup

Banga soup is a delicacy popular in the eastern part of Nigeria. It is made with palm fruit extract and cooked with scent leaf or bitter leaves.

Okra soup

Okra soup is one of the most popular Nigerian soups. It is so popular that it has become hard to tell which area of the county the soup originates from. Check our previous post for the simple okra soup recipe and keep an eye out for our recipe for how to make white okra soup.

Vegetable soup

Edika Ikong Soup is another favoured soup enjoyed throughout the country. The generous use of vegetables and proteins in the vegetable soup makes it highly nutritious and enjoyable. A typical vegetable soup contains water to leave, ugu (pumpkin leave), Nigerian Spinach/ Amaranth greens (Alefo) and bitterleaf. The soup is also packed with proteins like meat, fish, kpomo (cow skin) and crayfish.

Vegetable soup is called Efo Riro by the Yoruba people of western Nigeria.

Edikang Ikong soup

Edikang Ikong soup is a Nigerian soup native to the Aqua-cross people. It is made with veggies like Ugu and water leaves. You can also garnish your Edikang Ikong with periwinkle, kpomo, and assorted proteins!! 

Please drop a comment if you want us to share our take on the Edikang Ikong soup recipe!!

Egusi soup

This soup is one staple in Nigeria, prepared with melon seeds and served with or without vegetables like Ugu (pumpkin leaves), Uziza leaves and bitter leaves.

Ora/Oha soup

We cook this delicacy from eastern Nigeria with the leaves of the African Coralwood, also known as African Pterocarpus soyauxii. This soup is also known as Ora or Oha soup. It originates from the eastern parts of Nigeria. 

We enjoy Oha soup with a lineup of Nigerian fufu garnished with assorted proteins. These proteins include shaki, Dry and stock fish.

Pepper soup

This is one of the best comfort food Nigeria offers. Pepper soup is a mix of savoury, spicy and heat.

There is also a list of Nigerian pepper soups to try. These include catfish pepper soup, beef pepper soup, cow tail pepper soup, dry fish and chicken pepper soup.

Bitterleaf soup (Ofe Onugbu)

Bitterleaf soup, also known as Ofe onugbu, is made with bitterleaf, goat meat and powdered cocoyam as a thickening agent. 

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Ofe Nsala

Nsala soup is known to the Igbo people from the east of Nigeria as Ofe Nsala. This Nigerian soup is better when garnished with assorted seafood, especially catfish.

Ogbono soup

This is a staple in Nigerian homes and restaurants. The Ogbono soup recipe is simple and versatile. You can use goat meat to elevate the taste and aroma of this Nigerian delicacy. Besides smoked fish and vegetables, lumps of egusi can garnish this soup.

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Groundnut soup

The egusi soup recipe is almost the same as the Groundnut soup recipe, but groundnut (peanut) soup is cooked with peanuts instead of egusi (melon). Groundnut soup also appears like egusi soup. Most times, we add egusi to groundnut soup to make it thicker.

Okoho soupe

Pounded yam and Okoho soup is the traditional food for the Idoma people. It is widely enjoyed in Benue State, north-central Nigerian. Popular garnishes are egusi and an impeccable collection of proteins.

Beans soup

This is yet another one of the Nigerian soups that are wildly enjoyed. It is also known as Gbegiri Soup!! 

Keep an eye out for our Gbegiri Soup recipe.

NIgerian soups are delicious

Dry Okro soup

Dry okra soup, also known as Ijangada. This soup recipe is basically the same as the recipe for Okro soup. You can choose to cook your Dry Okro soup with chicken, beef or any proteins of choice, although dry okro soup tastes better with dry fish and simple ingredients.

This Nigerian soup requires palm oil, although it is not compulsory!!


Mahogany seed is known to Enugu indigenes from Eastern Nigeria as Ofe Akparata. It is also known to the Idoma people from Benue State as Ukpo. It is garnished with vegetables and egusi. To eat Ofe Akparata the Nigerian way, you need to pair it with pounded yam or Akpu.

The most popular Nigerian draw soups?

While okro soup and ogbono soup take the cake for the most popular Nigerian draw soups, Okoho soup is the thickest!!. Edikang Ikong is also a popular draw in Nigeria.

Are Nigerian soups healthy?

I believe Nigerian food is some of the most healthy food you can find anywhere in the world. In a typical pot of Nigerian soup, the only ingredient processed is probably the seasoning. Besides seasoning, every other additive is organic. Our ingredients are fermented, dried, roasted, smoked, or fresh (from the farm to the pot).

popular Nigerian soups

Food processing and preservation in Nigeria

Our method of preservation ensures that we add no synthetic chemicals to our food. The only way we preserve our food is by sun drying, fermenting, smoking and roasting. Some other most common ingredients preserved include:

Vegetables: sometimes our vegetables like bitterleaf, uziza, and ugu (pumpkin leaves). You can rehydrate bitter leave by boiling them in salty water. Uziza and Ugu do not need to be rehydrated. All you need to do is rinse in salty water.

Check out how to eat right with diabetes.

Meat and fish: Fish is smoked while the meat is fried, salted, and dried.

Fufu: besides the processed semovita and wheat, they make some of the most popular Nigerian fufu from properly drying and milling grains. These include corn, cassava, guinea corn, yam and rice.


Casava is one of the most popular Nigerian food. It is versatile and a staple in the Nigerian kitchen. cassava is locally processed in the rural parts of Nigeria to make foodstuff that can go several months, even years, without spoiling. As long as we properly store them.

Some of the incredible by-products of cassava include:

  • Garri

  • Akpu: Akpu is famously paired with egusi soup

  • Abacha is a noddle-like delicacy native to the Igbo. Abacha is prepared with palm oil, crayfish, azu (fish),

  • Starch is a swallow made from cassava. Starch and Banga soup.

Some of the incredible by-products of cassava include:

  • Garri
  • Akpu: Akpu is famously paired with egusi soup
  • Abacha is a noddle-like delicacy native to the Igbo. They prepared Abacha with palm oil, crayfish, azu (fish),
  • Starch is a swallow made from cassava. Starch and Banga soup.
  • Casava flour

Low-Carb Nigerian Soups

As mentioned earlier, a good majority of the soups enjoyed in Nigeria are plant-based, and most of the proteins are also fresh. Some soups contain ingredients like Yam, groundnut and cocoa, which are notorious carbs. so, if you are looking for a way to enjoy more vitamins and proteins in your diet, you can go for dishes like Okro soup, vegetable soup, and Edikang Ikong soup. Also, the best Nigerian soups also pair well with a list of vegetables… consider including them in the soup.

Check out tips on how to do a low-carb diet from Healthline

Another way to ensure you get the right amount of nutrients in your meal is by being mindful of the fufu or swallow you pair with your soups. A typical Nigerian soup is rich in proteins, fibre and minerals, while a typical Nigerian fufu is a pure carbohydrate. The fufu called starch is proof of this theory.
Instead of eating eba (garri), Akpu, cassava or pounded yam, you can pair your soup with any fufu with minimal carbohydrates. There are several fufu that are rich in other food classes to balance the excess carbohydrate

Nigerian soups are served with some fufu

Low-carb Nigerian fufu you will like

Some of the low-carb Nigerian fufu include:

  1. Wheat
  2. Semovita
  3. Plaintain fufu
  4. Corn food
  5. Pando potato
  6. Guinea corn food

Find the most comprehensive soup recipes for Nigerian dishes. Beginners can easily follow these recipes.

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