Efo Riro is a very popular Yoruba soup in Nigeria, it is one of my favorite Nigerian soups because of its health benefits. The name ‘efo’ means vegetables, hence it is a Yoruba rich vegetable soup/stew.
Believe me when I tell you that this happens to be one of the most delicious Yoruba soups that I have made.

If you scroll down a little, you will find a deliciously made plate of efo riro, as served with fufu – it was delicious 😉

It is a little bit similar to the popular edikaikong soup, the difference is the use of tatashe, spinach and few other Yoruba local ingredients, although some people choose to use tomatoes for personal reason but I think tatashe does a perfect job.

Here are the ingredients for making efo riro, I think it would take a little over 30 mins for preparing the ingredients and then the actual cooking takes about 60 minutes. As usual, the ingredients below can serve just about 5-6 people, you can increase or decrease depending on your audience.

Ingredients Include: (for 5-6 People)

Sliced Spinach leaves (7-10 cups)
7-10 pieces stock fish ear
assorted meat (1KG)
1 cup of sliced tatashe
quater cup of sliced pepper
half cup of sliced onions
Half Cup of Ground Crayfish
2-3 spoons of iru (locust beans)
smoked fish (2-3 medium)
Palm oil (200ml)
3 knorr cubes

Here are some of the ingredients for making efo riro, top left is smoked fish, followed by sliced onion at top middle, then 3 spoons of iru in a plate. Below is sliced spinach and pepper/tashe at left and right respectively.
Making Efo Riro

Preparation:

Use either tatashe or shobo, about 5-10, slice alongside the fresh red pepper and transfer in a bowl, this improves the look of the soup at the end of the day. Wash meat thoroughly with lots of water and salt to remove sand then be sure to also wash the smoked fish if you are making efo riro soup with fish.

Here is my delicious efo riro, served with fufu
Efo Riro Soup/Stew

How To Cook Efo Riro

If you follow the steps outlined below cautiously you will end up with a very delicious pot of obe efo riro, {obe} is the yoruba name for soup in case you are wondering.

Step 1
Place the washed meat in a pot, add a little of water, season with salt, sliced onions, 2 knorr cube and allow to boil for 10-15 minutes, add 1-2 cups of water and cook till tender and the water is almost dried.

Add the smoked fish, stock fish, add a cup of water and cook for another 10-15 minutes depending on the hardness of your stock fish, you need to know that people like them better when they are very soft. The water should be almost dried, don’t allow to burn.

Step 2
Remove the pot from heat, place another pot on heat and pour in some palm oil, 200ml. Allow to heat before adding the sliced onions, pepper/tatashe, stir and allow to fry for another ten minutes while stirring occassionally to avoid burning.

Step 3
Add the cooked meat/stock fish/smoked fish, stir and allow to simmer for 5 minutes, add the crayfish, iru, stir and allow another 3 minutes. Add a cube of maggi, salt to taste, stir and add the spinach leaves. Stir all together and allow to simmer for another 3-5 minutes and you just mad a delicious pot of efo riro

Step 4
This is how to make efo riro soup in Nigeria, please serve with Eba, Pounded yam, rice, beans, Semolina, Amala or any other similar Nigerian Food of choice, I like this soup and fufu the way it appears above.

You can see the video for preparing efo riro below! You can also go ahead and read up other articles about Yoruba foods. this soup is just one of them, you can also learn how to prepare gbegiri (the popular beans soup), we also have a Yoruba version of Bitter leaf Soup.

Learn how to prepare efo riro in this 3 minutes video

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Learn how to make Ewedu soup – Efo Riro Soup

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Comments

  1. Tunde B  July 24, 2013

    OMG! I love this soup also, efo riro is like the best soup that I have eaten, my mum is a very good cook but unfortunately she did not teach me how to cook, she focused more on my sisters so I was more of a consumer but now I live alone and would like to learn how to make some of this Nigerian foods, just to keep body and soul together before getting married. I want to learn more of yoruba soups – I am a yoruba person

    reply
    • Olar  February 15, 2017

      Bros u can Cook it on ur own if u follow the receipt very well….don’t worry iyawo will teach how to Cook all the whole food.

      reply
  2. Mary  July 24, 2013

    Thanks for the recipe, I am also a yoruba person. I like yoruba foods too and obe efo riro is one of my best Yoruba recipes

    reply
  3. Ms. S  August 30, 2013

    Hi there,
    great stuff!! I would recommend you use the word ‘simmer’ on low heat rather than ‘boil’ in step 4, after vegetables are added. If veg reach a ‘boil’ state, they’re practically dead of nutrients. Vegetables cook very quickly and can cook from just the heat of the ingredients already in the pot. The greener the veg the more healthy the meal is, brown looking veg is over-cooked and stripped of its valuable nutrients.

    Thanks again
    Ms.S

    reply
  4. Shantel  October 26, 2013

    Oh my God! I made it d exact way it was written ere and it came out fantastic.am going through other recepies ryt now.gosh,
    !!!!!! I cant wait

    reply
  5. Jaydee  December 23, 2013

    thanks you’re a life saver

    reply
  6. flakie  February 7, 2014

    Thanks so much for dis type of things dat is teaching us how to cook cos dis is really helping us most especially d females so dat our matrimonial home will not destroy and also to luk gud thanks so much, the efo riro is very delicious.

    reply
  7. BOLAWA OLUWAFUNMILAYO  March 8, 2014

    WHY,U RE A GREAT TEACHER OF FOOD

    reply
  8. Yetunde  May 14, 2014

    Well done. This is great.

    reply
  9. timothy owolawi  June 9, 2014

    wow,dis is delicious.i almost bit my mouth.i cnt wait again 2 cook dis 4 my future wife,nt my mum but my wife.

    reply
  10. Alason Damola  June 23, 2014

    I am the most lazy out of my family i hate cooking.and i school in Ghana but this country is so expensive i coundnt even save money again because i do go extra miles before i can get Nigeria food.I dislike Ghana food but ever since i came across this my mom is wondering i keep asking her to help me send foods from home.lolThank for this

    reply
  11. Toyin  June 28, 2014

    Ur recipe looks really delicious nd av learnt hw to improve on my eforiro. But i never knew water leave was to b added to eforiro oh. So what shd b d proportion of water leave to spinach ?
    Tanks

    reply
  12. hajara  July 31, 2014

    I love tradional foods,

    reply
  13. Bukola Abiodun  August 4, 2014

    .Wow!….Delicious.You are a veteran in cooking.Thanks for keeping my home alive!

    reply
  14. Halimat  August 13, 2014

    I Like Yoruba People,CultureFoods. Yoruba is my Culture

    reply
  15. Airat  September 1, 2014

    Tanx that was a big relief because there was something I really needed t be cleared of, which u did now tanx again.

    reply
  16. geenability  September 15, 2014

    nice blog u hav here chy. I’m nt a yoruba babe buh i jst luv tryin out foods frm diff parts of d country. u didnt specify hw d spinach wil b prepared cos i learnt its gonna be soaked in warm water for sum mins befor usin it. pls clear me on dt. Tnx n kip d gud wrk goin

    reply
  17. unita  September 16, 2014

    U re too impressive u av enchance ma cookin

    reply
  18. hatroop  September 22, 2014

    well i,m abt going in2 commercal cookn ta,s y i wnt 2 improve in my cookn thks

    reply
  19. shyni  October 13, 2014

    Trying to cook Nigerian foods for my Nigerian hubby, hope this works!!!!!

    reply
  20. Ene  November 16, 2014

    wow!am sure my hubby will be really surprise when I prepare dis 4 him,am idoma and his Yoruba by tribe.thank alot

    reply
    • Chy Anegbu  November 20, 2014

      Sure, he would be.

      reply
  21. Sonia Daniels  November 24, 2014

    Hi I’m South African and my hubby to be is Yoruba. I love the recipe’s but do struggle to get the ingredients in SA. Will try as much as I can though as I’m trying to learn his beautiful language. Ose gan nii Chy.

    reply
    • Chy Anegbu  November 30, 2014

      lol, thanks for your comment Sonia, welcome to the kitchen

      reply
  22. Mosunmola  January 4, 2015

    Wow! Thanks my dear,you made it very easy for me.

    reply
  23. abimbola  February 19, 2015

    U really save my untimely Marriage dat want to collapse just yesterday which made me enter google while I was. Directed to ur blog inshort ur efo riro save my marriage Today.tank so much u are a great menthol

    reply
    • Chy Anegbu  February 23, 2015

      Wow! Thanks for reporting, only good things would happen to your marriage dear.

      reply
  24. nkem  March 3, 2015

    Thank u for this, it’s really helpful. Xoxo

    reply
  25. nenoyima  March 24, 2015

    Hi chy,
    At what point is the locust bean added and is the spinach same as the vegetable commonly called “green”?

    reply
    • Chy Anegbu  March 27, 2015

      just when you add the crayfish and green is not spinach. thanks

      reply
  26. vickky  May 19, 2015

    Am an edo girl i love efo-riro just learnt hw to prepare it wen i ws in lagos

    reply
  27. Eloho  July 21, 2015

    thank alot,this is nice

    reply
  28. Josephine  July 25, 2015

    I just made efo riro for my fiance and his reply after eating? “God bless you boo, *sighs* this is just awesome….. BTW he cleaned his plate, not even crumbs were left, a rare occurrence. Thanks so much. Pl keep the recipes coming

    reply
  29. Charyz  August 26, 2015

    Great Job!

    reply
  30. TRICIA  September 15, 2015

    Thanks a lot. l love this soup even though l have not eaten it. may be l will try it this weekend. please, do l need to grind the locust bean before adding it to the soup?

    reply
    • Chy Anegbu  September 19, 2015

      No, you don’t need to grind the locust beans, just add as it is.

      reply
  31. Omolola  September 26, 2015

    U really got d recipes nd steps,i love efo riro so much especially if dried fish(eja gbigbe) is added,it brings out a nice taste in it

    reply
  32. Ify  October 23, 2015

    Thanks a lot chy for this wonderful recipe!

    reply
  33. fafcy  November 25, 2015

    All thanks to you Chy. Please I think I am getting confused on this one. Please is SPINACH same as FLUTED PUMPKIN (Ugu). Thanks.

    reply
    • Chy Anegbu  November 27, 2015

      No, they are not the same.

      reply
  34. temi  December 28, 2015

    Can I use green instead of Spanish and how do i prepare the green leaves if i can replace green witj spanish

    reply
  35. meme  January 18, 2016

    Pls d tatehe is it d dry one or d fresh one know as bell pepper?

    reply
    • Chy Anegbu  January 19, 2016

      the red fresh one, thanks.

      reply
  36. viva  January 23, 2016

    Spinach ain’t too common in the market. I used to thing efo riro is prepared using “green” and that is why I dnt cook it bcos it comes out watery. Thanx all the same for the great job

    reply
  37. Dick Pinaere  March 1, 2016

    Thanks a lot for what you are doing to help most of us in the kitchen department. I want to ask if spinach leaves are the same as ugu leave

    reply
  38. kafilat Olota  March 23, 2016

    I will try it. to make the day special for my husband and I.

    reply
  39. mbonu ify  April 11, 2016

    PLEASE WHAT IS THE LOCAL NAME OF EFO RIRO LEAVE,SO DAT IT COULD BE EASY FOR ME TO SEARCH FOR IT IN THE MARKET.KINDLY REPLY TO MY EMAIL.
    E MAIL ADDRESS:IFEYINWAMBONU@GMAIL.COM

    THANKS

    reply
    • Chy Anegbu  April 12, 2016

      I hope you got my email? @ mbonu ify?

      reply
  40. Kimora  April 15, 2016

    You didn’t state the kind of efo to be used, I used efo tete instead of efo shoko. Well it still came out OK, my dad said it’s manageable… Just an igbo girl trying different recipes

    reply
  41. Chinwe  April 26, 2016

    pls Chy, what is d local name of spinach so dat I can search for it in d market blc I am confused, i thought it was green vegetable but u said is not. pls send d reply to my email. and ur book is superb I am enjoying it. Thanks.

    reply
    • enitan  January 23, 2017

      I tink it’s called efo amunututu…it’s usually grown personal by people in dere yard than been sold in the market.

      reply
  42. joy  April 30, 2016

    Pls I live in d north and haven’t seen spinach anywhere around.can I use green or ugwu in place of spinach?

    reply
  43. JOY  April 30, 2016

    Nice one

    reply
  44. Adejoke Akeju  May 23, 2016

    This is *Oyinbo efo riro* not the local efo riro!!!!

    reply
    • Chy Anegbu  May 24, 2016

      Lol. Akeju, Thanks for your comment. Recipes do evolve for the good of all of us.

      reply
  45. Chekwube  May 28, 2016

    Thank u for this recipe. I am not a fan of Yoruba foods but immediately l read this your tips on how to make efo riro, l rushed to market to buy the things required in making the soup. The good thing is that, it came out well and my husband and his brother didn’t allow me to enjoy the food because of the oliver twist attitude towards the soup. Thank u very much, l think l will have a good night rest tonight. Even my baby in me can testify to the sweetness of the soup.

    reply
  46. oluwa nene sanni  August 22, 2016

    Your recipe is for this is efolicious….it is simply amazing

    reply
  47. ella  September 7, 2016

    I really apperciate your good work keep it up.

    reply
  48. habidez  November 16, 2016

    i love the efo riro recipe just finished making it it taste delicious.
    you just the best thanks for the recipes
    i cooked it for the family

    reply
  49. Ololade  March 24, 2017

    OMGosh!!! Unbelievable! I stumbled on this site few weeks back just because I was curious to know how to prepare this dish. I had to look for it today to finally carry out the experiment. Lols… Not really an experiment, it’s a meal for the house tho’. You better believe it! I became a veteran efo riro maker in just an hour ago and also it was my first time cooking this and OMGoodness it came out superb and my uncle even said it tasted like that of a professional. I’m so happy!!! I always believe I can cook. Every woman can cook as long as they are fearless. I felt guilty after reading everyone’s comment and just skipping. Thank God I already bookmarked this site. Big cheers to Chy!!!!

    reply
  50. XRumerTest  April 5, 2017

    Hello. And Bye.

    reply
  51. Kimalee  June 15, 2017

    Hi I have fallen in love with this dish in a restaurant and can’t wait to make it this weekend, along with fufu! Your recipe is the one I decided to follow as it looks sooo good. I see alot of questions about what green leaf/spinach I should purchase but I don’t see your response. I am going to a world market so they should have the actual one you use. Can you tell me the name? Also, does ground crawfish come already ground? I have never made African food before, sorry.

    reply
    • Chy Anegbu  June 16, 2017

      I used spinach leaves, everybody knows what is spinach in America. I think you can use green leaves alternatively if you live in Nigeria and can’t visit spar or shoprite to buy spinach. You will need half cup of ground crayfish.

      reply
      • Kimalee  June 16, 2017

        Thank You! Found everything except Locust beans and knorr cubes. Look forward to finding them somewhere and making it. I bought dried codfish and smoke herring because that’s all they had. I will let you know how it and the fufu come out! Thanks again.

        reply

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