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


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 occasionally to avoid burning.
making efo riro

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.

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Learn how to prepare efo riro in this 3 minutes video

Learn how to make Ewedu soup


  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

    • 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.

  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

  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

    • Obalakaye  August 15, 2017

      Yes. You are right, that makes you a professional.

  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

  5. Jaydee  December 23, 2013

    thanks you’re a life saver

  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.



  8. Yetunde  May 14, 2014

    Well done. This is great.

  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.

  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

  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 ?

  12. hajara  July 31, 2014

    I love tradional foods,

  13. Bukola Abiodun  August 4, 2014

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

  14. Halimat  August 13, 2014

    I Like Yoruba People,CultureFoods. Yoruba is my Culture

  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.

  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

  17. unita  September 16, 2014

    U re too impressive u av enchance ma cookin

  18. hatroop  September 22, 2014

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

  19. shyni  October 13, 2014

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

  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

    • Chy Anegbu  November 20, 2014

      Sure, he would be.


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