Nigerian Egusi Soup

Egusi soup is unarguably the most popular Nigerian soup. In my few years as a food blogger and Nigerian food lover, I have learned that different recipes exist across different Nigerian ethnic groups.

The Yorubas make efo elegusi while the Igbos make ofe egusi, all with similar ingredients but with slightly different approaches.

This is a comprehensive recipe for the best kind – egusi soup with lumps… the kind you only get to eat when you visit a 5-star restaurant or hotel πŸ˜€

Like I stated on the introductory page; Egusi (melon) soup is the most popular of all Nigerian soup. On this page, I also included a video recipe for this soup and then a list of some other Nigerian soups that are in the same category as this yummy soup.

What you find below is a delicious plate of egusi soup and fufu, a popular Nigeria combination.
Delicious Egusi Soup

Complete Ingredients For Egusi Soup

Serving: 12

2KG Assorted meat
4 cups of egusi (melon)
Roasted fish (about two medium sizes)
1 cup of ground crayfish
2 cups of washed bitter leaves
3 seasoning cubes
300ml of palm oil
About 2 liters of water
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste (scotch bonnet).
One medium-sized Stock fish head (okporoko)
20g Dawadawa or opkei (local ingredients)

The above-listed ingredients will make a large pot of egusi soup, see the bottom of this page. This soup will serve a family of 4 three times. You can always refrigerate leftovers.

This recipe shows you how to prepare Egusi soup with lumps, the kind you only find in posh restaurants and eateries.

Preparation

Grind the four cups of egusi with a dry blender or hand grinding machine and set aside in a bowl. Add about a cup of water to it and stir to make a very thick paste as you can see below.
mixing

Be sure that the bitter leaves (onugbu) are properly washed, it is advisable to remove over 95 percent of the bitter taste, this process is known to most Nigerians, it involves washing and squeezing the bitter leaves for several minutes in a very big bowl.

If you bought the already-washed bitter leaves from the market already, it is advisable to boil alone for about ten minutes, this would further remove the bitter taste and serve other purposes.

Parboil the meat with all the necessary ingredients, it is advisable to parboil meat with some ingredient before adding to the main food, this improves the taste of the meat.

Parboil for about ten minutes, then add water and cook till the meat is tender and the stock (water) is about to dry. Use two seasoning cubes, a teaspoon of salt and a half cup of sliced onions.

Pour hot water over the stockfish in a bowl and wash thoroughly to remove sand, then set aside. Also remove center bone from the roasted fishes, wash and set aside too.
Ingredients efo elegusi

How to make Egusi Soup with Bitterleaf

Set your cooking pot on the fire and add 300ml of palm oil (red oil), allow to heat for a minute but don’t allow to bleach. Add the egusi paste and keep stirring for the next eight to ten minutes to form seed-like crumbs. See the image below.
Frying Egusi

Then transfer the already cooked meat into the pot, stir.
making egusi soup

Add the washed dry fish, stockfish, ground crayfish, a seasoning cube, ground scotch bonnet pepper and 6 cups of water. then cover half way and allow to boil for the next ten minutes.

Stir occasionally to avoid burning.

Add the already washed bitter leaves, one spoon of ground dawadawa (local ingredients), taste for salt and pepper.
how to make egusi

Allow to boils for ten minutes, stir every 3 minutes and you just made a delicious pot of egusi soup.
Melon Egusi Soup

This is how you make the best Egusi soup with lumps, the kind you only find in posh restaurants and eateries. πŸ˜€

You can serve with eba or fufu, in fact, any one of the Nigerian swallows will make a great combination

What is Nigerian swallow? Learn all about it and all other ‘swallow recipes’

I also enjoy eating this soup and pounded yam together.

Egusi Soup and Pounded yam

The most popular way to serve this soup is to pair with pounded yam. If you are desiring a delicious plate of egusi soups and pounded yam, you will have to prepare them separately.

Follow the recipe on this page to make the soup.

Pounded yam is just boiled yam that underwent the process pounding πŸ˜€

Recipes exist that have taken away the strenuous process of pounding. I learned you could make pounded yam with blenders or just buy yam flour and do it the easy way.

Here is the recipe for Pounded Yam

When you are done, you can serve both together.

Note: This soup can also be made with fluted pumpkin, the same process should be followed the only different is that bitter leaves should be replaced with fluted pumpkin leaves

Video For Efo Elegusi (Yoruba)

Here is a visual demonstration of the method outlined above, enjoy!

A combination of Ofe Egusi and Pounded Yam would be perfect for lunch

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Egusi Soup Recipe

Egusi Soup Recipe

Chy Anegbu
Egusi soup is the most popular soup in Nigeria, this recipe shows you how to make the most delicious kind... the kind of egusi soup with lumps.
5 from 6 votes
Prep Time 45 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Nigerian Cuisine
Servings 12 People
Calories 670 kcal

Equipment

  • Cooker
  • Pots

Ingredients
  

  • 2 KG Assorted meat
  • 4 cups of egusi melon
  • Roasted Mackrel about two medium sizes
  • Half cup of ground crayfish
  • 2 cups of washed bitter leaves
  • 3 seasoning cubes
  • 300 ml of palm oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste scotch bonnet.
  • One medium-sized Stock fish head okporoko
  • 20 g Dawadawa or opkei local ingredients

Instructions
 

  • Set a cooking pot on heat and allow drying. add the palm oil and allow to heat for 2 minutes but don't let it bleach.
  • Disolve the egusi seeds in a cup of water and add to the heated oil
  • Fry the dissolved egusi seeds in palm oil for the next 8-10 minutes. Always stir to avoid burning it.
  • Once the egusi is fried, add 6 cups of water, the cooked meat, stir. add the roasted fish, stockfish, ground crayfish, a seasoning cube, ground scotch bonnet pepper then cover and allow to boil for the next ten minutes.
  • Stir occasionally to avoid burning.
  • Add the already washed bitter leaves, one spoon of ground dawadawa (local ingredients), taste for salt and pepper.
  • Allow to boils for ten minutes, stir in between.
  • Serve Egusi soup and garri (eba), alternatively, you could serve with pounded yam.
  • This is how you make the best Egusi soup with lumps, the kind you only find in posh restaurants and eateries. ?

Video

Keyword Efo Elegusi, Egusi soup recipe, Ofe egusi

Here is The complete List of All Nigerian Soups

Return to Homepage – All Nigerian Foods

87 Comments

The Nigerian Kitchen
Reply

Do you think this soup is the most popular in Nigeria?

July 10, 2013
Dele Abiodun
Reply

How much is the Ultimate Nigerian Cook Book? I want to buy one

April 28, 2017
Favourbby
Reply

I tink is very popular.do to its delicious teste.

December 5, 2017
Akana Ogechi
Reply

i need how cook delicious plenty Egusi soup for my wedding. thanks

July 15, 2013
Ade
Reply

In fact, u are great!
it’s not that I can’t prepare food but I believe dat will lean everyday. And from what I am reading on this site I believe indeed that you are superb.
Keep the ball rolling. God is ur strength.

July 16, 2013
Ogwumagana
Reply

Ade, say the truth and shame the devil… You don’t know how to cool, simple. Come and beat me, I dey my village.

June 2, 2019
Geoffrey.Nwogu
Reply

Thanks for your courageous undertaking putting together this great food blog. It is a great expose of one of the most important aspects of African civilization. Our cuisines is second to none in the world and I thank you for opening it up to the world. I like egusi soup too, Thanks for a nice job.

August 1, 2013
Cathy
Reply

Thanks for the egusi soup recipe, thank God i got ur page. Cos i have lean alot from u. God blesss

September 12, 2013
fortunate
Reply

I have learned a lot on how to make egusi soup,I am a south african woman married to a nigerian man.It was a challenge for me to cook for him coz he doesn’t like my food,but now am glad I know

September 18, 2013
balo
Reply

thanks alot.God bless you nd increase your talent.

November 3, 2013
princess olamide
Reply

Wow am so happy to know how to prepare Egusi soup now thanks for the good work

November 14, 2013
susy
Reply

The soup turned out great. Keep doing the good work. Thanks

November 27, 2013
tessy awu
Reply

Thanks so much.for this wonderful site.You are blessed! Pls I want to be receiving newslettes frm u on diff kinds of recipe.God bless u and keep the good work.

January 16, 2014
Ezi Catherine Ukoh
Reply

Thank you for the recipe. In Malaysia, it is kinda hard to get the ingredients, but I will try to get them as per recipe. My husband loves this egusi soup very much.

January 27, 2014
Gift
Reply

really nice!!! i want to know why you didnt use fresh tomatoes and pepper, i think it improves the taste.

March 19, 2014
Chy Anegbu
Reply

Gift, thanks for your comment. I used fresh pepper, you can also add tomatoes if you like the taste

March 26, 2014
alva cadle
Reply

Im grateful for this blog cause my guy is Igbo and he cant stomach my type of food much, tho he tries. Now I am surprizing him with many dishes.

April 9, 2014
Chy Anegbu
Reply

Alva, thanks for your comment

April 10, 2014
Oluwazobam
Reply

Chy may God keep strengthening you….Amen #great dish

April 21, 2014
kelechi
Reply

I just followed the direction and I cooked egusi soup made with ugwu for the first time. Thanks a lot, you have made me proud of myself.

June 13, 2014
as a bee
Reply

You are doing a great job. Seriously! Keep it up and thank you. One pot of egusi coming up now!

July 29, 2014
chinenye luke
Reply

M so proud 2 b part of u guyz,I ve learn’t alot

September 24, 2014
Nikki Grace
Reply

Yea its great! Keep up the good work.I luv the taste more wen u add 2 big bulbs of onions (blended). Eww 2 d tomatoes!

October 3, 2014
Taiwo Osakwe
Reply

Wow! A different method from what I know n grew up knowing. Thank you.

November 30, 2014
meggie
Reply

Thank you am Ethiopian dating a Seirra leon men, i made eguzi soup before once…he ate it but of course it was far from being perfect….am only concerned about bitter leave where i can find it….i used spinach before….i am asking around where to find it…thx alot….tomorrow my baby is going to be surprised.

December 13, 2014
Euny
Reply

Anoda way i make my eguisi soup is by adding raw eggs to the grounded eguisi before frying, u should try it, it tastes great!

December 15, 2014
adolf
Reply

It’s always a delight reading your page. Could you please use lay estimates for your measures such as one or two spoonfuls as opposed to 5 to 10 cl. I believe most of your followers would benefit more that way . More power to your elbow.

January 7, 2015
Chy Anegbu
Reply

We measure some spices with spoons but liquid can not be counted in spoon… easily. However, I have edited most of my pages the include the equivalent in cups and spoons.

January 10, 2015
santus
Reply

SANTUS C
You are just nwa afo Igbo and doing a great job.I am happy to be part of this.keep the good work,thumbs up.

January 26, 2015
Faithia osawaru
Reply

Interesting Chy. I just ordered for ur books which I got within three days in warri. In short I are really gifted. God bless u

March 15, 2015
Chy Anegbu
Reply

Thanks for reporting dear, I am glad you got your cookbook without hassle.

March 17, 2015
endurance
Reply

Nice

June 3, 2015
Claire
Reply

Since some recipes have no universal English names, this may be hard to pull off in other localities like here in Uganda

June 4, 2020
king Marvis
Reply

Aaaaaaaa tanks a lot…I just cook egusi soup and my America friends are going crazy….

June 16, 2015
nath
Reply

The site is damn help to whoever like kichen…
I have learned a lot ..
Iam a chef .
I have gone above others with this page..
Nuch love to the developer .

July 2, 2015
Philip Kingsley
Reply

I’ll try it out now.
Last week I tried your okra recipe and the soup turned out delicious.
Keep it up

August 10, 2015
Ifeoluwa
Reply

Its a great priviledge to av u as frnds. So keep it up cos it helps most wives to bcom an experrt cooker.thanks

August 12, 2015
ivymariea
Reply

for my egusi soup I use either bitterleave/ ugu/ or uziza and otazi
you can try it with uziza. it comes out great and lovely.

August 16, 2015
Arhueruduvwo Philemon
Reply

Dear you are wonderful for your detail explanation, but my favourite dish is banga soup.

August 19, 2015
Eloho
Reply

i jt want to thk u alot for i hv learn alot on ur program

August 26, 2015
Omoruyi bolanle
Reply

You are such an amazing cook, I love how you make egusi soup, u’ve got so much swags!!!!!! Good job. I’m glad I dotted all the lines to hook up site. Great way to go all the way in steps. Thumb up for u.

August 27, 2015
Enitee
Reply

You are doing a great job dear. You are just the best cook jooor!

September 23, 2015
LINDAMARY
Reply

I do much love this ur recipes and my husband did too

October 2, 2015
Dora
Reply

Nice one chy! I have always loved to make my egusi soup to come out with balls, will that happen if I follow this recipe? And how do I order for your recipe book? Nice job, weldone!

October 10, 2015
joseph
Reply

i like it and i av learn alot also u are great keepon

October 23, 2015
o.j
Reply

thanks a lot, if not for u my visitors will not eat wat they want oo

March 18, 2016
Hilario
Reply

I did as you directed and I made a nice Egusi soup today thanks for your clue I love that

March 25, 2016
Ahmed Juwaratu
Reply

U are great loving this soup remain bless

April 3, 2016
fatima
Reply

thanks for this your site,my family are happy with me for your nice meals.

April 18, 2016
suzzy
Reply

Tanx chi baby, I prepared mine just d way u lectured and it looks exactly like d one in I saw and it was very delicious. God bless u for making me improved in my cooking, my family members are all happy.

April 18, 2016
Mina
Reply

Thanx Chy, but you dint say how the osu will be prepared. When do i add it?

April 19, 2016
Chy Anegbu
Reply

@ Mina, just before you add the egusi.

April 19, 2016
Ogechukwu Angel
Reply

Waoooo.Chy dis is really awesome.God bless u for spicing up our homes with different delicacies.U rock.

April 19, 2016
Tee Okoro
Reply

U are indeed a great teacher.thanks so much.

April 20, 2016
Goodnews
Reply

Thanks for improving me on cooking. But pls how do I use tomatoes to cook egusi soup (mellon) pls.

April 26, 2016
Buchi
Reply

Now I’ve got to know why my egusi soup never tasted good. Mehn I love this.
Please how can I get your cook book and how much is it sold?

May 7, 2016
swetyzee
Reply

Is tomato, papper and onion not need to prepare egusi soup

May 20, 2016
Zukky
Reply

You are doing a good job

June 4, 2016
Charity Mathias
Reply

I just want to thank you a lot for a hav leant a lot through ur page. My d good Lord bless you

June 10, 2016
Charity Mathias
Reply

Thanks a lot

June 10, 2016
Cecilia
Reply

I tried this recipe and it was superb. Thanks a lot ma

June 12, 2016
BLESSING
Reply

thanks ,its delicious have tried it,so superb

June 21, 2016
Suzannah Francis
Reply

absolutely fantastic cuisine! I love Nigerian foods
thank you for you wonderfull recipes
after work I will cook the bitter leave dish and
envite my Nigerian friend to enjoy with me…
how stunning is this dishes…”dis manjefiek” in Afrikaans!
love you guys

July 6, 2016
temmy
Reply

I tried the catfish peppersoup recipe and method 2day with much uziza,utazi and scent leaf.It was d best,av never enjoyed p.soup like dat before.U’ll continue 2 grow in wisdom in Jesus name

July 6, 2016
vina
Reply

You are doing a great job. Love the mails u send to me. God bless u

July 7, 2016
Jane
Reply

I tried ur Caribbean rice n my husband loved it. Thank you

August 14, 2016
Hamza Muhammad
Reply

Who said u re not genius. U stand out unique. My mom said am the best cook when I follow ur instructions. Like ur style.

October 5, 2016
Dae
Reply

When do you put the ogiri?

October 29, 2016
Chy Anegbu
Reply

Right after the fish and crayfish.

November 1, 2016
Liz
Reply

Really thankful for this recipe, I just used it and it’s my first time and my Egusi tastes good. Although, I think it’s a little salty but it’s good still ?

December 5, 2016
Chinasa Michael
Reply

Yeah! You are great, infact, your cooking method is superb, Keep up the good work.I luv ur style of cooking, pls do send me more on how to cook native soup, i love learn more from you and my God will surely bless u nd ur handwork. Amen! Carry-Go!

February 16, 2017
Ololade
Reply

Wow! Thanks a lot Chy! This instruction is clearly stated but like u said “…Add the egusi paste and keep stirring for the next eight to ten minutes to form seed-like crumbs…” Then when am I suppose to add the pepper? Pls reply. Thanks!

March 26, 2017
Chy Anegbu
Reply

You add the pepper after you add the meat, crayfish, then pepper.

March 28, 2017
Ololade
Reply

Thanks a lot!!!!
Up Chy!!!!

March 30, 2017
Abdul Tajudeen Abiola
Reply

How much is the cook book and how can I get it.

July 30, 2017
Chy Anegbu
Reply

Please call 08035051468 for the cookbooks.

August 8, 2017
Lucia ireka offor
Reply

Although i know how to prepare egwusi soup but i will try this recipe thanks

September 27, 2018
Ikejoseph
Reply

Talk true!! U just learnt it now. Hahahahahaha

September 26, 2019
City taste
Reply

Always proud of been a chef

December 5, 2018
Anonymous
Reply

Nyc 1..one big pot of egusi will soon land

March 15, 2019
hsay
Reply

I am a 14 year old nigerian but and live in america, and speak like an american. How do i make egusi soup I have ate it before..

March 22, 2019
Toni
Reply

Please what’s ground osu?

March 28, 2019
Amarachi
Reply

Plz hw cn u use osu to thick ur soup? Tnx alot luv ur blog

April 27, 2019
Chy Anegbu
Reply

Same way you use egusi, you ground it. Thanks for asking.

April 29, 2019
Geoffrey
Reply

5 stars
This is educational! I just ordered for 2 cups of melon ? now & some ingredients. I need to surprise my wife that I can cook egusi soup. Thanks so much ?

September 7, 2019
Ikejoseph
Reply

5 stars
Woooow!! I love this!!. Can’t wait to get married and show my wife what I just learnt… If she like make she do shakara, I will just enter kitchen and surprise her

September 26, 2019
Ferd
Reply

5 stars
I’ve found something that helped me.
Many thanks! Egusi soup is actully my favorite Nigerian soup.

November 15, 2020

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