What is Nigerian swallow?

Ask Cooking QuestionsCategory: Nigerian cookingWhat is Nigerian swallow?
davi anana Staff asked 5 years ago

What is Nigerian swallow? I have heard a lot about this delicacy, but I don’t quite get it yet, do you care to explain further and how can I prepare this swallow in my kitchen.

4 Answers
Chidi answered 5 years ago

Nigerian swallows refer generally to foods that are wholly swallowed in Nigeria. Not wholly, literally, but in portions. Swallows are served with either stew, soup or sauces. Swallows and soups are quite popular in Nigeria, they could be combined with anyone of the many Nigerian soups and served as dinner or lunch in Nigeria.
There are different types
Pounded yam
Swallows can also be made from some of the popular Nigerian staple foods like
Corn (Maize)

How do you eat swallow?

Basically, you don’t chew them, you pinch a portion, dip into your soup and swallow. You can learn more about Nigerian soups here and how to make them. I have also written a recipe here about – Eba (garri) (one of the popular swallows in Nigeria).

Chef Chidi Staff answered 5 years ago

What is Nigerian swallow?

what is nigerian swallow
Swallows are complementary foods that are made from popular staple foods like cassava, wheat, plantain, coco-yam, etc.
They are generally served with Nigerian soups in restaurants and Nigerian homes. It is almost impossible to find someone that is munching a bowl of eba without soup.

What are types of Nigerian Swallows

There are more than 11 well known swallow recipes in Nigeria but the basic and most popular ones are listed below.


Eba and Ewedu

The image above is that of eba and ewedu soup (a popular Yoruba soup), I have clearly stated that they are all served with soups.
This is unarguably the most popular swallow in Nigeria because it is easy to make and also generally affordable. It is made from cassava, in just 24 hours, you could make eba out of cassava.


This is also made from cassava but takes a little more time. If you have tubers of cassava and know all the processes involved, you could have fufu in just 4 days. Other names for fufu includes loi loi, Akpu, santana, etc. I have written another article explaining How to make fufu


Wheat swallow

I guess this is the easiest among them all, What you need is dried wheat. Once it is ground, it takes just about 10 minutes to prepare. You can serve with anyone of the Nigerian soups, what you find above is wheat and okro soup.

Pounded yam

Pounded yam is just boiled and pounded yam, you pound with a mortar and pestle. You don’t wanna pound some newly harvested yams since it wouldn’t give you the necessary consistency. You can also make this from yam flours, there are different brands of store-bought yam flour. Pounded yam is a Nigerian swallow that is reserved for the rich and famous.

Tuwo Shinkafa

Tuwo shinkafa swallow
You make tuwo shinkafa, one of the popular swallows in Nigeria, from rice. This swallow is very popular in Northern Nigeria.

You boil rice until it gets really soft, then you stir until it attains consistency. mold into rice balls and serve with any Nigerian soup.
Now you know what is Nigerian swallow,

Eva answered 5 years ago

We have different types of Nigerian swallow,
1. Amala: it is gotten from either yam or cassava flour and it can be served with Nigerian soups such as ogbono soup, ewedu, egusi, efo riro, but it is mostly eaten by the Yorubas, amala is a delicasy in Yorubaland

3. Eba: it is made from cassava refined to be garri, it can be eaten with any soup and it is eaten by anybody in Nigeria, it is considered the most popular swallow in Nigeria.

2. Fufu: it is made from cassava, you soak in water for 3-4 days and strain when it becomes soft.
Transfer to a bag and allow excess water to drain for some hour then cook and serve, fufu it is served with egusi soup, ogbono etc, it mostly eaten by the Igbo’s

5. Wheat: it is made from wheat and it can also be eaten with any soup and by anybody

6. Pounded yam: it is made from cooked yam, It is very easy to make, you just boil yam and pound using mortar and pestle. Pounded yam can be eaten with egusi, ogbono, okro soup and its mostly eaten by the Igbo’s

Those are what we call Nigerian swallows.

Chizobafrances answered 4 years ago

Nigerian swallow basically refers to local meals that are not chewed, but are usually “swallowed”. Most of the time, these “swallows” are usually eaten with different kinds of soups peculiar to that particular tribe.
The swallows are as follows :
1) Garri.
2) Fufu.
3) Semovita.
4) Amala.
5) Plantain flour.
6) Starch.

1) Garri

Garri, also known as cassava flakes, is a very popular swallow amongst the southerners in Nigeria. It is usually made from processed and ‘fried’ cassava. It can be prepared by pouring the required quantity of hot water into a bowl and adding the cassava flakes which hardens in seconds. A garri turner is required to turn the paste into a desired consistency.

2) Fufu
Fufu is popular amongst the people in the Eastern part of Nigeria. It is slightly different from garri in the sense that, whilst garri is fried during preparation, Fufu is cooked and pounded.

3)  Starch
This is a swallow that has its popularity amongst the Delta and Edo people .It has its own special mode of preparation.

4) Amala
This is a popular Yoruba swallow that is eaten in the Western part of the country.

5) Plantain Flour
This is processed plaintain, and it is prepared just like garri