Vegetable Soup

March 18, 2020
Chef Chidi
Vegetable soup

Vegetable soup is paired with any of the swallows in Nigeria and served as either lunch or dinner. This recipe shows you how to cook a healthy soup with vegetables (ugu and water leaves) the Nigerian way.

I love this soup for many reasons:

For starters, I made it with vegetables, and those are synonymous with health.

In Nigeria, we combine different vegetables to make different soups.
Okra soup, Afang soup and even edikaikong are different combinations of different veggies.

Veggies are good for the heart and body cells.

That is just why we are making this soup.

I have written a lot in the last few months about Healthy Nigerian foods, check out the article just to learn why this soup should appear more often on your menu.

Ingredients for Vegetable Soup

Big bowl Waterleaves
Big bowl ugu leaves (fluted pumpkin)
Roasted mackerel
1KG or 35 Ounces of Goat meat
1 cup crayfish
6 scotch bonnet peppers
400ml Palm oil
2 seasoning cubes
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons Ground Ofor


Step 1
Slice the water leaves and fluted pumpkin leaves with a kitchen knife, you want them thinly sliced as you can see below.

What you find below is a bowl of fluted pumpkin leaves – vegetables.
This is the equivalent of 12 cups. You should wash ugu (fluted pumpkin) properly before slicing them.


This is a bowl of sliced water leaves – the equivalent of 15 cups.

Water leaves

You can wash the water leaves after slicing them. Wash the leaves properly and transfer into a sieve to strain excess water.

You don’t want too much water in your vegetable soup.

Step 3
Wash the roasted fish, remove center bone and break to smaller bits as you can see below.

Fish and Meat Ingredients

Season the goat meat with a teaspoon of salt, sliced onions and two seasoning cubes. Allow the meat to boil, add two cups of water and let the meat cook until it becomes tender and easy to chew.

Cooking goat meat for vegetable soup

Pound the scotch bonnet (peppers) and 1 cup of crayfish together. You could blend them if you like. Set aside on a small plate.

How to Cook Vegetable Soup

Step 4

To the boiling meat, add the washed, roasted fish. Allow them to cook until the water dries. Don’t allow it to burn.

Most people don’t like too much water in their vegetable soup, to achieve that, use some tricks – like boiling the meat/fish till the water is almost dried.

Step 5
When the meat cooked and the water is almost completely dried, add the palm oil, 400ml. You need lots of palm oil when you cook vegetable soup.

Cooking veggies

Step 6
Now you add the vegetables, the water leaves should come first. It should fill the pot, it will go down in 3 minutes as you continue to stir.

ofe ogu

You can add the leaves little by little, so it doesn’t fill the pot and become difficult to stir.

After adding all the water leaves, allow it to simmer for 2-4 minutes while you stir occasionally.

Step 7
Add the pounded crayfish and peppers.

cook vegetable soup

Stir all together and taste for salt, add salt to your taste. You don’t want too much salt.

Step 8
Add the ugu leaves (fluted pumpkin) at this point.

Stir in 2 tablespoons of ofor (used as a thickener). Turn properly so it doesn’t form crumbs.

Pot of vegetable soup

Stir all together and allow the vegetable soup to simmer for three minutes.

That is how to make vegetable soup the Nigerian way. I serve all soups in Nigeria with swallow. There are 4 major types in Nigeria.




Pounded Yam.

Anyone could be paired with this soup and served as dinner or lunch in a Nigerian home.

Below you find a simpler recipe for vegetable soup and a video I shot while making this soup. David did a great job with the video.

Vegetable soup

Vegetable Soup | How to Cook Vegetable soup

Chef Chidi
I love vegetable soup and if you follow this recipe you could make a pot of this deliciousness in just about 90 minutes. In this recipe, I combined fluted pumpkin (ugu leaves) and water leaves.
We call it edikaikong in Efik. In Igboland, we call it ofe akwukwo nri or vegetable soup for English.
5 from 10 votes
Prep Time 35 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine Nigerian Cuisine
Servings 12 People


  • Pots


  • Big bowl Waterleaves
  • 1 KG or 35 Ounce of Goat meat
  • 1 cup crayfish
  • 6 scotch bonnet peppers
  • 400 ml Palm oil
  • Big bowl ugu leaves fluted pumpkin
  • Roasted mackerel
  • 2 seasoning cubes
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tablespoons Ground Ofor


  • Thinly the slice the waterleaves and fluted pumpkin (ugu leaves)
  • Wash the ugu leaves before slicing it.
  • Slice the water leaves then wash it.
  • Allow them to strain seperatrly using a sieve to remove excess water
  • Clean and wash the roasted fish, pound your crayfish/peppers.
  • Season the meat and let it cook till it becomes tender.
  • Add the washed roasted fish to the boiling meat, let them boil together till the water dries.
  • To the meat/fish on heat, add palm oil (400ml)
  • The vegetables should be added, the water leaves should come first.
  • After adding all the water leaves, allow it to simmer for 2-4 minutes while you stir occasionally.
  • Keep stirring.
  • Add the pounded crayfish and peppers.
  • Add salt to your taste.
  • Ugu leaves should follow at this point (fluted pumpkin)
  • Stir in 2 tablespoons of ofor (used as a thickener). Stir properly so it doesn’t form crumbs.
  • Stir and allow the soup to simmer for 2 minutes, stir and serve.


Keyword Cooking with vegies, Ofe Nigeria, vegetable nigerian, Vegetable soup



5 stars
This is the best vegetable soup I have ever made ,it was actually my first time and it turns out wonderfully made ❤️. Thanks for the recipes and directions

March 31, 2024
Umoru Omaojo

Thanks a lot………. I’m inside the kitchen already arranging my ingredients for the vegetable soup 😂

March 28, 2024
Blessing Aniagor

5 stars
Thanks to u I’ve done my project successfully lol

November 21, 2023

Thank you for sharing this, I’m going to give it a try today.

August 6, 2023

Am actually cooking it with this recipe now🥰🥰

December 22, 2023

Thanks for this I really appreciate. But in the absence of ofor what can you use?

July 13, 2023

5 stars
Your method for vegetable soup it really great
Thanks to you for this process.
It really helped.

May 28, 2023

Wow that was very helpful👍

April 30, 2023

I just followed the steps and arrived at a delicious vegetable soup this evening. Thank you so much.

April 22, 2023

5 stars
Thank you very much sir😻 this really helped

March 10, 2023
John Mba

Pls Mr Chidi, at ur convenience, I will like you to add other recipes and procedures for other local soups in Nigeria.

February 6, 2023
Timothy uwani

5 stars
I followed your step and I captured it immediately

February 5, 2023
Timothy uwani

It was very very helpful

February 5, 2023

Thank you so much ❤️
I really appreciate🙏

November 17, 2022
Peter A.

This was very helpful. I prepared my first ever African veg soup, thanks to you. Thank you! 🙏🏽

August 10, 2022

5 stars
Thanks so so much…….but if I don’t add water at all and put ofor……won’t it be too thick

May 11, 2022

It would. That’s actually how I prefer it.

January 25, 2023

Nice one…..a quick one:
Can I use kpomo and beef instead of goat meat?

If yes, when do I introduce the kpomo?

July 31, 2021
Chidi Anegbu

Sure, you can pre-cook the kpomo with the meat, except it is already soft then you can add it before the oil.

August 3, 2021

If the kpomo is not cooked you, you should cook it before you di the meat(beaf&assorted meat). Or if it was already cooked you add it a minute before the palm oil.

August 5, 2022
Mr Noel

Can chicken or turkey meat be used instead of goat/ beaf in the preparation process of vegetable soup? And also hope using spices like curry and thyme wont distort the taste of the soup?

May 24, 2021
Chidi Anegbu

Yes Ofcourse.

June 1, 2021

Great work keep it up

April 14, 2021
Kanu Faith

I don’t use ofor. Enough vegetables does the magic

December 6, 2020
Ewulu Ann

Can I use kinda instead of goat meat

December 13, 2020
Chidi Anegbu

Yeah, sure.

December 14, 2020
Blessing Aniagor


November 21, 2023

Nice jobs.
Quick question…. Can I store vegetable soup in the freezer?

November 7, 2020
Chidi Anegbu

Sure you can. I store vegetable soup in the freezer for several days.

November 9, 2020

Thanks for this recipe, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love vegetables. I am a typical vegetarian and just looking for recipes that would allow me eat lots of them

August 19, 2020

5 stars
I am definitely making this version of vegetable soup. While growing up we made this soup with just ugu leaves. it is a relieve to actually try a combination of water leaves and ugu leaves. I suppose it would be softer and yummier.

July 9, 2020

Well explained. Thanks for sharing with us

April 9, 2020
Funmilola Onabolu

5 stars
U are exceptionally good..I am really learning a lot. Pls what is ofor

April 12, 2020
Chidi Anegbu

Ofor is a local ingredient used for thickening soups in Nigeria.
You will find it in any Nigerian local market.

April 16, 2020

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Recipe Rating


Omg! Chef, I love u so much, God bless d day I came across dis site,u make me wanna eat every time and try all recipes,Have tried d fried rice,mashed chicken porridge,indomie and I am trying d beans 2nyt, U re Jst Awesome,Tnks 4 impacting so much knowledge God bless you, but I still need u 2 teach us how 2 mk friut juice ,nd spagetti bolognese! LOL.