African Dishes You Can Make with Palm Oil

The kitchen was smoky and filled with the warm aroma of spices and sauce. Aunty Funke, a matriarch with hands seasoned by years of cooking was at it again. She was stirring a pot of rich egusi, seafood and leafy greens simmered in palm oil base. The palm oil made it a beautiful sight to behold! 

Palm oil is the heart and soul of countless African dishes, passed down through generations. This versatile ingredient adds layers of flavor and texture to different dishes. Here are some popular African dishes cooked with palm oil:

Native Jollof Rice

This is a one-pot dish made with rice, tomatoes, onions, spices, and protein (chicken, beef, fish, or vegetables). Palm oil gives jollof rice its signature reddish color and smoky flavor. The dish goes beyond the basics. Look for ingredients like fermented locust beans (Iru) and leafy greens like Ugu (pumpkin leaves) or Efinrin (spinach) for a vibrant touch. Smoked or dried fish like crayfish and stockfish makes it savory.


This is a classic soup from Calabar in southern Nigeria. It is made with fluted pumpkin seeds, waterleaf, meat (often goat or chicken), and palm oil. Edikaikong is known for its rich flavor and green color. But Edikaikong is more than just greens. It's a party for the palate! Smoked fish and crayfish add a depth of smokiness and a touch of the sea. Stockfish lends its rich, intense taste to the dish. Meats like beef, chicken, or even offal like tripe can join the party, making it more satisfying.



Sliced or chopped, these little green pods add a delightful crunch and a subtle freshness to the soup. But it's the palm oil that takes center stage. Its rich, reddish hue adds a beautiful color, while its unique complements the okro. The soup is enjoyed with fufu or eba.



Egusi soup is a Nigerian dish that is a staple in many households. It is made with ground melon seeds (egusi), vegetables, meat, fish, and crayfish. Palm oil is a key ingredient in egusi soup, as it adds a richness and depth of flavor that cannot be replicated with other oils.

Oha Soup

The star of the show is the oha leaf, a leafy green with a slightly bitter and peppery taste. Cocoyam, a root vegetable, is often added for thickness and creaminess. The soup is infused with a blend of spices, including uziza and crayfish. Oha soup is enjoyed with a starchy side dish like fufu, pounded yam, or even semolina. It's a complete meal in itself, perfect for a satisfying lunch or dinner.


Ogbono soup, also known as draw soup, is a rich and tasty Nigerian soup made with ground ogbono seeds, classic West African spices, and your choice of meat and fish. It's a hearty and filling dish that is perfect for a cold winter day. The ogbono seeds give the soup a slightly slimy texture, which is similar to okra stew.


This nutritious dish features soft, cooked beans simmered in palm oil sauce. Often flavored with onions, pepper, crayfish, and your favorite spices, it's a complete meal on its own, perfect with rice, plantains, or bread.


Yam Porridge

Yam porridge, also known as Asaro, is a delicious and comforting Nigerian dish made with African yam. You only need a handful of ingredients to create this delicious meal. The base is yam, tomatoes, onions, and peppers, all brought together with the magic touch of palm oil.


Ready to have a taste of these African dishes? Flourish Spices and African Food is your one-stop shop for the finest, naturally sourced palm oil and a treasure trove of African spices. We have everything you need to recreate these dishes

Visit our website or our store today to get your palm oil and all that's on this list. Don't stall. Grab yours before they're out of stock.

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