7 Nigerian Dishes You Should Try

Posted on: 12 October 2020

Nigerian food is its own distinct genre, with a focus on using aromatic spices to create savory dishes. If you have never tried Nigerian food, and a new Nigerian restaurant has opened in your neighborhood, there are a few classic dishes you need to try in order to get a feel for this delicious cuisine.

Dish #1: Pepper Soup

Pepper soup is all about the spices, not the vegetable. It contains spices such as gbafilo, uda, Calabash nutmeg, and alligator pepper when it is made with authentic ingredients. Traditionally, pepper soup is made with goat meat, although you may find some variations made with different types of fish. It also usually contains lemongrass as well and has a light watery base.  

Dish #2: Jollof Rice

One of the most classic Nigerian dishes is a rice dish. Jollof rice always consists of five main ingredients: chili peppers, tomatoes, onions, scotch bonnets, and rice. It is usually made with long grain rice.

There are lots of variations of jollof rice, with additional ingredients being added to the five classic ingredients. There are many different regional variations of jollof rice, and it is often considered a celebratory dish.

Dish #3: Akara

Akara is a dish of fried bean cakes. The inside is made with black-eyed peas, and the outside is crusty. It is often served alongside a dipping sauce that can change the taste of this dish. In a restaurant, you are most likely to see this served as an appetizer or alongside another larger dish. It is also considered a breakfast food.

Dish #4: Beef Stew

If you are looking for something hearty, try out some beef stew. It is made with a tomato base, and the meat is slowly cooked in the mixture until it is tender, and the meat can easily be pulled apart. It is usually served alongside either rice or some starchy vegetables.

Dish #5: Dodo

Dodo is a simple way to use overripe plantains, a fruit that is easy to find in Nigeria. Overripe plantains are taken and deep-fried, creating a nice, crispy little treat. It is often served as a side dish or as a dessert.

Dish #6: Okra Soup

This soap is made with crayfish, spinach, and okra. The okra is cut into very tiny pieces, which allows the okra to really cook and helps to create a nice, thick soup. There are also vegetarian versions of okra soup. It is a thick soup that is often served on its own.

Dish #7: Pounded Yam

With pounded yams, yams are taken and then crushed up until they reach more of a creamy consistency. Then, the dough-like yam mixture is taken and made into an almost ball-shaped, creating a stretchy and soft delicious treat. Pounded yam is often served alongside soup.

When you visit a Nigerian restaurant, see if they have any jollof rice, pepper soup, Akara, beef stew, dodo, okra soup, or pounded yam for you to treat. Enjoy the taste and well-flavored dishes associated with Nigerian cuisine.