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BN Cuisine with Dooney’s Kitchen: Groundnut Soup



Groundnut has to be one of the most universally loved foods. I am yet to meet anyone who hates groundnuts, except those who suffer from nut allergies, and to them I sincerely say sorry. I am a huge fan of groundnut, so imagine my joy when I was introduced to this soup at a friend’s house (shout out to Benny Adeola). I loved it so much that I hounded her for weeks to teach me how to prepare it.

You see, she is from Edo state, and this soup is popular amongst the people from Etsako. In their language it is called Omisagwe. It is also similar to Miyan Taushe a delicacy from Northern Nigeria. Its Asian relative to a little extent (the only commonality – peanut paste) is Satay Sauce. Groundnut soup is a perfect blend of sweet and savoury. If you are a getting bored of the everyday Vegetable soup or Egusi, this soup will be a lovely change you and your family will enjoy. Our vegetable soups can be a little overwhelming for a non Nigerian, so if you are trying to introduce him or her to Nigerian soups, this is a great place to start, as the main ingredient is familiar. Now to mummy’s with fussy eaters (bless your soul). If your children have been turning their noses up at some Nigerian soups, prepare this for them and simply tell a little white lie – it is made with peanut butter. That should get them running to the dining table, and trust me, they’ll stay there. Lol

You Need

1 cup raw un-skinned groundnuts
¼ cup oziza seeds
1 handful of chopped Efinrinbasil can be used as a substitute
1 medium sized smoked fishI used Eja Osan
1 medium sized stockfish
An assortment of boiled meats
Beef stock
3 – 4 Ata Rodo or more – I will say more because you’ll enjoy this soup spicy
1 red onion
1 cooking spoonful of Palm oil
1 cup periwinkle
Seasoning cube – optional* Knorr Chicken cube preferred


Oziza Seeds

Oziza Seeds

How To

Season and boil the meats with chopped onions – I used Goat meat, Cowleg, Pomo (cow skin), Saki (tripe – cow stomach) and Stockfish. Make sure you are left with some stock

Dry roast the groundnuts and oziza seeds for 2 – 3 minutes in a frying pan, shaking the pan regularly. I find that roasting spices and nuts in a pan releases the oils and intensifies the flavour.

In a mill, blend the groundnut and the oziza seeds until you achieve finely textured powder and set aside. If you have a grainy texture, simply blend again. The longer you blend, you will notice the powder transforming into a paste.  This is as a result of the oils in the nuts and the seeds. Roughly blend the Ata Rodo and set aside.

When the meats are tender, shred the stockfish into bite sized portions. Shred the smoked fish and add to the pot. Let this cook for 5 minutes to infuse the stock with the flavor of the smoked fish

Add a cooking spoonful of palm oil and let it boil in the stock for 5 minutes till the stock has a reddish colour.Groundnuts already contain oil, so use palm oil sparingly.

Add the blended Ata Rodo, stir, and let this boil till it properly combines in the stock. This should take 2 – 3 minutes. Taste the stock for salt and seasoning, and re-adjust if necessary. There’s a very strong chance you won’t need to.  If you notice from the pictures, I have very little stock liquid in the pot. This is to create a very rich and strong tasting stock from all the components. Your stock must always be the flavour base of your soup. Then add the periwinkles.

Add the groundnut powder and 1½ cups of hot water.The palm oil and pepper stock must be bubbly and boiling by the time you are adding the powder.

Let this cook for 10 minutes, and watch as the soup thickens.If you are left with a watery consistency, simply add extra powder in cooking spoonful increments every 5 minutes. Why? The soup will thicken every few minutes, so don’t add too much extra groundnut powder at once, otherwise you’ll be left with a thick sludge.


Add a handful of chopped Efinrin, stir and let this cook for 2 – 3 minutes under low heat. Stir again afterwards and taste for salt and seasoning.

…………and there you have it Groundnut Soup. Serve with Yellow Garri or Pounded Yam.

I have anticipated some of the questions you may have –

Q: Can you cook this soup without the oziza seeds?
A: Hmmn, Benny will say no no no, and I will agree with her. You want to enjoy the full richness of this soup, so don’t leave out a key ingredient. Regarding oziza seeds, I tried to think of a substitute and I did a blind taste test with black peppercorns. It was pretty close in taste. Biting into oziza seeds also leaves a tingling peppery sensation on your tongue. So I’ll go out on a limb and suggest black peppercorns if you can’t find oziza seeds.

Q: Can you use any other vegetable?
A: I’ll say no too. Efinrin is not just an added bonus in Groundnut soup. It is a key ingredient that forms part of the flavor profile. So, vegetables like Ugwu or Spinach will do nothing for the soup, you may as well leave them out.

Q: Can you use roasted groundnut?
A: Yes you can, although it won’t be my first choice, because roasted groundnut already tastes different. Also, the texture of the soup is likely to be grainy instead of smooth, unless you’ve got a very powerful mill or you blend multiple times.

Q: Can you use peanut butter?
A: Honestly I don’t know. This is not Satay sauce. I really can’t recommend something I have never tried before.

Q: Where’s the crayfish?
A: I left it out intentionally. Personally, I don’t like crayfish with creamy textured soups.

Q: Can you make this with hazelnuts, cashew nuts, tiger nuts?
A:Err, I don’t know o

I hope I’ve answered any concerns that you may have raised. On a final note, calling on all nut lovers, here’s a challenge for you. I have eaten Miyan Taushe only once, and not to offend anyone, but I really didn’t fancy it. This may be due to who prepared it, and not the dish itself.

So, if you’ve got a wicked recipe for Miyan Taushe, enlighten me please, so I can try it out too. Email it to me at [email protected] with pictures and I’ll put it on the blog and acknowledge the author. I’ll be waiting.

Dunni Obata is an IT Project Manager by day and a cook the rest of the time. She loves entertainment and one of her bad habits is feeding people. When she’s not cooking, she’s watching the Food Network. Dunni is very passionate about Nigerian food and believes they have a lot to offer globally. Visit her blog –

I'm an IT Project Manager by day and a cook the rest of the time. I love entertaining, and one of my bad habits is feeding people, so guests beware. When I'm not cooking, I'm watching Food Network, American TV series and National Geographic in that order. When I want peace and quiet, I curl up on the sofa and read a good book I'm very passionate about Nigerian food. I believe our food has a lot to offer globally, and with the right exposure, it can stand proud alongside food from other cultures. I'm hoping to get us all fired up and talking about Nigerian cooking irrespective of whatever part of the world you live in. Welcome to Dooney's Kitchen


  1. Looks super yummy never tried it though…would be interested to know what it tastes like and the periwinkle is a nice twist.

  2. dianalicious

    May 10, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    yummy… can i send some of my delicacies BN cuisine? I enjoy cooking as a calabar girl concerned *.)

  3. Morning dew

    May 10, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    Looks absolutely yummy!!!!

  4. Lilly

    May 10, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    Very Nice Cant wait to make mine. Is the periwinkle necessary for this kind of soup?

    • Dunni Obata

      May 10, 2013 at 6:59 pm

      Not it is not, I just love periwinkle and I have it in the freezer, so I added it

    • Ima

      February 19, 2016 at 6:57 pm

      Good evening. Thanks for your effort. When using shelled periwinkle, you cut it half way so you can suck it out well and it also cuts out the part not suitable for eating.

  5. lele

    May 10, 2013 at 12:52 pm

    wow…. quite a different way from making ghanaian grouundnut soup, check out the ghanaian cooking blog

  6. crystalwhite

    May 10, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    Sorry thot the end of the periwinkle has to be cut off so as to suck out the periwinkle from the shell, all the same can”t wait to try it this weekend.

    • Dunni Obata

      May 10, 2013 at 6:59 pm

      I tried that cutting thing, and geez, it is too hard, so I just get it out of the other end

  7. oluchy

    May 10, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    l will try this soup ds weekend. 10xn.

  8. Jose

    May 10, 2013 at 1:11 pm

    Emmmph Dunni, Can I marry you? or rather can I clone you and put you in my house. Your Bride Price is exponentially increasing

    • Bleed blue

      May 10, 2013 at 2:47 pm

      And after the marraige, please can you people immediately adopt me as your first child?

    • Dunni Obata

      May 10, 2013 at 7:00 pm

      Lol…… nice one. Don’t worry Jose, my dad doesn’t do the whole bride price thing. He just warns the guy very well not to misbehave. OR ELSE. Lol

    • Dunni Obata

      May 10, 2013 at 7:16 pm

      Ah, what are you going to do to become the first child, because the adoption list is very looooong o and the people on there are ready to fight you to the top. Lol

  9. anonymous

    May 10, 2013 at 1:13 pm

    You abandoned your blog not nice at all. Kept going there and theres no form of activity, why???

    • Dunni Obata

      May 10, 2013 at 7:01 pm

      Really sorry, new project and new boss and getting home at unfavourable hours. I am adjusting better now.

  10. carol

    May 10, 2013 at 1:14 pm

    wow!!ur method is very simple but totally different from my Ghanaian second favorite soup of all time.would love to try ur version but i dont knw wer to get some your ingredients here in France.

  11. Hurperyermie

    May 10, 2013 at 1:23 pm

    will try this cos i like wat am seeing

  12. ally

    May 10, 2013 at 1:34 pm

    very interesting but dear thats not how periwinkle is supposed to look like in a pot of soup, guess u really missed that

  13. nelly

    May 10, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    what is Efinrin in English ? i really need to make this soup.

    • Bolu

      May 10, 2013 at 2:27 pm

      1 handful of chopped Efinrin – basil can be used as a substitute

    • Luqman

      May 10, 2013 at 2:33 pm

      It is called basil leaves, it is normally used in Yoruba land to treat wounds

    • deep

      May 11, 2013 at 4:38 am

      Basil and efinrin are NOT the same!

    • Moblezzin

      May 12, 2013 at 8:34 pm

      @deep….yes they are the same

  14. Nice Anon

    May 10, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    It looks so good! Cool

  15. mia

    May 10, 2013 at 2:28 pm

    bless your soul dear, been wondering how I’ll learn this soup and you’re definitely a lifesaver. and the fact that it’s not video is a plus, u can easily go back and see. bless your soul dear.

  16. gloria

    May 10, 2013 at 2:45 pm

    @Nelly Efinrin in english is scent leaves that’s what its usually called

  17. CuriousShe

    May 10, 2013 at 3:09 pm

    This is one of my favourite soups. I have used peanut butter and it tastes almost the same. The first time I wanted to make it, I couldn’t find a suitable means of blending the peanuts.
    With peanut butter, be sure to use pure peanut butter(without the chunky nuts). When I use peanut butter, I don’t use palm oil. I mix the peanut butter with water to form a fine thick paste.
    I then boil a mix blended tomatoes, ata rhodo and onions for a while, add the peanut butter paste and other regular ingredients (olive oil/vegetable oil/canola oil, meats, fish, stock cubes, salt etc etc). Let it all cook till you have your desired thickness, taste and consistency.

  18. somebody

    May 10, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    Very nice! Will try it. One suggestion though…not everyone that comes to BN (I find other food bloggers do this as well) is Yoruba and as such, please provide us with the English version of words such as “ata rodo” and “efinrin”. Please consider your audience next time, thank you.

    • Dunni Obata

      May 10, 2013 at 7:03 pm

      Hi, my apologies about the Ata Rodo, but right by the Efinrin i wrote Basil can be used as a substitute. The thing is I like to make my recipes authentic, so if the real word for an ingredient is Yoruba that would be it. If you check French, Chines, Indian and Spanish recipes they don’t deviate from the language of the spice – as an addendum you see the English translation. So, my apologies once again for typg it as Ata Rodo. It is scotch bonnet or habanero pepper

  19. gloria

    May 10, 2013 at 3:35 pm

    looks yummy dooney but that periwinkle part i dont agree…can it be prepared with egusi?

    • Dunni Obata

      May 10, 2013 at 7:03 pm

      If you use Egusi, it would then be Egusi soup.

  20. Zero

    May 10, 2013 at 4:00 pm

    Wow..will defo try this…Make una dey use nice classy pots cook nowww. The plates are ok but the pots r too local abeg…dis na for public show. Every other thing dey ok…ha.

    • Dunni Obata

      May 10, 2013 at 7:07 pm

      U know those nice classy pots are usually non stick pots and I have read enough about the dangers of cooking with non stick pots – chemical interaction and all. under high heat. So it is heavy grade Aluminium pots and even frying pans. Something has to give so as not to endanger one’s health. That non stick pan in the picture hasn’t been used in ages and it was only exposed to heat for about 1min.

  21. 'Mide

    May 10, 2013 at 4:18 pm

    Looks good, and I will be trying it. Great Job, Dunni!

  22. Dlapikin

    May 10, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    The soup is better in texture and looks with peanut butter!

    • Dunni Obata

      May 10, 2013 at 7:07 pm

      Really???? Well I have never tried it before.

  23. Princy

    May 10, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    Welldone..I am also from Etsako and testify the wonders this soup does anytime I make it for friends…Infact I had this guy who used omisagwe as excuse to visit me at very odd hours some years ago. However, I disagree with you on the use of Efinrin only…my grandmother cooked it with properly washed ‘bitter leaves’ gives the ‘sweet’ groundnut taste a certain flavour which you would love much more than efinrin..try it…
    Lastly…make sure you add enough atarodo to enjoy the soup and do not make it too can also try making it with only catfish, crabs and any seafood u love…simple delicious

    • Dunni Obata

      May 10, 2013 at 7:09 pm

      Hey, someone from Edo state. I hope I did justice to your traditional dish. Benny said to me only Efinrin is used, so it’s great to read that bitter leaf can be used to, although I doubt if I would use it because bitter leaf and I only seem to agree in Bitter leaf Soup. Thanks for the tip anyway. Next time I’ll divide the soup into two and try one with Efinrin and the other with bitter leaf and compare

    • Rametu

      July 7, 2014 at 6:09 pm

      Very pleasant and satisfied.. It best known with pounded yam,super-delicious,you can also use bitterleaf.. For me, I prefer bitterleaf,because,tastes native and savour.. kudos!you really did well..

  24. Aisha

    May 10, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    I will surely try this out! Thank you Dunni!

  25. Ngum

    May 10, 2013 at 8:16 pm

    Nice one! groundnut soup is tasty and easy to make. Back to ur Q & A: yes, you can make it without oziza seeds. That’s how we do it in Cameroon and it tastes great. Also, you can use peanut butter but the real thing is always better. It’s also possible to leave out oil as groundnut also has its own. My aunt usually puts in a sprinkling of sliced up spinach to give it a lovely colour.
    Mummy’s fussy eaters? In whose house?

    • Dunni Obata

      May 15, 2013 at 6:44 pm

      Okay, maybe that is a Cameroonian recipe. Thanks for the suggestion


      April 17, 2015 at 6:30 pm

      Wow this is great;am from fugar in etsako. Well u can still use bitterleafs, seriously its better than scent leafs.

  26. Aisha

    May 10, 2013 at 9:39 pm

    Hi Dunni, so,do you put the non-skinned groundnut in the pan or you remove the skin first? I saw both the skinned and non-skinned in the first photos, so it is kind of confusing. Thank you!

    • Dunni Obata

      May 10, 2013 at 9:44 pm

      You leave the skin on. I put the two versions side by side for comparison in case anyone had questions. My preference would always bee the skinned groundnut (raw) over the roasted version. If you can’t find raw groundnuts then use the roasted version. I hope that helps

  27. Jose

    May 10, 2013 at 11:22 pm

    Miss Dunni, do you offer cooking lessons, I am more than willing to learn. Besides, can you do a session on how to season fish like cameroun style. This can be added to the Bride Price dowry later on :). But seriously though, I am interested in learning these dishes

    • Dunni Obata

      May 15, 2013 at 6:46 pm

      Lol @cooking lessons. My blog offers lessons with useful hints and tips. About seasoning fish cameroon style, I am guessing the secret is the cameroon pepper. Unfortunately, until I make a trip to Lagos this year or stumble across it at an African store, I may not make much progress, but I will try.

    • Dunni Obata

      May 26, 2013 at 12:47 am

      Hi Jose, if you ever get to read this. I have started organising cooking classes. For now, I will be running it in groups of two. So if you are interested, please send me an email. [email protected]

  28. hawaii

    May 11, 2013 at 12:45 am

    I. Like food network too! And I like your cooking. Tips and recpes,am Also afan of groundnut soup although I have never used oziza seed before,myquestions is Oziza seed is usually bitter if taken and blended too much,since u say Its A key ingredientwhat quantity will you advice

    • Dunni Obata

      May 11, 2013 at 10:17 pm

      Hi – my recipe has the measurements for the oziza seed against the groundnuts. So, use that measurement and it should be fine. If you are making more, just simply double the ingredients. I hope that helps

  29. cathy

    May 11, 2013 at 12:13 pm

    definitely try it, btw how are you going to suck out the periwinkle without cutting it?

  30. Haleema

    March 26, 2014 at 12:45 pm

    Hmm. yes! I’m from Etsako. Auchi to be precise. This is our native soup, and you did justice to it. Thumbs up!

  31. Ronny

    June 6, 2015 at 9:28 pm

    I made mine this night with Ugwu and its fine. Will use effirin next time and see how it goes.

  32. ebun folorunsho

    June 6, 2016 at 7:57 pm

    Hi Dunni, love your blog and love cooking as well. I don’t think scent leaf is essential. Try bitter leaf, the bitter taste tones down the sweetness of the groundnut. Learnt that from my mum she is from Auchi and you Can also add cow skin, cut into tiny round pièces. Lastly try adding the huge red crayfish, Yorubas call it ede instead of periwinkle.
    Cant wait to read more recipes, keep up the good work?

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