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How to Cook Delicious Nigerian Bean Soup (Gbegiri)

Eunice loves to cook food from her native Nigerian cuisine and share her recipes with others.


What Is Gbegiri?

Gbegiri is a highly nutritious and tasty bean soup that comes from western Nigeria. Its primary ingredient is black-eyed peas. Traditionally, it is served with amala, a starch made from yam flour that is commonly eaten by the Yoruba people.


For the gbegiri:

  • 2 onions
  • 1 cup beans (black eyed peas)
  • Habanero peppers, to taste
  • 1/4 kilogram mackerel fish
  • 1/4 cup palm oil
  • 2 bullion cubes
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For the ewedu (jute soup):

  • 1/4 kilogram meat (poultry, beef or goat)
  • 1 bunch or a medium-sized plate full jute leaves
  • 4 tablespoons locust beans
  • 1 teaspoon potash
  • water
  • Salt, to taste

Instructions for Gbegiri

  1. Wash the beans thoroughly to remove the skins.
  2. Place the peeled beans in a pot or pressure cooker and cook till they are done (about 20 minutes in a pressure cooker or 45 minutes in a pot).
  3. Steam the meat and fish with bullion cubes and salt for 10-15 minutes to make a stock.
  4. Blend cooked beans in a blender to make a purée. Set aside.
  5. Place a pot on medium heat, add palm oil and heat for about 3 minutes (don’t allow the oil to bleach).
  6. Stir the puréed beans in heated palm oil and cook for about 3 minutes.
  7. Add meat stock and stir. Check consistency. Add water till you achieve desired consistency/thickness.
  8. Add parboiled meat, fish and pepper. Stir.
  9. Turn down the heat and allow it to cook for about 8-10 minutes. Keep checking in between to prevent soup from getting burnt.
Gbegiri, ewedu, fried meat and stew are served together

Gbegiri, ewedu, fried meat and stew are served together

Instructions for Ewedu

  1. Pluck the ewedu (jute) leaves from the stem.
  2. Rinse off jute leaves thoroughly in clean water. Set aside.
  3. Mix water and potash in a small pot, and place on medium heat to boil.
  4. As soon as the water starts boiling, add the ewedu leaves and cook for 6-10 minutes.
  5. Turn off the heat and whisk briskly with a traditional whisk broom, effectively mashing the leaves into a purée. Alternatively, use a blender to blend the leaves after they have cooled.
  6. Put the pot on minimum heat and add in the pureed ewedu.
  7. Add salt, ground dry crayfish and locust beans.
  8. Leave it to simmer for 2-6 minutes.
  9. Serve with gbegiri and amala (yam meal).
Ewedu (jute leaves)

Ewedu (jute leaves)

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