Last Updated 17/07/2020

Searching for egusi soup recipe? 

In this blog post, you'll discover how to make egusi soup in five (5) different fascinating ways.

Let's dive in...

1. how to make egusi soup (Frying Method)

The frying method of making egusi is probably the commonest way of making Egusi soup.

Depending on whether you want egusi lumps or not, there are two ways to this frying method.

Fun fact: Back in the days, Egusi lumps served as meat for people who could not afford meat. And today, it can serve as meat for people who avoid meat (like vegetarians)

Anyway, here's how to make frying method egusi soup:

Egusi Soup Recipe (Frying method)

Recipe by Fitnigerian

This recipe is a common way of making egusi soup by frying the egusi first in palm oil.

4.5 Star Rating

Egusi soup recipe frying method

Category:

Soup

Method:
Fried 

Cuisine:
Nigerian

Serves
6 people

Prep Time
20 Min

Total Time
1H 5 Min

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup of Egusi seeds
  • 1 bunch of pumpkin leaves (Ugwu)
  • 1kg of assorted meat, that is Shaki, Ponmo etc already cooked
  • 3-4 smoked fish
  • 1 medium onion
  • Pepper mix (i.e a blend of 4 red bell pepper, 3 scotch bonnet pepper (Ata rodo)  and 2 tomatoes.)
  • 1 cup of beef stock
  • 1 - 2 cooking spoon of palm oil
  • 3 tablespoons of ground crayfish
  • 1 Handful of iru (locust beans)
  • 1 seasoning cube
  • Salt to taste
Directions (For Lumpy Egusi Soup): 
  1. 1
    Blend your Egusi seed then set aside.
  2. 2
    Wash and chop your pumpkin leaves (Ugwu) or vegetable of choice
  3. 3
    In a large pot, pour your palm oil and allow it to be hot for a few seconds.
  4. 4
    Add enough water into the Egusi powder to make a thick paste then add your Egusi paste into the hot oil with a spoon, in bits till the paste is exhausted. You fry through and take off heat. And set aside.
Fried Lumpy Egusi
  1. 5
    Pour oil into your pot and sauté chopped onions till it’s translucent. Add pepper mix and locust beans, stir to combine and allow to simmer for about 3-5 minutes.
  2. 6
    Add your lumpy Fried Egusi and break apart with a spoon in whichever size you want.
  3. 7
    Add your stock then your assorted meat and smoked fish. Allow to cook for a while then taste for seasoning. Add your ground crayfish then seasoning cube and salt if needed.
  4. 8
    Add your washed ugwu into the pot, allow to simmer for 2-5 minutes then take off heat.
Directions (For Non-Lumpy Egusi Soup): 
  1. 1
    Blend your Egusi seed then set aside.
  2. 2
    Wash and chop your pumpkin leaves (Ugwu) or vegetable of choice
  3. 3
    In a large pot, pour your palm oil and allow it to be hot for a few seconds.
  4. 4
    Pour oil into your pot and sauté chopped onions till it’s translucent. Add pepper mix and locust beans, stir to combine and allow to simmer for about 3-5 minutes.
  5. 5
    Proceed to add your ground Egusi powder, add water or stock and stir continuously (so it doesn’t burn or stick to your pot) to allow it to fry well (you would know it has fried well when it has formed a crumbly paste and oil bubbles on top). 
  6. 6
    Add your stock then your assorted meat and smoked fish. Allow to cook for a while then taste for seasoning. Add your ground crayfish then seasoning cube and salt if needed.
  7. 7
    Add your washed ugwu into the pot, allow to simmer for 2-5 minutes then take off heat.
Video (Non-lumpy Egusi Soup): 
Notes: 
  • The green leafy vegetables used in making egusi are different for many households, probably based on ethnicity. Example of leaves commonly used are:
    - Spinach leaves
    - Ugu or pumpkin leaves
    - Water leaf aka Gbure elegusi
    - Efo Igbo, known as Igbagba in my native tongue (Ekiti)
    - Bitter leaves.
    - Okazi
    - E T C
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2. how to make egusi soup (Boiling Method)

This boiling method of making egusi soup is majorly used by the Yoruba people of Nigeria (It's refered to as Efo Egusi). Here's how it's done:

Egusi Soup Recipe (Boiling method)

Recipe by Fitnigerian

This recipe is another common way of making egusi soup by boiling rather than  frying the egusi.

4.5 Star Rating

Egusi soup recipe boiling method

Category:

Soup

Method:
Boiled 

Cuisine:
Nigerian

Serves
6 people

Prep Time
10 Min

Total Time
50 Min

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup of Egusi seeds
  • 1 bunch of spinach leaves (Efo tete)
  • 1kg of assorted meat, that is Shaki, Ponmo etc (Already cooked
  • 3-4 smoked fish
  • 1 medium onion
  • Pepper mix (i.e a blend of 4 red bell pepper, 3 scotch bonnet pepper (Ata rodo)  and 2 tomatoes.)
  • 1 cup of beef stock
  • 1 - 2 cooking spoon of palm oil
  • 3 tablespoons of ground crayfish
  • 1 Handful of iru (locust beans)
  • 1 seasoning cube
  • Salt to taste
Directions:
  1. 1
    Chop onions, wash and shred your vegetables and blend your Egusi seeds.
  2. 2
    Add enough water into your Egusi powder to make a thick paste.
  3. 3
    In a large pot, add your palm oil and sauté onions till it’s translucent. Add your pepper mix and stir to combine. Add your locust beans and allow to simmer for 2 mins.
  4. 4
    Add in water/stock and bring to a boil, then add your assorted meats, smoked fish, ground crayfish and taste for seasoning. Add seasoning cube and salt if needed.
  5. 5
    With the aid of a spoon, form scoops of the egusi paste and drop into your stew base till none is left. Cover the lid, allow to cook undisturbed for about 10-15 minutes. Do not stir.
  6. 6
    Add your spinach and stir to combine, allow to simmer for 2 minutes then take off heat.
Video:
Notes: 
  • The green leafy vegetables used in making egusi are different for many households, probably based on ethnicity. Example of leaves commonly used are:
    - Spinach leaves
    - Ugu or pumpkin leaves
    - Water leaf aka Gbure elegusi
    - Efo Igbo, known as Igbagba in my native tongue (Ekiti)
    - Bitter leaves.
    - Okazi
    - E T C
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3. how to make egusi soup (My Mum's Method)

This recipe is my mum’s recipe. She would be proud of me right now ^_^. And, luckily for us it can serve as sort of a fit-fam, more nutritious version of making Egusi.

Let’s begin….

Egusi Soup Recipe (My MuM's method)

Recipe by Fitnigerian

This recipe is a special way of making egusi soup using three different leaves.

4.5 Star Rating

Egusi soup recipe mum's method

Category:

Soup

Method:
Boiled 

Cuisine:
Nigerian

Serves
6 people

Prep Time
20 Min

Total Time
55 Min

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup of Egusi seeds
  • 1 small bunch of Efo Igbo
  • 2 bunches of Waterleaf
  • A small quantity of nicely diced scent leaves (Effirin)
  • 1kg of assorted meat, that is Shaki, Ponmo etc (Already cooked
  • 3-4 smoked fish
  • 1 medium onion
  • Pepper mix (i.e a blend of 4 red bell pepper, 3 scotch bonnet pepper (Ata rodo)  and 2 tomatoes.)
  • 1 cup of beef stock
  • 1 - 2 cooking spoon of palm oil [Optional]
  • 3 tablespoons of ground crayfish
  • 1 Handful of iru (locust beans)
  • 1 seasoning cube
  • Salt to taste
Directions:
  1. 1
    Blend your melon (Egusi) seed, chop your onions and set aside. Soak your locust beans in salt water for a couple of minutes then drain.
  2. 2
    The Efo Igbo has a bitter taste to it if not washed properly, so after shredding the vegetable, add salt and give it a good squeeze/wash with your hands to get out the water. Alternatively, you can use a food processor.
  3. 3
    Wash and shred your waterleaf as well as your scent leaves.
  4. 4
    In a large pot on low to medium heat, add your blended boiled pepper and let it simmer for about 30 seconds then add water or stock if available. Add locust beans (iru) and taste for seasoning, adjust with seasoning cube if necessary.
  5. 5
    In a bowl containing your Egusi powder, add your chopped onions and then in little increments, add your stew base in step 4 to form a thick paste.
  6. 6
    In your large pot containing the stew base, add your assorted meat, give it a good stir and simmer for about 2 minutes. Add your ground crayfish and taste for seasoning. Add salt if necessary.
  7. 7
    Add smoked fish, then add more stock and/or water. Then with the aid of a spoon or hand (most preferably, the hands), form a lump in whichever shape and size you prefer and drop into the pot. Do that till all that thick paste is exhausted.
  8. 8
    Cover the pot and allow it to cook undisturbed for about 15 minutes. Stir to avoid the Egusi from burning.
  9. 9
    Proceed to add your scent leaves, allow to cook for about 2 minutes giving it a good stir then add your Efo Igbo, let it cook for about 5 minutes.
  10. 10
    Add your Waterleaf and let it simmer for a bit then remove from heat. At this point, you can add your palm oil but for fit-famers like me, this step is totally not necessary. 
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4. How to make Gbure Elegusi

This is making Egusi with just waterleaf. This Egusi is usually very light and watery because of the nature of the waterleaf (only vegetable used). It contains a lot of water and unleashes that into the soup.

This soup is a hit back to back and can be used to eat rice and bread….don’t ask me how oo. LoL!

Gbure Elegusi Recipe

Recipe by Fitnigerian

This recipe is light egusi soup using water leaf as the only vegetable

4.5 Star Rating

GBURE ELEGUSI RECIPE

Category:

Soup

Method:
Boiled 

Cuisine:
Nigerian

Serves
6 people

Prep Time
20 Min

Total Time
55 Min

Ingredients:
  • 1 cup of Egusi seeds
  • 1 bunch of fresh water leaf
  • 1kg of assorted meat, that is Shaki, Ponmo etc (Already cooked
  • 3-4 smoked fish
  • 1 medium onion
  • Pepper mix (i.e a blend of 4 red bell pepper, 3 scotch bonnet pepper (Ata rodo)  and 2 tomatoes.)
  • 1 cup of beef stock
  • 1 - 2 cooking spoon of palm oil [Optional]
  • 3 tablespoons of ground crayfish
  • 1 Handful of iru pete (locust beans)
  • 1 seasoning cube
  • Salt to taste
Directions:
  1. 1
    Blend your Egusi seeds to a fine powder then blend your onions to a fine paste. Combine both the Egusi powder and onion paste to form a thick paste. Alternatively, you can use water to form a paste if you don’t want to use the blended onion paste.
  2. 2
    Heat up palm oil in a large pot and sauté the remaining ½ chopped onion till it’s translucent. Add your pepper mix and stir to combine giving it time to come to a boil.
  3. 3
    Pour in your beef stock then taste for seasoning. Add your ground crayfish and add seasoning cube(s), salt if needed. Allow to simmer for about 2 minutes.
  4. 4
    In order for your meat to soak in the stew base, add your assorted meat and smoked fish and simmer for a couple of minutes. Add more stock/water if necessary.
  5. 5
    Proceed to form a ball of your Egusi paste with a spoon and drop into your stew base. Stir continuously till it’s cooked well (oil bubbles to the top).
  6. 6
    Add your fresh waterleaf on low heat (to allow the water content in the vegetable to be unleashed), cook for about 5 minutes or till it’s properly cooked (oil bubbles to the top) then take off heat.

NB: This procedure uses fresh water leaf, you don’t have to blanch the vegetable.

Video:
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5. How To make Egusi Ijebu

This is a soup from the Ijebu speaking parts of Nigeria. Unlike the common Egusi, this one is really light and lump free.

Let’s cook.

Egusi Ijebu Recipe

Recipe by Fitnigerian

This recipe is another light and lump-free egusi soup without any added vegetables.

4.7 Star Rating

Egusi Ijebu recipe

Category:

Soup

Method:
Fried 

Cuisine:
Nigerian

Serves
6 people

Prep Time
20 Min

Total Time
1H 5 Min

Ingredients:
  • A bowl of ground Egusi
  • 500g of assorted meat of choice
  • 2-3 cooking spoons of palm oil
  • 2 medium onions
  • 2-3 scotch bonnet (Ata-rodo) pepper
  • 1 red bell (tatashe) pepper
  • 2-3 tablespoons of ground crayfish
  • Seasoning cube(s) to taste
  • Salt to taste
  • Ogiri
  • 2 cups of beef stock
  • Water
Directions: 
  1. 1
    Blend your Egusi, peppers, onions and ogiri with water/stock and set aside.
  2. 2
    In a large pan on medium heat, pour your palm oil and heat for 30seconds - 3minutes. Add your blended pepper and Egusi mixture to the hot oil and mix thoroughly till it’s well combined.
  3. 3
    Add stock/ water and allow to cook for about 5 minutes, making sure it’s still lump-free. Add your ground crayfish then taste for seasoning. Add seasoning cube(s), salt if necessary.
  4. 4
    Place on low heat then add your assorted meat. Allow to cook for another 10-15 minutes. At this point, be careful not to allow your Egusi clump up...keep stirring to remain lump free.
  5. 5
    Add water/stock if needed to maintain its light consistency and taste for seasoning. Allow to simmer for a couple of minutes then take off heat.
    Serve with ewedu soup and any swallow of choice
Video:
Cell
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Related recipes 

Frequently Asked Questions About Egusi 

Here are some of the frequently asked questions about Egusi and thier answers:

Is Egusi the same as pumpkin seeds?

Egusi is Not the same as Pumpkin seeds. Egusi is gotten from Melon seeds. Although pumpkin seeds are different from Melon seeds (egusi), they can can still be used to make the delicacy, “Egusi soup”. The pictures below show the differences:

Egusi seeds

Melon/Egusi Seeds

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin Seeds

Is Egusi Igbo or Yoruba?

Egusi soup is eaten in all the parts of Nigeria. In Yoruba, it’s called Efo elegusi. In Igbo, it’s called Ofe egusi and Miyan gushi in Hausa.

Is Egusi good for the body?

Egusi is good for the body because it is rich in some healthy fats like polyunsaturated and Omega-6 fats. Egusi is beneficial for skin, heart and fertily health, just to name a few.

Conclusion

Egusi Soup Recipe (5 Fascinating Methods)

Searching for egusi soup recipe? 

Type: Soup

Cuisine: Nigerian

Recipe Yield: 6

Preparation Time: 10M

Cooking Time: 40M

Total Time: 50M

Recipe Ingredients:

  • Egusi seeds
  • Vegetable
  • Palm oil
  • Smoked fish
  • Assorted meat
  • Pepper mix
  • Onion
  • Locust beans
  • Seasoning cube
  • Crayfish
  • Salt
Editor's Rating:
4.7

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