Nigeria Food Recipes; How to Make Egusi Stew (Melon)

Nigerians love to eat Egusi Stew especially with local dishes like Eba, Amala, Tuwo, and even pounded yam. These food products come from starchy roots of plants, such as cassava and yam. Likewise, Nigerians use a lot of green vegetables, such as okra, spinach, bitter leaf, and other African plants. What’s more, Nigerian doesn’t only rely on products from plants. They also like meat dishes, using chicken, goat, or cow.

Nigerian is broadly divided into three regions based on ethnic groups. The northern part, which is comprised mainly of the Hausa ethnic group, love spicy-hot meat kabobs. The southern part, which is comprised mainly of the Igbo Ethnic group, loves seafood stews made from fish, lobster, shrimp, rice, crap, and vegetables. The western part, comprising of the Yoruba ethnic group, love stewed meats inside Egusi stew with cooked cassava or yam flour.

Nigerian Egusi Stew (Melon Stew)

Egusi stew is a local Nigerian name for edible melon. The stew is local to the Yoruba ethnic group of the country. For this stew, the melon seed is finely ground which gives this stew its unique taste and flavor. Meats of chicken or cow (beef) can be used to spice it up, together with smoked fish and crayfish.

 Egusi Stew

The stew is not complete without the red palm oil. In fact, this substance gives the stew a distinctive African taste. On no occasion should you attempt to replace this oil. Otherwise, you may end up wasting your effort and time. For this stew, the oil is worth looking for.

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Also read: Nigerian Food Recipes; How to make African Bean Soup (Gbegiri)


  • ½ cup melon seeds
  • 1 3-pound chicken, cut into 8 pieces
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/3 cup red palm oil
  • 2 ½ pounds ripe tomatoes cut in half, squeeze seeds out
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 habanero chili peppers, stemmed and halved
  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste
  • 2-4 cup of water
  • 1 ¼ pounds fresh shrimp, heads and shells removed
  • 1 pound fresh spinach, with stems, chopped


  • Place the melon seeds in a food processor and crush until it becomes smooth in powdery form.
  • Likewise, blend your tomatoes, onions, and pepper in the food processor until it is smooth.
  • Add salt to the chicken and then place it in a large frying pan with red palm oil. Roast the chick until it becomes brown on both sides.
  • Add the blended tomatoes combination
  • Now, reduce the heat and cover partially
  • Cook until the chicken becomes tender
  • Add water and shrimp
  • Leave for about 10 minutes and then pour your blended melon seed.
  • Continue to simmer for about 10 minutes and then put the light off
  • Enjoy while hot


The local Yoruba Egusi stew is better eaten with a cooked local yam (pounded yam) or cassava flour (amala).

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