Medium Recipes

How To Prepare Egusi Soup (melon)


Ofe Egusi, that’s the Name. Just like I rightly stated on the introductory page of Nigeria Soups, the Egusi soup (melon) happens to be the MOST popular of all Nigerian Soups as far as consumption is concerned. Also on this page I have done my best to attach a video on the preparation and cooking of the Egusi soup (melon) for better illustration, and also made a list of needed ingredients.

There are actually two different Egusi soup (melon) recipes that am aware of, not withstanding, we will be taking us on the most popular recipe, then probably the second should come briefly at the end of this recipe then later in the week on a separate detailed blog post.

What you find below is a delicious plate of egusi soup, served with fufu.


Egusi soup (melon)

  • Author: Chef Lilian



  • Meat of choice 2kg (beef, chicken turkey, goat meat, or assorted meat)
  • Assorted meat is a combination of different parts of a cow
  • 4 cups of egusi (melon)
  • Dry fish (maybe two medium sizes)
  • 1 cup of ground crayfish
  • 1 cup of Ground Osu (optional)
  • A good amount of washed bitterleaf
  • 3 cubes of knorr, maggi or other natural sweetener
  • 250ml of palm oil
  • About 2 liters of water
  • Salt and pepper to taste.
  • One medium size Stock fish head (okporoko)
  • Ogiri or dawadawa or opkei (local ingredients)


  1. Grind the four cups of egusi with a dry blender or hand grinding machine and set aside in a bowl. Add about  a cup of water to it and stir to make a very thick paste.
  2. Be sure that the bitterleaf (onugbu) is properly washed, it is advisable to remove over 95 percent of the bitter taste, this process in known to most Nigerians, and it involves washing and squeezing the bitter leaves for several minutes in a very big bowl.
  3. If you bought the already-washed bitter leaf from the market it already, beautiful! it is advisable to boil alone for about ten minutes, this would further remove the  bitter taste and serve other purposes.
  4. Parboil the meat of your choice with all the necessary ingredients; it is advisable to parboil meat with some ingredient before adding to the main food, this improves the taste of the meat. Parboil for about ten minutes, then add water and cook till the meat is tender and the stock (water) is about to dry. Use two cubes of knorr, one spoon of kitchen glory beef spice (optional), a teaspoon of salt and half cup of sliced onions.
  5. Soak the dry fish and stock fish in a bowl with hot water and wash thoroughly to remove sand and center bone, then set aside. Tear open the head of stock fish and wash.
  6. Set your cooking pot on fire and add 250ml of palm oil (red oil), allow to heat for a minutes but don’t allow to bleach. Add the egusi paste and keep stirring for the next eight to ten minutes to form seed-like crumbs.
  7. Then transfer the already cooked meat into the pot, stir, add the washed dry fish, stock fish, ground crayfish, 2 cubes of maggi or knorr, 3 cups of water. Then cover half way and allow boiling for the next ten to fifteen minutes.
  8. Stir occasionally to avoid burning.
  9. At this point you can add one cup of ground osu (optional), a tablespoon of ground ofor or achi.
  10. Add the already washed bitter leaves, (or ugu [fluted pumpkin]), one spoon of ground dawadawa (local ingredients), taste for salt and pepper.
  11. You may add another cube of knorr. Allow to boils for five to ten minutes and you just made a delicious egusi soup.
  12. Nigerian egusi soup could be served with rice, but most especially eba and fufu. I personally enjoy eating this soup and pounded yam together.
READ ALSO:   Chinese Honey BBQ Chicken Salad

Video On Making Egusi Soup

Here is a visual demonstration of the method outlined above, enjoy!

Note: This soup can also be made with fluted pumpkin, the same process should be followed the only different is that bitter leaves should be replaced with fluted pumpkin leaves.

The second egusi soup recipe is very simple to make. You can still follow the same process outlined above. Parboil the meat; add the dry fish, stock fish once it is soft for consumption. Also add the palm oil, 2 cubes of maggi, salt and pepper, dawadawa or okpei. Then add the ground egusi (here there is completely no reason to add water or make into paste)

The only different between the two recipes is that the egusi is fried at the beginning in the recipe above while it is added at the end here. A combination of Ofe Egusi & Pounded Yam would be perfect for launch

About Chef Lilian

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