Gbegiri is a beans soup that is served  alongside a hot plate of Amala. 

‘Gbegiri’ is a Yoruba word which means ‘beans’.  This soup is a traditional Nigerian delicacy common amongst the Yoruba, especially Oyos.      It is a traditional Nigerian recipe that is specific to the Yoruba People.

Yorubas live primarily in southwestern Nigeria, spreading from Lagos State to Ogun, Osun, Ondo, Ekiti and of course Oyo state and some parts of Kwara, Kogi and Edo states.

Oyo has a deep historical background as we all know,  this is  because the kingdom is known for its numerous ancient warfare and battles – both internal and external.

Well, let’s visit the kitchen! To prepare a sizzling Gbegiri delicacy, especially the Oyo way, SALT is not always added to the soup! Did I hear your exclamation? Yes, I know you will say how is this possible? For Oyos, it’s very possible, they enjoy Gbegiri without salt!

Amongst Oyos, Gbegiri is best served with Amala.  In fact, many of them usually mix this delicacy with Ewedu to produce ABULA soup! The soup is usually served thick. It’s a traditional food for the elites that can be served at any time of the day.

It constitutes a perfect sample of plants and animal protein, vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Owing to its rich protein content, Gbegiri soup is a fundamental dish for people wishing to take extra care of their health, to prevent constipation, treat or prevent anemia and coronary diseases.

It is also ideal for children and adolescents for physical growth and development. It is equally recommended for the well being of pregnant women and nursing mothers.

This soup helps convalescing patients to recover quickly from their illness, replace worn out tissues and also build a strong immune system against diseases and infections.

     Gbegiri soup is rich in pantothenic acid and placin, these two vitamins are necessary for good skin condition. The potassium content of the soup is high and it is low in sodium. It is therefore an ideal food for those wishing to prevent hypertension.

Gbegiri is easy to make and very tasty. There are different methods of preparing this soup but two methods will be ideal for this edition!

You can add or subtract from it to fit your taste buds. Some like it really spicy while some like it mild.

If you are a Vegetarian, you can have your own version of this dish by skipping on the meat or chicken.  But remember your protein requirement is still intact.

Well, enough of this grammar, lets see what it takes to relish this meal! There are different methods of preparing this meal, but I will focus on two of the methods.


Recipe for 4 servings

. 1 derica of brown beans

. Salt to taste [ oh this is optional]

. Seasonings to taste

. 2 smoked fish [cleaned]

. 2 cooking spoons of palm oil

. ½  kilogram beef or assorted meat [diced]

. ½  kilogram chicken or turkey  [diced]

. 3 tablespoons ground crayfish [optional]

1 tea spoon ground pepper

A pinch of kaun [potash]

A small bunch of Ugu leaf [shredded and optional]


stockfish [soaked]

..soaked stockfish will help to make the food tasty!

Wash and dehusk the beans,  if you don’t have brown beans you can make do with the white beans; after peeling , make sure the beans is clean. While this is happening, set a pot of two cups of water on the fire. Add the pinch of kaun [potash]. The potash is to soften the beans quickly and enable it to be slimy like ewedu or okro or better – still, Ogbono!

Bring the water to boil and make sure the potash is well dissolved in the boiling water. Add the beans and allow it to cook for 15 minutes or until it is pulpy. For the typical Yoruba cook, the best bet is IJABE. The use of IJABE is the process of using a clean hard broom to mash the beans into a puree. At least at the end of the process the soup should look like a typical ewedu soup. For those who may not like idea of using a broom, the use of a blender is not a bad idea at all!

Once the soup is well mashed, you can now add salt [oh remember the fact that SALT is optional, more so as the soup can still be tasty without salt] and seasoning to taste, the pepper, the crayfish, palm oil, the smoked fish and your diced meat. Cover and simmer for another five or 10 minutes. Add the shredded vegetables, uncover and simmer for few seconds. Remove from heat and serve along side a hot plate of Amala.

HMMMMN stop salivating, just enter your kitchen and use the beans in there to prepare this soup!

Bon appetite.



Recipe for 4 servings

. 3 cups of beans [white or red]

. 2 cooking spoons of red oil

. 1 large stock fish

. 1 kilogram meat [diced]

. 1 kilogram fish

. Salt to taste [optional]

. Seasoning to taste

. 3 tablespoons ground crayfish

. 1 teaspoon ground dry pepper

. A small plate of blended pepper and tomatoes


Soak the beans in some hot water, this will make it easier for the back of the beans to come off. Wash the beans until it is completely clean, drain and pour into a pot. Allow to boil until it is completely soft and pulpy. In another pot, boil your meat and fish adding the necessary seasonings including salt to taste.

Use a sieve to extract the pulpy beans. Transfer the extraction into a clean pot and add the red oil and pepper. Allow to boil for four minutes before adding the meat stock. Add the remaining ingredients, taste for salt, simmer and remove from heat. Serve alongside a sizzling plate of Amala.


Amala is a yam flour swallow and delicacy usually in  powdery form. It is   made from dry yam. After thorough preparation, the colour looks like chocolate.

To prepare Amala, pour about four cups of water into a pot and set on heat. Make sure you bring to boil and use a wooden stick to stir the flour into the boiling pot of water, stir thoroughly until the food is set. This should be between five and seven minutes. Remove from heat and set the pot in between your two legs, hold the pot with your legs and continue to stir until you have a smooth lovely chocolate colour. This is the local Oyo method! Remove from heat scoop into three or four plates, depending on the method you apply and serve hot, not minding the weather. A cup of cold water settles it all!

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