Saturday 14 November 2020

Vegan Cameroonian Okra Soup

vegan okra soup

Hey folks, hope you're having a wonderful weekend.  I'm very excited to share this guest post with you, written by the lovely Ngwafu of Gwafu Vegan. Cameroon and Nigeria are neighbouring countries and so it's no surprise that there are a lot of similarities between our cuisines. I was intrigued to note the slight differences in the preparation of this okra soup, as compared to the Nigerian version. Enjoy this post and be sure to show Ngwafu some love over on her Instagram page.


Hello! My name is Ngwafu, I’m a vegan Chef based in Manchester. I’ve been vegan now for over 5 years and haven’t looked back. I was born in Cameroon but immigrated to the UK at the age of 5 and have lived over here ever since. My passion for food started with my mother. I didn’t grow up vegan but the bases of Cameroonian food are around fruit and vegetables, and meat is something we ate once or twice a week. I would always want to go food shopping with her and help in the kitchen to learn from her. 

I started to take my eating habits seriously at University, where I learnt that the vegan diet was the most sustainable in the world. I wanted to do what I could to help save the planet and make it a better place for future generations. Shortly after this monumental change, I started an Instagram account to document my vegan journey. I wanted to show other people - especially those in black community - that going vegan and cooking vegan meals isn’t as hard as it looks and doesn’t compromise on taste. 

gwafu vegan

A few years later, with my drive and enthusiasm to spread the joy for vegan food still alive, I started my very own business and launched a website where I share my favourite vegan recipes. I also deliver tasty West African vegan food in and around Manchester, via Get Vegan Grub.

I recently developed this recipe: Okra soup! A delicious Cameroonian dish. Traditionally made with fish. However I’ve substituting it for vegan fish sauce (can use soy sauce if you don’t have vegan fish sauce) and seaweed, ensuring you don’t miss out and still packs a punch of flavour!

Serves 4


Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes


Stage 1

 One medium onion – finely chopped

 2 tbsp rapeseed oil

Stage 2

 1 tbsp smoked paprika

 3 garlic cloves – finely chopped

 1 tbsp chilli flakes

Stage 3

 500ml lukewarm water

 1 tablespoon/1 cube vegetable stock

Stage 4

 2 tbsp vegan fish sauce

 2 tbsp dried seaweed – finely chopped

 1 Maggie cube (optional)

 80g Egusi

 250g Okra - fresh or frozen (ensure to defrost fully if frozen)

Stage 5

 100g fresh spinach

Stage 6 – to serve with -optional

 122g garri - dry

 240ml warm water

 120ml warm water – to add at the end

Prep work:

1. Mix stage 3 together, ensure the vegetable stock is thoroughly mixed in.

2. Cut off the tops & tails of the okra and finely chop. Chop into bigger pieces if you

don’t want your okra soup to be too thick.

3. In a blender, grind the Egusi into a powder.


1. Add stage 1 (One medium onion – finely chopped, 2 tbsp rapeseed oil) to a pan on medium heat, fry for 2-3 minutes or until translucent.

2. Reduce the heat and add stage 2 (1 tbsp smoked paprika, 3 garlic cloves– finely chopped, 1 tbsp chili flakes) to the pan and cook for a further 2 minutes.

3. Add stage 3 (pre-mixed veg stock in water) and increase the heat to a gentle simmer.

4. Add stage 4 (2 tbsp vegan fish sauce, 2 tbsp dried seaweed – finely chopped, 80g Egusi, 250g Okra, optional: 1 Maggie cube) and cook for 10-15 minutes, still gently simmering. Ensure to stir the soup every 5 minutes.

5. Next add stage 5 (100g spinach) to the pan. Cook for 1 minute, then turn off the heat, cover the pan and leave to finish cooking for 2-3 minutes before serving.

6. This dish is best served with garri. In a small bowl, mix together 122g of garri with 240g warm water (step 6). Place in the microwave for 1 minute 30 secs, remove and add the remaining 120ml warm water and mix well. Place back in the microwave for 1 minute. Mix well and serve hot with the Okra soup.

Go and check out the rest of my recipes! I post new recipes every month, giving a brief history of the dish, as well as adding my own personality to it. Click here.

CALLING ALL MANCUNIANS! Order today: vegan West African meals, cooked by me and delivered straight to your door. Click here to pre-order now.

1 comment:

  1. Deffo going to use this recipe, I miss okra when i'm at uni as prepping the fish is a lot of work, this looks like a great alternative!