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Efo riro

Efo Riro (Nigerian Spinach Stew)

Efo Riro (Nigerian Spinach Stew) is one of the traditional stew associated with Yoruba people/culture but it is widely prepared by all/most of the tribes in Nigeria. It is served at the parties, small gatherings, and most homes. It is a very delicious meal if prepared correctly, it is made with different type of vegetables and proteins, I used spinach with tripe and beef (skin on), you don’t have to use same proteins I used, you can use any protein of your choice. You can eat efo riro by itself, with amala, pounded yam, rice, plantains, and the list goes on. I made a post about efo riro a while ago I used two types of vegetables, you might want to check it out Spinach and Kale Soup (Efo riro; Vegetable Soup)

Let’s get started!

Efo Riro (Nigerian Spinach Stew)
  • 24 Ounces Spinach
  • 2 Big Red bell peppers
  • 4 Habanero/rodo
  • 1.5 Onions (divided)
  • 1 Cup Dried shrimps/prawns
  • 1/2 Cup Dried fish
  • 1 Tablespoon Ground crayfish
  • Assorted meats
  • Locust beans/ iru
  • Palm oil
  • Knorr bouillon powder/cube
  • Salt to taste
  1. Remove the stem of the peppers, clean a half of the onion and blend together.

    efo riro pepper
  2. You can use pre-boiled meats or boil your meats with onion, knorr, salt and any seasonings of your choice. Boil until the meats soften.

    Efo riro season meat
  3. Place a saucepan/pot over medium-high heat, pour the pepper mixture and boil until thickens. 

    efo riro blended pepper
  4. Clean the dried fish and dried prawn/shrimps (separately) by soaking in hot water and salt for a couple of minutes. Rinse out and set aside.

    Efo riro dried shrimp
  5. After the meats are done you can roast them slightly or cook as is. I roasted the beef but not the tripe.

    Efo riro baked meat
  6. Clean the locust beans/iru by rinsing with water. If you're using a frozen spinach thaw and squeeze out the excess water if you're using fresh spinach wash with water and blanch to get rid of the excess liquid.

    Locust beans
  7. Place a large saucepan/pot over medium-high heat and pour the palm oil and allow to get hot. Don't bleach but let the oil gets hot enough to make sizzling sounds. You can use as little/as much oil as you want.

  8. Add the washed iru and fry for a few seconds, oh my...the smell of frying iru is heavenly!

    Fried locust beans
  9. Chop/slice the remaining onion and add to the frying locust beans. Stir and continue to fry together for a couple of seconds.

    Efo riro add onion
  10. Add the ground crayfish and stir. Don't fry the ground crayfish first because it might burn before you finish frying other ingredients.

    I used a frying pan for this step because I didn't want to scoop out the pepper mixture and also the pot was big enough for the cooking.

    Efo riro fried onion
  11. Pour the oil over the pepper or add the pepper to the oil and stir.

    Efo riro fried stew
  12. Add the dried fish and the dried shrimps/ prawns and stir together.

    Efo riro dried fish
  13. Add the meats and mix to combine. If the pepper mixture is too thick add a small quantity of broth/water to allow the meats to absorb the pepper. Leave to cook for about 3-5 minutes.

    Efo riro add meat
  14. Add the knorr and salt then mix.

  15. Add the spinach to the mixture and mix thoroughly.

    Efo riro add spinach
  16. Check the seasonings and adjust accordingly. Leave to simmer for about 2 minutes.

    Efo riro
  17. Serve with your favorite side.

    Efo riro
  18. Enjoy!

    Efo riro
Recipe Notes


 You can use any type of protein you like, adjust the spice to your preference.

You might want to try Nigerian Stew With Dried Fish (Obe Ata)

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