Egusi Elefo (Nigerian Melon seed and Vegetable Soup)

Hello Guys! *Tenders apologies*. I know someone just whispered “as usual”. My excuse this time is that I am in my last semester of my school work (Yay!). It’s been challenging. I’ve only had time to cook at home properly for the first time this year this passing weekend.

Onto today’s dish; Egusi Soup. It is in no way an original recipe. It has been there probably since the Garden of Eden. Trust me, life is incomplete without Egusi soup.

I made this with all of my heart, because it is a cacophony of meats, flavors and textures as any good soup should be . This soup is made in different ways depending on the part of Nigeria it is being made. I am from Western Nigeria and this is the time saving way I make mine. I got a full pot which I will show you at the end. You can tweak the measurements in this recipe depending on the number of hungry friends or flatmates you have that suddenly become friendly when you are cooking.

For social media addicts who would prefer to see this in a Twitter Thread with videos, I got y’all!


3 Cups Ground Melon Seeds (Egusi)

2 Bunches of Mustard Greens

5 Cooking Spoons Palm Oil

3 Scotch Bonnet Peppers

2 Onions

2 Garlic Cloves

Cameroon Pepper


4 Maggi Cubes

Chosen meats: Smoked turkey, Shaki (Tripe), Bokoto (Cow-leg), Ponmo (Cow Skin) and Goat meat parts.

Making this soup can be as easy as pie or as difficult as trying to build Rome in one day. I spent between 35 to 40 minutes in total making this. Hence if I can you can. Yes we can *does the Obama hand wave*. Dang I miss that man.


  1. Wash all of your meats and season with salt, cameroon pepper, scotch bonnet, an onion bulb, two cloves garlic and two maggi cubes. Add about two cups of water and cook till desired softness. (Yes, you guessed right I ate four pieces to check if it was seasoned and properly cooked). When cooked, set aside and let the meat soak up the stock.
  2. In a separate pan, you will be making your egusi paste. Chop up an onion finely, and add it to your dry Egusi, add tablespoons of water gradually and mix it all up till it forms a very thick dough-like paste. In this pan add about three spoons of Palm Oil and fry this mix on low heat for five minutes.
  3. In another pot, heat up one spoon of palm oil and add your meats in and stir. You would see the meats give off some stock and that is fine. It adds to the flavor.
  4. Now you grab the pan with the fried Egusi and pour it into the pot with the meats then stir it up allow to simmer for five minutes or till you get impatient.
  5. Wash your mustard greens and cut them finely. Add them into the pot and stir well till it’s all mixed properly. Let sit and simmer for three minutes.
  6. That’s all. I’m serious, it’s that easy.

Serve it up and enjoy!

If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments section below!

10 thoughts on “Egusi Elefo (Nigerian Melon seed and Vegetable Soup)

  1. Maryam Adebisi says:

    Hello, this looks amazingly delicious! I never get egusi right! Going to attempt to make this. I just have a few questions please. 1) is mustard greens the same as fresh spinach or fresh collard greens? 2) in picture #3, when you said to add the meats to the palm oil in the pot, did you also add with some of the stock water, or do not add any of the stock water to it as well please? Really hope to hear back from you please

    1. Tobi says:

      Hello Maryam,
      1. NO they are not the same. Mustard and Collard Greens withstand longer cooking times than spinach and for me I prefer them but Spinach works perfectly fine too.
      2. You can add a little stock water so it doesn’t burn. I did that!

  2. Ijeoma says:

    Do you take orders? If yes, how can I place an order?

  3. Duchesskk says:

    Yay! I’m making this today, if it looks and tastes nice I€ll send a picture

  4. Franca says:

    Looks yummy. I bet it tastes as good as it looks.

  5. Bookie says:

    Looks delish!
    However, you didn’t state how you put the egusi paste in the palm oil, is it the way you put puff puff or akara into oil?

    Bookie Kunlere

    1. Tobi says:

      Yes, I am sorry, you scoop some in your hand and add morsel sized bits into the oil.

  6. Reblogged this on iateHouston and commented:
    Straight Fire, from ChefMaster Tobs

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