Banga Soup Recipe (Delta Version)

Banga Soup is a very popular Nigerian Palm nut soup, it’s a Delta/Urhobo favourite. The preparation method of Banga soup varies from tribe to tribe. The Igbo version is called Ofe Akwu which includes the addition of Ugu or Scent leaves which is without in the Delta version. There’s also the Efik version called Abak Atama.

I will be using the canned Palm nut extract for my Banga soup recipe. It’s much easier to use and cuts the cooking time down tremendously. If you’re thinking of using fresh palm nut, all you’ll need to do is wash the nuts vigorously to remove all traces of dirt, boil the nuts for 15-20 minutes on medium heat or until the nuts soften. Transfer the nuts into a mortar and pound till the skin begin to break off and the colour becomes kind of even. Do this carefully so you don’t break the kernels. Pour some hot water on the nuts; still in the mortar and mix thoroughly then strain with a sieve or cloth to extract the palm oil and that’s it.

Banga soup is mostly cooked with fish but you can also add meats to it if you choose to. I’ll be using fresh Catfish and smoked turkey. I really wanted to use just fish but I love the flavour of smoked turkey in soups and stock, hence its inclusion.

I’ll be using a store bought pre-mixed Banga spice blend as I haven’t got access to the real deal. Banga spice typically consists of a blend of blended Tyko, Obeletientien, Rogojie and Oburunbebe stick.

So, Banga soup, let’s start…


1500grams Palm nut Extract

1 Medium size Catfish or any preferred fresh fish

Assorted Meats of your choice

2-3 Medium Pieces Stockfish (Panla, Okporoko)

1-2 Medium Dried Fish ( I’m using catfish)

1/2 Cup Fresh or Smoked Shrimps (Optional)

1 Tablespoon Ground Dried Crayfish or prawns ( Prawns preferably)

1-2 Tablespoons Banga Spice

1-2 Tablespoons Crushed Obeletientien leaves or Dried bitter leaves.

1 Oburunbebe stick

2 Scotch bonnet ( Atarodo)

1 Medium onion chopped

2 Tablespoons dried pepper (Atagungun) This is optional if you’re using Rodo but I l prefer mine really hot.

1/2 Cup Periwinkles (I’m not using any though)

Bouillon cubes ( I’m using Knorr)

Salt to taste


These are my ingredients:Banga soupGut, clean and wash your fish thoroughly, especially if you’re using Catfish as it can be quite slimy. Wash Catfish with salt to remove the slime, alternatively, you can freeze it for a day, leave to thaw and just rinse with water.

Boil your meats first, if you’re using any. I’m using smoked turkey. Remember to start with the tougher meats, then add the softer ones as you go. Also, remember to boil offals separately. I’m starting with my smoked turkey, I’m boiling this with chopped onions, Knorr chicken cube, salt and a teaspoon of Aromat seasoning, I’ll be boiling this till tender, not soft, just tender…You can do the same with your tougher meats.Banga soup 2
When it’s tender, add the dried stockfish and the blended Scotch bonnet, continue to boil till the stockfish is tender and the meats/smoked turkey soft….Banga soup 3
Then, add the smoked fish, switch off the heat and simmer with the residual heat for 2-3 minutes…Banga soup 4
Now, transfer your palm nut extract into a big pot. If you’re using the tinned extract, it comes really thick, dilute with hot water, the water should be almost double the quantity of the extract. I’ll be using the stock from the meats as well, so, I’m including the quantity of the stock as part of the water I’m diluting the extract with. When you’ve added the water and stock, place on a hob on medium heat, mix thoroughly to break up clumps.

Do not cover the pot from now till the end of the cooking process.banga soup 5
Let this boil for 10-12 minutes…Banga soup 6
Then add the Banga Spice, Oburunbebe stick, ground crayfish or prawns, dried pepper, knorr cube and salt to taste. You may not need too much salt if your stock is well seasoned so be mindful.

Be really careful when adding Banga spice, start with a tablespoon thereabouts and add more intermittently if needed, too much will make your Banga soup really bitter and that would be irreversible if  that’s the case. Leave to cook for 5 minutes, at this time, the soup would have thickened up a bit.Banga soup 7
Now, add the Catfish or your preferred fresh fish and fresh shrimps, (now is a good time to add periwinkles if you’re using any), turn the heat down to low, leave to cook for 7-10 minutes, at this time, palm oil would have settled on the top. Decant some of the palm oil if you find it too oily.Banga soup 9
Blend your bitter leaves or Obeletientien…banga soup 8

Now, add the dried Obeletientien or bitter leaves, stir and combine…cook for 2 minutes, then switch off the heat.

Be very careful when you’re adding bitter leaves, too much will make your Banga soup really bitter and inedible.

Banga soup 10

Leave to cook for a further 2-3 minutes with the residual heat…Banga soup

Remove the Oburunbebe stick….Banga Soup

And you’re done…Banga Soup
Banga soup


And that’s it. Do give this Banga soup recipe a try, you’ll absolutely love it! If you do, please don’t forget to leave a feedback, it’s always a pleasure reading from you. Don’t forget to subscribe to the blog and share this lovely recipe with friends. See you in the next recipe….

22 thoughts on “Banga Soup Recipe (Delta Version)

  1. Thank you for this, but don’t get the part when you say blend the bitter leaf will you wash the bitter leaf and then blend it and pour into the banga and still add dry bitter leaf pls help

  2. Saw your recipes and often pride myself on knowing how to make banga but I never knew I was adding bitter leaves, I thought it was a different native spice lol. Love your responses and attention to detail. How can I subscribe to your channel or the link to your Facebook page?

    • Hi Oma. The major leaf used for Banga is Obeletientien. I’m guessed no that’s the native one you use. Bitter leaf is more like a substitute especially for those abroad where Obeletientien can’t be sourced. Thanks so much for the lovely words. Ypu can subscribe by following the prompt on the homepage. It’ll ask to enter your email address. My Facebook page is “Sisi Jemimah”…..?

  3. Eh eh eh I love this.I av bin in delta close to two years now, I Neva got courage to prepare banga .ur recipe encouraged me, I tried it And guess what! It turned out nice. Husby is loving it. Thanks Jemmy. More recipes pls

    • Aww, I thrive on beautiful feedbacks as this. Thanks so much for trying out the recipe and I’m glad you loved it. You’re very welcome, more yummy recipes to come….

    • Banga and Tuwo? Hmmm Never heard of that combo before ooo….LOL. Palm nut extract is unprocessed/ unrefined Palm oil. No, it’s not same as Palm oil.

  4. Sisi Jemmy, you are doing a great job here. I have been using your recipes since I bumped on you on Cook and Share (FB). I cooked coconut jollof rice – fried rice, seafood okra, egusi, edikang Ikong, yam and plantain and they all turned out well. Thanks so much. xoxo

    • Hi Kemi, thanks for the feedback and I’m glad you find my recipes useful. You’re very welcome. Really do appreciate the lovely feedback….X

Join the discussion!

Love Our Recipes? Then Stalk Us Here!