How To Make Easy Nigerian Okra And Ogbono Soup

Easy Nigerian Okra and Ogbono Soup recipe with Spinach

Okra and Ogbono Soup for a win!

Okra soup is one of the most popular Nigerian soups. Most of the ethnic groups we have in Nigeria have a thing for okra. In other words, it isn’t a kind of soup reserved for one particular ethnic group. I grow up eating okra, and I loved it. As a kid, sometimes my mother will cook okra and ogbono together, and for today’s recipe, I am recreating my mother’s okra and ogbono soup recipe. Okra is generally the best Nigerian soup that most Nigerian parents use to start their kids on the part to eating traditional Nigerian soup and swallow. Please SAVE/PIN THIS IMAGE ON PINTEREST. ⤵️

Healthy okra and Ogbono soup, also known as "draw soup." This very authentic Nigerian/African soup recipe is made with okra, ground ogbono seeds, and spinach. Okra soup is an African delicacy; it is nutritious, delicious, and finger-licking good! Okra and Ogbono soup remain among the favorite Nigerian and African soups, mostly served with cassava fufu, yam fufu, or garri. #Okra #okrasoup #Africansoup #drawsoup #Ogbonosoup #Nigeriancuisine #Nigeriansoups #westafricanfood #Africanrecipes

Okra and Ogbono Soup Swallow

“Swallow” is a starchy food usually eaten with a bowl of soup such as oat fufu, cassava fufu, yam fufu, Garri fufu, plantain fufu, etc., Typically, you will pick up small fufu or swallow, and you dip it generously in the soup, and then you will swallow it! Additionally, okra and ogbono soup are natural to swallow and likewise gentle in the tummy. Soup and swallow bellow. ⤵️

Nigerian okra draw soup and oat fufu swallow
This is a typical swallow: Here is Okra and Ogbono soup with oat fufu “swallow.”

Soup = Superb in Nigeria.

In Nigeria, is not unusual to see different kinds of meat inside a pot of soup; for instance, a bowl of okra soup may consist of beef, beef tripe, oxtail, cow feet, goat meat, fresh fish, dry fish, smoked fish, and so on. The list is endless; I guess we cook extraordinarily and we derive joy in doing so. So for this very soup, I will be adding and using different parts of meat. Skip the meat if you are vegetarian, and I encourage you to swap the meat to your preference if you do not like a particular part of the meat that I will be using today.

This recipe shows you how to prepare soup with frozen vegetables.
This soup is yummy, nutritious and a hit in my household! You have to try it!

The Okra Benefits.

Okra is full of high-quality fiber, which aids in digestion and can stop constipation; an excellent source of protein, okra is also low in fat and sodium. Therefore, it can help with the improvement of cholesterol health. Oh, kay!… Click To Tweet

 Ogbono is Outstanding.

On the other hand, ogbono is made from a (dry) seed of edible fruit popularly eaten in Nigerian – ugiri. If you haven’t noticed, most Nigerian soups require thickeners, which are usually seeds (but mostly used in ground form). In case of this soup, alongside frozen okra I will also use ogbono; it will help both in the thickening or (draw as we say back home), and flavor. Okra and ogbono combo are a match made in food heaven; it combines the freshness of okra and on the other hand the magic-ness of dry ground ogbono seeds. Both tend to draw very well; when used together produces one of the best soups from Nigeria.

Ogbono soup with okra is nutritious and delicious! You can use fresh or frozen okra for this recipe!

Okra and Ogbono Soup Memories.

As kids, we would eat okra with anything, like anything. Sometimes at my house, we would eat okra with rice or yam. But, in reality, it is traditionally eaten with swallow – pounded yam, pounded cassava or fufu, garri or oat fufu. You can also lunch or dine on a bowl of okra without swallow! 

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Easy Nigerian Okra and Ogbono Soup recipe with Spinach

How To Make Easy Nigerian Okra And Ogbono Soup With Spinach Leaves

  • Author: Nkechi Ajaeroh
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 11 - 13 Servings 1x


Okra and Ogbono soup is one of the most favorite Nigerian soups. It is very tasty, nutritious and insanely delicious! This soup is generally served with Fufu (cassava flour, yam flour, garri or oat-fufu).

Scroll up to see what I served this okra and ogbono soup with oat-fufu. This healthy okra and ogbono soup recipe is also easy to follow as soon as you boil the meat, you are pretty good to go!


  • 2 lbs. of beef (or more/less)
  • 1 lb. of goat meat
  • 2 lbs. of cow feet
  • 1 lb. of Dry fish
  • 1 bulb of onions (quartered; use for cooking the meat)
  • 1 TBS. salt or less (for cooking the meat; the amount of salt you use will depend on the quantity of meat/your taste)
  • 1 tablespoon seasoning powder or 4 seasoning cubes (for cooking the meat)
  • 7 cups of beef broth (or more/less. Broth/stock from all the meat)
  • 4 (12oz) bags of frozen okra or 2 lb. of frozen okra
  • 1 (12oz) bag of frozen spinach (you can thaw or use from frozen)
  • 2 TBS of dry Lante leaves (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon Nigerian red pepper or any chili/hot pepper
  • ¼ cup of palm oil
  • ½ cup of ground Ogbono
  • ¼ cup of ground crayfish
  • 12 red bell pepper (blend alongside the okra)
  • Water (as needed)


Preparation/boiling the meat

  1. Set a clean pot on the stove, add the meat to a clean pot and add quartered onions, salt, seasoning cubes or powder. Then add water until it is well over the meat. Set the pot on the stove to medium to high heat, cover, and cook until tender; separate meat from broth, and set aside.
  2. Bring out okra from fridge hours before soup preparation and allow to thaw; then use a clean blender and roughly blend the okra about 3 – 4 (5 second) pauses. Add some bell peppers alongside okra and repeat the process until all the okra is blended. Set aside.

For the soup

  1. Set a clean pot on the stove and set your stove on low – medium. As soon as the pot warms up add palm oil, allow the palm to heat up just a little bit, and then add ground Ogbono and continue to stir. Keep stirring gently up to the 1-2 minutes to dissolve all the Ogbono into the oil. Then gently add the broth (every liquid from cooking the entire meat.) Then stir in fish, and crayfish, mix well into the soup, cover the pot and allow to cook for about 8 – 10 minutes, this enables the fish to cook a bit prior to adding the already cooked meats. Stir in between to avoid burning or sticking to the pot.
  2. After the said time (when the soup starts to really simmer), add the meat, crush in one seasoning cube or 1 teaspoon seasoning powder, followed by the ground red pepper, stir very well and allow to cook for about 2 minutes, then add washed Lante leaves. Cover the pot and cook for about 8 – 10 minutes, add little water in between this time if necessary.
  3. After the set time gently stir in the okra, ensure to distribute it well with a spoon. Then cover the pot and continue to cook for about 15 – 20 minutes. This cook time also depends on the quantity of the okra. If you are using the same amount in this recipe, then it will take about that time (that’s what it takes me.) Stir the pot within intervals of 3-5 minutes to ensure that the soup is cooking evenly and avoid burning of any sort.
  4. After 15 minutes or so it will be time to add the spinach. Stir in the spinach (I would usually squeeze water out of the spinach before adding if it is thawed.) Use the cooking spoon to ensure the okra is well distributed. By this time your soup is looking yum, feel free to taste it and add additional salt and seasoning if desired. Allow everything to simmer for another 3 – 4 minutes, and your yummy okra and Ogbono soup is ready! Serve with fufu, Garri pounded yam or oat fufu or just eat a bowl by itself.


The meat boiling time is not included in the cooking time for this soup.

You can always use less meat or no meat at all! You are in charge of the amount of meat you may decide to use. You can substitute the entire meat and fish with mushrooms instead. Sometimes I alternate, you can see that in the video I used chicken instead of goat meat or cow feet.

Sometimes I do prefer to cook certain the meats separate, for instance, I would typically cook goat meat separate from the cow feet because the cow feet takes the longest to cook. But if I were using beef and chicken breast I would usually cook them in the same pot but add them at different times. You may notice this in the video as well.

Add extra time to cooking the cow feet; it takes about 2-3 hours to make them tender unless you are using a pressure cooker. As you cook the cow feet the water will continue to decrease, keep adding water as you go. You will need this water as it becomes the base for the soup.

You may need additional salt or seasoning cubes/powder if you are using low sodium or non-sodium broth or plain water. Also, taste the soup as you go along to make sure it is coming along well, and then adjust appropriately.

Please remember that the primary determinant of how much time it will take you to make this soup is the quantity/amount of soup.

Cook this soup on medium to avoid burning or sticking to the pot. Enjoy.

  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Category: Nigerian Soup
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: Nigerian Cuisine

Keywords: Okra Soup, Ogbono Soup, Okra and Ogbono Soup, Nigerian Soup, Healthy Nigerian Soup, Okra soup recipe, Okra and Ogbono Swallow, Draw Soup, Soup and swallow recipe, West African soup recipe

Recipe Card powered byTasty Recipes

Do you eat okra soup? Tell me in the comment below, how you like to cook yours. Annnnd, do let me know when you make this soup.

PLEASE SHARE THIS POST. If you like this yummy Nigerian Soup, then am sure will enjoy my other Naija recipes:

And if you desire to get started on a healthy lifestyle, then I want to invite you to join my healthy lifestyle online Community, find out more about it here

Finally, I will like for us to connect on PinterestInstagram, and Facebook and Twitter lol, let’s connect everywhere!😊 Remember to share this recipe post. Please SAVE/PIN this image on PINTEREST. ⤵️ 

Healthy okra and Ogbono soup, also known as "draw soup." This very authentic Nigerian/African soup recipe is made with okra, ground ogbono seeds, and spinach. Okra soup is an African delicacy; it is nutritious, delicious, and finger-licking good! Okra and Ogbono soup remain among the favorite Nigerian and African soups, mostly served with cassava fufu, yam fufu, or garri. #Okra #okrasoup #Africansoup #drawsoup #Ogbonosoup #Nigeriancuisine #Nigeriansoups #westafricanfood #Africanrecipes

With love,

Sharing is caring!

Nkechi Ajaeroh, MPH

Hi, I'm Nkechi "Kechi" Ajaeroh, a Public Health professional turned Inspirational author slash exceptional home cook. A 2x International Best Selling Author of Elevate Your Life with the Power of Positive Perception and Gratefully Growing. African, (specifically, Nigerian) Food Enthusiast, watermelon connoisseur, on my to finessing my fitness. This blog is all about loving food, living life, practicing gratitude, and inspiring you to use your wings. Join the journey.

  1. Okra is my fav veggie since childhood but now it doesnt suit me at all 🙁 This soup looks awesome Nkechi. Myh mom used to make crispy okra with gramflour. WE get fresh okra here never saw it frozen 🙂

    1. WOW! Growing up I loved okra as well and still loves it very much now😂
      Same here, I didn’t know about frozen okra until I came to live in America. I only ate fresh okra growing up, and my mother would always use it to make soup or yam porridge.
      Currently, my kids love my okra soup, and it melts my heart because I feel I am passing down our okra tradition to the next generation.

  2. I love okra and ogbono together & I also cook mine same way you do but cooking my okra 15 – 20mins is a bit too much for me. I love my okra a little crunchy so I like to go for fresh okra. Thanks for sharing

    1. Hello, Theresa!
      Thanks for stopping by.
      Oh, I see what you mean. Whenever I make okra by itself, I cook it for less time. But when am making it with ogbono, I would normally want it to blend in. And I also, I make it in very large quantity, so this cook time allow it to properly heat up real good. 🙂
      It is awesome to see that you enjoy my kind of food. Nice to meet you!
      Hope to see you often.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.