How to Make Nkwobi

Nigerian cuisine is aromatic, colorful, and varied. Nkwobi is one of the favorite Nigerian foods. Nkwobi has been the traditional dish for Ibo people for centuries. Rich in calories, it provides enough energy for the dominant tribe to handle all their tasks and duties. It may be not the best choice for those who are very concerned about weight control but give yourself some rest and find out how to prepare nkwobi.

How to make nkwobi: basic tips

  • Cow leg is bonny. Remember it when buying; two kilograms, for instance, is not as much as it sounds.
  • Mind this when you manage your time and remember that pressure cooker will help to make the meat soft and prepare it faster. Besides your time, it is the way to save electricity or gas.
  • Cut the foot into medium chunks or ask to do it at butchery when you when buying.
  • You can use calf or goat leg as an option.
  • Ehu seeds are the ingredient for unique flavor. A small quantity will be enough.
  • As a last resort, you can use nutmeg, but it is not the equal alternative. Besides, ehu seeds are hard to find outside Nigeria, and this is one of the ingredients that makes nkwobi unique.
  • Use dry pan for roasting – it guarantees better aroma.
  • Use potash to curdle palm oil. One of the most popular questions is how to make nkwobi without potash. It is possible to use Ngu and keep the traditional recipe.
  • Utazi leaves create specific bitter taste. Spinach can be used as an alternative.
  • Ugba gives additional flavor.
  • Onions should be used only for garnishing and only in raw form.


Nkwobi recipe


  • 2 kilograms of cow foot
  • 200ml of palm oil
  • 2 tablespoons of ground crayfish
  • 1 tablespoon of powdered potash
  • 1 tablespoon of ground and roasted Ehu seeds
  • 2 chili or habanero peppers
  • 1 onion
  • 10 utazi leaves


  1. Wash foot chunks and put them in a pot.
  2. Add some water (just enough to prevent the meat from burning) and cook at medium heat until the meat is to cook nkwobi
  3. Meanwhile, pour the oil into a dry pot and add potash mixture. Stir till it starts to curdle and turns to cook nkwobi
  4. Add chopped pepper, ground crayfish, and edu seeds and still everything.
  5. Add some salt to the meat. After it is done, stir meat with the paste, and put everything in the to cook nkwobi
  6. Cut onions into rings and utazi into slices. Use it for garnish – put on the top of the dish.
  7. Serve it on a wooden mortar.

Note: you can serve the dish in any hollow-ware. Traditional wooden mortar will help to recreate the authentic experience. For this, serve the dish with a chilled drink, preferably alcoholic, or a glass of juice, if you do not drink.

How to make nkwobi with goat meat

There is always room for improvisation. If you want to choose other meat or add other species, feel free to experiment. If you are cooking nkwobi for the first time, try to use the original ingredients. This will allow enjoying the unique experience. Use the same recipe to prepare nkwobi with the goat head. The dish still tastes delicious but is known as isiewu.

Now you know how to cook nkwobi. Take some time to shop for ingredients, good luck with cooking experiments, and Bon appetite!