How To Make Onunu – Mashed Yam And Plantain

Onunu is a Nigerian delicacy that hails from Rivers State and has a long and rich history. The list of ingredients for onunu is surprisingly short, given its amazing flavour and fluffy texture. Visually, onunu resembles pounded yam, but those two dishes have more differences than similarities. Find out how to make onunu right now!

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1. Ingredients

The two main ingredients for onunu are mashed yam and plantain, but there are a few more ingredients you will need to recreate the beloved taste of onunu. Here is what you will require for this recipe:


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  • Plantains – 2
  • Yam slices – 3
  • Palm oil – 1/2 cup
  • Salt – to taste
  • Pepper – to taste

Onunu cannot be made without plantains, but you can’t just use any plantains you have at home. To achieve the perfect consistency, the plantains should be overripe. When you see the majority of the plantain skin turn brown, you can instantly begin cooking your onunu.

2. How to make onunu

If you have never cooked onunu before, you are probably going to be surprised by how easy this dish is. Take these steps to make your first batch of delicious onunu:


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  1. Peel the skin from the yam slices and rinse them. Put the yams into an empty pot.
  2. Add enough water to cover the yams, put on a stove, and bring to a boil.
  3. Cook the yams until they are soft.
  4. Wash the plantains them and slice each plantain into 2 or 3 slices, leaving the skin on. Put the plantains into an empty pot.
  5. Cover the plantain slices with water, put on a stove, and bring to a boil.
  6. Cook until the plantains are soft.
  7. Take the yam slices out of the water, put into a mortar, and pound with a pestle while the yam is still hot.
  8. Peel the skin off the plantains while they are still hot and add to the pounded yams. Pound together until you reach an airy and uniform consistency.
  9. Add the salt, pepper, and palm oil. Continue pounding the onunu until the mixture reaches a warm yellow colour and a sleek shine. Make sure not to pound your onunu too much – it can lead to a rubbery, doughy texture you don’t want.
  10. Shape the onunu into a ball. The pounded yam and plantain onunu is done!
  11. Serve your onunu with your favourite stew or soup. Onunu tastes particularly great with seafood, so if you are planning to make a seafood stew, you already know what to serve with it.

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My name is Inna. I am a content writer with an English and literature background. As a mother of a 2-year old son, I love learning about children’s health and development, as well as finding new interesting toys and activities for my little one. I am also in love with all things tech and always keep my finger on the pulse of new smartphone and gadget releases. Another big passion of mine is beauty and makeup – every day I read about new trends in skin care and makeup and always look forward to trying them. Plus, I love pop culture, travelling, crafts, and anything that can make our daily life more thrilling!