Gambian Cuisine
Gambian Cuisine

Cuisine of Gambia

Gambian cuisine is part of West African cuisine and includes the culinary practices and traditions of the nation of Gambia. Common ingredients include fish, rice, peanuts, tomato, black eyed peas, lemon, cassava, cabbage, salt, pepper, onion, chili, and various herbs. Oysters are also a popular food from the River Gambia, and are harvested by women.

Most Important Dishes of Gambian Cuisine

Benachin Gambian Cuisine
Benachin Gambian Cuisine

1Benachin

Benachin is a Wolof dish traditionally cooked in one pot (the practice giving it its name) Various ingredients including fish or meat are added, seasoned with herbs, lemon juice, basil, aubergine, parsley, onion, chili, tomato, pumpkin, carrot, cabbage, vegetable oil, and water, with tomato paste sometimes added for color.

Caldo Gambian Cuisine
Caldo Gambian Cuisine

2Caldo

Caldo is a lemon flavored steamed whole fish dish, a variation of Yassa. Jorto or sompat are usually used.

Domoda Gambian Cuisine
Domoda Gambian Cuisine

3Domoda

Domoda, a Mandinka dish made with concentrated peanut paste (groundnuts), meat or fish seasoned with salt, small medium onion, fresh tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, medium cabbage, water, tomato paste, lemon juice, soup stock, and white rice. Domo means eating and Dait the word for a stew pot.

Mbahal Gambian Cuisine
Mbahal Gambian Cuisine

4Mbahal

Mbahal a smoked and salted fish dish prepared with groundnuts, locust bean or black-eyed beans, spring onion, fresh chilies, white rice, and bitter tomato or Jattoo.

Nyambeh Nyebbeh Gambian Cuisine
Nyambeh Nyebbeh Gambian Cuisine

5Nyambeh Nyebbeh

Nyambeh Nyebbeh, a cassava and bean dish made with oils, onion, chili, soup stock, salt, pepper water and fried snapper.

Pepper Soup Gambian Cuisine
Pepper Soup Gambian Cuisine

6Peppersoup

Peppersoup, a spicy fish stew and cow leg or foot stew.

Yassa Gambian Cuisine
Yassa Gambian Cuisine

7Yassa

Yassa is a lemon whole chicken or fish dish made with salt, pepper, onion, clove, garlic, mustard, chili sauce, lime juice, rice and water (if making it with chicken).

Fish Balls Gambian Cuisine
Fish Balls Gambian Cuisine

8Fish balls

Fish balls made with ground bonga, onion, tomato, breadcrumbs, parsley, black pepper, oil, soup stock, tomato paste, chilis and white rice.

Jollof Rica Gambian Cuisine
Jollof Rica Gambian Cuisine

9Jollof rice

Jollof rice, known as ‘Benachin’ in the Wolof language, it is made with rice, onion, tomato and red pepper and seasoned with ingredients such as nutmeg, ginger root, Scotch bonnet, cumin and chili peppers. It can include meat, fish and vegetables.

Maafe Gambian Cuisine
Maafe Gambian Cuisine

10Maafe

Maafe, a peanut stew.

Oyster Stew Gambian Cuisine
Oyster Stew Gambian Cuisine

11Oyster stew

Oyster stew, a stew made with oysters.

Thiakry Gambian Cuisine
Thiakry Gambian Cuisine

12Thiakry

Thiakry, a sweet dish made from couscous (wheat or millet), milk (or sweetened condensed milk or yogurt), and spices. Chakery is a couscous pudding.