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African Peanut Soup Recipe (Vegetarian)

This African Peanut Soup recipe is inspired by the groundnut soup recipes from Western Africa. Creamy peanut butter, veggies, coconut milk and spices create a protein-rich soup with a creamy texture. This fantastic recipe is vegan, gluten-free and can be made ahead for meal-prep.

African peanut soup in a bowl with a spoon

When the last of the summer fades and we’re left with the rainy days of Autumn, my taste buds crave for a comforting bowl of piping hot soup.

This delicious recipe hits the jackpot every time thanks to the fantastic combination of flavors.

I have used the Instant Pot Pressure Cooker but this is a good soup to make in the slow cooker as well.

About African Peanut Soup

This West African Peanut stew bores similarities to the peanut stews enjoyed by West Africans.

Classic groundnut stew recipes are made with meat such as chicken or beef with countries such as Ghana, Nigeria, Sierra Leone and Senegal all having their own variations.

Commonly, the base is pretty much onion, garlic, chillies and veggies include tomatoes and carrots.

This particular soup is vegan and so does not follow the traditional recipe.

You could call this a peanut butter soup recipe as the peanuts are a dominant flavour and definitely make this soup unique compared with other vegetable soups!

Peanuts or groundnuts, originated from South America before finding their way to Africa and the rest of the world.

Why you should make this soup:

This healthy soup is filling and nutritious. Pressure cooking retains more nutrients, makes the soup easy to prepare in less time. It also contains some plant-based protein thanks to the peanut butter.

The ingredients for this hearty soup are basic, are available throughout the year and are fairly budget friendly. This is definitely a win for uni students who have had enough of tinned soup!!!

It is a comforting soup that is wholesome and enriched with deep flavours which you won’t get of tired anytime soon.

Vegan Peanut soup served in a cream colour bowl topped with roasted peanuts

Ingredients:

For this soup, all the ingredients required are very basic and available in your pantry.

Peanut butter – you can use either crunchy or smooth peanut butter but use natural peanut butter where possible. If you do not want to use peanut butter, then almond butter or cashew butter is the next best alternative.

Carrots – they’re available all year round and are inexpensive. If fresh is not available, use frozen or tinned carrots.

Sweet Potatoes – Add some diced sweet potato for flavour and nutrition. Sweet potatoes compared with regular potatoes contain more Vitamin A, C and antioxidants.

Tomato – I have used tinned tomatoes for ease but you can also use fresh. Alternatively, use tomato paste but using actual tomatoes bulks up the soup more and provides fresh flavours.

Onion – I have used white onion but you can use red onion too.

Garlic – Add a few garlic cloves as an immune system booster and add warmth

Red chili paste – to add some spiciness to the soup, if you don’t have it use harissa paste instead. You can alternatively add red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper. If you’re ready for some real spice, use fresh chili peppers such as scotch bonnet peppers or habanero peppers!

Vegetable stock – vegetable broth adds delicious flavours and depth to soup. I prefer to use a veggie stock cube that is dissolved in hot water.

Spices – I have used warm ground spices such as ginger, black pepper, cinnamon and clove. All add their own unique flavours and bit of a kick. As an alternative, you can add a 0.5 inch of fresh ginger in place of the ginger powder.

Coconut milk – it’s vegan, contains good fat and adds creaminess to the soup.

Olive oil – alternatively, use coconut oil, groundnut oil, sunflower oil or avocado oil.

Garnish

Sprinkle over chopped fresh cilantro (coriander) or parsley

A squeeze of lime juice

Crushed peanuts

Optional

Add a red or yellow bell pepper

Stir in spinach, kale or collard greens at the last minute for flavour and bite

For convenience, use a mild curry powder in place of the various ground spices. Note that different curry powders contain different ingredients so will affect the final flavour of your soup.

You can add a pinch of brown sugar as a sweetener, but the sweet potatoes do a pretty good job

Spicy African peanut soup in a bowl topped with freshly chopped parsley

How to make West African Peanut Soup

I have used the Instant Pot but you can also make this recipe on the stove.

Select the Sauté function on the Instant Pot panel. Add oil and onion and garlic, and sauté for a minute or so.

Oil, onion and garlic in the instant pot

Tip in roughly chopped carrots and sweet potato and cook for a minute.

Add the tomatoes, chilli paste and all the ground spices along with the salt.

Add vegetable stock and give it a stir making sure nothing is stuck to the bottom of the pot (prevents Burn Sign). As a rule of thumb, I add enough stock to just cover the ingredients when making soup in the Instant Pot. You can always add more stock once blending to thin it out.

Close the lid and select High Pressure for 8 minutes. Make sure to place the vent on Seal.

Allow for 10 minutes NPR then release any remaining steam.

Spoon in the peanut butter and pour coconut milk.

Using a food processor or immersion blender, blend the soup until smooth. You can alternatively keep in chunky if you want.

Check the seasoning and serve in soup bowls.

Top with crushed peanuts, red chili flakes, and finely chopped parsley or coriander. Squeeze over some lime or lemon juice.

Drizzle some extra coconut milk.

Enjoy with crusty bread or rolls or enjoy on its own.

peanut soup in the bowl

Serving Suggestion

This is a great recipe to serve with crusty bread or rolls such as tiger rolls or Tuscan Tomato and Bread Salad.

You can also treat it as a curry and make a meal of either white rice or brown rice. Quinoa or millet are two other good options.

Storage

This soup can be made ahead for meal prep in a large pot. I think it tastes even better the next day!

Place in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days. You may need to add a splash of water when reheating as it thickens up.

To freeze, once cooled, freeze in portions in freezer safe containers to enjoy next time.

FAQs

I don’t have a pressure cooker, can I make this soup on a stovetop?

Definitely, you can. It will take longer to cook but there will be no compromise on taste or texture.

Is this soup suitable for a gluten-free diet?

Yes, as all the ingredients are naturally gluten-free. Also it is plant-based and dairy-free too.

Can I freeze African Peanut Soup?

Yes, once it is totally cool down, store it in a freeze-proof container, seal it properly and store it in the freezer for up to several weeks.
Whenever you want to have it, remove the container from the freezer, let it thaw on the kitchen worktop, reheat it again, make sure it is piping hot and serve.

How can I thicken the soup?

You can thicken your soup by adding in extra peanut butter. You can also saute for a few minutes to evaporate the excess water. Keep in mind that soup thickens as it cools.

Other Instant Pot Recipes

15 Bean Soup Recipe (Vegan)

Vegan Carrot Ginger Soup with Saffron Vinaigrette

Mulligatawny Soup

Thai Carrot and Cashew Soup

Creamy Broccoli Pear Soup

Goji Berry Soup

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Peanut soup in two bowls next to small peanut bowl

African Peanut Soup Recipe

Hayley Dhanecha
This African peanut soup is prepared with SO-GOOD-FOR-YOU ingredients, it’s vegan, quick and gluten free. It’s hearty and delicious and ticks all the boxes!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Appetizer, Side Dish, Soup
Cuisine African, American, British
Servings 8 servings
Calories 161 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

Soup

  • 6 medium carrots peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 small sweet potatoes peeled and chopped
  • 1 can tomatoes
  • 1 big onion roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 can coconut milk light
  • 2 tablespoon peanut butter
  • salt
  • ½ teaspoon black Pepper
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground clove
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili paste or chilli flakes
  • 4 cup vegetable stock

Toppings optional

  • Red chili flakes
  • Coconut milk
  • Freshly chopped parsley
  • Lightly roasted and crushed peanuts
  • Lime wedges

Instructions
 

  • Press the saute button on your instant pot panel.
  • Add oil and onion, saute the onion for a minute or so.
    1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 big onion
  • Then add roughly chopped carrots and cook for a couple of minutes.
    6 medium carrots
  • Tip in the tomatoes and all the ground spices along with the salt.
    1 can tomatoes, 1/2 teaspoon black Pepper, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon ground clove, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1 teaspoon chili paste, salt
  • Add vegetable stock and give it a stir.
    4 cup vegetable stock
  • Close the lid and set the high pressure for 8 minutes.
  • 10 minutes NPR then release the steam.
  • Add peanut butter and coconut milk.
    1 can coconut milk, 2 tablespoon peanut butter
  • Blend it in the blender or hand blender.
  • Check the seasoning, and serve HOT in a serving bowl.
  • Top it up with crushed peanuts, red chili flakes, and finely chopped parsley.
    Red chili flakes, Freshly chopped parsley, Lightly roasted and crushed peanuts, Lime wedges
  • Drizzle some coconut milk.
    Coconut milk
  • Enjoy with crusty bread or rolls or have it on its own.

Notes

  • If you don’t want to use tinned tomatoes, use fresh tomatoes.
  • Fresh ginger can be used instead of dried ground ginger.
  • Harissa paste can be used instead of chili paste.

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
African Peanut Soup Recipe
Serving Size
 
8
Amount per Serving
Calories
161
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
14
g
22
%
Saturated Fat
 
10
g
63
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
3
g
Sodium
 
526
mg
23
%
Potassium
 
286
mg
8
%
Carbohydrates
 
9
g
3
%
Fiber
 
2
g
8
%
Sugar
 
4
g
4
%
Protein
 
2
g
4
%
Vitamin A
 
7900
IU
158
%
Vitamin C
 
3
mg
4
%
Calcium
 
31
mg
3
%
Iron
 
2
mg
11
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

The nutritional information provided is an approximation calculated by an online calculator/plugin. Please consult a professional dietitian for nutritional advice.

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