Experience yams like never before with an easy, delicious, and hearty Yam Porridge recipe!
Once you taste it, you’ll discover why it’s a crowd-favorite in Nigeria. Unlike other porridge recipes, it’s complete with sweet potatoes and plantains for the best flavor.
It’s certainly an upgraded recipe that everyone would want to taste. Every bite is a burst of flavor that’s sweet, starchy, savory, smoky, and incredibly satisfying.
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Make everyone feel the comfort of home-cooked food with porridge recipes. Start with the Yam Porridge to give everyone the best dining experience!
How to Make Yam Porridge
There are many ways to cook yams, and the Yam Porridge is a must-try for every home. It will make your guests feel welcome for an awesome bonding time together.
Let me tell you how to cook Yam Porridge like it came straight from Nigeria!
These are all you need to cook Yam Porridge:
Can you really turn yam into porridge? Of course!
Yam has a rich, earthy, and mildly sweet flavor. Indeed, it’s easy to prepare, and you can fry, roast, or boil it to unleash its taste. It has brown skin, but the flesh can be white, pink, purple, or yellow.
Once you cook it, you will taste how starchy it is and how tender it is. Everyone will surely love how thick and creamy it is at every spoonful.
What better fruit can you pair with yams than the plantain?
Plantains are sweet and starchy fruits that you should cook before you can enjoy. Use ripe plantains to get a taste of how delightful it is with the yams.
Once you cook it into the dish, it will have a soft, chewy, and tender texture that makes it great for a porridge recipe. They will certainly make the dish taste so much better.
Is the Yam Porridge even complete without sweet potatoes?
Like plantains and yams, sweet potatoes are starchy and sweet. When you cook it, it can become soft, crispy, or even caramelized, depending on how you prepare it.
Its texture and flavor truly go well with other starchy fruits and veggies. You will love how it makes the porridge taste better and richer.
It might sound odd to add fish to a porridge recipe, but trust me; it will be the best. The flesh is also juicy and moist and blends perfectly with the other ingredients.
You can’t forget about the leafy greens. In this recipe, I suggest using baby spinach for its tender, creamy, and sweet quality. It also adds a pop of color to the porridge.
Check out my spinach storage hack to make spinach last longer!
Red bell pepper
When you feel like there’s something missing in the Yam Porridge, it might be the red bell pepper. It has a sweet and citrusy flavor with a fragrant aroma when cooked.
Give the dish an enriched flavor with some sweet pepper. It pairs well with the red bell pepper giving the dish a saccharine and subtle flavor.
If you want to take a break from sweet food, then add a scotch bonnet for some spice to the porridge. Try my scotch bonnet storage hack to have it in stock all the time!
Every bite of the Yam Porridge is tasted with red onion. Its spicy and pepper flavor makes it perfect for a savory porridge. Even its aroma can improve the overall dish!
Use palm oil to neutralize the sweet and earthy flavors of the dish. It also makes the porridge recipe smell fresh and fragrant.
For the seasoning, all you need are chicken cubes or all-purpose seasoning and sea salt to season it. These will surely make a difference in the dish.
Add all of these to your grocery list, and you can make the Yam Porridge at home with ease. Indeed, these are the secrets to a world-class Nigerian porridge recipe!
Use these steps as your guide to cooking Yam Porridge:
Fruits and vegetables
- Peel and slice the yams, sweet potatoes, and plantains into big pieces.
- Rinse the yam and sweet potatoes in a bowl of water.
- Transfer them into bowls.
- Clean, rinse, and slice the mackerel into four pieces.
- Place it in a pot and cook over medium heat.
- Then, season it with salt, stock cubes, and mixed herbs.
- Next, add water and cook for five to seven minutes.
- Set the stock aside for later use.
- Once cooled, debone and break the mackerel into chunks.
- Rinse the red bell pepper, sweet pepper, scotch bonnet, and red onion.
- Then, slice the ingredients using a knife.
- Puree them in a blender until smooth.
- Mix the sweet potatoes, plantain, yam, onion, and pepper sauce in a pot.
- Pour a cup of water into the blender and rinse it out.
- Add the mackerel liquid stock.
- Cover it with a lid.
- Allow it to cook over medium heat for 20 minutes.
- Add the palm oil, chicken stock cubes, and sea salt, and stir.
- Let it cook for another 10 minutes over low heat.
- Then, add the chopped baby spinach.
- Add chunks of the deboned mackerel or any other topping you prefer.
- Cover it with a lid and cook for two more minutes.
- Once content with the flavor, pour the porridge into a glass dish and serve!
Once done, experience the richness, fragrance, and flavor of the Yam Porridge recipe! It has the texture, the taste, and the nutrients!
- The yams should feel firm to the touch and without bruises or cracks.
- Store yam in a cool and dry area for up to three weeks.
- To refrigerate or freeze, it is best to cook or boil them, but you can also store them raw.
- Put them in resealable bags to preserve them.
- You can purchase unripe green plantains, then let them ripen over time.
- For ripe plantains, choose the ones that are yellow and black.
- It should yield slight pressure.
- Let the unripe ones ripen within two weeks.
- You can refrigerate or freeze peeled and sliced ripe plantains to extend their shelf life to several days.
Buying sweet potatoes
- Opt for medium-sized sweet potatoes with healthy-looking skin and without bruises and soft spots.
Storing sweet potatoes
- Store the sweet potatoes in dry areas in your pantry, then, use them within a week.
Buying baby spinach
- Pick spinach with a dark green color, fresh scent, and crunchy texture.
- Moreover, avoid bunches with wilted baby spinach.
- For packaged ones, always check the expiration date.
Storing baby spinach
- Do not wash the baby spinach before refrigerating.
- Store them in plastic bags and use them within four days.
Peppers and scotch bonnet
Buying peppers and scotch bonnet
- It is best to select vibrantly colored and firm-skinned peppers.
- The stems should still be attached, and the bell pepper should feel heavy for its size.
Storing peppers and scotch bonnet
- Store them in resealable plastic bags to extend shelf life to up to a week.
Buying red onion
- Go for red onions with a firm and unbruised texture.
- Also, avoid ones with soft spots and discoloration.
Storing red onion
- Store the onions in cool areas.
- For sliced onions, preserve them in containers for several weeks.
Cook the mackerel at least two hours before you add them to the Yam Porridge.
Yam Porridge Variations
You might be surprised at how many versions of the Yam Porridge you can make at home.
Make it a vegetarian porridge recipe by omitting mackerel from the recipe. You can also use a bit of vegetable broth, ginger, mushrooms, cauliflower, coriander leaves, or scallions.
Instead of using mackerel, you can try to add chicken, beef, tofu, or other kinds of fish for a savory flavor. Try to season it with other herbs and spices that you want to taste in the dish.
- Pot: Cook the Yam Porridge in a large and deep pot.
- Blender: Make the pepper sauce in a blender.
- Knife: Peel and slice everything with a knife.
- Wooden spatula: Stir the porridge using a wooden spatula.
- Glass bowls: Put the vegetables in glass bowls.
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How to Serve Yam Porridge
You will surely feel proud to serve the Yam Porridge to your family and friends. It’s going to give all of your guests a wonder dining time, especially for lunch or dinner.
This dish is best served with dishes such as:
- At room temperature: Eat the Yam Porridge within two hours.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is yam porridge made of?
There are different versions of the Yam Porridge. In the classic Nigerian version, you need yams, plantains, sweet potatoes, mackerel, pepper sauce, baby spinach, and spices.
Is it yam porridge or yam pottage?
You can use yam porridge and yam pottage interchangeably. Actually, the words “porridge” and “pottage” are both used in Nigerian delicacies like Yam Porridge.
How do you thicken yam porridge?
The Yam Porridge is naturally thick because of the yams, plantains, and sweet potatoes. Since they are starchy, they add flavor, aroma, and a thick texture to truly make it a porridge.
What are the nutrients in yam porridge?
Yams have the combined nutrients of yams, sweet potatoes, and plantains. There are also vitamins and minerals you can get from the pepper sauce, mackerel, and baby spinach.
Delicious Yam Porridge (VIDEO)
For the sauce
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 sweet pepper
- 1 scotch bonnet (optional)
- ½ red onion (medium-sized)
For the porridge
- 1 puna yam (medium-sized)
- 1 ripe plantain (medium-sized)
- 2 sweet potatoes (medium-sized)
- 10 cups baby spinach
- 1 mackerel (boiled or smoked)
- 1 cup mackerel liquid stock
- ½ cup palm oil (or sunflower oil)
- 2 cubes chicken stock
- 1 tsp sea salt
- Prepare the ingredients. Peel and slice the yam into big pieces. Submerge them in a bowl of water. Do the same for the sweet potatoes. Peel and cut the plantains. Transfer them into bowls.
- Cook the mackerel. Clean, rinse, and slice the mackerel into 4 pieces. Place it in a pot and cook over medium heat. Season it with salt, stock cubes, and mixed herbs. Add water and cook for 5 to 7 minutes. Set the stock aside for later use. Once cooled, debone and break the mackerel into chunks.
- Make the pepper sauce. Rinse, slice, and blend the red bell pepper, sweet pepper, scotch bonnet, and red onion until smooth. Set this aside.
- Cook the porridge.In a pot, combine the carrots, plantain, yam, onion, and pepper sauce. Pour a cup of water into the blender and rinse it out. Add the mackerel liquid stock or any other stock of your choice. Cover it with a lid. Allow it to cook over medium heat for 20 minutes. Add the palm oil, chicken stock cubes, and sea salt, and stir gently. Let it cook for another 10 to minutes over low heat. Then, incorporate the chopped baby spinach, depending on your preferred quantity. Add chunks of the deboned mackerel or any other topping you prefer. Cover it with a lid and cook for 2 more minutes.Serve with any stew of your choice for added taste!
- Serve this with stew to balance the flavors.
- Purchase and store quality fresh ingredients for an aromatic and healthy dish.