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West African Peanut Stew

Recipe Details

Servings: 6
Prepping Time: 30 Min
Cooking Time: 1 Hour


2 tablespoons peanut oil

1 red onion, chopped

2 tablespoons chopped fresh ginger

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 pound chicken, cut into
chunks (Optional)

1 tablespoon crushed red
pepper, or to taste

Salt and ground black
pepper to taste

5 cups chicken stock

3 small sweet potatoes,
cut into chunks

1 (16 ounce) can chopped
tomatoes, with liquid

1 cup chunky peanut

¼ pound collard greens,
roughly chopped

Other optional veggies,
sautéed okra, sweet
potatoes, daikon radish,
carrot, yellow peppers


  1.  Heat peanut oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Cook and stir onion, ginger, and garlic in hot oil until onion is softened, about 5 minutes.
  2.  Add chicken; cook and stir until thoroughly browned —season with crushed red pepper, salt, and black pepper.
  3.  Pour in chicken stock. Stir in sweet potatoes (and any other veggies that need to soften); bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover the pot partially with a lid, and cook at a simmer for 15 minutes. 
  4.  Stir in tomatoes, peanut butter, and collard greens. Partially cover the pot and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until greens are tender, about 20 more minutes.

Hi, I’m Luke, and I’m blessed to serve with the Operations team at WorldServe International. This role takes me all over the continent of Africa, and my greatest joy is connecting with our teams on the ground in each country where we work and seeing the incredible work they do!  

My parents were missionaries in West Africa – Senegal and Togo – for 33 years, and I was fortunate to spend most of my childhood on the continent. In my free time, you’ll probably catch me listening to Afrobeats at the beach or playing soccer with friends.

This is one of my lifelong favorite recipes, it takes me straight back to my childhood whenever I get the chance to have it. Peanut Stew is popular all around West Africa (including Nigeria, where WorldServe is working now!). Since I grew up in both Senegal and Togo, we probably had this meal about once a week.  

I feel like this encapsulates the West African region perfectly – full of flavor and spice (if you like spice!). In Senegal, this dish is called Mafé – served over rice and typically in a large communal dish or bowl where your whole family or group of friends would sit around and eat together. For me, the best part of good food is sharing it with great company.

You can customize this recipe how you like – while it’s typically made with either chicken or beef, it’s easy to make a vegetarian version. If you’re feeling extra creative, roast or fry some plantains on the side – you won’t regret it. 

If you’re looking for something to watch after your meal, watch the documentary The Great Green Wall – which discusses the challenges and successes in revitalizing the Sahel and desert areas stretching east to west across Africa. Our efforts to provide clean water go hand in hand with these tree-planting and agricultural initiatives – we work in some of the driest and water-scarce places on the continent. What a joy it is to provide these communities with clean water!

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