African Fufu Recipe (Only 3 ingredients!) (2024)

Home Side Dish

Published by Izzy

on Nov 14, 2023

5 from 3 votes

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Are you ready to discover one of the most popular “swallow foods” in West Africa? Fufu is a smooth, stretchy, and filling side dish made with cassava and plantains. It’s easy to make with only 3 basic ingredients and optional seasonings! Serve it with Egusi Soup, Ogbono Soup, or other stews or sauces for a comforting meal!

Bonus! Learn to make it ahead for freezing and reheating so that you’ll always have a delicious side dish ready!

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What do I ❤️ most about fufu?

  • Only 3 basic ingredients: cassava, plantains, and water. You can add optional salt and pepper if you like.
  • The smooth and stretchy texture with a subtle sweetness! It doesn’t require chewing and is so easy to swallow.
  • Freeze well so that you can enjoy it anytime!

I can’t say I’ve ever been to Africa. Nor can I say I’ve eaten at many authentic African restaurants, but I’ve had fufu several times during my trips to the Caribbean countries. I have to admit: I like it even more than mashed potatoes.

There are many ways to make fufu: West African style, East African style, the type of starchy vegetables you use, how long to boil them, and whether you pound them using the traditional technique or with a food processor!

I’ve included all of my secrets for making the BEST fufu every time!

Watch Fufu Recipe Video

Fufu: a “swallow food”

Also called foofoo or foufou, fufu is made with starchy vegetables like plantains, yam, and cassava (or yuca). They are boiled, pounded, and then shaped into round balls. It originated in Ghana and has become a popular dish in many African and Caribbean countries.

Fufu is a famous Swallow food in West Africa where the food is swallowed without chewing. Because the texture is so smooth and pliable, you can let it slide down your throat!

The traditional process of making fufu is difficult as it mixes and pounds separate equal portions of cassava and green plantains thoroughly with water. I’ve created a much easier recipe – simply boil the cassava and plantains, blend them with a food processor or blender, then shape them into small balls.

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Make the perfect fufu with 3 basic ingredients!

Cut, boil, and blend. That’s it! You’ll only need plantains, cassava, water, and optional salt and pepper. Check the complete recipe with measurements at the bottom of this post, but here is an overview of how it goes:

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First, cut plantains and cassava. I recommend using slightly ripe plantains.

  • The traditional fufu recipe uses green unripe plantains, but I like the texture of fufu made with plantains that are not completely green. The slightly ripe plantains also add a nice and slight sweetness to the dish. Avoid ripe or over-ripe plantains with many patches of black pots.
  • Peel the skin of plantains and cut it into chunks with similar thickness. This allows them to cook evenly.
  • Peel the skin of cassava and cut it into chunks.
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Next, boil. In a large saucepan or pot add water and bring it to boil. Add cassava and plantain pieces, and boil them for about 15-20 minutes until they’re tender and soft.Drain and shake to remove excess water.

Tip: How do I know when they are done cooking? These starchy vegetables are ready when you can easily pierce them with a fork. Test the cassava and plantain after 15 minutes of boiling. If they’re still firm in the center, you’ll end up with lumpy fufu! Remove from heat when they’re soft.

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Finally, blend. Pulse to blend, and add water GRADUALLY until it’s nice and smooth without any chunks. It’s important to add only a small amount of water each time. Too much water will make your fufu too soft.

Tip: Don’t over-blend. Plantains and cassava release starch every time they’re blended. Too much blending can lead to gluey and gummy consistency.

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Season with optional salt and pepper to taste. Stir until the mixture becomes thick and smooth. Enjoy! 😋

If you want to shape it perfectly like the ones in the photo, you can use plastic wraps when shaping the fufu as it’s very sticky. This also helps to retain moisture and prevent your fufu from drying out.

Eating fufu with hands like locals

Fufu tastes the best when it’s freshly made. I like to serve it hot. Traditionally, African people eat fufu by pinching some of the fufu off with fingers and forming it into a bite-sized round ball with palms. Dip it into a soup and use the fufu to scoop up a portion of the soup. Put everything in your mouth and SWALLOW! Yes, just swallow down your throat, WITHOUT chewing!

Of course, if you are making it at home with your family, feel free to use a spoon or fork, just like the way you eat mashed potatoes.

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How to store fufu

Let it cool to room temperature and wrap it with plastic wrap to keep it moist.They keep well in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

To reheat, you have a few options:

  • In the microwave: Microwave in 1-minute intervals until heated through.
  • On the stove: Cook it in a skillet over medium heat for about 10 minutes.
  • In the oven: Warm in a 350°F oven for about 25 minutes.

Make it ahead and freeze it in individual portions

I like to cook a large batch of fufu and freeze it in small portions. You’ll have a delicious side dish any time!

  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and scoop 1-cup portion sizes onto the sheet.
  • Flash freeze for 1 hour, and then transfer to a freezer-friendly Ziploc bag. It’ll last up to 3 months in the freezer.
  • To reheat, let frozen fufu thaw in the fridge overnight. Then reheat according to the instructions above.

How to make fermented fufu

This recipe also works for fermented fufu. The only extra step is to soak the peeled and cut cassava for 3-4 days at room temperature. Follow the recipe below for the rest of the process.

More Delicious African and Caribbean Foods

  • Nigerian Jollof Rice
  • Puerto Rican Rice and Beans
  • Mofongo
  • Favorite African Foods

If you’ve tried this fufu recipe, leave a review below. I love hearing your feedback!

African Fufu Recipe (Only 3 ingredients!) (10)

5 from 3 votes

Easy Fufu Recipe

By: Izzy

This easy fufu recipe is made with 3 ingredients and optional salt and pepper. Simply boil cassava and plantains first, and then blend them into a dough-like consistency. Finally, it’s shaped into small balls and served with soup, stew, or sauce. Ready in 25 minutes! So filling and delicious!

Prep: 5 minutes mins

Cook: 15 minutes mins

Total: 25 minutes mins

Servings: 8 balls

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  • 1 pound cassava, (I used 1 cassava for this recipe)
  • 1 pound plantains*, It’s best to use the plantains that are not completely ripe. I used 2 plantains for this recipe
  • water
  • salt and pepper, to taste


  • Rinse the cassava and plantains with cold water. Peel the skin and cut them into chunks.

  • In a saucepan add water and bring it to boil.

  • Add cassava and plantain pieces, and boil them for about 15-20 minutes until they’re soft. Test by piercing with a fork after 15 minutes. If they are tender and break easily, they are ready.

  • Transfer the pieces to a food processor or blender using a slotted spoon.

  • Pulse to blend, adding water GRADUALLY, until it reaches your desired consistency. It’s important to add small amount of water each time.

  • Transfer the mixture into a bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Mix until the fufu is thick and smooth.

  • Place a piece of plastic wrap on the counter, and take about 2 spoons of the mixture to the middle of the wrap. Shape it into balls. Repeat with the rest of the dough. You’ll get about 8-10 fufu balls. Serve them with stew or soup.



  • * The traditional fufu recipe uses green plantains, but I recommend using the slightly ripe ones. It will produce a more creamy texture and slight sweetness.
  • Store the individually wrapped fufu in the refrigerator and they’ll last for about 4 days.


Calories: 160kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 10mg | Potassium: 437mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 646IU | Vitamin C: 22mg | Calcium: 11mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate only and will vary based on ingredient brands and cooking methods used.

Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!

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About Izzy

I'm Izzy, a food lover and photographer. Here you’ll find a collection of simple recipes that are perfect for busy people. My blog aims to help you make and enjoy delicious and healthy food at home.

Read More About Me

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