How to prepare Gbegiri Soup (Abula)

Effizzie Magazine Saturday Delicacy




Gbegiri soup is a type of Nigerian soup popularly eaten by the Yoruba tribe of Nigeria. It is made from peeled cooked bean. This beans soup is commonly served at restaurants also known as Buka. It is delicious, velvety and mildly flavoured. Gbegiri or abula as often called is served with ewedu and buka stew.


I’m starting this month’s post with my gran’s (Iya Dele) staple, Gbegiri soup popularly called abula in some other part of Yoruba land in Nigeria. My grandma used to sell gbegiri (abula) and I remember people queuing up every evening to buy from her, she usually serves her gbegiri with Tuwo (corn flour). She prided herself in using fresh ingredients; my best part of the soup is the bone marrow and biscuit-bone that she uses.

Those things are out of this world. I can actually taste the soup in my mouth as I’m typing this… longer throat me, I know. Gbegiri is made from beans, delicious, and easy to make but since I moved to the UK, I have found another easiest way of making it.

Gbegiri involves using peeled beans, cooking it for some minutes and then using a hand broom to smoothen it, well, I am happy to tell that the world has evolved since yesterday. You can now make this delicious soup with unpeeled beans and thanks to the blender or food processor, your hands can rest.

I would have to apologise to grandma, as I cheated a lot in making this soup but hey, this is 2015 (recipe update in 2020)! We have to learn to embrace change. This method did not change the taste at all.


  • I pressure cooked my peeled beans using a pressure cooker
  • Substituted fresh pepper with cayenne pepper
  • I blended my beans with a blender instead of sieving…shhh! my grandma and mama use ijabe (cooking chopping broom. lol) Not sure of the English word for it. You can still cook gbegiri without a blender.


black-eyed peas or brown beans, peeled

Cayenne pepper, this is where I cheated, my grandma uses fresh pepper for hers.

palm oil

Ground crayfish

Seasoning (stock cubes)


Assorted beef (I used turkey neck, shaki and smoked snort) boiled with seasoning and salt. No curry and thyme, please. This is optional as this soup is mostly cooked plain.


soak beans in water for 3-5 minutes and peel to remove the skin. leave the skin on if you choose. Alternatively use the blender to peel the beans. it is faster and less stressful

Boil peeled beans with enough water until soft alternatively, use a pressure cooker for this bit as it is quicker


Boil assorted meat till tender with seasoning and salt. Separate stock from meat and set aside

Blend cooked beans in a blender for a smooth puree and set aside (I love this bit as you can see the silkiness of the beans)

Place a cooking pan on medium heat, add palm oil and heat for about 3 minutes (don’t bleach oil)

Stir puréed beans in palm oil (beans purée should not be loose but somewhere in the middle of loose and thick) Add water if needed to achieve the desired thickness

Add assorted beef and cayenne pepper, stir till well combined. Reduce the heat and leave to cook for about 10 minutes. Check-in between to avoid soup from burning

Add crayfish, seasoning and salt. At this point don’t want the soup to be thick, add water if need be but don’t overdo it.

Continue to cook until all ingredients are well combined. Check for seasoning and salt. Serve with ewedu soup, swallow of choice like amala dudu (black yam flour), garri or Tuwo and buka stew

Write up Culled from My Active Kitchen site (kudos to them)

Youtube video culled from Ngor Kitchen site

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