African Chicken Stew is made with tomatoes that are cooked  until the taste is mellow once fried after it has been parboiled. It is so flavourful and perfect served over hot fluffy rice!

I have a thing for tomato-based stews. In  Africa stew is a tomato based dish which is usually cooked with fried chicken, meat and fish.  Rice and Stew is an iconic dish in a lot of West and Central African countries.

Rice and stew is also a great combo with  SWEET FRIED PLANTAIN

There’s just something about that fried tomato stew over hot fluffy rice. This stew is so flavourful with the combination of herbs and spices used.


Here are the ingredients  needed for African Chicken Stew. Be sure to check out the specific measurements of each ingredient.

1. Chicken. Chicken is used to make African chicken stew. The chicken used is tougher than conventional chicken . You can find hard chicken from African or Asian stores. For this recipe i used soft regular American chicken . Just know that which ever chicken you choose to use, the recipe is still the same. Please note if using hard chicken, you will have to boil it for a longer period . Cooking with soft chicken will only require  a shorter time and less water.

2. Tomatoes. Fresh ripe tomatoes are used for African chicken stew. The riper the tomatoes, the tastier the stew. Plum or chopped  Can tomatoes ; can also be used and is usually parboiled prior to cooking stew so as to remove the taste of acid when  making the stew.

3. Oil. Vegetable oil works well with this dish. Feel free to use any other oil of your choice.

4. Onions  for flavour especially red

5. Herbs like basil, celery, spring onions  and parsley add a lot flavour to this stew.

6. Garlic and ginger are two very important ingredients for this dish to  improve the taste of this stew.

7. White pepper goes so well together with chicken . Black pepper too will do put please use only a pinch of it as this can make your stew bitter if too much is used.

8. Maggi seasoning cubes. You can also  substitute them with chicken bouillon powder for this stew dish.

9. Red peppers for flavour and colour


I should note here that another ingredient you could add is habanero or scotch bonnet pepper to make the stew hot. In fact, a lot of Africans love it that way.


However, I omit it because my kids can’t tolerate that level of heat *yet*. However I like making it separate which you can always add to your meal AFRICAN PEPPER SAUCE


Here is a run-down of how to make African chicken stew. Be sure to check out the full recipe below for more detailed directions.

1. Chop chicken into desired pieces. Season the chicken with a seasoning blend made of ginger, garlic and herbs. Add salt, Maggi, white pepper and onions to the chicken.

2. Add water to chicken and cook until done.

3. Drain the chicken and place in the oven to broil.

4. Heat up oil and sauté onions. Add the parboiled  freshly blended tomatoes, red peppers and cook down until water  shrinks. Add  paste mixture  and cook down.

5. Add ginger, garlic and herbs and cook to release their flavour. Add stock from the cooked chicken and curry powder. Add water to desired thickness.

6. Add broiled chicken back to pot and let it simmer in the stew. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

7. Serve African Chicken Stew with white rice, SWEET FRIED PLANTAIN and a salad.

Can I reduce the quantity of oil used?

Yes you can reduce the quantity of oil used but it is important that you start with the one cup of oil to fry the tomatoe base

That’s because you need enough oil to help cook down the tomatoes. Once the stew is done you can then skim off the excess oil with a spoon.

Also, you could make this stew with a healthier oil like avocado oil or light olive oil. Extra virgin olive oil is not ideal because it has a strong taste which might interfere with the flavours in the stew.

Which country in Africa is this recipe from? 

Apart from Cameroon which is my country of origin, Chicken stew is also very popular in  West and Central African countries like Ghana and Nigeria.

I should note here that chicken stew look a lot different in other parts of Africa too like North Africa or South Africa.


  • 10 cloves garlic peeled
  • 2 inches ginger root peeled
  • 6 sprigs parsley
  • 4 sprigs basil
  • 1 stem celery
  • 5 pounds chicken (I used a whole chicken) about 2.5kg, see Note 1
  • 1 large onion (chopped and divided into 3)
  • ½ teaspoon ground white pepper divided
  • 3 teaspoons Maggi seasoning cubes (4g) substitute with three teaspoons chicken bouillon powder (divided)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup vegetable oil or any neutral tasting oil
  • 6 large Roma tomatoes or 8 medium ones (see Note 2)
  • 6 oz tomato paste (170g) substitute with double the quantity of tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder