African Peanut Stew with Kale

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This African peanut stew with kale is a one-pot meal that’s naturally vegan and incredibly flavourful. The peanut stew is super easy to make for a comforting dinner that’ll please the entire family.

Photo of a bowl of African stew with peanuts on the side

Peanut stew is a popular dish in many countries in West Africa, and there are lots of variations of it, with maafe being one of the most popular. Maafe is a stew that originated in Mali, but it’s also prepared in Nigeria, Senegal, Mauritania and other West African countries.

While there are dozens of variations of African stew out there, the common denominator is a naturally creamy and rich sauce made with peanut butter. African stew is often made with chicken or beef, but this is a vegan African peanut stew that’s so flavourful you’re not going to miss the meat even one bit.

What ingredients go in this vegan stew?

This is basically a vegan sweet potato stew made extra flavourful by adding fresh garlic, ginger, cumin and red chilli flakes. What I love about this stew is that you can make it as fiery as you want. If you really like to feel the burn, you can add half of a jalapeño too.

Closeup photo of a bowl of stew

Many African stew recipes call for collard greens, but I like it much better with kale. Feel free to use any leafy greens you want in this stew, with spinach being another option. If you use fresh spinach, you’ll only need to cook it for 1-2 minutes, as it wilts so much quicker than kale.

How do you make African sweet potato stew?

To make this vegan peanut stew, start by frying the onion, garlic and ginger in a bit of groundnut oil. Add the spices and cook until they’re fragrant, then add the tomato paste, sweet potato, peanut butter, and stock.

step by step process photos

Simmer for about 15 minutes or until the sweet potatoes are fork-tender, then add the chopped kale and simmer for another 5 minutes until it wilts.

And that’s it. This is a super easy one-pot vegan recipe that you can easily make even on a busy weeknight.

How do you serve it?

Serve the African stew with white rice, brown rice or quinoa. I like to top it off with some chopped peanuts for some very welcomed crunchiness. If you want, you can also serve it with some coriander on top.

The stew tastes great when reheated, so you can have leftovers for lunch. It keeps well in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Image of a bowl African peanut stew

Recipe notes & tips

  • You can play a bit with the spices to make this vegan stew your own. Ideas include ground coriander, cayenne pepper, bay leaves, ground turmeric or ground fenugreek.
  • Feel free to add some other veggies to the stew if you want. Red or green peppers would be a great addition.
  • To make the soup extra creamy, smash some of the sweet potatoes with the back of your spoon before adding the kale.

If you liked this African peanut stew with kale, you might also like some of my other vegan stews:

Tuscan Bean and Barley Stew with Kale

Spanish Chickpea and Sweet Potato Stew

Moroccan Aubergine and Chickpea Tagine

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Yield: 4

African Peanut Stew with Kale

image of African food

This African peanut stew with kale is a one-pot meal that's naturally vegan and incredibly flavourful. The peanut stew is super easy to make for a comforting dinner that'll please the entire family.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes


  • 1 tbsp groundnut oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp minced ginger
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1/4 red chilli flakes
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 medium sweet potatoes, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 50 g (1/4 cup) smooth peanut butter
  • 1 litre (4 cups) vegetable stock
  • 100 g (3.5 oz) kale, stems removed and roughly chopped
  • Chopped peanuts, to serve, optional


    1. In a large pan, heat the oil and fry the onion for 2-3 minutes over medium heat until it softens. Add the minced garlic and ginger and continue to fry for 30 seconds until fragrant.
    2. Next, add the cumin and chilli flakes to the pan and cook for another 30 seconds, stirring often.
    3. Stir in the tomato paste and add the sweet potatoes and peanut butter. Cover everything with the stock, bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, then lower the heat. Simmer for 15 minutes with a lid on until the sweet potatoes are fork-tender.
    4. Add the kale and simmer for another 5 minutes until it wilts. Serve with rice and topped with chopped peanuts if you like.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 246Total Fat 13gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 9gCholesterol 6mgSodium 922mgCarbohydrates 27gFiber 4gSugar 9gProtein 8g

Nutritional information is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator.

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