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Senegalese Chicken Soup | A West African classic soup

A spicy, delicious West African curry & peanut soup. An African classic soup, this one will warm you up on a cold Winters day.

Senegalese Chicken Soup, A West African classic soup

A spicy and delicious curry soup that is not too hot, this is one of our favorites.  We eat this regularly, with a big chunk of crusty bread, so I am very excited to share this with you.

I first read about Senegalese Chicken Soup from an article in TV Guide about the Soup Nazi from Seinfeld.  Remember that guy?  The ingredients looked so appetizing and I was a relatively inexperienced cook back then.  The first attempt while following the recipe exactly, resulted in a soup that was too  spicy to eat.  The taste was phenomenal so many tries later I have the recipe exactly to our liking.  I also simplified a few steps to make it easier than the original recipe.  If you have a stick blender or food processor then ‘This soup is for you!’  If not, that’s OK too:)

Senegalese Chicken Soup, A West African classic soup

A little history of West African cuisine

Senegalese Chicken Soup, A West African classic soup

Senegal is on the western coast of northern Africa with much diversity in its languages and cuisine. While under French colonial rule, many Vietnamese immigrated there during the First Indochina War. The coastal location allows for easy trade routes which has given Senegal easy access to spices and other culinary goodness. The main proteins there are peanuts and seafood. They also have chicken, lamb, beef but not pork. Meat other than seafood is a luxury and is eaten in moderation, the most accessible being chicken. Their other main agricultural products remind me of living in Texas. They have similar climates and grow similar vegetables. Their staples are peas, black-eyed peas, sweet potatoes, lentils, white rice and couscous. Their national dish is called Thieboudienne or Ceebu Jen, ‘The Rice of Fish’. It sounds wonderful and I may have to give it a go sometime. It’s fish that has been marinated with parsley, lemon, garlic, onions (amongst other herbs), and then later cooked with tomato paste and a variety of vegetables such as lettuce, cabbage, and carrots. Rice is later added to the mix giving it a reddish look similar to Spanish Paella.

This soup starts off with some Indian spices, onions and garlic.  I love any excuse to open my Indian spice tin, the aroma that greets me in the face is like a little kiss from the spice angels.  Every time I open this tin I wonder the same thing, ‘Why don’t I cook more indian food?’.  Just like in Indian cooking, after softening the onions, the spices are added to ‘bloom’ them, or really to get them to release their oils.  It makes a difference, giving the dish a bit more depth in the flavor department.

Senegalese Chicken Soup, A West African classic soup
Senegalese Chicken Soup, A West African classic soup

The broth is then added to stop the blooming and to blend the flavors together.  After some simmering the soup base is blended and peanut butter is added which gives a surprising creaminess and nutty flavor.  All the rest of the ingredients are added and some more simmering brings this beautiful soup together.  This is really easy, I hope you give this amazing soup a try.

Senegalese Chicken Soup, A West African classic soup

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Senegalese Chicken Soup, A West African classic soup

Senegalese Chicken Soup | A West African classic soup

Yield: 10 bowls
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes

A rich, authentic curry chicken soup from Western Africa made with curry, peanut butter, chicken and tomatoes. An easy soup the whole family can enjoy!


  • 1 Large onion, diced
  • 4 T Olive oil
  • 2 tsp Garlic, chopped
  • 2 Heaping Tbs curry powder
  • 2 tsp Ground coriander
  • 6 Cups chicken broth
  • 6 oz Can tomato paste
  • 1 Cup of peanut butter
  • 28 oz Can of diced tomatoes
  • 1.5 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite size pieces
  • Garnish: Scallions Chopped peanuts Cilantro


  1. Cook onions in olive oil until soft. Add garlic and cook 2 minutes.
  2. Add curry powder and coriander and fry two more minutes.
  3. Add chicken broth and scrape bottom very well with wooden spoon. Simmer 30 minutes.
  4. Add peanut butter. With stick blender, blend until peanut butter is incorporated and a lot of the onions are pulverized.
  5. Add diced tomatoes, tomato paste and chicken.  Simmer 30 more minutes until chicken is cooked through.
  6. Garnish as desired.


  • If you don't have a stick blender, you can set aside 2 cups of soup, let cool.  Add to blender with the peanut butter, stir back into soup pot.
  • You can also whisk the peanut butter in, this will take awhile before it is incorporated. 
Nutrition Information:
Serving Size: 1.5 cups
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 434Total Fat: 28gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 80mgSodium: 398mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 4gSugar: 6gProtein: 30g

Did you make this recipe?

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Serve with tasty Naan bread!

Easy Indian Naan Bread Recipe, homemade, soft and so delicious! This will be you new favorite bread to make at home, try this at your next family dinner. | Fusion

Bon appetit y’all!

David Lindquist

Tuesday 19th of January 2021

Senegalese soup is my favorite soup of all time. With a hunk of some kind of bread, it' s a great meal.


Wednesday 20th of January 2021

I KNOW!! Glad you love it:). You're right, with a hunk of crusty bread it is very much a meal. Mwhaa!


Tuesday 28th of January 2020

This soup was so nice and creamy! A great twist on a tomato baes soup. And it smelled wonderful while cooking :)


Thursday 30th of January 2020

This is my husbands favorite soup! I'm glad you liked it. I've changed it over the years to make it less spicy and easier to make.


Sunday 20th of January 2019

I LOVE this soup! Can you make this again next time I come over? It has just the right amount of spice. Thanks Mom:)


Monday 14th of January 2019

I highly suggest you top this with a squeeze of lime.


Monday 14th of January 2019

Thomas, I think that would be perfect! Fresh citrus juice is one of my favorite condiments.


Saturday 30th of December 2017

Does the chicken ever get cooked?


Sunday 31st of December 2017

Yes Evert. Good catch. There is a simmering step I missed when I converted to a new recipe card. Just simmer 30 more minutes after adding the tomatoes and chicken, garnish as desired. Enjoy and thank you!

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