Rwandan Banana Beignets

This week’s AFN Country Series features the delicious Rwandan Banana Beignets, locally known as “Akabenz.”

These tasty delights are a mouthwatering treat that holds a special place in Rwanda’s rich culinary heritage. The Rwandan Beignets offers a unique fusion of sweet and savory flavors, making them a favorite snack for locals and visitors alike.

The key ingredient that sets Rwandan Banana Beignets apart is the indigenous banana variety used in their preparation. Known as “Igisahira,” these bananas are smaller and sweeter than the typical ones found in many regions. Their distinctive taste provides the beignets with a natural sweetness, allowing them to stand out from other fried delicacies.

AFN Country Series: Rwandan Banana Beignets
Rwandan Banana Beignets

The preparation process of Rwandan Banana Beignets is a labor of love. Ripe Igisahira bananas are mashed into a smooth paste, creating the base for the beignet batter. A hint of spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg is often added to enhance the flavor profile. The batter is then shaped into small, round discs and carefully dropped into hot oil, where they sizzle to golden perfection. The result is a delightful blend of crispy exterior and soft, sweet interior that instantly captivates the senses.

Served hot, Rwandan Banana Beignets are often enjoyed as a quick snack on the go or shared during social gatherings and family celebrations. Their popularity extends to local markets and street food stalls, where vendors skillfully fry batches of these delectable treats, spreading their tantalizing aroma throughout the air.

Beyond their delightful taste, Rwandan Banana Beignets carry cultural significance. They reflect the country’s agricultural abundance and the deep-rooted connection between Rwandans and their land. The use of local ingredients underscores the importance of sustainability and preserving traditional farming practices.

AFN Country Series: Rwandan Banana Beignets
Rwandan Banana Beignets -image credit immaculatebites

For those curious about exploring Rwandan cuisine, indulging in Banana Beignets is a must. The experience is not only a delightful culinary journey but also an opportunity to appreciate the country’s vibrant food culture and the heartwarming hospitality of its people.

So, if you ever find yourself in this beautiful East African nation, don’t miss the chance to savor this beloved treat and immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of Rwandan flavors and traditions.

But for now, here’s a simple recipe you can make yourself at home.

AFN Country Series: Rwandan Banana Beignets

Rwandan Banana Beignets

Avatar photoLaila Yetunde
Savory Recipe For Your Rwandan Banana Beignets
Prep Time 50 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Course Breakfast, Dessert, Sides, Snacks
Cuisine Rwandan


  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Powdered sugar, for dusting (optional)
  • Pinch of salt


  • Peel the ripe bananas and mash them in a mixing bowl until smooth
    2 ripe bananas
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and a pinch of salt
    1 cup all-purpose flour, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, Pinch of salt
  • Add the mashed bananas, milk, and vanilla extract to the dry ingredients.Stir until you have a smooth, thick batter
    1/2 cup milk, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Heat vegetable oil in a deep frying pan over medium-high heat.
    Vegetable oil, for frying
  • Using a spoon or your hands, drop small portions of the batter into the hot oil, making sure not to overcrowd the pan.
  • Fry the banana beignets until they turn golden brown on both sides, usually taking about 2 minutes per side.
  • Once cooked, remove the beignets from the oil and place them on a paper towel-lined plate to drain excess oil
  • Optionally, dust the beignets with powdered sugar before serving
    Powdered sugar, for dusting (optional)
  • Enjoy these delicious Rwandan Banana Beignets as a delightful dessert or snack!


This recipe is inspired by Rwandan cuisine and is part of the AFN Country Series of the Week. Enjoy exploring different flavors from around the world!
Keyword Rwandan Banana Beignets
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