Achu Soup (Yellow Soup)

Achu soup is a unique cuisine. Everyone, including those who are ill or recovering from an illness as well as those who are hungover, has reported that it increases their appetite. It functions miraculously! To get it rolling in a flash, you need the precise approach. hungover

This dish is very tantalizing and it stands out due to its unique nature.

Origin of Achu Soup

Achu is the traditional meal of several villages in the North West region of Cameroon. It is the specialty of the Bamenda.

It is also widely eaten by the Bamilekes in the western region of the country. However, even people who hail from other regions of the country still enjoy eating achu since it’s very delicious.

It was said that some years back in a traditional setting, families gathered together to eat achu on leaves placed on the floor which symbolizes the spirit of unity in those families.

Modernization has changed the traditional eating method of achu. Today achu and yellow soup are rarely eaten on leaves not to mention in a group on the floor.

Many people prefer to dish out their share of achu and eat with their fingers. Achu is not a dish that you will enjoy eating with a spoon or fork, so many people enjoy eating it with their fingers.

Achu is a dish that is always present on occasions like celebrations, ceremonies, sacrificial moments, and traditional rights in the villages.

Many people enjoy it with a traditional roasted chicken called ‘kahti- kahti’ which is also a very traditional chicken roast.

Achu Soup Recipe

The meal starts with some nicely boiled cocoyams (taro), which are then pounded into the Achu fufu (a whitish paste).

The pounded cocoyam is eaten with either a black soup made with cocoyam leaves (and sometimes groundnuts/peanuts) or a yellow soup.

It is mostly eaten with the yellow soup which is made up of “kanwa” (limestone), palm oil, and a special blend of spices.

In the absence of kanwa, you can use baking soda because it has a component that is also present in the limestone. Science-inclined people will understand this better.

There has been an argument that kanwa is not good for health. So many people resort to making an alternative to kanwa called “Nikki”. It is achieved by burning peels of plantains for a long time to achieve an ash-looking substance.

Making this achu soup is quite easy. You simply combine some beef stock with all the ingredients and mix until everything is well incorporated.

The achu soup is not “cooked” on heat but rather “mixed.” Traditionally, it is mixed to perfection by pouring the soup from one pan to another over and over. Or by scooping the soup with a bowl and pouring back into the pot until it is well mixed.

Well mixed here means the stock must not separate from the oil. They have to marry and be one happy family. They must be one and indivisible.

Achu soup is flavorful, flavorful, and hot if pepper is added. It is light and has strong ethnic flavor.  This dish is so delicious that you could  lick your fingers. 
No need for cutlery here. Simply wash your hands and get started!

How to Serve Achu Soup

It is served in a very special way. A mound is formed on the plate with the pounded cocoyams then a hole is bored in the middle of the mound.

That hole is where the soup is poured in. Achu is figuratively called, “one finger around the world” because you eat it by moving your finger around the pounded cocoyam mound and dipping it into the soup.

Be Sure to Try These Other Cameroon Dishes!

Be sure to recreate this incredible delicacy. Enjoy your Achu Soup!

Achu Soup (Yellow Soup)

Achu Soup (Yellow Soup) – gloriously yellow, delicate soup prepared mostly in Cameroonian home cooking and fairly common in the Western and North West province. It is always paired with mashed/pounded achu coco (taro).
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Course Soup
Cuisine Cameroonian
Servings 1


  • 500 g Meat beef tripe, cow skin
  • 2 kg Coco Yams Taro
  • 67 cups Water
  • 1 tsp bouillon powder or maggie
  • 1 tbsp ground limestone
  • 2 tbsp Achu Spices
  • ½ cup warm red palm oil
  • 1 hot pepper Habenero
  • Salt to taste


  • In medium –sized saucepan boil meat, season with salt, hot pepper, and Maggie until tender (approximately 30-60 minutes depending on the choice of meat). You can shorten this process in half by using a pressure cooker. Reserve the stock (preferably 6 cups or more).
  • Boil the cow skin and tripe together or you may do so separately until tender. Remove cow skin, tripe. Set aside.
  • Let the stock come to room temperature before using.
  • While meat is boiling grind limestone and warm
  • In a blender, pulse stock, limestone, oil and achu spice, until all the ingredients have been fully incorporated and it has turned into yellowish color.
  • Adjust salt and Maggie according to taste.
  • Voila achu soup- you may add the meat at the point or serve with meat on the side.


The side dish is “taro”. You can buy taro here on Afrosmartshop.
Achu spice can also be found/bought here.
Most spices cannot be identified individually by name. They are always grouped together - sold as Achu spice.
A little smoked fish adds another dimension to this dish.
The key to good achu soup is the right combination of kanwan and oil (when the soup separates, add a little kanwan and pulse again.
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Blessing Funmilayo Ogunsanya
Hello, my name is Funmilayo, and i love to write about food, beauty, fashion and wellness. So welcome to my Food world! I share histories, discoveries, uniqueness, tips, and tricks on different dishes .Come let's take this adventure together. I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I do and hope to see you back here again soon.

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