Otong Soup

    Otong soup is a traditional Okra soup from the Efik people of Cross River State, South Eastern Nigeria.

    I don’t get tired of okro soup be it Ila asepo, otong soup, Ogbono Okro or plain okro. I just love the way it helps slide swallow all the way down to it’s destination not to mention it’s high nutrient value.

    Otong (Efik Okro Soup) is one of the most favored of recent trending meals in the world. It is appreciated by millions every day. It’s simple, it’s quick, it tastes yummy.

    What Is Otong Soup?

    This is another Nigerian soup that has Okra as one of the ingredients. Otong soup has two key vegetables characteristic, Ikong Ubong( Ugu) and Okra, the combo of these two vegetables differentiates otong soup from other okra soups- Ikong Ubong (pumpkin leaves) and Uziza leaves (piper guineese).

    Various ethnic groups in Nigeria have different names for their variations. Each with subtle changes. For example, the Yorubas know it as Ila asepo, Igbos call it Okwuru and the rest of us know it simply as Okro.

    Is Otong Soup Healthy?

    Yes, it is! With the high fiber content in Okra this soup is really quite friendly with the digestive system. So you are onto some nutrition packed soup because ugu has high iron content and as with many vegetables,  short cooking time helps to retain the nutrients better.

    Tips And Substitutions

    • If you cant source Ugu leaves, you can use spinach, Water leaves or Kale instead. If you cant source Uziza leaves, which is optional anyway, you can use ground Uziza seeds insead.
    • Do not cover pot after okro has been introduced into the pot.
    • Don’t overcook if you want okro green and resilient. The retained heat keeps cooking the Okro for about another 2 minutes after you take off heat.

    What To Eat With Otong Soup

    This soup can be eaten with Ayan Ekpang (grated steamed cocoyam), pounded yam, Eba, Semo, Amala or any other swallow. It is always a delight to watch your guests wrap their pounded yam round the soup ,lick their fingers and go for the next ball of pounded yam.

    So that’s going to wrap this up with this special food otong(efik okro soup) recipe. Thanks so much for your time. I am sure you can make this at home.  Remember to bookmark this page in your browser, and share it to your family, friends and colleague. Thanks again for reading.  Let’s cook!

    Otong Soup

    Otong Soup

    Avatar photoJennifer Ezeokoli
    Otong soup is a traditional Okra soup from the Efik people of Cross River State,South Eastern Nigeria. Various ethnic groups in Nigeria have different names for their variations.
    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 45 minutes
    Total Time 55 minutes
    Course Side Dish, Soup
    Cuisine Nigerian


    • 700 g assorted meat (Beef, Cow tripe, offal)
    • 8 kg fresh okro
    • 1 cup palm oil
    • 2 tbsp dry grinded crayfish
    • 7 kg fresh prawns
    • 2 raw crabs broken and prepared
    • 6 kg mussels
    • 1 stock fish large
    • 2 smoked catfish medium-sized
    • 1 handful uziza leaves (you may use spicy curry leaves) chopped
    • 1 handful ugu (pumpkin leaves) or any vegetable works
    • 3 habanero pepper (Ata-rodo)
    • 1 tbsp dry grounded pepper
    • 1 red bell pepper large
    • 3 bouillon cubes
    • salt to taste


    • Put the seafood and meat in a bowl of luke warm water, add salt and wash vigorously, rinse and repeat 3 times. Be sure to hand wash the mussels and remove any impurities.
    • Boil and season the meat and seafood with salt and seasoning cubes.
    • Wash your okra under running water in a sieve and chop them into any size you want.
    • Roughly chop the habanero pepper and red bell pepper and pour along with the crayfish into the pot, add the oil and cook for about 5 minutes.
    • At this point the prawns should be pink, the crabs, coral and the mussels should have opened up (discard any unopened mussel)
    • Pour in the Okra and vegetable along with the uziza andstir. If the soup is too thick, add a little water. Check for seasonings and let the soup cook unconvered for another 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and cover. The trapped heat will cook the okra completely.
    • Serve with Ayan Ekpang (grated steamed cocoyam) Fufu or any kind of swallow.
    Keyword Ila alasepo, Okro, Okwuru, Otong, Otong Soup, Soup
    Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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