Cassava Pancakes Recipe from Zambia

Cassava Pancakes

Cassava Pancakes Recipe from Zambia
Region / culture: Zambia | Preparation time: 15 minutes | Cooking time: 20 minutes | Servings: 4


Cassava Pancakes
Cassava Pancakes

Cassava pancakes are a delicious and easy-to-make dish that can be enjoyed for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Made with grated cassava, onions, eggs, and seasonings, these pancakes are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.


Cassava pancakes have been a popular dish in many West African countries for centuries. Cassava, also known as yuca or manioc, is a starchy root vegetable that is a staple food in many tropical regions. The root is grated and used in a variety of dishes, including pancakes, fritters, and porridge.


How to prepare

  1. Wash, peel, and grate the cassava. Grate or chop the onion and add it to the cassava.
  2. Add salt and pepper. Beat the eggs, add them to the cassava, and mix well to form a batter.
  3. Drop spoonfuls of the batter into hot oil. Brown on both sides, drain, and serve hot.
  4. Serve alone or with akamu (maize pap).


  • Add chopped vegetables such as bell peppers, carrots, or spinach to the batter for added flavor and nutrition.
  • Substitute the onion with garlic or ginger for a different flavor profile.
  • Top the pancakes with a dollop of yogurt or sour cream for a creamy finish.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

Make sure to wash and peel the cassava before grating it to remove any dirt or debris.

- Be sure to drain the pancakes on paper towels after frying to remove excess oil.

- Adjust the seasonings to suit your taste preferences, adding more or less salt and pepper as needed.

Serving Suggestions

Cassava pancakes can be served alone as a snack or paired with akamu (maize pap) for a more substantial meal. They can also be served with a side of fresh vegetables or a spicy dipping sauce.

Cooking Techniques

Use a non-stick skillet or griddle to fry the pancakes for a crispy exterior.

- Cook the pancakes over medium heat to ensure they are cooked through without burning.

Ingredient Substitutions

If cassava is not available, you can use grated potatoes or yams as a substitute.

- Olive oil or vegetable oil can be used in place of groundnut oil for frying.

Make Ahead Tips

The batter for cassava pancakes can be prepared in advance and stored in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. Simply fry the pancakes when ready to serve.

Presentation Ideas

Arrange the cassava pancakes on a platter and garnish with fresh herbs or a sprinkle of paprika for a pop of color. Serve with a side of salsa or chutney for added flavor.

Pairing Recommendations

Cassava pancakes pair well with a variety of dishes, including grilled meats, roasted vegetables, or a fresh salad. They can also be enjoyed with a side of fruit for a light and refreshing meal.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Leftover cassava pancakes can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat, simply place the pancakes in a skillet over medium heat until warmed through.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of cassava pancakes contains approximately 250 calories.


Cassava is a rich source of carbohydrates, providing energy to fuel your day. Each serving of cassava pancakes contains approximately 30 grams of carbohydrates.


The oil used for frying the pancakes adds fat to the dish. Each serving of cassava pancakes contains approximately 10 grams of fat.


Eggs are a good source of protein, which is essential for building and repairing tissues in the body. Each serving of cassava pancakes contains approximately 6 grams of protein.

Vitamins and minerals

Cassava is a good source of vitamin C, thiamine, riboflavin, and niacin. These vitamins are important for maintaining overall health and well-being.


This recipe contains eggs and groundnut (peanut) oil, which may be allergens for some individuals. Be sure to check for any food allergies before preparing this dish.


Cassava pancakes are a nutritious and filling dish that provides a good balance of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. They are a great option for a satisfying meal any time of day.


Cassava pancakes are a versatile and flavorful dish that can be enjoyed for any meal of the day. With a crispy exterior and a soft interior, these pancakes are sure to become a new favorite in your recipe repertoire.

How did I get this recipe?

The moment I found this recipe is one I won't soon forget. It was a sunny afternoon in the bustling city market, where vendors shouted out their prices and customers haggled for the best deals. I was perusing the stalls, searching for the freshest ingredients for my next culinary adventure, when I stumbled upon a small, nondescript booth tucked away in a corner.

As I approached, I saw an elderly woman sitting behind the booth, a serene smile on her weathered face. She was surrounded by an array of exotic fruits and vegetables, and there was something about her presence that drew me in. I struck up a conversation with her, asking about the produce she had on display.

She told me about the cassava root, a staple in many tropical cuisines, and how it could be used to make a delicious and hearty pancake. Intrigued, I asked her if she could share the recipe with me. She smiled and nodded, reaching for a tattered notebook that was lying on the table.

With a twinkle in her eye, she began to recite the ingredients and instructions for making cassava pancakes. Her voice was soft and soothing, and I hung on to every word as she spoke. She told me about how the cassava root had been a part of her family's diet for generations, and how she had learned to make these pancakes from her own grandmother.

I listened intently, taking mental notes as she described the process of grating the cassava, mixing it with coconut milk and sugar, and frying it until golden brown. She talked about the importance of patience and precision in cooking, and how each step must be done with care and love.

As she finished reciting the recipe, she handed me the notebook with a smile. I thanked her profusely, feeling a sense of gratitude for the unexpected encounter. I left the market that day with a newfound sense of purpose, eager to try my hand at making cassava pancakes.

Back in my kitchen, I gathered the ingredients and set to work. I peeled and grated the cassava, marveling at its starchy texture and earthy aroma. I mixed it with coconut milk and sugar, tasting the batter to adjust the seasoning. I heated a pan and poured the mixture onto it, watching as it sizzled and bubbled, turning into a golden brown pancake.

The smell that wafted through my kitchen was intoxicating, a blend of caramelized sugar and toasted coconut. I flipped the pancake carefully, revealing a crispy exterior and a soft, chewy interior. I knew that I had stumbled upon something truly special.

I sat down at my table and took a bite of the cassava pancake, savoring the sweet and savory flavors that danced on my tongue. It was unlike anything I had ever tasted before, a perfect combination of textures and tastes that transported me back to that bustling city market.

As I finished my meal, I thought about the elderly woman who had shared her recipe with me. I imagined her sitting in her booth, surrounded by the sights and sounds of the market, passing down her culinary knowledge to a curious stranger. I felt a connection to her, a bond forged through a shared love of food and tradition.

And so, the recipe for cassava pancakes became a cherished part of my culinary repertoire, a reminder of the power of food to bring people together and create lasting memories. I vowed to pass it down to future generations, just as the elderly woman had done for me. And as I sat in my kitchen, basking in the warm glow of a successful cooking experiment, I knew that some recipes are more than just a list of ingredients – they are a link to the past, a taste of history, and a celebration of life itself.


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