Most Nigerians eat a light breakfast and have their main meal in the late afternoon. Popular foods include akara, akamu (ogi) and moyin-moyin. Akara is made from skinned, ground beans mixed with ground tomatoes, spices and peppers, and fried in vegetable or palm oil. Akamu is made from ground, fermented cornstarch. Moyin-moyin is made of skinned and ground beans mixed with tomatoes, ground peppers, meat, eggs and spices. This mixture is put in banana leaves or aluminum cans and steamed.
Yams, cocoyams and sweet potatoes are popular in Nigeria. Boiled yam, pounded and made into small smooth balls, eaten with vegetable, meat or fish soup, is a popular meal. Rice cooked with ground tomatoes, peppers and sometimes meat, is eaten with fried plantain, mostly in western Nigeria. Palm oil, a reddish brown oil made from ground palm kernels, is widely used in cooking. Nigerians usually drink tea and soft drinks. Muslims are forbidden to drink alcohol.

Many traditional diets have undergone changes over time because of urbanization. For example, gari, a dry grain made by grating, fermenting, drying and cooking cassava, can be stored and is therefore ideal for use in urban areas. Urbanization has also increased the demand for corn. Fresh roasted corn sold as fast food is very popular in urban areas.

    Jollof Rice

1 litre white rice
1.5 litre water
2 tomatoes
1 bell pepper
1 onion
250 ml canned tomato sauce
100 ml canned tomato paste
250 ml beef broth
1/4 tsp dried red pepper (cayenne)
2 tsp salt


Boil water and add the rice. Blend the tomatoes, pepper and onion. Add this mixture to the rice after 10-15 minutes. Add the beef broth, tomato sauce and tomato paste. Add dry red pepper and salt to the boiling rice. Continue to cook until rice is soft. Add more water or beef broth if necessary.