Swahili Zucchini Soup

Okay, I know you’re wondering what is this soup? Having just come back from Kenya and having had the most delicious food there,I’ve been eager to try and make some of the local cuisine. This one is really easy and delicious, it’s Mombasa in a bowl.

About the recipe

This Swahili soup comes from the coast of Kenya from Mombasa and the coastal towns. The inspiration is this beautiful coconut milk soup served at the Maji Hotel in South Coast. The soup was served steaming hot and fragrant, all presented in a beautiful coconut bowl.

What makes this soup uniquely Swahili is the addition of turmeric and coconut milk. The recipe IS from the tropical coast after all – and you know they have plenty of coconut growing here. As for the turmeric, its the Arabic and Indian influence in this area that brings turmeric to Swahili cuisine.

Flavored with ginger, garlic, onions and turmeric and then blended with coconut milk, this zucchini soup is fragrant, creamy and delicious. Add in chunks of chicken or fish if you like, or keep it vegetarian, either way it’s going to taste awesome. Give it a try!

Swahili Zucchini Soup


2 large zucchini cut into small chunks – about 5-6 cups
2 large shallots finely diced or 4 small shallots
2 potatoes peeled and cut into bit size pieces
1 inch piece of ginger minced
4 garlic cloves minced
1 green chili minced. Remove the seeds to keep it mild
1 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp red chili powder or paprika
Salt and pepper
1 can of coconut milk
Coconut oil or any neutral oil
Juice of 1 small lemon
Sprigs of fresh cilantro


Boil the potatoes until tender. Set aside.

In the meantime in a large pot warm 2 tbsp oil. Add the shallot, ginger, garlic and chili. Saute until the shallots are tender about 2-3 minutes. Then add the turmeric and chili powder.

Next add the cut zucchini, salt and pepper to taste and 1 cup water. Stir and cover the pot. Cook for 10-15 minutes until the zucchini is tender.

Then carefully blend the souoin a blender until smooth. Pour back into the pot and add 1 can of coconut milk and the cooked potatoes. . Warm through until bubbly. if the soup is too thick add more water to thin it out. Turn the stove off. Garnish with fresh cilantro and squeeze of fresh lemon.

Serve warm.

6 thoughts on “Swahili Zucchini Soup”

  1. Good morning Kalpana,
    I also made Swahili Zucchini Soup yesterday from the recipe you had posted on your blog. My neighbors gave us a lots of Zucchini from their garden and I thought of your recipe. It came out delicious, thx for sharing the recipe❤️🤗

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