Recipe: Togolese Gboma Dessi: A Classic Togolese Dish


What’s your Reaction?

Togolese Gboma Dessi is the dinner for tonight! A classic sauce that is also called sauce feuille, you can eat gboma dessi along with akoumé, a dish made from corn flour, or you can choose to eat it with rice.

Togolese Gboma Dessi has a similar recipe to Ghanaian stew, Fetri Detsi, often prepared with okra and gboma by the people of the Volta Region, but the dish has now spread to other regions.

This is no surprise as Togo and the inhabitants of the Volta Region in Ghana share similarities in terms of history, language, and food. Gboma, which basically means “fresh leaves” in Ewe, is a language spoken in Togo and parts of Volta Ghana. Most refer to this gboma as spinach. 

Gboma Dessi or sauce feuille is prepared with spinach and shrimp, crabs, smoked fish, meat, or chicken. 

Whichever protein you choose to prepare Togolese Gboma Dessi with, all you have to do is strictly follow the traditional cooking instructions of this stable dish. For this recipe, we’ll use beef, smoked fish, shrimp, and some crabs.

Now let’s prepare dinner!

How to Prepare Togolese Gboma Dessi

Togo, officially the Togolese Republic, is a francophone country in West Africa bordered by Ghana to the west, Benin to the east, and Burkina Faso to the north. The country extends south to the Gulf of Guinea, where you’ll find its capital, Lomé. It covers 22,008 square miles (57,000 square kilometers) with a population of approximately 8 million and has a width of fewer than 115 km or 71 miles between Ghana and its eastern neighbor, Benin.

Gboma dessi is probably the closest thing to a national dish of Togo, and a delicious and healthy way to enjoy your evening meal, complete with beef, shrimp, and akoumé.

You’ll need just a few specific West African staple ingredients to make gboma dessi, a recipe I’m confident you’ll love due to its flavor and aroma. Believe me, this is a healthy delicacy to spice up your evening. Get your cooking pot already!

Join our Spotcovery Global Black Community Facebook Group for early access to exclusive content and share in a lively discussion.

Ingredients for Preparing Togolese Gboma Dessi

Gboma, also called Spinach
Gboma Source: Highly Fresh licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
  • Salt
  • Cloves
  • Ajwain seeds 
  • 6pcs of Hot pepper
  • 14 oz. tomato sauce
  • ¼ lb shrimp (optional)
  • 2 Maggi stock cubes 
  • 2 onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Chopped ginger or paste
  • 1 lb smoked fish chopped
  • ¼ cup of palm oil or dzomi
  • 3 fresh tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 lb spinach or gboma leaves
  • 1 ½  lbs. beef, cut into cubes
Some ingredients for cooking Togolese Gboma Dessi
Source: Freepik licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

You’ll need one-and-a-half tablespoons of Gbotemi spice blend, made by dry-frying in a skillet all the spices (except the ginger) and then blending together to a fine powder in a spice grinder (with the ginger):

  • 1 tsp. whole cloves
  • 1 tsp. anise seeds
  • 1 tsp. ajwain seeds
  • 1 tsp. cardamom seeds
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger

People Also Read: Recipe: Saka Saka Recipe (Congolese Cassava Leaf Soup)

Cooking Instructions

  1. In a large cooking pot, heat part of ¼ cup of palm oil or dzomi.
  2. Saute the chopped onion, minced garlic and ginger for two minutes.
  3. Add your beef, a pinch of salt, and one Maggi stock cube.
  4. Add gbotemi spice.
  5. Add a little water, stir and cover to cook for 30 – 40 minutes. 
  6. After, add the smoked fish and shrimp and leave the mixture to boil for 10 minutes.
  7. Set aside.
  8. Wash and slice your spinach leaves or gboma. You can also use your hand to slice the gboma leaves into pieces.
Sliced Gboma
Source: Freepik licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
  1. Steam for five minutes with a little water. 
  2. Put the remaining palm oil to boil and add chopped onion, garlic, and ginger paste.
  3. Add your tomato paste and stir. After 5 minutes, add your fresh tomatoes and leave to boil for 10 minutes. 
  4. Pop or squeeze the hot pepper in the sauce. Stir, taste, and season with a Maggi stock cube, and a pinch of salt. 
  5. Add your boiled meat and broth to the tomato sauce.
  6. Leave to boil for 15 minutes and simmer for 2 minutes.
  7. Serve hot with boiled rice or Akoumé 

People Also Read: Recipe: Delicious Binyebwa | Ugandan Groundnut Sauce Recipe

Togolese Gboma Dessi served with rice.
Source: I Love Africa  licensed under CC BY 2.0

Join Naty Cooking Diary as she takes you through how to prepare classic Togolese Gboma Dessi. Naty is passionate about cooking and food in general and loves to share African cuisine on her Youtube channel.

Togolese Gboma Dessi

Togolese Gboma Dessi

Recipe: Togolese Gboma Dessi: A Classic Togolese DishSedi Djentuh
Togolese Gboma Dessi, also called sauce feuille, is a sauce traditionally prepared with spinach, beef, chicken, shrimps,and smoked fish. You can eat Togolese Gboma Dessi with akoume or rice.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 40 minutes
Total Time 2 hours
Course Main Course
Cuisine African
Servings 4
Calories 7 kcal


Cooking Pot


  • 1 lb Spinach
  • 1/4 tbsp Salt
  • 6 pcs Hot pepper
  • 14 oz Tomato paste
  • 3 pcs Fresh Tomatoes
  • 1/4 lb Shrimp (optional)
  • 1 lb Smoked fish
  • 1 1/2 lb Beef, chopped
  • 2 Maggi Stock Cubes
  • 2 Onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp Ginger paste
  • 1/4 cup Palm oil
  • 1 tbsp Cloves
  • 1/4 tbsp Salt
  • 1 tbsp Ajwain seeds
  • 1 tbsp cardamom seeds


  • Cooking instruction for Togolese Gboma Dessi



Serving: 4gCalories: 7kcalCarbohydrates: 3.6gProtein: 25.7gFat: 0.4gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gPotassium: 167mgFiber: 2.2gVitamin C: 28.1mgCalcium: 29.7mgIron: 0.81mg
Keyword Spinach

Video: Source Naty Cooking Diary  licensed under CC BY 2.0

Congolese Cassava Leaf Soup
Saka Saka is a simple but unique dish that brings together the finest ingredients from Central Africa. It is a rich blend of flavorful cassava leaves, creamy peanut butter, vegetables, and spices, carefully combined to create a delicious and unforgettable culinary experience.
Check out this recipe
Recipe: Togolese Gboma Dessi: A Classic Togolese Dish

Nearly 80% of consumers turn to directories with reviews to find a local business. List your business for free in our exclusive Spotcovery Black-Owned Business Directory

What’s your Reaction?
Sedi Djentuh
Sedi Djentuh
Hey, Sedi here, a content writer. She's fascinated by the interplay between people, lifestyle, relationships, tech and communication dedicated to empowering and spreading positive messages about humanity. She's an avid reader and a student of personal weekly workouts. When she's not writing, Sedi is busy advocating for plastic-free earth with her local NGO.


Recipe Rating

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here
Captcha verification failed!
CAPTCHA user score failed. Please contact us!

Share post:

Subscribe to our newsletter

To be updated with all the latest news, ebooks, how-to guides, offers and special announcements


More like this

Most Successful And Famous Black Golfers

White people dominate golf. But, over the years, black...

The 10 Best Black Actors Under 40

The presence and talent of black actors under 40...

Why is World Refugee Day Important? 7 Reasons

The sight of homeless children and adults displaced by...

How to Dance Amapiano Step by Step

Originating from South Africa, Amapiano has taken the music...