Suya Kebab - A Popular African Street Food
Suya is a dry spicy peanut satay blend used to mainly marinade grilled meats including kebabs, across Africa.
Suya Kebabs / grilled meat are a popular street food traditionally prepared by Hausa people of northern Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroon, Niger and Sudan. The word Suya originates from nomads or travelling cattlemen from these regions, who sat around camp fires, skewered their meats on their swords and grilled them for dinner. In Hausa language, Suya means grilling hot. A literal translation for spicy piping hot food.
In Ghana, my country of origin, the Suya Kebab is affectionately called “Chinchinga”.
The word "Chinchinga" brings nostalgic memories of the sounds and bustling sights of night life along township roadsides in the cities of Ghana. Some kebab sellers open their stalls as early as mid-afternoon but the majority start from late afternoon to the early hours of the next day.
Kebab is normally prepared on sight and barbecued over hot open charcoal fire using rustic locally crafted barbecue stands. The open fire constantly creates a delightful smell of burning meat fat and swirly smoke which always have the tendency of drawing customers over. Locals are always good at knowing where the favourite Kebab stall can be found.
Kebab stalls are usually found next to local drink pubs or food and drink bars. That is because Suya kebabs / grilled meats mostly serves as starters and often had with chilled drinks.
Suya grilled meat are either cut into cube shape sizes and alternatively threaded unto wooden skewers with onions and sometimes sweet peppers or sliced into thin steak sizes. The marinade is used for mainly beef, goat meat, pork, liver, sausages, fish and poultry.
KORKO, an African artisan food startup based in Kent, UK have come up with their very own versions of Suya spice including the original. The spice mixes contains no peanuts and the ranges are;
Smokey Meat (Original)
Sweet and Smokey Chicken
Lemon and Herbs
(Perfect for Lemon Chicken or Fish)
Learn how to make easy special dinners and meals with our special African Suya spice from the comfort of your home. Try our BBQ Suya spices for your;
Visit to find out interesting ways of making your very own Suya meal today.
Written by Korko Lartey