Ugandan Matooke Recipe: Authentic Cooking Guide

Matooke, also known as matoke, ibitoke, or bananas of the cooking type, stands as one of Uganda’s iconic dishes. A staple and pride of Ugandan homes, this dish deeply embodies the cultural and gastronomic essence of East Africa. Primarily made from green bananas (plantains), its taste and method of preparation can vary regionally. Here, we uncover the essence of Uganda’s culinary prowess with a detailed guide to preparing Matooke.

History of Matooke

Bananas have been cultivated in Uganda for over 5,000 years, evolving from a simple agricultural product to a cornerstone of Ugandan cuisine and culture. The Buganda Kingdom, one of the ancient monarchies in Uganda, even had a term for banana plantations: ‘Toka’. The practice of steaming and mashing bananas to create Matooke is a tradition that has been handed down through countless generations, symbolizing Ugandan unity, perseverance, and culinary heritage.

Ingredients, Quantities, and Suggestions

  • Green bananas (plantains) – 10 to 12
  • Lemons – 2
  • Onions (chopped) – 2
  • Tomatoes (diced) – 2
  • Bell peppers (diced) – 1
  • Fresh groundnut paste (peanut butter can substitute) – 2 tablespoons
  • Palm oil or any cooking oil – 2 tablespoons
  • Salt – to taste
  • Water

– Choose firm green bananas, ensuring they’re without black spots or ripening signs.
– Fresh groundnut paste can typically be located in African grocery stores.

In-Depth Directions and Tips

  1. Preparing the Bananas: Begin by peeling the green bananas. Use lemon juice on your hands to avoid sticky sap. After peeling, place them immediately in cold water to halt discoloration.
  2. Cooking: Sauté the onions in palm oil until translucent. Add tomatoes, bell peppers, and groundnut paste, mixing until consistent.
  3. Steaming the Bananas: Introduce the peeled bananas to the pot. Pour in water until bananas are halfway submerged. Let simmer on medium heat until bananas soften, roughly 20-30 minutes.
  4. Mashing: When soft, use a masher to make a smooth, even paste within the pot.
  5. Serving: Serve the matooke hot, ideally accompanied by a stewed meat or vegetable dish.

– Aim for a stretchy, smooth matooke consistency. If it’s too firm, incorporate more water; if too mushy, cook longer to reduce water.
– Spicy sauces or stews perfectly complement the subtle matooke flavors.


Matooke, with its rich history and unique preparation method, showcases the culinary richness of Uganda. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a home cook looking to explore global cuisines, this authentic Ugandan Matooke recipe is a perfect starting point. As you dive into its preparation, you’re not just making a meal – you’re experiencing a piece of Ugandan heritage. Enjoy your culinary journey!

Each recipe is a chapter in the vast book of Ugandan Food Experiences. Turn more pages with us on our main platform.

Siti Bane
Siti Bane
Emerging from Africa's diverse culinary landscape, Siti Bane, in her mid-40s, epitomizes the essence of the continent's rich gastronomic heritage. As the Blog Editor for 70recipes, she marries tradition with modernity, inviting readers to experience the true flavors of Africa.

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