Muffins recipes

National dish of Uganda

flag of Uganda

  • Independence: 8. 10. 1995
  • Capital: Kampala
  • Official language: Swahili, English
  • Population: 35 873 253
  • Area: 236 040 km2
  • International code: UG
  • Currency: Ugandan shilling (UGX)
map of Uganda



  • 8-10 plantains
  • 1 lemon, juice of (optional)
  • oil (for frying)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2-3 Tomatoes, chopped (or canned whole tomatoes, drained)
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 chili pepper, chopped (optional)
  • salt or coriander or cayenne pepper (to taste) or red pepper (to taste)
  • 1 lb ground beef (optional) or 1 lb beef stew meat, cut in bite-sized pieces (optional)
  • 1 cup beef broth (optional) or 1 cup beef stock (optional)
Matoke is national food (dish) of Uganda


Peel the plantains, cut into cubes, sprinkle with lemon juice, and set aside. Heat oil in a large pan. Fry the Onion, tomatoes, green pepper, hot pepper, and garlic together. Add spices to taste. Add meat or broth. Continue frying and stirring until the meat is nearly done or until the broth is starting to boil. Reduce heat. Add plantains. Cover and simmer over low heat until plantains are tender and meat is done. Serve matoke (matooke, if you prefer) hot.


Matoke refers to a local plantain that is wrapped in banana leaves and then, steamed to make a dish. The term matooke also refers to a meal of mashed plantains, beef and dried fish that are cooked in a beef stock flavored with chillies, tomatoes, bell peppers and garlic. This is considered to be one of the national dishes and the carbohydrate essential of Uganda. Matoke or green plantains are a staple crop in Uganda. These East African Highland bananas or plantains grown plentifully in the state and the mashed plantain are served at every meal. This variety of banana resembles unripe bananas but they are very different in taste and texture. They are very hard and they do not sweeten as they turn ripe. They have to be cooked to turn them into a soft mash which can then be consumed just like mashed potatoes. As a result, the mashed bananas can be served with a large range of gravies, meats and broths as an accompaniment. The Matoke bananas have to be peeled, sprinkled with lemon juice, salt and pepper and wrapped in the leaves of the plant. The banana parcels are then steamed in a cooking pot of water. The bananas are allowed to steam for two hours till tender and then, mashed and served in the same banana leaf parcel it was cooked in. The cooked bananas turn soft yellow in color. Matoke parcels or steamed banana is traditionally served with every meal as the carbohydrate staple of Uganda.

Popular Matoke Variations:

  • Spicy Matooke cooked with kale or spinach is a very typical recipe prepared in Uganda. Banana parcels are made or the bananas are boiled to prepare the mash. This mash is then served with tomato based spinach gravy.
  • Matooke with Njahi Beans is prepared by mashing the bananas and then serving them with beans in a tomato based gravy.
  • Matoke also refers a single dish prepared by simmering the bananas with beef, dried chillies, and dry fish in a tomato, bell peppers and garlic sauce. This dish is served as a one pot meal.
  • Katogo Matoke refers to mashed bananas in a Binyebwa or peanut sauce. This dish is slightly different as the peanut sauce is made and the cut bananas are added to the peanut sauce to cook in the sauce.
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