An Overview Of Zambian Food

On this page I will share with you some of the Zambian food available in this country.

However, if you didn't know,you can also contribute and share with the world your favorite Zambian dish! In a hurry to do so? Skip below to add your own Zambian dish that you love!

Fist, you can visit the Zambian Dish for a list of Zambian dishes.

Staple Food

That said, would you want to taste the Zambian dish? One ways you can do this is to visit some Zambian Restaurants.

In most towns in Zambia, a typical dish of Zambian food is that one which will go down well with nshima.

This is maize or corn which has been ground and boiled to make a thick mash known as nshima. 

Depending on where you hail from, nshima has got different names: The Lozi call it Buhobe, the Bemba, Ubwali, the Tonga, Insima and the Ngoni, Chewa and Tumbuka call it Sima or Nsima.

Other main dishes are cassava, yam, rice, and potatoes.

Side Dishes

Most of the food in Zambia has tribal connections. Indeed most dishes hail from different parts of Zambia.

A typical meal consists of different dishes which may include dishes like ifisashi, ifinkubala or impwa.

Of course nshima is always on the table to go with them.

A large majority of Zambians, who have no access to modern, refrigerating equipment resort to the methods of their forefathers for preservation of food. Hence, most of the food is dried to extend its shelf life.

There are very few foods in Zambia which cannot be preserved in this way.

It is not surprising therefore that you find fresh and dried vegetables, dried and fresh Mushrooms, dried and fresh Fish, and chikanda. Other side dishes include meat products such as beef, goat meat, lamb, and chicken.

And other commonly prepared dishes include sorghum, pumpkins, beans, okra and millet. But then there are also a variety of fruits in Zambia. You will find fruits such as groundnuts, paw-paw, mango, bananas, and lemons.


Zambian FoodZambian Food

If you are visiting Zambia and wish to sample Zambian food, the list is endless. Try ifisashi, the diverse dish which can be prepared from a variety of foods like kapenta, dried mushrooms, fresh or dried vegetables, or any other suitable foods.

Ifisashi is a mixture of groundnuts (ground) and any food cooked in combination.

The result is a delicious blend of a thick groundnut stew with the particular food. Groundnuts can be roasted before grinding, depending on your taste. The cooking process is known as 'ukusashila' (mixing with groundnuts). This process results in the dish called ifisashi. In short 'ukusashila' is the actual cooking process resulting into 'Ifisashi'.


Another Zambian specialty is Ifinkubala ( mopani caterpillars). These caterpillars are usually harvested from a certain species of trees on which they feed from the leaves. Next time you visit a Zambian restaurant or any eatery, request for ifinkubala and ifisashi to go along with your nshima.

The process of Eating Nshima With Side Dish

How do you go about demolishing the delicious food in front of you? First traditional custom and hygiene calls for you to wash both hands with clean water. But generally, only the right hand is used for eating. 

Using the right hand, take a piece of nshima and press it into a ball to make it easy to swallow. You then dip the nshima ball into a bow of ifisashi, meat , village chicken or whatever Zambian dish and pop it into your mouth. Tasty stuff!

Now you are on your journey to satisfaction!

Zambian Beverages

In this category of Zambian food, we will look at the Zambian beer. and traditional Zambian beverages. Incidentally, the first Zambia beer festival was held on 25th September 2009.

That's it!

And Now The Tables Are Turned On You!

It is your turn now to tell the world about the Zambian food that you enjoy.

Yes, do you have any misgivings, any advice, any tips?

Now, how do you want to tell it? In words or photos? Tell it in whatever way you want, and it's so easy.

If you want it in words just type!...

Your story will appear on a Web page exactly the way you enter it here. You can wrap a word in square brackets to make it appear bold. For example [my story] would show as my story on the Web page containing your story.

And if you want to upload a picture, no problem. So let's start!

What Is Your Best Zambian Food?

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What Other Visitors Have Said

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Pupwe (Okra) 
Hello, I am Namwanga from Northern Province. In my home village, we eat okra called Pupwe, and hey it’s delicious. We eat in collaboration with ifisashi …

Ifishimu (Ifinkubala) and
Kapenta (Dried Small Fish)
These are the two Zambian foods I enjoy the most and have learnt how to cook. These foods are seasonal but can be preserved for later. Kapenta can be …

Chikanda Not rated yet
It's simply amazing, nothing like anything you have ever tasted!

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