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Kilishi Recipe

Updated: Apr 19

Kilishi is a type of Nigerian beef jerky that is marinated in a spicy blend of herbs and spices, then dried in the sun. It is a popular snack in Northern Nigeria and can be enjoyed on its own or as a side dish with other Nigerian foods. Here's a detailed recipe for making kilishi at home:


  • 1 pound of beef sirloin or flank steak

  • 2 tablespoons of peanut butter

  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste

  • 1 tablespoon of cayenne pepper

  • 1 tablespoon of smoked paprika

  • 1 tablespoon of garlic powder

  • 1 tablespoon of onion powder

  • 1 teaspoon of salt

  • 1/4 cup of water

Kitchen equipment:

  • Food processor or blender

  • Dehydrator or oven with a low heat setting

  • Mixing bowls

  • Measuring cups and spoons

  • Knife

  • Cutting board


  1. Trim any excess fat from the beef and cut it into thin strips, about 1/4 inch thick.

  2. In a food processor or blender, combine the peanut butter, tomato paste, cayenne pepper, smoked paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and water. Blend until smooth.

  3. Place the beef strips in a large bowl and pour the marinade over them. Use your hands to mix the beef and marinade together, making sure that all of the strips are evenly coated.

  4. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and marinate the beef in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or overnight.

  5. Preheat your dehydrator or oven to the lowest heat setting.

  6. If using an oven, place the beef strips on a wire rack set over a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. If using a dehydrator, place the strips on the dehydrator trays.

  7. Dry the beef for 8-10 hours, or until it is completely dry and chewy.

  8. Store the kilishi in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Calorie information: One serving of kilishi (approximately 1 ounce) contains approximately 70-90 calories, depending on the cut of beef used.

Healthy alternatives:

  • Use a lean cut of beef, such as sirloin or flank steak, to reduce the fat content of the kilishi.

  • Use natural peanut butter without added sugars or oils for a healthier option.

  • Reduce the amount of salt used in the marinade for a lower sodium content.

Kitchen equipment and ingredients available on Amazon:

Healthy alternatives continued:

  • Use organic and grass-fed beef for a healthier option.

  • Substitute the peanut butter with almond or cashew butter for a different flavor and lower fat content.

  • Use organic and low-sodium tomato paste for a healthier option.

  • Substitute the cayenne pepper with chili flakes or fresh chilies for a milder or spicier taste.

Note: Always read the label and ingredient list of the products you purchase and make sure they meet your dietary needs and preferences.

Enjoy your homemade kilishi as a healthy and delicious snack or side dish!

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