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A bowl of red, a tray of green and yellow, and a loaf of cornmeal mush wrapped in corn husk.
Egusi, goat stew, and kenkey, from Voilà Afrique
Robert Sietsema/Eater

17 Extraordinary West African Restaurants in NYC

Distinctive and delicious dishes from Senegal, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Togo, Nigeria, and Ghana

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Egusi, goat stew, and kenkey, from Voilà Afrique
| Robert Sietsema/Eater

The pandemic appears to have dealt a softer blow to West African restaurants than to many others, mainly because a wide swath of them always depended on carryout for a substantial part of their business, while the dining rooms often functioned as clubhouses for homesick immigrants. Yes, we’ve lost some important places in the last nine months, including Medina (Senegalese in downtown Brooklyn), Ebe Ye Yie (Ghanaian in Fordham Heights), and Chez Adja (Nigerian and Senegalese in Staten Island). But new places have popped up to replace them, making our collection of West African restaurants better than ever — a hopeful light in a dark time.

West African fare has exerted a profound influence on America’s food culture. Such dishes as collard greens, fried chicken, stewed okra, and hoppin’ john (black-eyed peas and rice) came from West Africa with unwilling immigrants on slave ships. But a new wave of West African migration arrived more recently, beginning around 1980. Senegalese street vendors were the harbingers, and they soon set up kitchens in single-room-occupancy hotels around Times Square to meet their culinary needs. Nigerian immigrants arrived at about the same time, riding the crest of an oil boom that transformed that country’s economy.

Temporary restaurants soon became permanent ones, and West African restaurateurs gradually became more savvy in attracting customers not limited to their countrymen and -women. There are now around 60 West African restaurants in the city by my estimate, mainly in the middle Bronx, Harlem, Jamaica, and Bedford-Stuyvesant. The countries represented include Senegal, Ivory Coast, Guinea, Togo, Nigeria, Chad, and Ghana (we once had ones from Sierra Leone, Mali, and Liberia, too). The food is distinctive and delicious, based on starches like rice and white yam fufu topped with meat, fish, and poultry sauces often referred to as soups. Sometimes sauces contain all the proteins at hand; they are then called mixed meat.

Here are some of my favorite West African eateries.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Papaye

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2300 Grand Concourse
Bronx, NY 10458
(718) 676-0771
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Located on bustling Grand Concourse, Papaye is a Ghanaian spot that’s one of the most mainstream West African restaurants in the city, where ordering is easy and a broad customer base has developed. Owned by Osei Bonsu and managed by his nephew Kwame Bonsu, nearly everything on Papaye’s large menu can be made on request, in contrast to the three or four dishes available at any given time at most other West African restaurants. Try the mashed rice called omo tuo, along with a stew of goat in peanut butter sauce. Jollof rice is another popular choice.

A chart makes ordering simple
A chart makes ordering simple
Robert Sietsema/Eater

2. Bognan International

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590 E 169th St
Bronx, NY 10456
(347) 271-5457

There is only one Togolese restaurant that I know of in the city, and it has been operating in the Bronx for the last eight years. It’s run by Fousseni Alidou, and his sister Haga Kamal does the cooking. A colorful menu posted on the wall offers abe nkwan (a palm-nut sauce with goat), okra sauce with fish, and a very light peanut sauce, in addition to the stray dish from Ivory Coast and Ghana. All sauces can be matched with kneaded starches like banku (fermented cornmeal) or fufu (a mixture of white yam and plantain). Surprisingly, spaghetti is another starch choice.

Fish in peanut sauce
Fish in peanut sauce
Robert Sietsema/Eater

3. Grin

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454 E 168th St
Bronx, NY 10456
(718) 292-8764

This small, rustic establishment features the cooking of Ivory Coast, including the national dish of athieke (pronounced “ah-check-ay”), which is a coarsely textured cassava stodge with a delightfully sour flavor. It’s served with a relish or two and a cube of salty Maggi. Break it up. Athieke is conventionally served with fried fish, which comes smothered in a mustardy mince of onions and tomatoes. Fried chicken and roast lamb are offered in a similar manner, and a stew or two is often available, thickened with okra and palm oil. Grin also serves espresso, a ubiquitous vestige of French colonialism in Ivory Coast.

Athieke with fish
Athieke with fish
Robert Sietsema/Eater

4. Fouta

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1762 Westchester Ave
Bronx, NY 10472
(718) 792-1700

Located in the Soundview section of the Bronx, which is now home to many West African immigrants from Senegal and Guinea, Fouta’s halal menu combines dishes from both cuisines. The interior has a clubhouse feel, and men sit around in robes and skullcaps eating bowls of fluffy white polished rice and sauce de feuilles made with sweet potato leaf, or lamb mafe (“mah-fee”) decorated with a single scotch bonnet pepper. First-time visitors are made welcome, and French and English are readily spoken. Nowadays, most of the business is carryout, which is fine since the food travels well in its foil containers.

Sauce de feuilles
Sauce de feuilles
Robert Sietsema/Eater

5. Africa Kine

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2267 7th Ave
New York, NY 10027
(212) 666-9400
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Owned by Kine Mar and her husband, Samba Niang, Africa Kine was founded in 1996 on the 116th Street strip known as Le Petit Senegal. Now that the restaurant has moved northward, it has less of a nightclub feel. It’s one of the few places in town you can get the African-Vietnamese spring rolls called nems and other starters (West African restaurants are more often one-plate-meal places). Sided with a mountain of rice, the serving of mafe (lamb or chicken in peanut sauce) is voluminous and laced with bright red palm oil.

Nems spring rolls
Nems spring rolls
Robert Sietsema/Eater

6. Balimaya

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2535 3rd Ave.
The Bronx, NY 10451
(718) 401-1122

On the fringes of Mott Haven in the far-south Bronx, Balimaya (“kinship”) features the food of Ivory Coast front and center, and other West African cuisines at the whim of the cook. Athieke served with fish — a national dish of fried whole fish on a bed of fermented manioc meal — is always available. But there’s also Guinean leaf-based sauces, and peanut stews from Senegal with lamb or chicken. Balimaya is a nice casual place on a major thoroughfare, and often open 24 hours. Call ahead.

Brown bumpy stew in one container, white rice in the other.
Lamb in peanut sauce
Robert Sietsema/Eater

7. Accra

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2065 Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd
New York, NY 10027
(212) 932-7739
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Located in Central Harlem, Accra is Manhattan’s sole Ghanaian restaurant, done up in colorful cafeteria style. Much of the food is served from a steam table, but the kitchen staff is adept at whipping up dishes at your request, too. The commodious dining room is lined with photos of African politicians like Kofi Annan and entertainers like Angélique Kidjo. Go for the goat pepper soup or the mixed meat in okra sauce with pounded yam fufu. The cooks will also be glad to recommend further combinations forming the basis of Ghanaian cuisine.

Accra is decorated with African heroes.
Accra is decorated with African heroes.
Robert Sietsema/Eater

8. Pikine

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243 W 116th St
New York, NY 10026
(646) 922-7015
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Located in Harlem’s Le Petit Senegal, the name Pikine refers to the prosperous farmland that lies to the east of the Senegalese capital of Dakar. And the cooking reflects this lushness, with a thiebou djeun (the national dish) that offers a spectacular six vegetables along with its stuffed bluefish, and also sports red rice more pungent than usual and nicely crusted from the bottom of the pan. The peanut sauce called mafe is shot with okra, which ramps up the slipperiness. Go at lunch for classic Senegalese cuisine and the occasional Gambian dish; at dinner, the menu turns more to North Africa and France for inspiration, as is common at Senegalese restaurants. Expect couscous and grilled whole fish.

Bluefish theibou djeun
Bluefish theibou djeun
Robert Sietsema/Eater

9. Voilà Afrique

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844 2nd Ave Enter through 45th Street Between 1st and, 2nd Ave
New York, NY 10017
(917) 327-3510
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Voilà Afrique’s French name is ironically intended, since the restaurant, poised on a hill above the United Nations, specializes in the food of two Anglophone nations, Ghana and Nigeria. Owner George Quainoo is from Ghana and chef Margarete Duncan grew up in Nigeria. From Ghana comes kenkey, a fermented cornmeal mash wrapped in corn husks, while Nigeria is responsible for suya, peanut-dusted beef kebabs. Sauces are the focus of most main courses here, including egusi made from greens and pumpkin seeds, and a novel peanut sauce that’s vegan. Pair them with rice or a mash for a full meal.

Two hand remove plastic wrap from a ball of fufu and let it tumble into a plastic bowl on a wrought iron tabletop.
A ball of pounded yam fufu
Robert Sietsema/Eater

10. B & B Restaurant

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165 W 26th St
New York, NY 10001
(646) 429-8174

B & B is a steam-table buffet founded in 2009 in Chelsea that allows you to pick your own dishes, load them into a carryout container, and pay a very reasonable price by the pound. Typically, it offers dozens of recipes adapted from several West African and even North African and Middle Eastern countries. Sometimes African-American, Jamaican, and Haitian food is included as well. This sort of place can’t be beat for a taste of the West African diaspora, even though the quality and heat level vary.

An assortment from several countries
An assortment from several countries
Robert Sietsema/Eater

11. Green Garden Buffet

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332 E 9th St
New York, NY 10003
(646) 575-1248

Owner Tamika Gabaroum hails from Chad, and after two decades working for the United Nations, she started this small steam-table carryout in the East Village a few months ago. The food, which is mainly vegan, offers a good generic picture of African fare (the cook is from Kenya), without providing many dishes attributable to one country or another. Find okra, eggplant, collards, and yams in abundance and nicely seasoned, with the occasional fish or chicken dish.

Orangeish roast chicken, sweet potatoes, and chopped greens in a square cardboard box.
Roast chicken, yams, and collard greens
Robert Sietsema/Eater

12. Africana

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14612 Liberty Ave
Jamaica, NY 11435
(718) 658-8501
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Africana is located in Jamaica, close enough to Kennedy to catch the traffic. Unlike neighboring Tropical Grill, Africana presents as a small cafe rather than a nightclub. The classic beans with dodo (fried plantains) makes a nice meal, with or without fried fish, or you might explore the multiple leaf- and seed-based sauces. They include egusi (made with melon seeds and looking something like scrambled eggs) and edikaikong (made with waterleaf and pumpkin). A range of mashes like fufu (white yam) and amala (cassava flour) are available to go with the sauces, known as “soups.” This is real homestyle Nigerian cooking.

Egusi and fufu
Egusi and fufu
Robert Sietsema/Eater

13. Teranga

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445 Albee Square W
Brooklyn, NY 11201

A decade ago Pierre Thiam operated a tiny Senegalese restaurant and jazz club in Clinton Hill; in the interim, he established a formal restaurant in Dakar and published a series of West African cookbooks. Now he presides over a pair of cafes in downtown Brooklyn and in Harlem (shown above) that have reformulated the collected cuisines of West Africa for contemporary tastes, concentrating on bowls and gluten-free items, with beer, wine, and cocktails added.

Patrons line up at the counter at Teranga, while yellow menus hang above them Alex Staniloff/Eater

14. Joloff

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1168 Bedford Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11216
(718) 230-0523
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Joloff, which refers to a West African tribe (usually spelled Jollof) and its recipe for cooking rice, is also the name of one of the city’s oldest Senegalese restaurants. Founded in 1995 by the Diagne family, the restaurant combines Rasta elements with traditional Senegalese fare. Appetizers are rare in West African restaurants, but here you can enjoy fataya jeun (mackerel turnovers), boulettes jeun (fish balls), and nem legumes, which are spring rolls brought to Dakar by Vietnamese refugees in the 1950s. Main courses run to dibi (lamb chops) and yassa (chicken with mustard-flavored onions).

Lamb chop dibi
Lamb chop dibi
Robert Sietsema/Eater

15. Buka

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946 Fulton St
Brooklyn, NY 11238
(347) 763-0619
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This rollicking 12-year-old Nigerian restaurant in Clinton Hill, founded by Lookman Mashood and Nat Goldberg, provides the best view of the unreconstructed national menu, with few adjustments to perceived American taste, from gluey cowfoot stew to rubbery land snails to fiery goat or fish pepper soup. The first-timer could do worse than a serving of beans and dodo (fried plantain) or boiled yam and egg, both tasty but relatively unspicy. The build-out is bistro style, and drinks include palm wine, which is definitely worth trying.

Lamb suya dusted with peanut
Lamb suya dusted with peanut
Robert Sietsema/Eater

16. Le Baobab Gouygui #2

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1235 Fulton St
Brooklyn, NY 11216
(718) 484-4866
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Named after a tree sacred to many West Africans, said to have been planted with branches in the ground and roots pointing skyward, Le Baobab boasts two locations, this one in Bed-Stuy, the other in Harlem. All the mainstays of Senegalese cuisine are presented, plus a few lesser-known dishes, such as sulukhu, fish in a peanut-and-okra sauce. The lunch menu changes daily in weekly rotation, while the dinner menu remains constant, with an emphasis on French-Senegalese fare like broiled lamb chops and grilled whole fish.

A white place with a mound of white rice on one side and a bowl with a brown chili-like dish.
Fish sulukhu
Robert Sietsema/Eater

17. Tropical Grill

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15341 Rockaway Blvd
Jamaica, NY 11434
(718) 949-1683

Many Nigerian restaurants cluster in Jamaica, Queens, making them easy destinations for travelers coming to and from JFK. Owned by Abimbola Jawo, Tropical Grill affects a nightclub demeanor and is one of the few West African restaurants in town to offer a full bar. It also has a very long menu that reflects several styles of regional Nigerian cooking. From the north, it serves the peanut-dusted kebabs called suya and freshly made doughnuts whimsically called puff puff. The goat pepper soup shown is my favorite, laced with a West African spice called grains of paradise.

Goat pepper soup
Goat pepper soup
Robert Sietsema/Eater

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1. Papaye

2300 Grand Concourse, Bronx, NY 10458
A chart makes ordering simple
A chart makes ordering simple
Robert Sietsema/Eater

Located on bustling Grand Concourse, Papaye is a Ghanaian spot that’s one of the most mainstream West African restaurants in the city, where ordering is easy and a broad customer base has developed. Owned by Osei Bonsu and managed by his nephew Kwame Bonsu, nearly everything on Papaye’s large menu can be made on request, in contrast to the three or four dishes available at any given time at most other West African restaurants. Try the mashed rice called omo tuo, along with a stew of goat in peanut butter sauce. Jollof rice is another popular choice.

2300 Grand Concourse
Bronx, NY 10458

2. Bognan International

590 E 169th St, Bronx, NY 10456
Fish in peanut sauce
Fish in peanut sauce
Robert Sietsema/Eater

There is only one Togolese restaurant that I know of in the city, and it has been operating in the Bronx for the last eight years. It’s run by Fousseni Alidou, and his sister Haga Kamal does the cooking. A colorful menu posted on the wall offers abe nkwan (a palm-nut sauce with goat), okra sauce with fish, and a very light peanut sauce, in addition to the stray dish from Ivory Coast and Ghana. All sauces can be matched with kneaded starches like banku (fermented cornmeal) or fufu (a mixture of white yam and plantain). Surprisingly, spaghetti is another starch choice.

590 E 169th St
Bronx, NY 10456

3. Grin

454 E 168th St, Bronx, NY 10456
Athieke with fish
Athieke with fish
Robert Sietsema/Eater

This small, rustic establishment features the cooking of Ivory Coast, including the national dish of athieke (pronounced “ah-check-ay”), which is a coarsely textured cassava stodge with a delightfully sour flavor. It’s served with a relish or two and a cube of salty Maggi. Break it up. Athieke is conventionally served with fried fish, which comes smothered in a mustardy mince of onions and tomatoes. Fried chicken and roast lamb are offered in a similar manner, and a stew or two is often available, thickened with okra and palm oil. Grin also serves espresso, a ubiquitous vestige of French colonialism in Ivory Coast.

454 E 168th St
Bronx, NY 10456

4. Fouta

1762 Westchester Ave, Bronx, NY 10472
Sauce de feuilles
Sauce de feuilles
Robert Sietsema/Eater

Located in the Soundview section of the Bronx, which is now home to many West African immigrants from Senegal and Guinea, Fouta’s halal menu combines dishes from both cuisines. The interior has a clubhouse feel, and men sit around in robes and skullcaps eating bowls of fluffy white polished rice and sauce de feuilles made with sweet potato leaf, or lamb mafe (“mah-fee”) decorated with a single scotch bonnet pepper. First-time visitors are made welcome, and French and English are readily spoken. Nowadays, most of the business is carryout, which is fine since the food travels well in its foil containers.

1762 Westchester Ave
Bronx, NY 10472

5. Africa Kine

2267 7th Ave, New York, NY 10027
Nems spring rolls
Nems spring rolls
Robert Sietsema/Eater

Owned by Kine Mar and her husband, Samba Niang, Africa Kine was founded in 1996 on the 116th Street strip known as Le Petit Senegal. Now that the restaurant has moved northward, it has less of a nightclub feel. It’s one of the few places in town you can get the African-Vietnamese spring rolls called nems and other starters (West African restaurants are more often one-plate-meal places). Sided with a mountain of rice, the serving of mafe (lamb or chicken in peanut sauce) is voluminous and laced with bright red palm oil.

2267 7th Ave
New York, NY 10027

6. Balimaya

2535 3rd Ave., The Bronx, NY 10451
Brown bumpy stew in one container, white rice in the other.
Lamb in peanut sauce
Robert Sietsema/Eater

On the fringes of Mott Haven in the far-south Bronx, Balimaya (“kinship”) features the food of Ivory Coast front and center, and other West African cuisines at the whim of the cook. Athieke served with fish — a national dish of fried whole fish on a bed of fermented manioc meal — is always available. But there’s also Guinean leaf-based sauces, and peanut stews from Senegal with lamb or chicken. Balimaya is a nice casual place on a major thoroughfare, and often open 24 hours. Call ahead.

2535 3rd Ave.
The Bronx, NY 10451

7. Accra

2065 Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd, New York, NY 10027
Accra is decorated with African heroes.
Accra is decorated with African heroes.
Robert Sietsema/Eater

Located in Central Harlem, Accra is Manhattan’s sole Ghanaian restaurant, done up in colorful cafeteria style. Much of the food is served from a steam table, but the kitchen staff is adept at whipping up dishes at your request, too. The commodious dining room is lined with photos of African politicians like Kofi Annan and entertainers like Angélique Kidjo. Go for the goat pepper soup or the mixed meat in okra sauce with pounded yam fufu. The cooks will also be glad to recommend further combinations forming the basis of Ghanaian cuisine.

2065 Adam Clayton Powell Jr Blvd
New York, NY 10027

8. Pikine

243 W 116th St, New York, NY 10026
Bluefish theibou djeun
Bluefish theibou djeun
Robert Sietsema/Eater

Located in Harlem’s Le Petit Senegal, the name Pikine refers to the prosperous farmland that lies to the east of the Senegalese capital of Dakar. And the cooking reflects this lushness, with a thiebou djeun (the national dish) that offers a spectacular six vegetables along with its stuffed bluefish, and also sports red rice more pungent than usual and nicely crusted from the bottom of the pan. The peanut sauce called mafe is shot with okra, which ramps up the slipperiness. Go at lunch for classic Senegalese cuisine and the occasional Gambian dish; at dinner, the menu turns more to North Africa and France for inspiration, as is common at Senegalese restaurants. Expect couscous and grilled whole fish.

243 W 116th St
New York, NY 10026

9. Voilà Afrique

844 2nd Ave Enter through 45th Street Between 1st and, 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10017
Two hand remove plastic wrap from a ball of fufu and let it tumble into a plastic bowl on a wrought iron tabletop.
A ball of pounded yam fufu
Robert Sietsema/Eater

Voilà Afrique’s French name is ironically intended, since the restaurant, poised on a hill above the United Nations, specializes in the food of two Anglophone nations, Ghana and Nigeria. Owner George Quainoo is from Ghana and chef Margarete Duncan grew up in Nigeria. From Ghana comes kenkey, a fermented cornmeal mash wrapped in corn husks, while Nigeria is responsible for suya, peanut-dusted beef kebabs. Sauces are the focus of most main courses here, including egusi made from greens and pumpkin seeds, and a novel peanut sauce that’s vegan. Pair them with rice or a mash for a full meal.

844 2nd Ave Enter through 45th Street Between 1st and, 2nd Ave
New York, NY 10017

10. B & B Restaurant

165 W 26th St, New York, NY 10001
An assortment from several countries
An assortment from several countries
Robert Sietsema/Eater

B & B is a steam-table buffet founded in 2009 in Chelsea that allows you to pick your own dishes, load them into a carryout container, and pay a very reasonable price by the pound. Typically, it offers dozens of recipes adapted from several West African and even North African and Middle Eastern countries. Sometimes African-American, Jamaican, and Haitian food is included as well. This sort of place can’t be beat for a taste of the West African diaspora, even though the quality and heat level vary.

165 W 26th St
New York, NY 10001

11. Green Garden Buffet

332 E 9th St, New York, NY 10003
Orangeish roast chicken, sweet potatoes, and chopped greens in a square cardboard box.
Roast chicken, yams, and collard greens
Robert Sietsema/Eater

Owner Tamika Gabaroum hails from Chad, and after two decades working for the United Nations, she started this small steam-table carryout in the East Village a few months ago. The food, which is mainly vegan, offers a good generic picture of African fare (the cook is from Kenya), without providing many dishes attributable to one country or another. Find okra, eggplant, collards, and yams in abundance and nicely seasoned, with the occasional fish or chicken dish.

332 E 9th St
New York, NY 10003

12. Africana

14612 Liberty Ave, Jamaica, NY 11435
Egusi and fufu
Egusi and fufu
Robert Sietsema/Eater

Africana is located in Jamaica, close enough to Kennedy to catch the traffic. Unlike neighboring Tropical Grill, Africana presents as a small cafe rather than a nightclub. The classic beans with dodo (fried plantains) makes a nice meal, with or without fried fish, or you might explore the multiple leaf- and seed-based sauces. They include egusi (made with melon seeds and looking something like scrambled eggs) and edikaikong (made with waterleaf and pumpkin). A range of mashes like fufu (white yam) and amala (cassava flour) are available to go with the sauces, known as “soups.” This is real homestyle Nigerian cooking.

14612 Liberty Ave
Jamaica, NY 11435

13. Teranga

445 Albee Square W, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Patrons line up at the counter at Teranga, while yellow menus hang above them Alex Staniloff/Eater

A decade ago Pierre Thiam operated a tiny Senegalese restaurant and jazz club in Clinton Hill; in the interim, he established a formal restaurant in Dakar and published a series of West African cookbooks. Now he presides over a pair of cafes in downtown Brooklyn and in Harlem (shown above) that have reformulated the collected cuisines of West Africa for contemporary tastes, concentrating on bowls and gluten-free items, with beer, wine, and cocktails added.

445 Albee Square W
Brooklyn, NY 11201

14. Joloff

1168 Bedford Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11216
Lamb chop dibi
Lamb chop dibi
Robert Sietsema/Eater

Joloff, which refers to a West African tribe (usually spelled Jollof) and its recipe for cooking rice, is also the name of one of the city’s oldest Senegalese restaurants. Founded in 1995 by the Diagne family, the restaurant combines Rasta elements with traditional Senegalese fare. Appetizers are rare in West African restaurants, but here you can enjoy fataya jeun (mackerel turnovers), boulettes jeun (fish balls), and nem legumes, which are spring rolls brought to Dakar by Vietnamese refugees in the 1950s. Main courses run to dibi (lamb chops) and yassa (chicken with mustard-flavored onions).

1168 Bedford Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11216

15. Buka

946 Fulton St, Brooklyn, NY 11238
Lamb suya dusted with peanut
Lamb suya dusted with peanut
Robert Sietsema/Eater

This rollicking 12-year-old Nigerian restaurant in Clinton Hill, founded by Lookman Mashood and Nat Goldberg, provides the best view of the unreconstructed national menu, with few adjustments to perceived American taste, from gluey cowfoot stew to rubbery land snails to fiery goat or fish pepper soup. The first-timer could do worse than a serving of beans and dodo (fried plantain) or boiled yam and egg, both tasty but relatively unspicy. The build-out is bistro style, and drinks include palm wine, which is definitely worth trying.

946 Fulton St
Brooklyn, NY 11238

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16. Le Baobab Gouygui #2

1235 Fulton St, Brooklyn, NY 11216
A white place with a mound of white rice on one side and a bowl with a brown chili-like dish.
Fish sulukhu
Robert Sietsema/Eater

Named after a tree sacred to many West Africans, said to have been planted with branches in the ground and roots pointing skyward, Le Baobab boasts two locations, this one in Bed-Stuy, the other in Harlem. All the mainstays of Senegalese cuisine are presented, plus a few lesser-known dishes, such as sulukhu, fish in a peanut-and-okra sauce. The lunch menu changes daily in weekly rotation, while the dinner menu remains constant, with an emphasis on French-Senegalese fare like broiled lamb chops and grilled whole fish.

1235 Fulton St
Brooklyn, NY 11216

17. Tropical Grill

15341 Rockaway Blvd, Jamaica, NY 11434
Goat pepper soup
Goat pepper soup
Robert Sietsema/Eater

Many Nigerian restaurants cluster in Jamaica, Queens, making them easy destinations for travelers coming to and from JFK. Owned by Abimbola Jawo, Tropical Grill affects a nightclub demeanor and is one of the few West African restaurants in town to offer a full bar. It also has a very long menu that reflects several styles of regional Nigerian cooking. From the north, it serves the peanut-dusted kebabs called suya and freshly made doughnuts whimsically called puff puff. The goat pepper soup shown is my favorite, laced with a West African spice called grains of paradise.

15341 Rockaway Blvd
Jamaica, NY 11434

Related Maps