Welcome to a culinary journey through the heart of Central Africa, where flavors are as vibrant as the cultures that thrive within this rich land. In the Central African Republic, food isn't merely sustenance; it's a celebration of community, tradition, and the abundant natural resources that bless the region. Amongst the myriad of dishes that grace the tables of Central African homes, Gombo stands as a testament to the ingenuity of its people, blending indigenous ingredients with a hint of French influence to create a dish that tantalizes the taste buds and warms the soul.

Join us as we uncover the secrets of Gombo, a beloved traditional dish that embodies the essence of Central African cuisine. From the bustling markets of Bangui to the remote villages nestled within verdant landscapes, Gombo unites families and friends in a culinary embrace, offering a taste of tradition passed down through generations. So, gather your ingredients, prepare your pot, and let's embark on a culinary adventure to discover the authentic flavors of Central Africa through the enchanting dish of Gombo.


  • 500g okra (fresh or frozen), sliced
  • 500g meat or fish (chicken, beef, or fish fillets), cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 3 tomatoes, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter (optional, for added richness)
  • 2 tablespoons palm oil or vegetable oil
  • 1 liter water or chicken/fish stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Hot pepper or chili flakes (optional, for heat)
  • Cooked rice or fufu, for serving


Prepare the Meat or Fish:

1- Season the meat or fish with salt and pepper according to your taste preferences.

2- In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the palm oil or vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the seasoned meat or fish and brown them on all sides. Once browned, remove them from the pot and set aside.

Sauté Aromatics:

1- In the same pot, add the chopped onions and minced garlic. Sauté until the onions are translucent and fragrant, about 3-4 minutes.

2- Stir in the diced tomatoes and cook until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes.

Add Okra and Flavorings:

1- Add the sliced okra to the pot and stir well to combine with the onion and tomato mixture.

2- Dilute the tomato paste in a little water and pour it into the pot, stirring to incorporate.

3- If using peanut butter, add it to the pot at this stage and stir until it melts and blends with the other ingredients.


1- Return the browned meat or fish to the pot.

2- Pour in the water or stock, ensuring that the ingredients are well submerged.

3- Season with salt, pepper, and hot pepper or chili flakes if desired, adjusting the seasoning to your taste.

4- Bring the mixture to a gentle boil, then reduce the heat to low and let it simmer uncovered for about 30-40 minutes, or until the okra is tender and the flavors have melded together.


1- Once the Gombo is ready, taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

2- Serve hot with cooked rice or fufu, allowing the flavors to mingle and create a satisfyingly authentic Central African dining experience.

Enjoy your Central African Gombo, a dish that beautifully captures the essence of Central African culinary heritage!

Nutritional Values:

Providing precise nutritional values for recipes can be challenging due to variations in ingredients, cooking methods, and portion sizes. However, I can offer approximate nutritional information for some of the key ingredients commonly used in Central African Gombo:

Okra (100g, raw):

  • Calories: 33 kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 7.5g
  • Fiber: 3.2g
  • Protein: 1.9g
  • Fat: 0.2g
  • Vitamins and minerals: Okra is a good source of vitamin C, vitamin K, and folate.


  • Rich in dietary fiber, which aids digestion and promotes bowel regularity.
  • High in vitamin C, an antioxidant that boosts the immune system and promotes skin health.
  • Contains vitamin K, important for bone health and blood clotting.

Chicken Breast (100g, cooked, skinless):

  • Calories: 165 kcal
  • Protein: 31g
  • Fat: 3.6g
  • Carbohydrates: 0g
  • Vitamins and minerals: Chicken breast is rich in protein and contains various vitamins and minerals, including niacin, vitamin B6, phosphorus, and selenium.


  • Excellent source of lean protein, essential for muscle repair and growth.
  • Low in fat and calories compared to other cuts of meat.
  • Contains vitamins and minerals such as niacin, vitamin B6, phosphorus, and selenium.

Beef (100g, cooked, lean cut):

  • Calories: 250 kcal
  • Protein: 25g
  • Fat: 16g
  • Carbohydrates: 0g
  • Vitamins and minerals: Beef is a good source of protein, iron, zinc, and vitamin B12.


  • High-quality protein source, vital for muscle development and repair.
  • Rich in iron, which helps transport oxygen in the blood and prevents anemia.
  • Contains zinc, necessary for immune function, wound healing, and DNA synthesis.

Fish (100g, cooked, various types like tilapia, catfish, etc.):

  • Calories: 100-150 kcal (depending on the type of fish)
  • Protein: 20-25g
  • Fat: 2-5g
  • Carbohydrates: 0g
  • Vitamins and minerals: Fish is rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids, and it also contains various vitamins and minerals such as vitamin D, vitamin B12, iodine, and selenium.


  • Good source of protein, important for muscle growth and repair.
  • Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which support heart health, brain function, and reduce inflammation.
  • Provides essential vitamins and minerals such as vitamin D, vitamin B12, iodine, and selenium.

Peanut Butter (100g, smooth, unsalted):

  • Calories: 588 kcal
  • Protein: 25g
  • Fat: 50g
  • Carbohydrates: 20g
  • Fiber: 6g
  • Vitamins and minerals: Peanut butter is a good source of protein, healthy fats, vitamin E, magnesium, and potassium.


  • Excellent source of plant-based protein, beneficial for muscle repair and growth.
  • High in healthy fats, including monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which support heart health.
  • Rich in vitamin E, an antioxidant that protects cells from damage and supports skin health.
  • Contains magnesium and potassium, important for nerve function, muscle contraction, and maintaining fluid balance.

Please note that these values are approximate and can vary based on factors such as specific brands, cooking methods, and portion sizes. Additionally, the nutritional values for the entire dish would depend on the quantities of each ingredient used and any additional ingredients or seasonings incorporated in the recipe.


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