Curious about what Ugandan food is like? In this Uganda Food Guide, you’ll learn about breakfast, lunch, and dinner – and sauces, desserts, and beverages from around the country – with 10 videos that include recipes and tips for preparing your own.
You’ll also learn about the three places to try local food.
Uganda Food Guide: 17 Must Try Dishes
Uganda is like a treasure chest. The more you dig into this country’s many offerings, the more impressed you become with its many hidden gems.
Uganda cuisine is one of these jewels that deepens your appreciation of this beautiful country.
While various Ugandan tribes sport their own specialty dishes, Uganda food consists overall of starchy staples like potatoes, beans, and cornmeal mixtures.
Greens, plantains, bananas, sweet potatoes, cassava, and peanuts are also a major part of the Ugandan diet.
If you are planning to travel to Uganda, you must try some or all of the following 17 Uganda dishes.
1. Luwombo (or Oluwombo)
If you want to experience a true, classic Uganda food dish, you should try luwombo.
This dish is believed to have been created by the personal chef of King Kabaka Mwanga of the Buganda Kingdom in the late 19th century and is a favorite among both royalty and common folk.
This traditional Ugandan stew consists of chicken, beef, or fish that is steamed with vegetables such as carrots, potatoes, and mushrooms along with peanut (g-nut) sauce in wrapped plantains.
Luwombo is one of those nice, hearty dishes that hit the spot and make you feel all warm and full inside.
Posho is one of those dishes that makes your food stick to your ribs and helps you feel full for a long time.
Sometimes called ugali, posho is simply fine, white corn flour that is thoroughly mixed with boiling water until it stiffens into a smooth, doughy consistency.
You may think this is a bland Uganda food, but when you eat it with other dishes like soups and beans, it enriches the overall meal and leaves you feeling satisfied.
Muchomo is derived from a Swahili word that means “roasted meat.” Muchomo is a tasty Uganda food that includes various meats ranging from chicken to pork, goat, and sometimes beef.
You’ll find these meat portions barbecued on a stick and served at roadside stalls, markets, and restaurants, often accompanied by roasted sweet plantains (known as gonja).
In Mexico, they have corn tortillas. In the U.S., they have biscuits or cornbread, and in France, they often have croissants.
Every culture around the world has its one bread staple that they eat with everything. In Uganda, that bread staple is chapati.
Made with wheat flour, baking powder, salt and water, chapatis are then rolled out into a pastry crust and often fried in a small amount of oil to thicken them.
Once cooked, you can do all sorts of things with chapatis. You can eat them alone or with beans or soup, or even with tea.
You can also use them as a wrap to hold minced meat and vegetables inside.
You know you can’t leave Uganda without trying out its national dish. Matoke (sometimes spelled matooke) is a banana variety that is considered more of a plantain.
Ugandans love to take the green, unripe ones and steam them while still unpeeled.
However, sometimes the plantains are peeled and then steamed. The plantains are then mashed and eaten. Occasionally, matoke is fried with tomatoes and onions.
An Indian-influenced alternative to matoke is making the fruit into a curry and adding spices to it.
And here’s how to make matoke in peanut sauce.
If you eat a traditional breakfast like the Ugandans, you probably won’t need to eat much else for the rest of the day.
In Uganda, katogo starts your day off with a hearty portion of fried plantains served with soup, beans, beef and vegetables.
Some people may prepare this Uganda food with variations that include Irish potatoes, greens, cassava, sweet potatoes, or viscera from goats, chicken or cows.