Nigerian Akara (Accara/Acaraje): Black Eyed Pea Fritters

Nigerian Akara (Accara/Acaraje) are tasty fried black eyed pea fritters/bean fritters that can be served alone or with a side of of starch (like pap, garri, custard or porridge) with a kaani dip or in a burger.

Nigerian Akara Recipe (Accara/Acaraje): Black Eyed Pea Fritters - Akara fresh from fryer

The other day I shared my recipe for Moi moi, and if you recall, I said that Moi moi was one of my favorites, but that I had other dishes that were also on my favorite list. Akara (also known as Accara or Acaraje) is another favorite of mine and is quite easy to make. Nigerian Akara is one of the most common breakfast staples in Nigerian homes and a very popular street snack as well. You will commonly find this black eyed pea/bean fritters delicacy sold by street sellers on its own or as part of what is locally called “Akara burger”, where a local bread favorite called “agege bread” (so called due to its popularity in the streets of Agege Lagos, Nigeria) is stuffed with several pieces of akara resulting in an amazing snack somewhat similar to a falafel burger (but much better in my obviously biased opinion!). In this Nigerian Akara recipe, I show how to easily make the fluffiest, most delicious black eyed pea fritters (or bean fritters to my fellow Nigerians who also make them with brown or honey beans) and use them in my own elevated akara burger recipe.

Akara is also quite popular in the West African region in places like Ghana and Senegal where bean fritters might go by the name “Accara” and is also enjoyed in Brazil where West African migrants call it Acaraje with theirs commonly stuffed with shrimp. In Senegal, it is very common to serve Accara with a side of kaani sauce: a spicy, tomato-based sauce usually used for dipping (which I also used as a side in this recipe for variety). Nigerian Akara is similar to Moi moi, but unlike Moi moi that is usually steamed or baked, Akara are fried black eyed pea fritters. The texture and taste of Akara and Moi moi are worlds apart, but they use very similar ingredients.

Nigerian Akara Recipe (Accara/Acaraje): Black Eyed Pea Fritters - 3 bean fritters in foreground with kaani dipping sauce and bundle in the back Nigerian Akara Recipe (Accara/Acaraje): Black Eyed Pea Fritters - side shot with spicy tomato sauce

5 from 5 votes
Nigerian Akara Recipe (Accara/Acaraje): Black Eyed Pea Fritters - Akara with spicy dipping sauce top shot
Nigerian Akara Recipe (Accara/Acaraje): Black Eyed Pea Fritters
Prep Time
5 hrs
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
5 hrs 30 mins

Nigerian Akara/Accara/Acaraje are tasty fried black eyed pea fritters that can be served alone or with a side of pap, garri, custard, porridge or even in a burger.

Cuisine: West African
Servings: 30 -32 pieces
Calories: 220 kcal
Author: Yummy Medley
  • 1.5 cups black eyed peas
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 2 scotch bonnet/ habanero peppers
  • 3 tsp vegetable bouillon
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil for deep frying
  1. First of all, start by skinning the beans. Simply soak the beans in water for 3 minutes. After about 3 minutes, the skin of the beans should start wrinkling a little bit. Place the beans in a food processor, with some water, just enough to cover it. Pulse the food processor about 5-6 times to agitate the beans. This process breaks the beans up and separates the skins off the beans. Be careful, some water might splash out of the processor while pulsing the beans.
  2. Pour the skinned beans in a bowl. Rinse several times to separate the beans from the skins, draining the skins with the water with each rinse. The skins should come off easily because the skins are lighter and should float to the top.
  3. Once the beans are clean, soak them in water for at least 4 hours or overnight.
  4. After the beans have soaked, drain the water that they have been soaking in, and rinse the beans one more time.
  5. Using a mortar and pestle or a food processor, grind the scotch bonnet peppers to a rough paste and set aside.
  6. Blend the beans and the onions with 1/2 a cup of water until it is completely smooth.
  7. The texture should be similar to that of a thick muffin batter.
  8. Heat up oil for deep frying in a pan up to 375°F while prepping the akara batter.
  9. Add the salt, bullion, and scotch bonnet peppers to the bean batter, mixing continuously for five minutes to in-cooperate air into the batter.
  10. With a large spoon, drop the akara batter a spoonful at a time into the hot oil to fry. Fry for 3-5 minutes on each side until it is golden brown both sides, take out of the frying oil and place into a colander or on paper towels to drain.
  11. Serve hot!

Nigerian Akara Recipe (Accara/Acaraje): Black Eyed Pea Fritters - Akara with spicy dipping sauce top shot

Akara/Accara/Acaraje can be served by itself, with a side of pap (a fermented corn based porridge also called ‘akamu’), eaten with cold soaked garri (finely ground cassava flakes soaked in cold water) as a side dish (as my hubby likes to have it for some reason), custard, porridge oats or in my new favorite way: as a burger. To assemble the akara burger simply place the fried bean fritters between your favorite buns ( instead of the usual agege bread, I used my own homemade Ghana sweet bread buns), and top with your favorite burger toppings. I topped my burger with caramelized onions, sprouts, and tomatoes.

Nigerian Akara Recipe (Accara/Acaraje): Black Eyed Pea Fritters - 3 delicious Akara burgers Nigerian Akara Recipe (Accara/Acaraje): Black Eyed Pea Fritters - 3 Akara burgers with hand picking tomato in the background

Let me know if you enjoyed this Nigerian Akara recipe! And if you are looking for another delicious beans recipe, why not check out my Nigerian Beans porridge recipe?


  1. Osaze

    September 5, 2017 at 6:42 pm

    This was my favorite breakfast growing up! This recipe makes me want to be a child again 🙂. Amazing photography xxx

    • Ms. Yum

      September 6, 2017 at 10:48 am

      Thanks Osaze! You should try the recipe yourself!

  2. Sunshine

    September 9, 2017 at 8:18 pm

    Your pictures are topnotch.
    I remember trying this at home. Need to try this again.

    • Ms. Yum

      September 11, 2017 at 9:50 am

      Thank you Sunshine! You definitely should give it a try.

  3. Sues

    December 14, 2017 at 10:04 am

    These would be great for New Year’s Eve, to bring luck in the new year!

  4. Sara

    December 14, 2017 at 6:15 pm

    Oh! These look awesome! I have to try this recipe!

    • Lois

      December 15, 2017 at 10:36 am

      I hope you like it when you do!

  5. Julia

    December 15, 2017 at 10:42 am

    I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be able to stop eating these. They sound absolutely scrumptious with the addition of the hot peppers. Oh, and the photos are really pretty!

    • Lois

      December 20, 2017 at 8:56 am

      Thank you kindly Julia!

  6. Helene

    December 16, 2017 at 8:39 am

    I saw those babies earlier on Pinterest and thought how gorgeous they look. They kind of reminds me of something that I had in india. I would like to try akara sometime. 🙂

    • Lois

      December 20, 2017 at 8:58 am

      I think I might know what Indian dish you are referring to Helene.

  7. Tina

    December 16, 2017 at 9:40 am

    This sounds great! In Texas we ate a lot of black eyed peas. Our growing climate I think is similar to Nigeria. We grow amaranth and okra too!

    • Lois

      December 20, 2017 at 8:59 am

      The climate in Texas is a little similar Tina. And there is a big Nigerian community in Texas so I am not surprised that there will be a demand for those ingredients. That is really cool!

  8. Marisa Franca @ All Our Way

    December 17, 2017 at 10:53 am

    I bet the scotch bonnets give a nice kick to your fritters. I’d love to try them. I really like ordering new tastes and cuisines when we eat out. This recipe certainly looks easy.

    • Lois

      December 20, 2017 at 9:01 am

      It really is easy to make Marisa. The scotch bonnets add more flavor than spice to the dish honestly, I might be biased cos I eat a ton of spicy foods… lol! If you try it I will say use a little at a time.

  9. prasanna hede

    December 17, 2017 at 11:40 am

    I love fritters,but the way I am used to making them is so different than yours.Will definitely try them out.

    • Lois

      December 20, 2017 at 9:02 am

      I am sure you are going to love them!

  10. Saima Zaidi

    December 17, 2017 at 1:09 pm

    These look really interesting especially in between the burger bun!

  11. Citra Kale

    December 17, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    İt looks scrumptious snack for me. And it’s wonderful we can pair it with burger buns..sound perfect brunch.

  12. Jessica (Swanky Recipes)

    December 17, 2017 at 6:52 pm

    This time of year, we make black pea and cabbage soup. This year, I might just have to try this recipe as it looks incredibly tasty!

    • Lois

      December 20, 2017 at 8:55 am

      I hope you try it! It is a delicious departure from regular black eyed peas

  13. Christine

    December 17, 2017 at 8:00 pm

    Love black eyed peas, so I think I would love these! I’ve never had Akara, but it looks delicious. Yum!

  14. Jillian

    December 17, 2017 at 10:46 pm

    I love spicy foods and this looks amazing. I have never tried making a fritter with black eyed peas or habaneros.

  15. Amanda @ Cookie Named Desire

    December 18, 2017 at 9:52 pm

    I used to live with someone from Ghana, but he never made these and now I am really angry at him because these look amazing. I also really love these photos!!!

    • Lois

      December 20, 2017 at 8:53 am

      You should be angry with him honestly cos he deprived you… lol! Well now you can make it on your own and let him know.

  16. Sebastian Wahl

    December 22, 2017 at 11:49 am

    Wole soyinka favorite breakfast food. I have always wanted to try. The Ghana buns are amazing. Want to try the Brazilian version that I think is eaten with some sort of coconut cashew and shrimp paste. Also can you put dried crayfish into akara? I will be going to local African market soon. Recently purchased both of Pierre tham’s Senegalese cookbooks.

    • Lois. O

      December 26, 2017 at 10:27 pm

      You can definitely put dried catfish into Akara. It is not done traditionally, but you certainly do not have to be traditional when making yours


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Food Blog Theme from Nimbus
Powered by WordPress