27 Delicious African Dessert Recipes You Need To Try

Quick Answer: What Are African Dessert Recipes To Know?

The African Dessert Recipes to know are all about the sweet, fruity, and mouthwatering flavors that come with many of the recipes. The recipes range from traditional recipes to more contemporary dishes. There are also savory dishes made from rice, bread, and vegetables. The recipes can vary in the type of ingredients used, and the flavors vary depending on what is available.

Africa is a large continent rich with diverse cultures and peoples, so when it comes to African Dessert Recipes to pair with your meals, you can be sure there’s going to be a slew of different sumptuous desserts that will have you asking for more.

From decadent and flaky pastries to sweet desserts to satisfy your sweet tooth, African Dessert Recipes have something for everyone.

So whether you’re looking for a new delicious treat to change your palate or for unique desserts to serve at your next party, you’ll find some of the best African Dessert Recipes in this article.

Quick Table: 27 Delicious African Dessert Recipes

RecipesCalories Per ServingPreparation Time
South African Trifle33430 Minutes
Almond Ghriba10447 Minutes
Kunafa2601 Hour 15 Minutes
Caramelized Peanut Bars (Nkate)22055 Minutes
Samsa26230 Minutes
Moroccan Orange Cake (Meskouta)27955 Minutes
Puff-Puff2092 Hours 10 Minutes
Bread Pudding (Om Ali)30620 Minutes
Malva Pudding29555 Minutes
Algerian Sables20955 Minutes
Moroccan Honey Sesame Cookies (Halwa Chebakia)1443 Hours
Koeksister11250 Minutes
Mauritian Polenta Pudding804 Hours 25 Minutes
Vinegar Pudding (Asynpoeding)10731 Hour 30 Minutes
Halwa4691 Hour 30 Minutes
Coconut Balls (Kube)3523 Hour
Semolina Pudding (Kuindlong)801 Hour 30 Minutes
Couscous Pudding (Caakiri)44420 Minutes
Sellou3071 Hour 30 Minutes
Tunisian Baklava8655 Minutes
Fried Banana Dessert19820 Minutes
Libyan Watermelon (Batikh)455 Minutes
Algerian Fruit Salad17425 Minutes
South African Milk Tart (Melktart)2942 Hours
Zimbabwe Candy Cake (Chikenduza)1602 Hours 15 Minutes
Mauritian Caramel Flan1903 Hours
Peppermint Crisp Tart18630 Minutes

27 Delicious African Dessert Recipes You Need To Try

27 Delicious African Dessert Recipes You Need To Try

The African Dessert Recipes to know are all about the sweet, fruity, and mouthwatering flavors that come with many of the recipes. The recipes range from traditional recipes to more contemporary dishes. There are also savory dishes made from rice, bread, and vegetables. The recipes can vary in the type of ingredients used, and the flavors vary depending on what is available.


  • South African Trifle
  • Almond Ghriba
  • Kunafa
  • Caramelized Peanut Bars (Nkate)
  • Samsa
  • Moroccan Orange Cake (Meskouta)
  • Puff-Puff
  • Bread Pudding (Om Ali)
  • Malva Pudding
  • Algerian Sables
  • Moroccan Honey Sesame Cookies (Halwa Chebakia)
  • Koeksister
  • Mauritian Polenta Pudding
  • Vinegar Pudding (Asynpoeding)
  • Halwa
  • Coconut Balls (Kube)
  • Semolina Pudding (Kuindlong)
  • Couscous Pudding (Caakiri)
  • Sellou
  • Tunisian Baklava
  • Fried Banana Dessert
  • Libyan Watermelon (Batikh)
  • Algerian Fruit Salad
  • South African Milk Tart (Melktart)
  • Zimbabwe Candy Cake (Chikenduza)
  • Peppermint Crisp Tart

1. South African Trifle

Have you ever had those days where you crave a dessert loaded with everything? The South African Dessert trifle is here to satisfy your cravings.

It is a no-bake dessert that consists of layers of different items like boudoir biscuits, cream liquor, jelly, fruits, caramel treat, fresh cream, and chopped nuts. 

This recipe doesn’t require any baking, meaning it’s practically impossible to mess up. So, this African Dessert Recipes is perfect for you if you’re a newbie in the kitchen or just not a fan of baking.

Calories Per Serving: 334

Preparation Time: 30 Minutes

2. Almond Ghriba

Anyone with gluten intolerance knows how hard it can be to find a gluten-free dessert that tastes good.

However, this Moroccan almond ghriba taste is a delicious gluten-free take on the traditional Moroccan cookie often made during holidays.

These nut-based cookies are baked from a mixture of almond flour, butter, sugar, preserved lemon, and eggs and then topped and coated with whole almonds and powdered sugar.

They have a crunchy and cracked texture on the outside but are very chewy and soft on the inside that you won’t be able to resist.

Calories Per Serving: 104

Preparation Time: 47 Minutes

3. Kunafa

Kunafa is honestly one of the most amazing sweet and savory desserts we’ve ever tried.

Phylo kunafa dough is shredded and combined with melted ghee and then topped with creamy milk pudding and cheese before being baked to perfection.

 After baking, it is best to drizzle a sugary syrup over the kunafa to create the perfect flaky and creamy dessert with the right balance of sweet and savory flavors.

This recipe might require a trip to your local middle eastern store as some of the ingredients, like kunafa dough, might be hard to find at your local grocery store. Still, after tasting this dish’s deliciousness, the trip will be well worth it.

Calories Per Serving: 260

Preparation Time: 1 Hour 15 Minutes

 4. Caramelized Peanut Bars (Nkate)

For all thepeanut lovers, these central African peanut bars are the perfect dessert you can eat without stressing about calories.

Oven roasted peanuts are crushed and caramelized in a sugary syrup made of lemon, water, and sugar. These little peanut squares are crunchy and eaten as snacks throughout the day.

However, they are so delicious and super addictive, so proceed with caution or go nuts and indulge your sweet tooth.

Calories Per Serving: 220

Preparation Time: 55 Minutes

5. Samsa

Not to be confused with the savory Indian samosa, Samsas are sweet pastry triangles stuffed with roasted nuts. They are popular in Tunisia and are often served during Ramadan and Eid holidays.

A smooth paste made from almond powder, hazelnut powder, honey, sesame paste, geranium water, and icing sugar is filled into puff pastry sheets and baked until the exterior is golden brown and flaky.

To add some more crunch to the texture, don’t hesitate to sprinkle generous amounts of sesame and almonds over the samsa after soaking them in a sugary syrup.

Calories Per Serving: 262

Preparation Time: 30 Minutes

6. Moroccan Orange Cake (Meskouta)

Meskouta is the perfect dessert to try when you need a soft spongy cake. The best part is that it is easy to put together and doesn’t require too many ingredients or steps.

Flour butter, eggs, sugar, orange juice, vanilla extract, and orange zest are whipped together and baked till golden brown to create a moist citrus cake that is so delicious on its own that no additional icing or cream is required.

Don’t hesitate to top the cake with orange slices after baking for an extra citrus flavor.

Calories Per Serving: 279

Preparation Time: 55 Minutes

7. Puff-Puff

With a fun name like puff-puff, you can be sure that this Nigerian dessert will have your taste buds tingling with deliciousness.

These little fried dough balls are like the easier yet equally delicious African cousins of beignets. 

They only require a well-combined mixture of flour, yeast, salt, nutmeg, and water that is then deep fried into small puffs with a crispy exterior and soft insides.

If you don’t mind the extra sweetness, you can elevate the taste of your puff-puff by dusting it with powdered sugar after frying.

Calories Per Serving: 209

Preparation Time: 2 Hours 10 Minutes

8. Bread Pudding (Om Ali)

A  pudding with a lot of history and story behind it. This classic Egyptian bread pudding is one of the best ways to incorporate a nutty and milkier texture into the traditional bread pudding you might be familiar with.

Palmier’s pastry bread is baked with a combination of sugar, whipping cream, and milk until golden brown and then topped with delicious nuts like pistachios and hazel nuts

If you’re looking for a dessert that is easy to whip up with a few basic ingredients, this is definitely the recipe for you.

Calories Per Serving: 306

Preparation Time: 20 Minutes

9. Malva Pudding

This South African pudding is probably one of the most popular desserts in the country, and after one bite of this creamy pudding, you’ll understand why it’s so loved.

Unlike the name implies, malva pudding is a super soft apricot-flavored cake that is soaked in a rich sauce made from butter, heavy cream, milk, and sugar.

It is a moist and delicious cake pudding with a perfectly caramelized exterior and an incredible syrupy cream liquid oozing out of the interior with every bite.

Calories Per Serving: 295

Preparation Time: 55 Minutes

10. Algerian Sables

These jam-filled cookies are the Algerian twist on the popular french sables. They are delicious treats you’ll find served in most Algerian cities.

Buttery vanilla cookies are cut and shaped into round shaped and baked. They are then filled with apricot jam and assembled into uniquely shaped sandwich cookies.

Although they are desserts, these cookies can also be enjoyed with tea as a snack, so don’t hesitate to incorporate them into your tea-time snacks as well.

Calories Per Serving: 209

Preparation Time: 55 Minutes

11. Moroccan Honey Sesame Cookies (Halwa Chebakia)

These sesame cookies are mostly served during Ramadan in Morocco and are the ideal dessert to make if you have a fancy party or event coming up. 

They are crispy and flavor-packed cookies made from a dough of flour, turmeric, yeast, egg, sesame seed, cinnamon, star anise, saffron, and olive oil. 

The dough is cut and shaped into a rose-like cookie before being fried, so this recipe might take a bit of time and creative effort, but the end result will be well with it. 

After frying, be sure to soak the cookies in a generous amount of orange-flavored honey syrup traditionally paired with these beautiful cookies.

Calories Per Serving: 144

Preparation Time: 3 Hours

12. Koeksister

If you want a dessert that is both pretty to look at and eat, these fried South African pastry braids are perfect for you. 

The dough is made from canola oil, flour, milk, salt, and butter, combined well, and then braided into the desired length of koeksister strips before deep-fried to a golden brown.

What makes these braided pastry strips even better is the sugary syrup they are soaked in after frying. 

They are the perfect dessert to serve at parties or bring to picnics if you want to show off your culinary skills.

Calories Per Serving: 112

Preparation Time: 50 Minutes

13. Mauritian Polenta Pudding

If you’re looking for a dessert that isn’t too sweet and has a rich flavor, this cornmeal-based pudding is perfect for you. It is a popular dessert in Mauritius, served in most households and sold in street shops.

Polenta is cooked with cardamon, sultanas, milk, brown sugar, and vanilla essence.

The thick creamy is then topped with coconut flakes and almonds and refrigerated to form a slightly sweet and refreshing pudding that can be enjoyed on hot days.

Calories Per Serving: 80

Preparation Time: 4 Hours 25 Minutes

14. Vinegar Pudding (Asynpoeding)

This South African vinegar is another creamy and thick dessert you can make without much hassle.

A lovely combination of flour, butter, vinegar, apricot jam, sugar, and eggs is whipped and baked into a soft brown pudding, then drizzled with poached apricot syrup.

It might seem unconventional for a dessert, but the vinegar in the pudding adds an acidic undertone of flavor that helps to balance the sweetness of the dish and makes it even more delicious.

Calories Per Serving: 1073

Preparation Time: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

15. Halwa

This Somali jelly-like dessert is a typical treat served at weddings and holiday parties.

It is sticky and sweet jelly made from cornstarch and incorporated with many spices like cardamom, nutmeg, ghee, and sugar for a lovely aroma that oozes delicious even while you’re making it.

You’ll need a bit of time and patience to make this recipe, as the halwa needs time to set and meld well with the spices, but you’ll be super satisfied with the delicious treat afterward.

Calories Per Serving: 469

Preparation Time: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

16. Coconut Balls (Kube)

These tasty coconut balls are popular all over West Africa. They’re seriously the most delicious way to enjoy coconut shaving. 

Coconut fruit is shredded and caramelized with a sweet syrup made of sugar, water, and lemon. The mixture is shaped into small round balls that set into a crunchy treat. The best part is you can eat it at any time of the day.

Calories Per Serving: 352 

Preparation Time: 3 Hours

 17. Semolina Pudding (Kuindlong)

As you can probably tell by now, pudding is a typical dessert in Africa. This South Sudanese pudding is another delicious one with a smooth buttery texture that melts in the mouth. 

It is an easy-to-make pudding that consists of a cooked combo of semolina, milk, sugar, and greek yogurt. The pudding is also topped with a rich buttery crumble-like sauce made of ghee(butter) and yogurt.

Calories Per Serving: 80

Preparation Time: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

18. Sellou

A delicious and beautifully shaped dessert, these Moroccan roasted flour treats are one of the easiest desserts to make. The steps involved are simple enough to be completed by even the most amateur cook. 

Flour is roasted in the oven and combined with cinnamon, toasted almond, sesame, and star anise powder. The mixture is sweetened with a generous amount of honey and mixed with melted butter before being shaped into little cones.

Calories Per Serving: 444

Preparation Time: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

19. Couscous Pudding (Caakiri)

Need a tangy dessert that is both sweet and filling? Then South Sudanese couscous pudding might just be what you’re looking for.

Cooked couscous is combined with milk, yogurt, sugar, pineapple, sour cream, and nutmeg to create this rich pudding that will please all who taste it. 

If you’re a fan of rice pudding, you’ll definitely love this less grainy version.

Calories Per Serving: 307

Preparation Time: 7 Minutes

20. Tunisian Baklava

Baklava is famous all around the Mediterranean, but these Tunisian versions are tough to resist.

Thin layers of phyllo dough are stuffed with a mixture of walnuts, pistachios, hazelnuts, and sugar before being baked into a light, flaky pastry.

Baklava is drizzled with a sugary citrus-flavored syrup to add a shine and sweetness to the exterior.

Calories Per Serving: 86 

Preparation Time: 55 Minutes

21. Fried Banana Dessert

Got a few soft bananas lying around your kitchen and not sure what to do with them? These Gabon fried banana desserts might be the perfect way to use those old bananas.

Ripe bananas are soaked in eggs and breaded before being fried to a crispy golden brown color. 

They are served with sour cream for the perfect balance of tart and sweetness.

Calories Per Serving: 198

Preparation Time: 20 Minutes

22. Libyan Watermelon (Batikh)

This is a fruity dessert that is easy to make. In Libya, it is served during the summertime, and the sweet and savory flavor will definitely make you reach for more.

Watermelon slices are garnished with black olives and then drizzled with date syrup to further sweeten the fruit’s juice.

It is really easy to make and only requires a few steps.

Calories Per Serving: 45

Preparation Time: 5 Minutes

23. Algerian Fruit Salad

This is another refreshing fruit-based dessert that can be enjoyed during the warmer months.

A selection of seasonal fruits is mixed with lemon, orange juice, sugar, and cinnamon for a sweet and citrus-flavored salad that tastes amazing when served cold. 

The best thing about this salad is that it consists of healthy fruits, so you can enjoy it whenever you want.

Calories Per Serving: 174

Preparation Time: 25 Minutes

24. South African Milk Tart (Melktart)

This creamy, decadent milk tart is a great dessert to try if you’re looking for something with a smooth consistency that will delight everyone. 

This recipe requires a tart shell that can easily be bought at the store, or you can opt for a homemade tart crust made from flour, butter, sugar, and eggs.

Either way, the final result will taste incredible when filled with milk and egg-based filling.

Calories Per Serving: 294

Preparation Time: 2 Hours

25. Zimbabwe Candy Cake (Chikenduza)

If you’d like to try a colorful cake you can serve at birthday parties, this zimbabwe candy cake is the perfect dessert. 

These yeast-based cakes are baked until they rise into thick, crumbly cakes glazed with arguably one of the most easily prepared pink icing made from water, icing sugar, and food coloring.

They are bright and eye-catching desserts that will get a lot of love from kids.

Calories Per Serving: 160

Preparation Time: 2 Hours 15 Minutes

26. Mauritian Caramel Flan

If you’re a flan lover, then this Mauritian caramel version will surely delight your taste buds.

The tasty flan dish is made from a well-blended and baked mixture of milk, custard powder, vanilla, and sugar. It is then topped with lovely caramel syrup.

Calories Per Serving: 190

Preparation Time: 3 Hours

27. Peppermint Crisp Tart

This is a delicious flavor-packed that is no doubt a national treasure in South Africa.

It is a refreshing layered dessert that consists of whipped cream, peppermint chocolate, peppermint essence, and crumbled cookies for an added crunch.

Once refrigerated, it is the perfect sweet treat to cool down with in the warmer month.

Calories Per Serving: 186

Preparation Time: 30 Minutes

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is The Most Popular Dessert In Africa?

Africa is a big continent with many different countries, so it can be difficult to say what the most popular dessert is. You might get a different answer depending on what country you go to and whom you ask.

In South Africa, malva pudding is undoubtedly the most popular dessert. While in western Africa, puff-puff is the most popular dessert.

If you visit Morocco or Algeria, baklava is the most popular dessert. Each country in Africa has its famous dessert.

Is African Food Healthy?

African food is very healthy and contains a wide variety of leafy greens and vegetables.

Although most meals on the continent are carbohydrate-based, they are often combined or paired with sauces and soups made from healthy fruits and vegetables.

Like any other diet, African food is rich in nutrients and has many low and high-calorie options. However, it ultimately depends on what meals you choose and how you prepare them to make a healthy balanced diet. 

What Is A Typical African Breakfast?

A typical African breakfast will vary depending on what region you are. However, the most common breakfast in most areas includes bread and traditional flatbread, often eaten with sauces and tea.

In many regions, grit-like porridges made from corn and millets, cooked plantains, yams, and cassava are also eaten with eggs or savory sauces.

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