In My Recipes


So this is a bit of a weird post for me.  This is one of the dishes in African culture that you learn through observation – as with most of our dishes – and not through a recipe. In South Africa, we call it ‘pap’. It’s the same dish, and is cooked in the same or similar fashion, but I find the texture significantly more dense, which is why I prefer how it’s made in Zimbabwe. I made it this Saturday and it’s perfect for the cold winter season we are approaching but they have it every day, all day in Zimbabwe! Allow me to share how I cook sadza.

This particular recipe serves 4 adults but it’s light – we don’t do big portions in my family.  I think the small quantities are fine for someone who is trying it out for the first time – that way, if you get it wrong you don’t waste too much. Here goes!


5 cups of water

3 cups of mealie-meal


1.   Make a paste with 2 cups of water and 2 cups of mealie-meal.

2. Bring the rest of the water to the boil in a pot, on the stove.

3. Add paste to the water, stir and cook until thick and translucent (like porridge)

4. Reduce heat and add the last cup of mealie meal in bits and fold into the porridge each time. You don’t have to add all of the mealie-meal in. Stop once its the texture that you like.

5. Continue cooking, for 15-20 minutes on very low heat, stirring in between.

6. Serve and eat with leafy greens and a relish.

Try it and let me know how it went! I can never manage to cook this for big crowds. 4/5 people is enough, otherwise I stuff out. Let me know how it goes for you.  Maybe you can try it for your family or a ladies get-together!


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  1. MumJess
    7 years ago

    Interesting to read the recipe of sadza so well written…loved it and will try it?

    1. Phumza Marumo
      7 years ago

      Thanks for reading! Isn’t it strange that we still choose to teach solely through demonstration and words and not through documentation? Anyway, i’m doing my best to change it.

  2. Ruvimbo
    5 years ago

    Just tried it but it ddnt come out so well.The people I served were saying in venecular “harina kukwata”😏😏😏

    1. Phumza Marumo
      5 years ago

      Lol! Did you do step 3 and theeen step 5 which would put your cooking time to 45min to an hour?

  3. Phumza Marumo
    5 years ago

    […] and toasted sandwiches whilst the kids had hot dogs and juice. This African mama had packed a nice sadza/pap meal for the bub which the staff were more than happy to warm for […]

  4. Z is for Zimbabwe: Zimbabwe for Kids Virtual Tour | Local Passport Family
    4 years ago

    […] Sadza is a staple food and also the national dish. It is like a cornmeal porridge, like ugali in Kenya. Zimbabweans eat it with nyama (meat) or vegetable stew. […]

  5. Nicky
    10 months ago

    Great recipe, thank you! I added 1 teaspoon of salt & feeling very proud with the result 🙂

  6. Delvis
    1 month ago

    Great & Appreciate Working Experience!


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