Couscous Sierra Leone style

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Beef and pepper couscous

Good friend – I am going to be near your house soon, can I come for lunch? Me- yes. Good friend – so see you in a couple of  hours? Me- gulp, yes.

It was only a small gulp because I kinda like being in this sort of situation. It gets my creative juices all stirred up and I can come up with some ‘interesting’ stuff (just ask OH about those spinach chilli pancakes :D).

Anyway, with the entire contents of my fridge being some beef and some peppers I figured my pantry staple couscous would save the day.

The great flavour of this couscous comes from the onions, tomato and beef. It has the added bonus of looking extremely pretty when dished up. It is kind of a one pot dish especially if you can add in some cooked leftover meat.

By all means vary the vegetables you use to suit your own taste. You need to use minimal liquid because you want a ‘dry’ish’ vegetable base (otherwise you could end up with soggy yet tasty couscous). So please do not skip the step of reducing the water in the stewing vegetables before adding in the couscous.

So please try this easy West African couscous recipe – the second recipe in the couscous pantry staple spotlight.  And please leave a comment below to let me know how you make yours. (And for more of my couscous recipes, try Orange, Pistachio and Pomegranate Couscous Salad {Vegan} and How to Cook Couscous In Only 10 Mins.)

This recipe was shared at the Weekend Potluck recipe party.

Don't forget to tag #recipesfromapantry on Instagram or Twitter if you try Couscous Sierra Leone style! It is really, really awesome for me when you make one of my recipes and I'd love to see it. You can also share it on my Facebook page. Please pin this recipe to Pinterest too! Thank you for reading Recipes from a Pantry.

Beef and pepper couscous
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5 from 1 vote

Couscous Sierra Leone style

Delicious West African couscous flavoured with onions, tomato and beef.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 10 minutes
Course: Lunch
Servings: 2
Calories: 818kcal
Author: Bintu Hardy


For the couscous

  • 180 g couscous 1 cup
  • 200 ml boiling water 1 cup
  • Salt

For the beef

  • 300 g beef approx 1 cup
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • ½ tsp ground coriander cilantro
  • Bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp water
  • ½ tsp oil

For the stew

  • 1 onion
  • 1 pepper bell
  • Chilli to taste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 jumbo or other seasoning cube
  • 2 tsp tomato puree
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 110 ml water 1 cup


  • Add couscous and salt into bowl.
  • Pour over boiling water and mix well.
  • Cover for 5 mins then fluff it with fork and cover for another 5 mins then set aside.
  • Skip cooking the beef if you are using already cooked meat.
  • Cut beef into very small cubes.
  • Season beef with salt, pepper, ground coriander and mix very well and put in a pot
  • Then add 1 tbsp of water and a bay leaf cook on low for about 10 mins until it is cooked and the water has dried up.
  • Then add 1 tsp oil to pot and fry the beef for 5 mins till brown, remove beef and set aside.
  • Peel and slice onions, deseed and cut pepper and chillies and add to pot with bay leaf, ½ jumbo cube, tomato puree, oil and water.
  • Mix these well, cover and cook for about 35 mins until soft. Keep an eye on this because if the water dries out before the vegetables cook then add in a tbsp of water at a time.
  • In the last five minutes open the pot and allow the water to evaporate.
  • When the water has completely evaporated add in the beef and stir for about 10 seconds and add in the couscous and mix till everything is well combined and warmed through.
  • Adjust the seasoning and serve with some grilled meat and salad.
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Calories: 818kcal | Carbohydrates: 75g | Protein: 38g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 106mg | Sodium: 3849mg | Potassium: 634mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin C: 5.4mg | Calcium: 61mg | Iron: 4mg



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  1. I love couscous and am always looking for new recipes! Thanks for sharing – pinning this one 🙂