Kilishi is one Nigerian snack native to Northern Nigeria. It is a spicy Nigerian beef jerky also known as ‘kundi’ in other parts of the country. This is very popular in the Northern parts because it is the main market for cattle which is the main ingredient for this spicy snack.

It is a snack you’ll eat till your chin begins to hurt and you wouldn’t want to stop because of its taste. Kilishi is also linked to the Nigerian suya in that they have similar ingredients but differs in preparation and texture. Traditionally, the beef is sun dried for about 3 days. In an hour now, you can get your beef jerky ready with the aid of an oven.



Beef, suya spice (pepper), garlic cloves (kanafuru), ginger, stock cubes, dry cayenne pepper and salt.


The beef you will use for kilishi should be cut from the reddest part of the beef with no fat at all. This is best done by the Mai Kilishi’s (Kilishi butchers) who are said to have the sharpest knife in the world. Also prepare the kilishi spice solution. Grind the cloves with a dry mill and set aside. Peel the garlic and ginger and pound/grind into a smooth paste. Add the ground cloves and crushed stock cubes to the garlic and ginger paste. Put in water, stir and sieve to get an extract of these spices and seasoning. Add the suya spice and cayenne pepper seeds to the solution stir and set aside.


Cut the beef into very thin fillets if the Mai Kilishis haven’t done that for you. Cut off all traces of fat from the beef. In contrast to the traditional sun drying, an oven is used which is set at the highest possible setting. Sprinkle a pinch of salt on fillets of beef and spread them around. Line your oven tray with a baking sheet and lay the pieces of beef flat on it.

Put the tray of beef into the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Flip the beef every 5 minutes for even drying. After 15 minutes, bring out the beef from the oven and brush the kilishi all over them, making sure that both sides of the beef are well covered. Put them back in the oven and bake for additional 10-15 minutes. Flip them from time to time and this time, keep a very good eye on it or else, it will become bone dry. This snack should be dry and chewy not crunchy.

Kilishi is then ready to be served. Suya spice (pepper) can be added. Enjoy your beef jerky with a chilled drink.

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