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Kenyan Samosa Recipe – with a step by step instructions

Kenyan samosas are fun to make and freeze very well. They’re so versatile, you can use whatever ground meat and vegetables you happen to have. Just make sure to make extra for snacking on later.

Kenyan samosas are one of those fun cultural foods that people just use what they have so there are many variations. These freeze well and my children love them!

We have some dear friends who moved here about three years ago from Kenya. To say that their friendship has enriched our lives would be an understatement. We have learned so much from them about contentment, needs vs wants, education and a whole host of other things.

I’ve also learned how to make some pretty yummy food, like lentils and rice and rainbow salad. Last week I learned how to make Kenyan samosa. Samosa is a fried savory pie that is made in many Middle Eastern and African countries. It can be filled with just veggies or a veggie and meat combination.

Like in many cultures there isn’t an “official” recipe that everyone follows because people just use what they have. My friend had only had samosa a few times as a young child. Then another local Kenyan friend showed her how to make them, and she showed me.

One thing I love about this recipe is that samosa freezes well so I made a bunch and put them in the freezer for my kids for snacks. You can also freeze them before frying.

How to make Kenyan Samosas

You can make your own pastry but my Kenyan friend (and her friend) use these uncooked tortillas. So that’s what I used. I realize that makes them not completely authentic. But if that’s what they use now that they’re living in the States, who am I to question it?

Kenyan samosas are one of those fun cultural foods that people just use what they have so there are many variations. These freeze well and my children love them!
Kenyan samosas are one of those fun cultural foods that people just use what they have so there are many variations. These freeze well and my children love them!
Kenyan samosas are one of those fun cultural foods that people just use what they have so there are many variations. These freeze well and my children love them!

Cut the tortillas in half and then make them into a funnel. You’ll make a paste with flour and water to seal all the edges.

Kenyan samosas are one of those fun cultural foods that people just use what they have so there are many variations. These freeze well and my children love them!
Kenyan samosas are one of those fun cultural foods that people just use what they have so there are many variations. These freeze well and my children love them!

Brown the meat and then add chopped onions, garlic, shredded cabbage, grated carrots and whatever other vegetables you want to the mixture.

Kenyan samosas are one of those fun cultural foods that people just use what they have so there are many variations. These freeze well and my children love them!

Fill the tortilla funnels and seal the edges with the flour and water glue. Deep fry until golden brown. My friend used an electric fryer but I just use my deep cast iron skillet.

Kenyan samosas are one of those fun cultural foods that people just use what they have so there are many variations. These freeze well and my children love them!
Yield: 20

Kenyan Samosas Recipe

Kenyan Samosas Recipe

Kenyan samosas are fun to make and freeze well. My Kenyan friends showed me an easy way to make them by using raw tortillas instead of making pastry. It's such a time saver.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 1 pound ground meat (my friend used turkey, I used beef; they were both good)
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 grated carrot
  • 1 cup finely chopped cabbage
  • 1/2 finely chopped onion
  • 5 cloves garlic (we love garlic, feel free to use less)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup of flour and water - mixed
  • Oil for frying  (my friend used canola, I used coconut)
  • Uncooked tortillas or (make your own pastry)

Instructions

  1. Cut tortillas in half and set aside.
  2. Brown meat.
  3. Chop all vegetables and add to meat.
  4. Add salt and pepper.
  5. Fold tortillas into a triangle so that they make a pocket.
  6. Use the flour and water mixture as a paste to seal the seams.
  7. Put a heaping teaspoon of meat in the pocket.
  8. Again, use the flour and water mixture to seal the top seam and fold it over. At first I used quite a bit of the flour and water but as I got more comfortable with sealing the seams I didn't need as much.
  9. After you have a few made, heat the oil to fry them.
  10. Fry them until the pastry is brown and then flip.
  11. Remove from pan when both sides are brown and put them on a plate with a towel to absorb the oil or on a rack with a platter underneath.
  12. Makes about 20

Notes

Samosas are one of those cultural recipes where it's really more of a process than an exact recipe. For the most part, people just use what they have to fill it. So feel free to experiment.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

image of Kenyan samosa cut in half

Thanks for sharing with your friends!

Michele Cipressi

Monday 31st of May 2021

I cook this all the time. Very, very good.

Angi Schneider

Thursday 3rd of June 2021

Thanks for sharing, Michele!!

Rajasi Kulkarni

Friday 30th of April 2021

In India and South Asia, you will find different variants of samosa. In India, Pakistan, Nepal and neighbouring countries, we make it using potato stuffing. You should check it out. Making samosa with meat is what came to our countries from Arabs.

Angi Schneider

Friday 30th of April 2021

Oh, I'll have to check that out. We love potatoes...lol. Thanks so much for sharing!

Louise

Monday 19th of October 2020

My family lived in Somalia years ago. We love samosas and make them every year for Christmas. (Ramadan was during Christmas when we were in Somalia). We have always used egg roll wraps. I'm flung to have to look for that pilau seasoning. There's a Somali guy in the san Diego area that sells samosas in the outdoor market. We bought lentil, potatoes, spinach, pineapple cream cheese, beef, and chicken. My favorites were the pineapple cream cheese and the potato ones.

Angi Schneider

Friday 23rd of October 2020

Thanks for sharing, Louise! I love hearing how other people eat. Pineapple cream cheese samosas sound fantastic! I'll have to try my hand at making some.

KD

Sunday 23rd of February 2020

Thank you so much for the receive. I'm anxious to try it because my fella and I had beef & potato Samosas for the first time at an African Festival. So good. When reheated at home the 2nd day the aroma is even more delicious. I swear there is some cinnamon or other sweet seasoning included. What do you recommend?

Angi Schneider

Monday 24th of February 2020

Hi, yes, there certainly might be some cinnamon in the samosa you had. I've seen recipes that include a little bit of cinnamon or even cardamon. I would suggesting trying a small amount and seeing how you like it.

Rachel

Thursday 18th of July 2019

When we went to Kenya many years ago our friend insisted on us trying these street food pastries called Samosas, we were game and found two ladies making them right on the sidewalk. We bought 3, then 3 more, it was on then! Any time we saw ladies making them we tried them! Those ladies used wonton wrappers because I watched and asked., I just forgot the names of the seasonings they used. They served them with a slice of lime. Yum.

Angi Schneider

Friday 19th of July 2019

What a great experience. I bet they are tasty with lime, thanks sharing!

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