Here are 7 best street food options to eat in Kenya
The wise men said, “You have not lived in Kenya until you enjoy Kenyan street food.” Personally, I have no solid proof of the whereabouts of these wise men or when and where they shared their wisdom (I was probably not even born) but I do know what it means to enjoy Kenyan street food. In fact, if I had the choice, my entire diet would be made up of Kenyan street food. Well, with that said here’s my favorite list of street food you can find and enjoy almost anywhere in Kenya.
Smokie Pasua/Mayai Pasua
This is the kind of snack that easily turns into a full course meal after a crazy night out with friends or family. They can be found in almost every major bus terminal, business centers and markets in Kenya. In addition to being easy to find, smokie’s and mayai’s are also cheap and to some extent part of the current urban culture.
Let’s get into the details: Smokie Pasua is basically a Beef Vienna which is carefully split in the middle and filled with kachumbari (A mixture of onions, tomatoes and green chillies) with tomato sauce and salt to taste. On the other hand, mayai pasua is an egg which is carefully split in the middle and filled with kachumbari, tomato sauce and salt to taste. If you haven’t tried this, I have no idea what you’re waiting for?
Mutura (African Sausage)
The African sausage commonly known as mutura is one of the most common and celebrated snacks you can find on the streets. Our deep relationship with goat meat as Kenyans is no secret. Most Kenyans are in an obsessive relationship with goat meat and will devour any form of it, the cheapest being Mutura.
Mutura is basically goat intestines which are washed well and stuffed with fried minced meat and other spices. The stuffed intestines are then roasted to create a unique explosion of taste. If you haven’t tried it, you have not lived! Mutura is mostly sold outside butcheries in and around the city center.
Let’s get back to the more healthy forms of Kenyan street food. Yes we love meat, but we try and balance it out once in a while. For example, mahindi choma, which is basically roasted maize, brings back the healthy. Most roasted maize joints are found by the road sides and also close to bus terminals.
At Ksh 40, one can purchase a fully roasted maize cob, completely ready to munch on. What makes mahindi choma special to most of us is the option of applying a mix of lemon and red pepper on the surface of the maize which makes the taste eccentric! I can’t even try to put in words, make a date and I am more than willing to treat you with this snack (We will split the bill of course, blame the economy).
They call it Kuku Mwitu and we call affordable chicken! These days, it is common to come across roasted chicken made entirely on the street. Most off these Chicken vendors are situated in sub-urban estates as a strategy to trap middle class residents, who happen to hate cooking but love a good meal, like me (please don’t judge a brother). At only ksh 150, you can get a large chicken breast, roasted to perfection, ready to eat, on the spot or at home. It is best served with ugali or chapatti. Enjoy and thank me later!
We also have the irresistible mshikaki, a long toothpick- piercing assorted meats, veggies, spices and tomatoes. In one word, Delicious! In two words, Very delicious! In three words, try it yourself! Some tastes just can’t be described. Unfortunately, Mshikaki is mostly found on the streets of coastal towns such as Mombasa. It can also be found close to night clubs in Nairobi. Writing about mshikaki just made me hungry!
Everyone loves French fries, right? I know I do. However, not everyone can afford to go high-end restaurants to enjoy this delicacy. Worry not my people, these days you can buy French fries for as cheap as 50 shillings (Kenyan Shillings) and yes you just might get full. And yes, doubting Thomas, French fries are sold in the streets but are just as tasty as those sold in expensive restaurants. Try it.
If you do not know a Mama Oliech kind of person close to your estate, you’re not Kenyan (I would tell who Mama Oliech but I want you to do some research). This is your chance to redeem yourself however. Get yourself a good Fish joint, where you can buy freshly fried street fish. Carry the fish to your house and devour it with ugali. And yes, you can thank me later.
This is just but a few of your options while strolling down the streets in Kenya, to be honest the list is endless. My last bonus tip: As much as I love street food, health is way more important. Ensure you eat street food that is well prepared and served in a clean environment. With that said, I’m off to get myself some street food for lunch!
By the way. As you munch on your delicious meal, you can listen to best east Africa radio stations from watupipo.com just click the button above this page Listen to live radio stations.
Kijana mpenda raha, a talented multimedia expert, fun cool kid.
Photo credits: exploreea.com, OMGvoice.com,