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Zimbabwean Peanut Butter Rice:  Mupunga Une Dovi

Zimbabwean Peanut Butter Rice: Mupunga Une Dovi

In the heart of Zimbabwean culinary tradition lies a dish that speaks volumes about the nation's culture and flavours - Mupunga Une Dovi. This beloved dish perfectly reflects the Zimbabwean people's resourcefulness, creativity, and deep-rooted connection to simple, wholesome ingredients. Mupunga Une Dovi is a classic combination of long-grain rice and creamy peanut butter, a marriage of flavours that has stood the test of time. In this blog post, we delve into this dish's history and cultural significance and present a simple, authentic recipe for you to enjoy and savour.

Mupunga Une Dovi has its roots deeply entrenched in the Zimbabwean way of life. The name itself, a blend of Shona and Ndebele languages, translates to "Rice with Peanut Butter." Historically, rice was introduced to Zimbabwe during the colonial era and quickly became a staple in many households due to its affordability and versatility. The addition of peanut butter, a nutrient-rich ingredient and a popular protein source in the region, resulted in a delicious fusion that became an integral part of Zimbabwean cuisine.

Rice, initially considered a luxury, gradually found its way into everyday meals, marking a shift in the culinary landscape. Mupunga Une Dovi, with its humble yet flavoursome combination, became a symbol of sustenance and unity among Zimbabwean families. It is a dish often enjoyed during gatherings, celebrations, and even on regular family dinner nights, binding generations through shared meals and memories.


  • 1 cup long-grain rice
  • Salt (to taste)
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter





1. Cook the rice following the instructions on the packet, omitting the use of oil.

2. Once the rice is nearly cooked, add 1/2 cup of water and the peanut butter. Allow it to cook a little more, ensuring the rice is slightly overcooked.

3. Cover the pot and let the peanut butter infuse into the rice for about 10 minutes, allowing the flavours to meld.

4. Using a flat wooden spoon or a traditional wooden tool called a "mugoti," gently stir in the peanut butter until the rice is well bonded together, fully incorporating the flavours.

5. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and let it simmer for an additional 10 minutes or until ready to serve.

Mupunga Une Dovi can be served with your choice of stew or sauce. It's also delightful on its own. The dish gains character and richness when paired with a savory stew. It also has a unique charm when enjoyed the next morning, cold, accompanied by a comforting cup of tea.