This African-inspired vegan sweet potato and peanut stew is a hearty, flavourful, and super comforting plant-based stew. Creamy sweet potato cubes, onion, garlic, sweet red pepper, tomatoes, coconut milk, crispy fried tofu and hearty greens, together with delicious spices make this unique stew so incredibly flavourful. Served with nutty, whole grain Italian black rice, it makes for an incredibly satisfying dinner or lunch, any day of the week.
How to serve this vegan sweet potato and peanut stew
I like to serve this curry-like stew with whole grain rice. My favourite is short-grain brown rice or Italian Venere Nero rice, as both have a terrific mild nutty taste and pleasant al dente texture. That being said, you can certainly serve this sweet potato and peanut stew with white rice or even bread (like naan).
How to adapt this sweet potato stew
- Any greens will work well in this recipe. I love the texture and flavour of the savoy cabbage in this vegan sweet potato and peanut stew, but feel free to substitute with kale, spinach, or whatever hearty greens you prefer.
- As for vegetables, I like to use sweet potatoes as the main vegetable as they perfectly compliment the tomato, coconut milk, and subtle peanut flavour. You could easily use a mix of regular potatoes and sweet potatoes, or add carrots to the mix.
- For some plant-based protein, I added pan-fried tofu to this stew, but this could easily be substituted by adding cooked lentils or chickpeas. Also great choices!
- I like chunky peanut butter, but smooth will work here too, but make sure it’s natural and unsweetened, to maximise the peanut flavour.
Tips for in the kitchen
I use a 28cm non-stick wok pan to make this recipe, it’s my go-to for curry recipes. And the only peanut butter I rely on for recipes like this is natural peanut butter that consists of simply peanuts and sea salt — that’s it! Look for it in your local organic food store (Rapunzel).
Looking for more recipes like this?
I’ll bet you’ll love my Sweet Potato Peanut Stew with Coconut & Spinach. It’s a wonderful combination of vegetables in a delicious coconut sauce spiced with turmeric and cumin, then topped with more toasted peanuts. Or how about trying my recipe for Peanut Coconut Noodles — also delicious!
Vegan Sweet Potato Peanut Stew with Tofu
- 2 tablespoon virgin coconut or olive oil, divided
- 2 small yellow onions, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tablespoon freshly peeled and grated ginger
- 600 g sweet potatoes, diced in ca. 2cm pieces (2 medium)
- 1 pointed red pepper, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoon ground coriander
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch cayenne pepper
- 1 x 400 g can organic chopped tomatoes
- 400 ml water
- 1 x 200 ml can organic coconut milk
- 1 x 200 g package firm tofu, cubed
- 2 tablespoon natural crunchy peanut butter
- 1/4 - 1/2 head of savoy cabbage, finely shredded (remove the thick stems) (100-150 g) or other greens, such as savoy cabbage, spinach or kale.
- 1 small bunch cilantro, leaves removed and chopped
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- whole grain rice (see notes)
- 1 lime, quartered
Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in the large, deep non-stick skillet or wok. Add the onion and fry gently over medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring now and then until it is just starting to soften.
Turn up the heat to medium-high, and fry for 3-4 minutes. Then add the garlic, ginger, sweet potato, red pepper, tomato paste, and spices (cumin, coriander, cinnamon and cayenne). Sauté for 2 minutes, stirring continuously until sweet potatoes are well coated and smells fragrant.
Add the diced tomatoes. Fill the can with water (400 ml) and add it to the pan so that everything is just covered. Add the coconut milk and season with salt and pepper, stir well.
Bring to a simmer, then cover partially with a lid, and cook at a light simmer, stirring occasionally, for 30-35 minutes, or until the sweet potatoes have softened.
Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Cook the tofu until a light golden brown. Set aside.
When the stew has cooked, add the peanut butter snd stir well to incorporate, then add cabbage and tofu. Cook, tossing, until cabbage just begins to wilt, about 1-2 minute.
Taste and adjust with more salt and pepper, if required.
Serve with rice and garnish with cilantro, plus a squeeze of lime, if desired.
- This dish is quite saucy until the savoy cabbage is added. If desired, add a splash more water if the greens soak up too much of the sauce.
- While the stew cooks prepare the rice. I like to serve short-grain brown rice or Italian Venere Nero rice with this recipe. Cook 200g rice in double the amount of water (according to package instructions) for 30-40 minutes, depending on type of rice.
- Since this stew is plant-based, leftovers keep well for a number of days, refrigerated in an airtight container. This makes it a great contender for meal prep!
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