Mandazi is a wonderful East African dessert and they make great finger foods for a wedding reception. Looking for wedding reception food ideas? Check out some recipes for this delicious dessert here. Welcome to the wonderful world of African dessert foods. It is a traditional Kenyan and Tanzanian snack food.

How great would it be to have foods from different parts of Africa incorporated into your wedding. Serving various types of African foods and drinks are a great way (and also a very convenient way) to infuse some African culture into your wedding day. This dish is a good choice for wedding foods because they are not only very simple to make, but you can also make this dish in bulk and at minimal cost.

So what is mandazi anyway? Think of it as doughnuts but without the glaze, frosting and sprinkles, with less sugar but addtional sweet and/or savory ingredients for a little “kick”.

African Wedding Foods – Mandazi/Mahamri Recipes

Here are some very basic recipes for making this sweet dessert. You can use these to try it out first and see how you like them but for a wedding, you’ll definitely need to increase the proportions exponentially.


  • Flour – 4 cups
  • Baking powder – 1 teaspoon
  • Sugar – 4 teaspoons
  • Salt – just a pinch
  • Allspice or cardamom – 1/4 teaspoon
  • Butter or margarine – 2 tablespoons
  • Milk – 1/4 cup
  • Water – 2 cups
  • Egg – 1
  • Vegetable oil – enough for deep-frying


  • Mix all the dry ingredients together
  • Mix in butter and/or margarine
  • Combine the milk and water then beat in the egg; add this mixture to the dry ingredients
  • Knead this dough mixture until it is soft and malleable then roll it out using a rolling pin and cut into triangular-shaped pieces; triangle shapes are standard but you may of course cut them however you please… Get creative, make hearts, diamond shapes, etc.
  • Deep fry in the vegetable oil until each one is an even brown color; be sure to drain the excess oil before serving

The above recipe is for the basic maandazi no, that’s not a typo, it’s a spelling variation; for a little variety you can try using coconut milk in place of plain milk, this version is actually called mahamri.

A feast is good when someone else gives it – Igbo (Nigeria) Proverb

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