6 Traditional Zambian Fruits You Must Try

Zambia has an abundance of natural resources and one aspect of this heritage is its diverse array of traditional fruits, which have been enjoyed for centuries by the local communities. Here are 6 traditional Zambian fruits that offer a unique and delightful taste experience.

From the masau and tamarind to the baobab and ngai, these fruits showcase the country’s incredible biodiversity.


Masau traditional Zambian fruits

Masau is a small fruit whose fruit tree is a common sight in Zambia.

With a vibrant orange color and a sweet and tangy taste, masau is a popular fruit that can be eaten fresh or dried.

It is green-ish when unripe, orange to brown when ripe and usually brown when dried.

It usually has one seed inside it.

Tamarind – Kawawasha

Tamarind fruits kawawasha

Tamarind fruit, also referred to as Kawawasha or Usika, is widely appreciated for its unique sweet and sour flavor.

The fruit comes from the tamarind tree, and its brown pod-like appearance encases a sticky pulp that holds a treasure trove of taste.

The fruit is enjoyed as a natural snack and is popular in juices.

Baobab Fruit- Mabuyu

Mabuyu Baobab fruits

The iconic baobab tree, revered for its majestic presence, is home to a fruit that is both nutritious and delicious.

The baobab fruit, known as Mabuyu in Zambian local language has a hard outer shell, which, when cracked, reveals a powdery pulp that can be consumed fresh or dried.

This pulp is tangy and slightly sweet, offering a citrusy flavor.

It is commonly used in making refreshing beverages.


Ngai fruits

The Ngai fruit is a unique and flavorful fruit indigenous to Zambia.

It is small and brown in colour when ripe but bigger than the masau, with a tangy and mildly sweet taste.

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The fruit is often enjoyed fresh, or sometimes dry.

The flesh is more juicy when it is fresh.


Masuku fruits traditional Zambian fruits

Masuku is a small fruit with an orange-ish to brown color and a unique flavor profile.

It has a subtle sweetness and a slightly tart taste, making it a refreshing treat.

The fruit is typically eaten fresh, and its juicy flesh is enjoyed by locals as a snack.

It has several seeds inside it.


Mabungo traditional Zambian fruits

Mabungo fruit has a subtle sweetness with a strong sourness.

The locals enjoy mabungo when it is fresh.

It also has several seeds inside it.

There are many other traditional Zambian fruits that I will look at in a future article. But for now, try these and tantalize your taste buds.