Top 21 recipes of 2021

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Top 21 recipes of 2021

2021 was another mammoth year of cooking and we’ve got the results to prove it. Here are the 21 most popular recipes of 2021 that includes a number of South African hero dishes.

Homemade Cape Malay-style pickled fish

While search volume for this pickled fish definitely spikes around Easter, it’s consistently one of our most popular recipes throughout the year.

Get the recipe for homemade Cape Malay-style pickled fish here.

Stiff pap

Proof that you can’t beat a good old classic, this stiff pap recipe is the one we turn to again and again, and it appears you do, too.

stiff papGet the recipe for stiff pap here.

Peppermint Crisp tart

We’ve featured other versions of Peppermint Crisp tart-inspired desserts, but none are more popular than this one.

Peppermint Crisp tart recipeGet the recipe for Peppermint Crisp tart here.

Pumpkin fritters

There’s an art to getting these South African staples right, which is why this recipe so well-loved.

Pumpkin fritters recipeGet the recipe for pumpkin fritters here.


There’s nothing better to top a stew with than dombolo, and this recipe just works every time.

Get the recipe for dombolo here.

Banana loaf

Lockdown or not, people are still making lots of banana bread.

banana loafGet the recipe for banana loaf here.

Boerewors stew

As weird as this might sound, it’s a comforting and hearty dish that our readers can’t get enough of.  While this version is a bit more modern, we’ve also got a more traditional recipe on the site that we love just as much.

Boerewors-stew-2Get the recipe for boerewors-and-chickpea stew here.

Traditional malva pudding

Would this even be a recipe round-up in South Africa if it didn’t include a malva pudding? While there’s no shortage of great malva recipes on our site (including ones that call for perfectly acceptable store-bought malva), this simple version seems to be the fan favourite.

traditional malva puddingGet the recipe for traditional Malva pudding here.

Peri-peri chicken livers with Portuguese rolls

We always think that chicken livers don’t get enough love, but the data says otherwise. This must be one of our favourite, speedy midweek dinners.

Peri-peri chicken liversGet the recipe for Peri-peri chicken livers here.


On a cold winter’s day, a bowl of warm melkkos will always be at the top of our list, too.

Melkkos recipeGet the recipe for melkkos here.

The fluffiest flapjacks

This genius recipe guarantees thick, puffy flapjacks and is so good you’ll never need another recipe ever again.

Get the recipe for the fluffiest flapjacks here.

Braaied snoek with sticky apricot glaze

Snoek is a local hero and this recipe uses classic winning flavour combinations in a way that still feels fresh and modern.

Braaied snoek with sticky apricot glazeGet the recipe for braaied snoek with sticky apricot glaze here.

Traditional samp and beans

You can’t go wrong with a rib-sticking bowl of samp and beans.

samp-and-beansGet the recipe for traditional samp and beans here.

Dad’s oxtail

There’s no wrong way to braise oxtail, but this family recipe comes out on top for a reason.

Dad's oxtailGet the recipe for dad’s oxtail here.

Blue cheese baked gem squash

Gem squash is the nostalgic veggie we all loved as kids, and the addition of blue cheese makes this feel a little more grown-up.

Blue cheese baked gem squash recipeGet the recipe for blue cheese baked gem squash here.

All-bran rusks

The perfect weekend project, these rusks are just like granny would make.

All-bran rusks recipe
Get the recipe for All-Bran rusks here.

No-bake cheesecake

With a base made of crushed biscuits and the filling made of cream cheese and condensed milk, it’s easy to see why this cheesecake is one of our best-performing recipes.

Get the recipe for no-bake cheesecake here.

Baked sago pudding

A hug in food form, this baked sago tastes like an old, well-loved family recipe.

Baked sago puddingGet the recipe for baked sago pudding here.


Scones are consistently part of our most searched recipes, which is why we’ve dedicated an entire recipe collection to them, but this version is one of our best.

How-to-make-sconesGet the recipe for scones with whipped vanilla butter here.


A national treasure, umqombothi really isn’t as difficult to get right as you might think. This recipe by beloved Dorah Sitole is the one we keep coming back to.

african-beerGet the recipe for Uqombothi here.

Eggless soji

Commonly served as part of an Eid menu, this eggless soji is satisfying and simple to make.

eggless-sojiGet the recipe for eggless soji here.


Jess Spiro Article by: Jess Spiro

Jess Spiro is a freelance food writer, chef and restaurant critic based in Cape Town, who can often be found in search of the next great plate of food. Follow her on Instagram @jess_spiro to see what she's eating.

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