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An image showing a serving of Ethiopian Spicy Pumpkin Stew, with the skillet on the back.
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5 from 2 votes

Ethiopian Spicy Pumpkin Stew (Duba Wat)

An appetizer, a side, or a main dish -- it is really up to you how to serve this deliciously intense Ethiopian Spicy Pumpkin Stew (locally known as Duba Wat). One thing is for sure, though; you will not be able to stop eating it!
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Ethiopian
Servings: 4
Calories: 246kcal
Author: Neriz


  • 3 to 4 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp berbere spice blend
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 kg pumpkin or squash (about 2 lbs), peeled, seeded, and chopped
  • salt, to season


  • Place a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Pour the oil into the skillet.
  • Once the oil is ready, add garlic and onions, and cook until they turned soft.
  • Add the berbere spice and ground cardamom and mix.
  • Cook for about 5 minutes, letting everything combine evenly.  If you think it's sticking to the pan, add a bit of water.
  • Add chopped pumpkin and mix.
  • Pour enough water to cover only a quarter of the pumpkin in the pan.  You can add more later if you think it needs more.
  • Add salt, then cover with a lid and bring to a boil.
  • Adjust the heat to medium-low and continue simmering until it's cooked; mix occasionally. (Do not forget to taste and adjust the seasoning during this time).
  • Take the pan off the heat and transfer it into bowls.
  • Serve.



  • I strongly suggest you use cardamom seeds, and ground them yourself, instead of using cardamom powder.  There is a noticeable difference in aroma and flavor between the two types.
  • Make sure the onions are already soft when you add the spices -- this is needed so all their flavors would merge, which is the base for this pumpkin stew.
  • When chopping the pumpkin, chop a handful of them into smaller bits. These are the ones that get cooked quicker, giving the dish that softer, mushier feel while still having perfectly cooked ones.
  • Watch how much water you add at first. The rule of thumb is only up to a quarter of the chopped pumpkin in the pan. If you feel you need more, then add a bit later while adjusting the seasoning.


Calories: 246kcal | Carbohydrates: 39g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Sodium: 91mg | Potassium: 1019mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 26584IU | Vitamin C: 60mg | Calcium: 147mg | Iron: 3mg