Cannabis infused Chakalaka: A spicy South African condiment

Published Jun 27, 2023 01:00 p.m. ET
Unsplash / Volkan Kaçmaz

Chakalaka is an insanely popular South African condiment that’s most well known for its vibrant flavors and spicy kick. It’s a versatile relish made using a variety of fresh veggies, spices, herbs and beans to create a delicious finish that pairs well with many different types of food.

Today we’re going to show you how to add a unique twist to this beloved traditional dish by introducing cannabis to the equation. This recipe will guide you through every step of the process, and you’ll even find a few tips and tricks that should help along the way.

Tips and tricks for success

Before we dive right into this glorious elevated recipe, we’d like to mention a few key points to keep in mind if you’re hoping to achieve the best results.

  • Proper dosing - It's crucial to exercise caution with any cannabis infused food, as the effects are often stronger and longer lasting than smoking. For that reason we recommend starting small and slowly gradually increasing the amount until you find the ideal dose to suit your needs.
  • Use complementary cannabis strains - Choose a strain that complements the natural flavors of chakalaka. Varieties with earthy or spicy undertones are guaranteed to enhance the overall taste of this dish.
  • Fresh ingredients are key - Use only fresh vegetables in this recipe, otherwise the texture and taste won’t be as good.

Cannabis-infused chakalaka recipe

This cannabis-infused version takes the traditional South African vegetable relish to a whole new level that’s bursting with flavors and just a hint of cannabis. It’s a spicy and aromatic dish that’s sure to add an exciting twist to your meals. You’ll need cannabis oil to complete this one, so if you don’t have any on hand then now is the perfect time to make some and we’ve got a great recipe that should help.

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cooking time: 45 minutes

Calories: 120 per serving

Servings: 6-8


  • 2 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 1 green bell pepper (diced)
  • 1 red bell pepper (diced)
  • 1 cooking onion (finely chopped)
  • 2 carrots (grated)
  • 1 cup canned baked beans
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons cannabis-infused cooking oil
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh cilantro or parsley (for garnish)


  1. Warm the cannabis infused oil in a large pan over medium heat. You’ll know it’s hot enough by testing the temperature with a drop of water which should sizzle as soon as it hits the oil.

  2. Once the oil is hot, use it to sauté the chopped onion and minced garlic until they become translucent and fragrant.

  • Add the diced bell peppers to the oil and fry them for a few minutes, or until they’re soft and slightly browned around the edges.

  • Stir in the grated carrots, and cook everything together for another 2-3 minutes so the flavors can blend.

  • Mix the canned baked beans, chopped tomatoes, and tomato paste into the ingredients in the pan.

  • Sprinkle a generous amount of curry powder, paprika, ground cumin, ground coriander, sugar, salt, and pepper over the vegetables and stir it well, until the spices are evenly distributed throughout the mixture.

  • Turn the heart down to low, and leave the chakalaka to simmer for 30 minutes, which should be enough time to finish cooking the vegetables.

  • Taste test the chakalaka and adjust the seasoning until you’re satisfied with the results. For those who despite extra spice, adding a pinch of chili flakes or a dash of hot sauce should do the trick.

  • Once the dish is fully cooked, it’s time to remove it from the heat, and leave it to cool for 3-5 minutes.

  • Garnish the veggie mixture with fresh cilantro or parsley for extra freshness and a splash of visual appeal.

  • Serve cannabis-infused chakalaka as a topping for grilled meats, braai, or as a condiment for your favourite sandwiches and burgers.

    Storage recommendations

    Store any leftover infused chakalaka in an airtight container and keep it in the refrigerator where it will stay fresh and delicious for 3-4 days.

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