Cassava Leaf: Simple Facts, Uses You Want To Know

cassava leaf

We are very conversant with cassava tuber

Various cassava products are present in our homes.

But have you considered cassava leaves being of any importance?

In this article we’ll take a close look at cassava leaves.

Cassava is grown for its root tuber which is processed into various food products, 

Such as Garri, Fufu, Cassava flour.

It’s also used in various industries as well.

See also: How to grow cassava

In Nigeria it is uncommon to find the leaves of cassava used for food.

But did you know that cassava leaves are eaten in some countries in Africa, Asia and South America.

Fantastic to note that the leaves are very nutritious 

And serve as a healthy vegetable in the region where they are used for food.

Some of this countries are


  • Sierra Leone
  • Congo
  • Liberia
  • Togo


  • Indonesia, 
  • Malaysia and
  • Philippines

South America

  • Brazil
  • Colombia
  • Venezuela

Description of Cassava Leaf

Cassava leaves are green in colour attached to a green or red stem.

The cassava leaves are palmate (fan-shaped) 

It’s divided into five to nine lobes 

The number of lobe in cassava leaf is irregular and can range from five to nine lobe. 

Mature leaves are hairless.

Several factors like the age, temperature, branching pattern affect the size of the leaf.

Nutritional Information of Cassava Leaf

100 g of boiled cassava leaves

Calories 31 kcal
Protein3.7 g
Ash0.4 g 
Dietary fiber1.6 g
Carbohydrate 4.8 g
Fat 0.6 g
Calcium 160 mg
Copper 0.10 mg
Iron 2.6 mg
Phosphorus50 mg
Potassium 14 mg
Zinc 2 mg
Niacin 1.7 mg
Sodium 13 mg
Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)0.02 mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)0.10 mg
Vitamin C34 mg
Beta carotene 3,897 ug
Water 90.5 g


Uses of Cassava Leaf

The cassava leaves can be used for the following purposes:

For Food

Cassava leaves are used for the preparation of stew, soup, snack and fillings. 

This meal, which goes by many names depending on the country, 

In Congo and Sierra Leone stew and soups are made with cassava leaves, it’s called “Pondu” or “Saka Saka” 

The traditional method of making this soup is to boil cassava leaves with a variety of seasonings and spices, then add meats such beef, smoked fish, or chicken. 

In Indonesia a meal called Gulai Daun Singkong (Cassava Leaves Curry) is made with cassava leaf

Other dishes are

  • In malaysia “Sayur Daun Singkong “
  • In philippine “Laing”
  • In Brazil “feijoada” stew and Mocotó
  • In colombia “sancocho” soup
  • In Venezuela “guiso de pollo.”

Agricultural Uses

Cassava leaves are used to provide food and nutrition to farm animals.

Medicinal uses

Cassava leaves are utilized in traditional treatments and eaten as green vegetables.

Health Benefits

  • Cassava leaves are good for your general health because they contain the same amount of vitamins as carrots. 
  • Cassava leaves contain a potent antioxidant called vitamin C, which may help stave off cancer, strokes, and cardiovascular disease. The mood, energy, and metabolism are also impacted by B vitamins. 
  • The lysine protein found in cassava leaves helps prevent kwashiorkor, a condition characterized by a deficiency of protein.

Side Effect of Cassava Leaf.

While cassava leaves are a valuable source of nutrients, they can also be toxic.

  • The presence of Cyanogenic Glucosides causes cyanide poisoning, which can cause symptoms like headache, nausea, dizziness, diarrhea, and vomiting, sometimes even leading to death.
  • The anti nutritional factors like tannins, polyphenols, and phytic acid that reduce nutrient bio availability, uptake, and digestibility.
  • Depending on how the leaves are processed, they can have harmful consequences that are more or less severe.

How To Process Cassava Leaf For Food

The ways in which the cyanide  in cassava is removed is by pounding or grinding, boiling and  fermentation.

Cassava leaves should not be eaten raw

When preparing cassava leaf for food the leaf must be washed thoroughly and boiled.

The water from the boiled cassava leaf should be drained off.

The leaves are chopped or blended in recipes that call for that.

I hope this article was helpful, would you consider adding cassava leaves to your diet?

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