10 Moroccan Dishes & Food you MUST try in Morocco

Food in Morocco is fragrant and flavorful. Andalusian Spain, Arabia, and France heavily influence Moroccan cuisine. The flavors are unique owing to the delicious combination of spices like cinnamon, cumin, and saffron. You will always be welcomed with some sweet mint tea, you will eat more tagine than you ever wanted to but make sure to try some of these other foods in Morocco like beghrir, harira soup, and oranges dusted with cinnamon.

10 Best Moroccan Dishes & Food to try in Morocco | Outside Suburbia

The main Moroccan dish that most people are familiar with is couscous and tagine. Some of the best tagines we had were up in the mountains in a Berber house, far away from Marrakech. Venture beyond these well-known foods and try some Moroccan pancakes, hearty soups, and desserts in Morocco. I share a couple of easy recipes that we have tried, save them, and try some Moroccan cuisine at home.

Moroccan Mint Tea

Anywhere you go in Morocco, you are always offered some mint tea. Known as ‘Moroccan whisky’, mint tea is the drink of choice for Moroccans. It is usually heavily sweetened with sugar and the tea is steeped with a few sprigs of spearmint stuffed into the teapot. It is poured into a tea glass from a height to create a froth called the crown. Delicious and seriously addictive!

10 Best Moroccan Dishes & Food to try in Morocco | Outside Suburbia
Mint Tea and the long pour!

Moroccan Breakfast Food

When visiting Morocco and staying either at a hotel or in a riad you will find a variety of different foods served for breakfast. You will find pastries, croissants, homemade jams, butter, mint tea and eggs. Traditional Moroccan Breakfast consists of some bread, which are eaten with olive oil and tea. 

While there were many types of Moroccan bread, the two eaten for breakfast are Msemmen and Beghrir.

Msemmen is one of the best Moroccan foods! Slathered with honey drizzle this Moroccan fried bread is indulgent. Typically they are made two times a day – for breakfast or in the mid-afternoon for snack/coffee time. You will find both sweet and savory versions of these layered bread.

Moroccan pancakes or beghrir (sometimes called Baghrir), is another popular breakfast food in Morocco. They’re known as the 1000 hole pancake due to the dozens of small holes that are formed on the top. They are eaten warm, and I loved slattering it with Moroccan Almond butter which was a mixture of almonds, peanuts, argan oil and honey.

Breakfast breads Msemmen and beghrir (Moroccan Pancakes)  at the Kasbah Tamadot | Outside Suburbia
Breakfast breads Msemmen and beghrir (Moroccan Pancakes) at the Kasbah Tamadot

Moroccan Pancakes (Baghrir) Recipe

2 cups fine semolina or cornmeal (better with semolina)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. dry yeast
¼ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon sugar
1 egg
1 cup of warm milk
2 cups of water warm

Mix all of the above ingredients in a blender. Cover the batter, and allow it to rest for 30 minutes. Then make pancakes on a griddle just like the regular pancakes. Cook till bubbles form and the top is not sticky to touch. Beghrir are only cooked on one side.  

You can serve it with a drizzle of melted butter and honey mix or jams.

B’ssara Soup

Made with fava bean, garlic and paprika, B’ssara Soup is vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free friendly. This rich soup of dried broad beans is traditionally served for breakfast, topped with a swirl of olive oil, a sprinkling of cumin and eaten with freshly baked bread.

See this recipe for an authentic B’ssara Soup

10 Best Moroccan Dishes & Food to try in Morocco | Outside Suburbia
Image by loubna guillory from Pixabay 

Tagine, the traditional food in Morocco

A tagine is a clay cooking pot with a conical lid that gives this Moroccan dish its name. Tagines or Tajines can be seen cooking everywhere from roadside cafés to high-end restaurants and in every home. You will find many many versions of tagines, from vegetarian, chicken, lamb to other exotic meats. They are always served with bread. One of the best tagines we had was up in the Atlas mountains at a traditional Berber house.

Traditional Food in Morocco. Easy Chicken Tagine Recipe | Outside Suburbia
Lamb Tagine with figs and olives

You don’t need a traditional tagine to make this dish, you can also make it in a Dutch oven. But don’t skimp on the spices, that’s what makes this Moroccan dish!

Easy Chicken Tagine Recipe

Chicken tagine is a traditional Moroccan dish made with an array of spices, garlic, onion, olives, and preserved lemons. Flavors and spices come together to make this food that is eaten every day in Morocco. Serve it with some couscous.

Here is an Easy Chicken Tagine Recipe we have tried and liked:

  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 lemon
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • Vegetables like carrots, turnips and Figs
  • 8 chicken thighs (about 4 pounds) I prefer the boneless
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion, halved and cut into big slices
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1-3/4 cups chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 large or 3 medium carrots, peeled and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick coins
  • 1/2 cup green olives, pitted and halved
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves for garnish
Moroccan Spices and Moroccan Cuisine | Outside Suburbia
Moroccan Spices

Combine the spices in a small bowl and set aside. Zest the lemon, combine 1 teaspoon of the lemon zest with 1 minced garlic clove; set aside.

Season both sides of chicken pieces with 2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Heat the oil in a large heavy-bottomed Dutch oven or pan over medium-high heat until beginning to smoke.

Brown the chicken pieces skin side down in single layer until deep golden, about 5 minutes. Flip the chicken pieces over and brown the other side, about 4 minutes or so. Transfer the chicken to a large plate; when cool enough to handle, peel off the skin and discard (skip if using boneless and skinless pieces).

Reduce the heat to medium. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until they have browned at the edges but still retain their shape, 5 to 7 minutes (add a few tablespoons of water now and then if the pan gets too dark). Add the remaining minced garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the spices and flour and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant.

Stir in the broth, honey, remaining lemon zest, and 1/4 teaspoon salt, scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to loosen any browned bits. Add the chicken (with any accumulated juices) back in, reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add the carrots, turnips, some apricots, figs, cover, and simmer until the chicken is cooked through and the carrots are tender-crisp, about 10 minutes more. You can skip the chicken and make a vegetarian tagine.

Stir in the olives, lemon zest-garlic mixture, cilantro, and 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice. Serve with couscous.

(Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated)

Moroccan Brochettes (Kebabs)

We had all kinds of food in Morocco but these Moroccan Brochettes (kebabs) made of lamb, beef or chicken were among our very favorites. The traditional seasoning for these kebabs include lots of onion, herbs like cilantro and mint, zesty amounts of paprika, cumin, cayenne, salt, and pepper.

Moroccan Brochettes (Kebabs) | Outside Suburbia
Moroccan Brochettes (Kebabs) with some salad

Couscous

Couscous is a fine wheat pasta traditionally rolled by hand by women of Morocco. It is usually steamed over a stew of meat and vegetables. To serve, the meat is covered by a pyramid of couscous, the vegetables are pressed into the sides and the sauce served separately. It is often garnished with a sweet raisin preserve, or sometimes with buttermilk.

A vegetable Couscous we had at the Riad 72 Living

I take the easy route on this use a package of Near East Couscous Mix. They come with different seasoning and we love the Toasted Pine Nut one.

Harira Soup

Harira is a cinnamon scented soup made with tomatoes, lentils, chickpeas, fava beans and lamb. It is finished off with a squeeze of lemon juice and some chopped coriander. Traditionally it is served with a sticky sweet pretzel called chebakkiya. Though this Moroccan soup is typically eaten to break the fast during Ramadan, it is also served throughout the year as well. So make sure to have some harira soup during your trip to Morocco.

See this recipe to made a vegetarian version of Harira Soup.

Try some Moroccan cuisine at home with these easy recipies | Outside Suburbia
Since we didn’t get to try them in Morocco, I made these Harira soup at home

Moroccan Dips & Appetizers

Moroccan meals usually begin with several cooked vegetables and salads. Bread is used to scoop up these delicious dips. There is always a dish of local olives, brined and juicy!

Moroccan Olives | Outside Suburbia
Moroccan Olives

Moroccan salads usually include green peppers, tomatoes, sweet carrots. Zucchini or courgette purée and zaalouk are a common occurrence on the appetizer plates. Much like Babagnoush, Zaalouk is a smoked eggplant/aubergine dip, seasoned with garlic, paprika, cumin and a little chili powder.

Moroccan Dips & Appetizers | Outside Suburbia
Moroccan Dips & Appetizers

Chermoula

With its long Atlantic and Mediterranean coasts, Moroccan cuisine includes a wide variety of fish dishes. Much like Chimichurri, Chermoula is a combination of herbs and spices used as a marinade for grilling the meat over coals. It is also used as a dipping sauce. We had some of the best fish in Essaouira near Marrakech.

Best Restaurant in Essaouria, Marrakech
A feast of fresh fish we had in Essaouira

Moroccan Desserts

Pastilla, also spelled bastilla is a sweet and savory Moroccan meat pie. I’m not entirely sure if it falls in the dessert category or not. Traditionally made with squab (pigeon) it has layers of a paper-thin pastry with pigeon meat, almonds and eggs spiced with saffron, cinnamon and fresh coriander. The pies are then dusted with icing sugar and cinnamon. I will let you decide if this Moroccan food item needs to be field under food or pastry 😉

Baklava is a popular dessert all over North Africa and is also known in Greece and in the Middle East. Made with layers of phyllo pastry that are baked and then soaked with syrup and topped or filled with nuts like walnuts and pistachio. You will find many variations of baklava, and it is a must-try food in Morocco. My favorite Moroccan dessert!

Moroccan Desserts you must try | Outside Suburbia
Orange cake and ice cream

Morocco grows some of the world’s best oranges and it is used in a lot of dessert food like cake and ice cream like this dessert we had the famous Nomad restaurant in Marrakech.

In Morocco, the bubbly pancakes (beghrir) that are mostly eaten at breakfast, are another favorite dessert food for many travelers to Morocco.

Another simple Moroccan dessert is cinnamon dusted oranges. Simple yet refreshing!

Save these Moroccan Recipes

Moroccan Pancakes (Baghrir) Recipe

Moroccan pancakes or beghrir (sometimes called Baghrir), is popular breakfast food in Morocco. They’re known as the 1000 hole pancake due to the dozens of small holes that are formed on the top. They are eaten warm, and I loved slattering it with Moroccan Almond butter which was a mixture of almonds, peanuts, argan oil and honey.

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups 2 cups fine semolina or cornmeal (but better with semolina)
  • 1 Tbsp. dry yeast
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of warm milk
  • 2 cups of water warm

Instructions
 

  • Mix all of the above ingredients in a blender.
  • Cover the batter, and allow it to rest for 30 minutes.
  • Then make pancakes on a griddle just like the regular pancakes.
  • Cook till bubbles form and the top is not sticky to touch.
  • Beghrir are only cooked on one side.
  • You can serve it with a drizzle of melted butter and honey mix or jams.
Keyword Baghrir Recipe, Moroccan Pancakes

Save this Easy Chicken Tagine Recipe. You don’t need a tajine pan, any dutch oven or deep pan will do. While this recipe calls for chicken, you can also make a vegan version by omitting the meat and adding extra hardy vegetables like turnips and carrots if you wish.

Chicken Tagine Recipe

A tagine is a clay cooking pot with a conical lid that gives this Moroccan dish its name. Tagines or Tajines can be seen cooking everywhere from roadside cafés to high-end restaurants and in every home. You will find many many versions of tagines, from vegetarian, chicken, lamb to other exotic meats. They are usually served with bread.

Ingredients
  

  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 lemon
  • 5 cloves garlic minced
  • Vegetables like carrots hardy vegetables like turnips
  • 4 or 5 Dried Figs or Apricots
  • 8 chicken thighs about 4 pounds I prefer the boneless
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large onion halved and cut into big slices
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1-3/4 cups chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 large or 3 medium carrots peeled and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
  • 1/2 cup green olives pitted and halved
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Combine the spices in a small bowl and set aside. Zest the lemon, combine 1 teaspoon of the lemon zest with 1 minced garlic clove; set aside.
  • Season both sides of chicken pieces with 2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Heat the oil in a large heavy-bottomed Dutch oven or pan over medium-high heat until beginning to smoke.
  • Brown the chicken pieces skin side down in single layer until deep golden, about 5 minutes. Flip the chicken pieces over and brown the other side, about 4 minutes or so. Transfer the chicken to a large plate; when cool enough to handle, peel off the skin and discard (skip if using boneless and skinless pieces).
  • Reduce the heat to medium. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until they have browned at the edges but still retain their shape, 5 to 7 minutes (add a few tablespoons of water now and then if the pan gets too dark). Add the remaining minced garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the spices and flour and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant.
  • Stir in the broth, honey, remaining lemon zest, and 1/4 teaspoon salt, scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to loosen any browned bits. Add the chicken (with any accumulated juices) back in, reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Add the carrots, turnips, some apricots, figs, cover, and simmer until the chicken is cooked through and the carrots are tender-crisp, about 10 minutes more. You can skip the chicken to make a vegetarian tagine.
  • Stir in the olives, lemon zest-garlic mixture, cilantro, and 1 tablespoon of the lemon juice. Serve with couscous.

Notes

You don’t need a tajine pan, any dutch oven or deep pan will do. While this recipe calls for chicken, you can also make a vegan version by omitting the meat and adding extra hardy vegetables like turnips and carrots if you wish. Don’t miss the honey and figs, it add sweetness to the dish.
Keyword Chicken Tagine, Chicken Tagine Recipe, Chicken Tajine

When you visit Morocco, don’t leave without trying these Moroccan dishes and traditional food in Morocco.

You might also like these other Food Diaries: 
11 Portuguese desserts you must try
Best ice cream shops in Plano
French Pastries you will love
15 Japanese Food you MUST try
20 Iconic food in Italy
10 Spanish Dishes, Drinks and Desserts I loved

PIN IT FOR LATER

Note: This post may contain affiliate links, partnership or sponsored content. If you purchase an item via one of these links, we may receive a small commission at no extra charge to you. But as always images and opinions are our own. For more information on our affiliates and privacy policy at Outside Suburbia see here.

Follow OutsideSuburbia
Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Tripadvisor

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating