10 Main Dishes of Moroccan Cuisine: What to Try for a Tourist

by Editorial Staff

In Morocco, you can try classic Arabic dishes – aromatic and spicy, incredibly tasty, always mouth-watering, and very satisfying. However, the country’s national cuisine is unique in many ways. We will tell you exactly what you need to try in Morocco in the first place. Descriptions of Moroccan dishes with photos will help you not to get lost in this kingdom of aromas.

10 Main Dishes of Moroccan Cuisine: What to Try for a Tourist
10 Main Dishes of Moroccan Cuisine: What to Try for a Tourist

Tagine

Tagine
Tagine

Perhaps the most popular food in Morocco and a must-try. It is cooked in a dish of the same name, and the recipe is unique – in other Arab countries, the tagine turns out to be different. It consists of large pieces of lamb or chicken, a lot of vegetables (potatoes, eggplants, onions, tomatoes), spices, as well as some honey and fruits. The result is a great combination of spicy, salty, and sweet tastes. This is a very aromatic dish, and the stew with vegetables literally melts in your mouth, as they are simmered in their own juice for several hours.

Couscous

Couscous
Couscous

In every Arab country, couscous is prepared in its own way. Even within Morocco, you can find different variations of the dish that are definitely worth trying. They are always based on cereals of the same name, vegetables, meat (lamb, chicken, sometimes beef, and sometimes all at once). Vegetables are boiled in broth with a bone, cut coarsely so that they do not lose their shape. Groats are traditionally steamed in special saucepans – hence this unique taste. Vegetarians can try the vegetable version of the dish in Morocco. The most popular type of Moroccan couscous is couscous au sept légumes (with seven vegetables).

Harira

Harira
Harira

The most popular soup in Morocco. Fragrant, spicy, nourishing, rich, with a unique taste – it will conquer anyone. Thick Moroccan soup is made from lentils, lamb, tomatoes, and a lot of spices. Little chickpeas, vermicelli, herbs are often added to it. Harira is a spicy soup with an unusually silky texture. This is a really delicious dish. This soup is often prepared in hotels, as it is very popular even among Europeans.

Bissara

Bissara
Bissara

Outwardly, the Moroccan bean sauce (or puree soup) of bissara does not look very attractive, but it is still worth trying. It is traditionally cooked in the cold season, but it can be found in national restaurants and even in resort hotels in Morocco in any season. It is essentially a wide bean paste with lemon juice, hot pepper, and caraway seeds, sprinkled with olive oil. If the dish is thick, you can spread it on bread. And if the mass is more like a soup, then the bissara is still not eaten with a spoon – they simply immerse buns in it. It’s really delicious!

Mrouzia

Mrouzia
Mrouzia

Another unusual combination of sweet and salty, which is so loved in Morocco. Mrouzia is most often made from lamb with plums and raisins, but there are other options (with chicken or beef, for example). The meat is stewed in a broth with spices, ginger, and dried fruits, and then almonds, sesame seeds, and honey are added. It sounds strange, but it turns out really delicious. Meat cooked in this way melts in your mouth – it is so tender. The sweetness of dried fruits and spices perfectly reveals its taste. The stew is served with something neutral: rice, chickpeas, sometimes couscous. Be sure to try this dish in one of the restaurants in Morocco, it is really tasty – it is not cooked like that anywhere else.

Zaalouk

Zaalouk
Zaalouk

The most popular salad in Morocco, which is often eaten by locals and is very popular among tourists. It is prepared on the basis of eggplants with tomatoes. The vegetables are pre-baked and then mashed, generously seasoned with garlic, aromatic cumin, paprika, and fresh herbs. The dish can be tasted as an appetizer in the company of unleavened flat cakes or fresh buns.

Pastilla

Pastilla
Pastilla

Be sure to try this mouth-watering, aromatic, incredibly tasty traditional meat pie in Morocco. It is prepared on the basis of the thinnest puff pastry with a large amount of tender juicy filling. In the classic recipe, the pie is stuffed with the meat of young pigeons (don’t worry, not street pigeons – they are grown on special farms). It is perfectly complemented by onions, aromatic sauce, nuts, spices, sugar – an incredibly interesting combination of salty and sweet taste is obtained. This dish is easy to try in restaurants or eateries in Marrakech, Rabat, Fez. In hotels in Agadir, Essaouira, Tangier, or other resorts in Morocco, the pie is most often prepared with chicken or fish.

Rgaif

Rgaif
Rgaif

Don’t miss the national Moroccan breakfast of rgaif pancakes with a variety of snacks. The filling can be anything: meat, cheese, sweet almond or honey, any other. Or you can try pancakes without filling. The standard breakfast is complemented by bean paste, potato salad, spicy harissa paste, vegetable salads, and other snacks, as well as national mint tea. Recently, rgaif in Morocco has become an increasingly popular street food.

Baghrir

Baghrir
Baghrir

For breakfast, dessert, or as a snack in Morocco, we recommend trying delicious openwork semolina pancakes. They are really special. Of course, pancakes are prepared in many countries, but the Moroccan version of the dish is unlike any other. There are no eggs in the dough, semolina gives them an unusual taste, and the simultaneous addition of yeast and baking powder (which is generally not accepted in cooking) makes them airy and fluffy. They even fry the pancakes on one side only to preserve their texture. Baghrir is served with a delicious warm honey-based sauce with ghee.

Chebakia

Chebakia
Chebakia

Chebakia base – deep-fried dough until golden brown. The finished sweetness is not sprinkled with powdered sugar but poured over with rose water-based syrup with honey. Not the healthiest for the figure, but incredibly tasty sweetness – try it, it’s worth it.

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