Authentic Egyptian Dukkah Recipe (Four Easy Steps!)
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Dukkah is really something special! An Egyptian condiment made from ground nuts and whole spices, it has an incredible earthy flavor and can be enjoyed sprinkled on so many different foods, making them a million times more delicious. I’m going to show you how to make authentic Dukkah with the best flavor.
Did you know the word Dukkah actually means ‘to pound’ or ‘to crush’ in Arabic? Which makes sense as it is essentially a mixture of spices crushed together! However, unlike a lot of spice mixes, Dukkah is not necessarily designed to be stirred in as seasoning.
Rather, it is used as a topping to be sprinkled over salads, dips, grilled veggies, or mixed with some good olive oil and used to dip pitta in. One of my favorite ways to eat it is on avocado toast. Pretty cool right?
What’s more, there are so many different ways you can make Dukkah. The simplest versions sold in Egyption markets contain just mint, salt and pepper. However you can really add whatever you like, as long as the flavors complement each other. Common ingredients include cumin, sesame and coriander, all of which we have included in our recipe.
However, top chef Ottolenghi also suggests using pistachio nuts, marjoram and za’atar…so you can get creative with it, and if you don’t have the exact ingredients, don’t worry!
Nuts & Seeds: Sunflower Seeds, Hazelnuts, Almonds
Nuts and seeds form a crunchy, rich base for the dukkah. You can mix these up and include whatever you’ve got in the cupboard (pumpkin seeds are a good shout!) but these 3 are an excellent place to start!
Whole Spices: Fennel Seeds, Coriander Seeds, White Sesame Seeds, Black Sesame Seeds
Toasting these spices really releases their flavour. If you really can’t get hold of whole spices, ground spices will also do, though it will change the consistency of the finished product.
Ground Spices: Cumin, Green Pepper, Sweet Paprika, Sea Salt
Ground spices round off your homemade dukkah seasoning with their subtler flavors. The smokiness from the paprika is particularly something you don’t want to miss out on!
Health Benefits of Dukkah
Dukkah provides a punchy blend of nutrients, thanks to the nuts and seeds that are the main ingredient.
Nuts have a whole host of health benefits including reducing our risk of cardiovascular disease and helping to control blood sugar levels! In our dukkah we use a mix of almonds and hazelnuts, both of which are high in healthy fats, dietary fibre and protein.
Nuts can help you to feel fuller for longer which could be great if you’re trying to lose weight – they reduce the risk of overeating.
Hazelnuts and almonds also contain vitamin E which can strengthen the immune system and maintain healthy eyes, and niacin (vitamin B3) which helps us release energy from the food we eat and can support nervous system function.
Seeds are packed full of healthy fats and fibre. In our recipe you’ll find a mix of super-seeds including sunflower seeds which are rich in B vitamins and sesame seeds, which are known for their high vitamin E and calcium levels.
This said, you won’t be getting these nutrients in huge quantities as dukkah is typically consumed in small amounts, however you can rest assured that this is one of those healthy recipes that can only be a positive addition to your diet.
How to make the best Dukkah
- Gently roast the hazelnuts, almonds and sunflower seeds in a dry skillet over a medium heat. Once the nut mixture is smelling toasty (approx. 3 minutes), take them off the heat and pop them in the blender. DO NOT BLEND YET!
- Add the whole spices, except the black sesame seeds, to the pan and toast them in a single layer. They should only need about 2 minutes. Add them to the blender too! Pulse a couple of times. We are looking for a crunchy mix here, not a coarse powder, so don’t over blend.
- Finally, add the ground spices and black sesame seeds. Give it one last whizz!
- Store it in an airtight jar at room temperature and enjoy whenever you fancy!
Can I make it ahead?
Yes! This is best made ahead of time and stored in an airtight container for use at a later date. All the ingredients are dry, so it will last for a long time and remain a flavorful spice blend.
What is Dukkah made from?
Dukkah is an Egyptian nut, seed and spice blend often made using almonds, pine nuts, cumin, coriander, mint and others. The ingredients can be varied according to taste and availability!
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What do you put Dukkah on?
The traditional way to serve dukkah is sprinkled on top of other foods. I suggest salads, roast veggies, yogurt, eggs or soup.
What does Dukkah spice taste like?
Dukkah tastes fragrant, smoky, earthy and nutty, with added freshness from the cumin and coriander! If you’ve tried Za’atar, it is similiar to that in many ways.
Dukkah Variations and Alternatives
As I’ve mentioned, this middle eastern spice blend is very adaptable. There are many delicious ways to prepare it.
You’ve seen what our version uses, but you could also make your own dukkah blends using: walnuts, pistachios, cayenne pepper, pine nuts, fresh thyme, pecans, marjoram, mint. The only things that I would always recommend keeping from the recipe card are cumin and coriander.
This mix is already gluten-free, vegan, and dairy-free!
What our Readers are Saying
Wow!!! finally made a batch -forgot the black sesame seeds and put 1 tbsp of coconut sugar too – and the divine smell from first the frying pan and then from the blender mixing warmed and roasted goodies! This all resulted in a wide grin on my face, oriental scent in my kitchen and naturally drooling all over anticipating dukkah-coated chicken breast fillets tonight! The ready made dukkah-blends cost a fortune at a special boutiques and this took less than 10 minutes to prepare! Cost is next to nothing considering how many batches one can make of the ingredients! Thanks so much for this recipe 🙂Elisa ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Made this Dukkah its really good! thanks for the recipe 🙂Liz ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
I’m so glad I found this recipe. WONDERFUL. A huge THANK YOU for crafting this wonderful, delicious spice blend.Mary EO ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
- 2 tbsp sunflower seeds
- ½ cup hazelnuts (or walnuts)
- 2 tbsp almonds
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
- 3 tbsp coriander seeds
- 3 tbsp sesame seeds, white
- 1 tbsp cumin, ground
- 1 tbsp green peppercorns
- 1 tbsp sweet paprika powder
- 2 tbsp sesame seeds, black
- 1 tsp sea salt (coarse)
- 1 tsp black cumin (nigella seeds)
- Gently roast the hazelnuts, almonds and sunflower seeds in a pan. About three minutes will do it. Take them out and pop them into a blender.½ cup hazelnuts, 2 tbsp almonds, 2 tbsp sunflower seeds
- Next, slowly roast the fennel seeds, normal cumin, coriander, and white sesame seeds. These won’t take as long – about two minutes should do it.1 tsp fennel seeds, 3 tbsp coriander seeds, 1 tbsp cumin, ground, 3 tbsp sesame seeds, white
- Put the second batch into the blender as well and just press the pulse button a couple of times. We’re looking for a nice crunchy mix here, not a powder. Finally add the green pepper, sea salt, black sesame seeds, black cumin and paprika powder and give it a last quick blend.1 tbsp green peppercorns, 2 tbsp sesame seeds, black, 1 tsp sea salt, 1 tsp black cumin, 1 tbsp sweet paprika powder
- Put it all in an airtight glass. Done! Use it to intensify soups, dips and salads or treat yourself to an oily bread and dukkah. You won’t look back.
I hope you enjoyed this authentic Dukkah recipe! Let me know how you used it in the comments below.
I would love to try this soon. Looks so good.
Hi Helene, yeeeess dukkah is amazing. Will deffo pimp all your salads a lot! 😀
When you refer to normal cumin, you are referring to cumin seed vs ground cumin, correct?
made this Dukkah its really good! thanks for the recipe 🙂
Awesome, Liz! Glad you enjoyed. We’ll pass on the compliments to chef Jansen 🙂
This looks great! May I ask if by ‘green pepper’ you are referring to a green bell pepper or some kind of spice? Also, any idea of the calorie count? Thank you!
Hi JoAnn! With the green pepper we actually mean green peppercorns (I’ve just changed the recipe to show that more clearly), but you could also use white or black pepper if you can’t find green. With regards to a calorie count, if we say there about 32 tbsp in a jar, and the jar is 992 calories, then we’re looking at about 31 cal per tbsp. I hope that helps! 🙂
Wow!!! finally made a batch -forgot the black sesame seeds and put 1 tbsp of coconut sugar too – and the divine smell from first the frying pan and then from the blender mixing warmed and roasted goodies! This all resulted in a wide grin on my face, oriental scent in my kitchen and naturally drooling all over anticipating dukkah-coated chicken breast fillets tonight! The ready made dukkah-blends cost a bloody fortune at a special boutiques and this took less than 10 minutes to prepare! Cost is next to nothing considering how many batches one can make of the ingredients! Thanks so much for this recipe 🙂
Hi Elisa! Really glad you liked the dukkah recipe – and had fun making it, too! Yes, it’s a keeper – I need a new batch actually!
This is an absolutely delicious mix, although I only had a few hazelnuts in the pantry so topped up the quantity with pistachios and macadamias.
Hoorah! Glad you like it as much as we do, Kim. Jansen really convinced us with this one, and we haven’t looked back since 😀
How long will it keep in the jar?
It’ll last a good few weeks as long as the jar is airtight! The longest I ever got to was about 4 weeks – then it all got eaten :D.
Just made a double batch. I have a friend I share recipes with and thought I’d introduce her to this one. I’ve already had a generous sprinkling on avocado toast and on half a baked sweet potato. I’m in heaven. Thank you so much for sharing this amazing recipe!
Aweeeesome!! Really glad you liked the Dukkah! It’s quite addicting, isn’t it?
I know what I am having for lu ch today!
Can the fennel seeds be left out?
I hate anything that tastes of liquorice.
Yes, Charlie! For sure. Although it will slightly the alter the taste I’m confident it’ll still be really tasty 🙂
It appears there are two different types of spice referred to as black cumin… Which one have you used?
Hi Alexander, wow I had no idea there were two. Today I learned something new. We used Nigella sativa. Thanks for the question, and hope that helps!
I made this with most of the ingredients listed. I did t have the black sesame or the black cumin. I really enjoyed it, it’s quite addictive. I made a second batch and added caraway and fresh orange zest (I dont think that’s traditional). The orange zest really lifted it and gave it a whole other dimension. This is going on my holiday appetizer table for sure!
Haha yes, it really is addictive! I love having a jar of the stuff around. The orange zest sounds really nice! Really cool, especially if you’re going to use it up quickly 🙂
I’m so glad I found this recipe. WONDERFUL. A huge THANK YOU for crafting this wonderful, delicious spice blend.
Happy to help, Mary! I’m glad you like it so much, we use it all the time, too!
Love the videos and would love the recipe for Chili sin and the quesadilla. Dukkah is a household g]favourite but oh so expensive in the shops! I look forward to trying your recipe. Many thanks
Hey Fern! Glad you like the videos :). There is one for the Chili sin Carne: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XYl1FsMOdnE&t=2s
and for the quesadillas – not yet – although these wraps are definitely worth checking out, in our humble opinion 🙂
How much does this yield?
Hi Ruby, it makes a jar with about 32 tablespoons 🙂
Can you freeze Dukkah when you make it & there’s only one of you to eat it?
I put it on top of hard-boiled eggs.
Hi Debra, actually Dukkah is fine for a couple of weeks in a jar at room temperature. Never tried to freeze mine since it was empty after 2-3 months anyway.
Debra Dukkah can definitely be frozen. However it also lasts well in a glass sealed container.
I made your Dukkah recipe at Christmas last year. Gave away jars of it and added it to my shortbread and chocolate bark as well. It was such a huge hit! One of my friends calls it her crack and adds it to everything! Thank you for such an amazing recipe!
No way?! That’s sooo cool! And a great idea actually. I may have to start doing the same! Thank you 🙂
Hi there, first time I try to make a Dukkah .. will make it again! Great recipe! Though i feel silly to ask this, but mine turned red because of the Paprika as the photo seems to be yellow? So next time i will try to put some Turmeric (but not as much as a table spoon of course)
Thank you for sharing the recipe!
Glad you enjoyed it, MC! I think it’s fine there was a red tinge (unless it was maybe too much paprika?). Haha yes, definitely less than a tsp of turmeric, but should still be great! 🙂
Very yummy have not tasted anything like it before. It is also really nice sprinkled on salads.
Yes! It’s great on salads, agreed. I’m glad you like it, thanks for writing, Jason!
Green peppercorns as I know them come in brine. Is that what you are using? Could black peppercorns be substituted? Apparently mummies were found with supplies of black peppercorns so they are definitely ‘Egyptian’ ingredients.
Hi Barb, yes you can deffo use black peppercorns. Maybe a little less. Nice research as well regarding them being Egyptian 🙂
Wow, thank you. This is so good. My smile when I tasted this made my day!
I would like to recommend that where you list ‘black cumin’ you add that this is also known as nigella. I had to Google black cumin and was worried that I wouldn’t be able to find it. When I saw that it was nigella I was relieved as this is a very common ingredient.
What a great point Anna! We’ll add this note right away, thanks!!