Traditional Moroccan food

Traditional Food from Morocco

Moroccan food is known for its rich flavors and unique ways of cooking. Here’s a list of traditional food from Morocco that you should definitely try, along with more info about the dishes and local cuisine.

Tagine

Tagine is not so much of a dish on its own, but rather the style of cooking and the vessel used to prepare the food. A tagine is cone-shaped and is usually made of clay or ceramic.

It gives a distinguished flavor and has long been a tradition within Moroccan cuisine. Tagine is perhaps the most iconic way of cooking, and some of the most common dishes that are prepared in a tagine include chicken and vegetables.

If you travel to Morocco, make sure to order a tagine at least once. Almost every restaurant will serve it.

Tagine

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Kefta

Moroccan meatballs are usually made from lamb or ground beef, which is mixed with herbs and spices. Kefta is often served together with couscous, vegetables, and various spices can be used to give a unique flavor.

Some local recipes can even include mint leaves or cinnamon.

Kefta

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Moroccan Sardines

Sardines is one of the staple foods of Morocco, and it’s popular all over the country, although it’s more commonly consumed along the coast. One of the best local dishes is stuffed sardines, and they make a great side dish or starter.

Morocco is the largest exporter in the world of sardines, which means there’s plenty of them. Moroccan stuffed sardines are usually filled with chermoula but can come with other stuffings and spices too.

Moroccan-Sardines

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Couscous

Couscous is a very traditional food from Morocco, and while it’s available worldwide, there are few places in the world where you can get better couscous than in Morocco. It’s originally from the Maghreb cuisine and is made from semolina wheat.

Many Moroccans eat couscous on a daily basis, and it’s very versatile since it can be served with both vegetables and different types of meat.

Couscous-in-Morocco

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Brochettes

Kebab is a favorite in all of the Middle East, and much of North Africa as well. The Moroccan version is locally known as brochettes and is usually served on skewers with either lamb, beef or chicken.

It’s a common type of street food in Morocco, and it’s both cheap and delicious. You can also get brochettes in bread and harissa.

Brochettes

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Harira

If you want to try a Moroccan soup, I can recommend the harira, which is made of chickpeas and lentils. The soup is primarily eaten during Ramadan in order to break the fast. However, it can also be found year-round in restaurants, and it’s easy to make at home as well.

The rich flavors come from the lamb or beef which is added to the stock, and for some extra texture, some chaariya is often added.

Harira

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Merguez sausage

If you like sausages, I can recommend having a grilled Merguez sausage. It has its origins from the Berber cuisine and is commonly eaten in several countries in North Africa. The Merguez sausage is often made of lamb and can be added to a tagine or eaten in a bread.

Merguez-sausage

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Fish Chermoula

Chermoula is one of the most iconic ingredients in Moroccan cuisine, and it’s actually not a dish on its own, but rather a mix of herbs and spices. It’s typically used for seafood and fish, and there are some regional differences in the spices used.

Fish-Chermoula

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Khobz

If you like to try bread from different parts of the world, you should write down Khobz on your foodie wishlist. It’s the most popular bread in Morocco, and it’s served to a wide range of different dishes and meals.

The Khobz is baked in wood-fired ovens and make a nice companion to the Moroccan cuisine and flavors.

Khobz

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Moroccan Chicken Bastilla

This is a chicken pie that is traditionally served on special events, but it can also be made at home and it’s available in some restaurants too.

Moroccan Chicken Bastilla

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Tanjia

Tanjia is most common in Marrakesh, and just like the tagine, it’s a clay pot dish that is usually made with beef, lamb or chicken. Tanjia dishes are known for their rich flavors with plenty of herbs and spices.

Rfissa

Rfissa is another traditional dish from Morocco, which is mainly served during celebrations. It’s usually made with chicken and lentils as well as fenugreek seeds, msemmen, and ras el hanout. It’s often decorated with quail eggs, fruits and nuts to add to the festivity.

Rfissa

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Zaalouk

Zaalouk is a type of cooked salad which is made with eggplant and tomatoes. It also includes garlic, spices, and olive oil. Zaalouk is typically eaten with bread and served as a side dish.

Zaalouk

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Lamb or Beef with Prunes

This combination is another showcase of the excellent and unique flavors of Moroccan cuisine. This dish can be made with either lamb or beef, which is cooked together with spices until it’s really tender. Prunes are added on the top along with almonds, and some syrup.

Moroccan dish with lamb

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More about Moroccan food & cuisine

Most people who travel to Morocco quickly fall in love with Moroccan food and cuisine. Contrary to other countries where usage of spices and herbs is heavy, the local food here has rich flavors instead of being too spicy.

Meat is typically eaten in most meals, but there are some vegetarian and vegan options available as well. Chicken, lamb, and beef are the most common types of meat. Pork is not used in the Moroccan cuisine since it’s an Islamic country, where consumption of pork is forbidden.

Traditional food from Morocco has been eaten for centuries here, and the dishes have all emerged from Berber and Maghreb cuisine, which at times have been influenced by Jewish and Arab food culture as well.

The Moroccan flavors and ways of cooking are quite unique, and to find the best places to eat traditional food from Morocco, you should try to eat where the locals eat. Souks are great if you want to try Moroccan street food, which is often cheap and delicious.

food from Morocco

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What is typical Moroccan food?

A typical Moroccan meal will include some type of meat, such as lamb, chicken or beef. It’s often cooked and served in a tagine with vegetables and couscous. Bread and Moroccan mint tea will usually be served on the side as well.

Is Moroccan food spicy?

Moroccan food is typically not spicy, although spices and herbs are used widely in the local cuisine.

What do they eat for breakfast in Morocco?

Breakfast in Morocco usually includes eggs, olives, bread, jams, pancakes, and tea.

Moroccan breakfast

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Moroccan Food etiquette

Which hand do Moroccans eat with?

Eating with your hand is not something that is typical in the Western world, but here, it’s quite common, although it should be noted that you always eat with your right hand in Morocco.

Moroccans typically use the first two fingers and their thumb when eating. Your left hand can be used to receive plates, or passing foods to others around the table.

Can I drink alcohol in Morocco?

Alcohol is available in Morocco at certain establishments that hold a specific license for tourists. However, since Islam is the state religion, it’s forbidden to consume alcohol in public, and Moroccans are typically not drinking alcohol.

Some supermarkets will sell alcohol to foreigners, but if so, it shouldn’t be consumed in public.

Don’t refuse food in Morocco when offered

Being invited to dinner in Morocco is not unheard of, and if you happen to get a connection with a local, it’s a nice opportunity to get to know more about Moroccan culture as well as eat some traditional food from Morocco.

However, just remember that it’s considered rude to say no to food. If you’re full, leave something on your plate instead of finishing it all.

Moroccan food etiquette

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Which is your favorite food from Morocco? Leave a comment below!