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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!
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 🙂
Made this Dukkah its really good! thanks for the recipe 🙂
I’m so glad I found this recipe. WONDERFUL. A huge THANK YOU for crafting this wonderful, delicious spice blend.
Mary EO ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Authentic Egyptian Dukkah
Want to learn how to make dukkah? Try our simple recipe for the spice blend you’ll soon be sprinkling on everything!
- 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.
Please note that the nutritional chart included is for the entire jar, and would be roughly 32 tbsp.
Jansen – thanks a lot for bringing some Egyptian flavours into our kitchen. What a cool recipe!
I hope you enjoyed this authentic Dukkah recipe! Let me know how you used it in the comments below.