Moroccan food is unlike any other cuisine in the world. With its mix of spices and flavors, it’s no wonder that so many people love it.
Being of Moroccan origins and thousands of miles away from my home, all I can say is I have always been fascinated by the food of my beloved country.
Moroccan dishes are a perfect fusion of Berber, Arab, Moorish, Mediterranean, and African influences. The food is characterized by its bold flavors, colorful decoration, and variety of native spices. It is also known for being very hearty and filling.
The good news is that Moroccan food is becoming more and more popular around the world, so it is easier to find Moroccan restaurants or ingredients to cook Moroccan dishes if traveling to Morocco is not an option for you.
But if you’re ever in Morocco, be sure to try some of these 40 best Moroccan foods & Dishes! So, get your appetite ready, and let’s dive into the delicious world of Moroccan food!
40 Moroccan Traditional Foods to Try in Morocco
Have no time to read? No worries, save it on Pinterest for later!
Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase or book through one of our links we may earn a small commission (don’t worry, it’s at no extra cost to you).
Moroccan Food: Main Dishes
Couscous ‘Seksu’ is the national dish of Morocco. Every Friday after Jumuaa prayers, Moroccans around the world gather around a large clay plate to feast on the traditional Moroccan Couscous.
Originally a Berber dish, the Moroccan couscous is basically a steamed wheat grain (sometimes semolina grains) topped with 7 different veggies and meat or chicken.
The couscous is usually served with Leben, a famous Berber drink that is made by letting milk ferment for a few hours and then shaking it until you get a sour delicious drink.
Make it at home: Couscous Recipe
Moroccan Tagine (Tajine)
Meet an an age-old Moroccan Amazigh tradition of cooking food in a unique dome-shaped clay pot. Tagine is a Moroccan dish that’s named after the pot cooked in.
This world-famous food can be made with chicken or meat or vegetables only if requested but not common for Moroccans since they LOVE their meat :P.
The Tagine is made by cooking the meat in a mix of exotic Moroccan spices, and onions, and then topping it up with either vegetable, green olives, or nuts.
What I like about the Moroccan Tagine is the beautiful presentation and that it is always served with bread (Khobz). I love the Moroccan Khobz!
Make it at home: Moroccan Chicken Tagine Recipe
Another favorite food in Morocco is this one. Rfissa is a very popular dish in Morocco during celebrations.
It is traditionally made with Msemen pastry bread (Found in Moroccan breakfasts), chicken, lentil, and chicken broth.
This Moroccan savory dish cannot be served without its two main ingredients, the Fenugreek spice, and Ras El Hanout a blend of several spices.
In addition to the mouthwatering taste, Rfissa is known to be good for health, especially for women recovering from childbirth and that’s why Rfissa is present at every newborn party in Morocco (S’boua)!
Make it at home: Chicken Rfissa Recipe
Djaj Mhemer (Moroccan Chicken With Preserved Lemon)
Chicken with preserved lemon and olives is another dish that Moroccans love to serve on happy occasions such as weddings.
As the name speaks for the dish, it is made with chicken slowly cooked with spices, garlic, onions, and flavored with homemade preserved lemon and green olives.
Sometimes, the chicken can be cooked with spices, then roasted or fried to get that dark brown color before serving it with lemon and olives.
Make it at home: Chicken with Preserved Lemon Recipe
Lhem B brkoko (Moroccan Lamb with prunes)
Slowly cooked on coal fire, that’s how Moroccans serve you the most tender and jaw-dropping meat dish.
Lamb meat is cooked with garlic, saffron, ginger, onions, and spices then topped with syrup-cooked prunes, and finally decorated with fried almonds.
Lamb or beef tagines with prunes are the best food you can try in local restaurants in Morocco.
This recipe is also quite easy to try at home, and you don’t need a Tagine pot. A conventional pot with a heavy bottom can do just fine.
Kefta Tajine (Moroccan Meatball Tagines)
Meatball (Kefta) tagine is a heavenly delicious meal that you can have for lunch or dinner. The mincemeat is seasoned with a lot of cumin, paprika, and herbs before being shaped into small balls and cooked slowly in a tomato sauce.
The last 10 minutes is when the egg mix is poured to add a fabulous touch and taste to the meatballs.
The result is a light, delicious, and filling dish served with homemade Moroccan bread. It’s a must-try Moroccan food when you visit.
Make it at home: Moroccan Seasoned Ground Beef or Lamb Recipe
Tajine Hout (Moroccan Fish Tagine)
Can I have a fish Tagine? Yep, you can! Moroccans are so creative with their Tagine recipes. They can make a tagine out of everything, even fish. You can have Sardine meatballs Tagine or a whole fish Tagine seasoned with veggies or just tomato sauce.
I like sardine meatballs more, so if you are a fish lover, try it on your next trip to Morocco.
Mechoui (Moroccan Roasted Lamb)
Lamb Mechoui is surprisingly one of the most delicious foods you can try in Morocco, especially in Marrakech. It is also a unique and crazy experience given how it’s cooked.
Usually, the Mechoui is made by wrapping a whole sheep like a popsicle and cooking in a very hot and big pit hole where they can stuff five sheep at a time (Wow!)
The result is insane, a jaw-dropping saucy and tender meat. And you can choose your cut from wherever you want, the leg, the shoulder, the head, the choice is all yours.
The best place to try Mechoui meat in Morocco is the Mechoui Alley in Marrakech.
Boulfaf (Moroccan Grilled Liver)
Eid Al Adha celebration in Morocco wouldn’t be complete without Boulfaf. Boulfaf is a spiced and coal-grilled lamb liver and heart with fat (optional).
After the meat (liver and heart pieces) are nicely grilled on a coal fire, they are cut into small cubes, wrapped in pieces of fat, put again on fire for a few minutes, and finally seasoned with salt and pepper and served.
This delicious Moroccan dish is hard to find in restaurants and to try it you have to be invited by a Moroccan family during Eid celebrations.
Make it at home: Moroccan Boulfaf Recipe
Bayd b Khlii (Moroccan Eggs & Preserved Meat)
We know eggs but what is Khlii? Khlii (or Khlea) is a kind of dried and preserved meat or let’s say a type of jerky in Moroccan cuisine.
Traditionally it’s made by marinating beef meat in lots of spices and garlic. The meat is then sundried and finally preserved in fat. Sounds unhealthy right? WHO CARES!!! You should definitely try the Khlii and eggs dish for breakfast when visiting Morocco. It’s super tasty.
The Khlii meat is first sauteed for a few minutes then the eggs are added et voila Besehha as Moroccans say! On a serious note, khlii is not consumed in large quantities.
Make it at home: Eggs with Khlii Recipe
Tangia or Tanjia (Marrakesh’s slow-cooked meat)
If there is one food you shouldn’t miss in Morocco, it is Tangia (or Tanjia). This Marrakesh specialty dish can be hard to find outside Marrakech and even if you do find it, I believe it won’t taste as good as the one found in Marrakech.
Tangia is not to be confused with Tagine. It’s totally different. Tangia is traditionally a few chunks of nicely spiced lamb meat cooked in a clay amphora for hours in a traditional street oven.
When the meat is seasoned with various ingredients including herbs, spices, garlic, saffron, cumin, turmeric, and lastly Smen (a homemade salty butter) it is then put in the amphora, sealed, and sent to the oven to be buried in hot coal ashes.
After a few good hours, the clay amphora is taken out and served in a Tagine (the pot) with some homemade cooked break.
Make it at home: Tangia Recipe
Moroccan Paella (Seafood Rice)
Paella is originally a Spanish dish from the Valencia region. However, the Spanish recipe has traveled all the way to its neighboring country Morocco and become one of its identity seafood dishes.
The Moroccan version of Paella is basically Chicken and shellfish (sometimes other seafood options are incorporated) marinated in Coriander Leaf, Cumin Seed, and Paprika, cooked with rice and stock for a delicious and tasty meal.
Make it at home: Moroccan Paella
Sardine mechoui (Moroccan Grilled Sardines)
Grilled sardines are common street food in Morocco and it’s usually found sold near beaches. Morocco enjoys its extensive coastline providing an abundant supply of seafood.
There are many ways of serving sardines in Morocco for example fried sardines, However, the grilled ones are healthier and way more delicious to enjoy on a beachy day in Morocco.
If you want to try the tastiest Moroccan grilled sardines, visit Essaouira fishing port. You won’t regret it!
Make it at home: Moroccan Grilled Sardines Recipe
Lhem Rass (Moroccan Steamed Sheep Head)
The sheep head is cleaned and steamed and cut into pieces then seasoned with salt, pepper, and cumin. This Moroccan dish is made every Eid Al Adha.
In Marrakech, you can purchase a whole head or even half and enjoy the soft and tender meat. My favorite part of the sheep’s head is the super-soft cheek meat.
Khobz (Moroccan homemade Bread)
You are probably wondering why Moroccan bread is in the main dishes section. Well, Moroccan bread or Khobz is an integral part of every Moroccan table and it’s served with almost every meal of the day from breakfast to supper.
Unlike Arabic bread, Moroccan whole wheat bread is a thicker round bread, crusty from the outside and fluffy from the inside. In Morocco, Khobz serves to eat all the main dishes by hand like the renewed tagines, salads, and more.
Make it at home: Easy Moroccan Khobz Recipe
Moroccan food: Appetizers, Soups & Snacks
Pastilla/Bstila (Moroccan Chicken or Seafood Pie)
Pastilla refers to different types of food in Russia and the Philippines. However, in Morocco, Pastilla also spelled Bastilla means something very yummy, a crispy dough pie with meat fillings.
The Moroccan Pastilla has an unusual mixture of sweetness and salt that can wake your taste buds up for sure. There are two main versions of Moroccan Pastilla, one with poultry and one with seafood.
Pastilla is generally served as a starter for special meals and occasions including wedding celebrations.
Briouat (Moroccan Samosas)
Moroccan Briouats are sweet or savory stuffing wrapped in filo dough and deep-fried or baked in the oven. But the version sold in Morocco is the deep-fried one.
Briouat stuffings can be made of meat (chicken and beef) or simply cheese and vegetables. These triangle-shaped treats are usually served in restaurants as a starter with main Moroccan dishes along with other appetizers such as spiced olives and Zaalouk.
They are also Moroccan street food but those are stuffed mostly with tuna or chicken. If you visit Morocco in Ramadan, you will find Brouiat on every single Ramadan food table as they are an integral part of Ramadan food in Morocco.
Harira/H’rira (Moroccan Tomato & Lentils Soup)
Harira is a traditional Moroccan soup made of tomato sauce, onions, lentils, chickpeas, spices, and a lot of fresh coriander and parsley.
Harira is considered a Ramdan special in Morocco. Ramadan Iftar (breakfast) can’t be complete without a bowl of Harira or two. Don’t worry! Harira is also made and served even outside of Ramadan in some restaurants and cafes in Morocco.
Local Tip: To enjoy the Moroccan Harira even better try adding a sparkle of sweetness like Chebbakia or dates to the meal.
Make it at home: Moroccan Tomato-Based Soup (Local Recipe)
Bissara (Moroccan Kidney Beans Soup)
While Harira stands out from the crowd for being a very famous soup in Morocco, Bissara deserves a mention for being a very much loved dip during the cold and snowy months in the country.
Bissara is made of pureed broad beans flavored with mainly olive oil, lemon juice, and lots of cumin, and it is commonly served for breakfast.
It might not be easy to find this dish everywhere but if you go to the countryside villages you will have better luck tasting it.
Zaalouk (Moroccan Eggplant Salad)
Zaalouk is a Moroccan salad of cooked eggplants, tomatoes, and peppers. The eggplant and peppers are first grilled, peeled, and then mixed with the tomatoes and sauteed in olive oil, garlic, and spices.
This Moroccan easy dish is a great starter (salade) that goes with meat dishes like Lamb and chicken Tagine. The starter is usually served cold on small plates around the main dish and eaten ideally with Moroccan bread.
If this sounds delicious to you, worry not! because you won’t need to book a flight to taste Zaalouk, it is an easy recipe that you can make at home in 15 minutes. Try it!
Maakouda (Moroccan Potato Fritters)
Maakouda refers to a Moroccan appetizer dish. It is traditionally prepared with mashed or grated potatoes, seasoned with sauteed onions, garlic, salt, cumin, and turmeric for the yellow color. The potato mix is then rolled into circle-shaped cakes and fried
There is also a version where tuna, meat, or cheese are added. Maakouda is considered famous street food in Morocco that might be eaten plain or in a sandwich.
A’dess (Moroccan Lentil Soup)
Lentils dish in Morocco is usually served as a side dish or a starter. They are cooked with onions, tomatoes, and garlic with added spices like pepper, salt, turmeric, and cumin. Lentil soup in Morocco is a staple food that can be vegetarian or with meat.
Loubia (Moroccan White beans soup)
Loubia is made with white beans. They are soaked overnight and then cooked with onions, tomatoes, a lot of herbs, and spices (salt, pepper, and turmeric). It is also common to add meat or chicken.
This staple Moroccan dish is found in other cuisines around the world like Turkish cuisine for example.
You will get a small plate full of spiced olives before or with every Tagine you order in Morocco. Morocco is one of the largest producers of olives and olive oil. They taste pretty good, to be honest, and I love olives.
Moroccan Tuna Bocadillo
Tuna Bocadillo sandwiches are popular street food in Morocco. This Spanish-influenced tuna sandwich can include a variety of stuffings including boiled potatoes, olives (black and green), onions, boiled eggs, and the spicy Harissa sauce if you choose to add it.
The bread used for the Moroccan Bocadillo is usually french baguettes but sometimes they use half a loaf of Khobz (round Moroccan bread).
Moroccan Food: Sweets and Pastries
Chebbakia (Moroccan Ramadan treat)
The rose-shaped sweet pastry is a Ramadan must in Morocco. It goes so well with Harira soup and dates. Chebbakia is made of a special Chebbakia dough and rolled to get the unique shape and then deep-fried until golden, and finally dipped in homemade syrup and sprinkled with sesame seeds.
Sellou/ Sfouf (Moroccan nut mix)
Sellou, also called Sfouf is a rich dessert or a snack that goes with Moroccan mint tea or spiced coffee. Sellou is a mix of ground-fried almonds, ground-toasted sesame seeds, browned flour, and flavored with cinnamon powder, anise powder, and honey or sugar.
The nutty ground is then mixed with melted butter or warmed olive oil. Unfortunately, Sellou is not commonly served in restaurants and cafes but it can be found on the menu of some Riads in Morocco.
Kab El Ghazal is a crescent-shaped cookie. The cookies are made by stuffing almond paste into a delicate pastry. The cookie is shaped like a crescent and baked in the oven.
The almond paste is flavored with rose or orange flower water and cinnamon which gives the cookies a unique taste. Kab El Ghazal is usually made on special occasions only such as weddings, and baby showers but is easily found in restaurants and bakeries.
Moroccan Ghoribas is one of my favorite cookies. Its crunchy and yet melt-in-the-mouth goodness is so irresistible. In Morocco, you can distinguish a good Ghoriba cookie from its surface cracks. The more cracks it has the better it tastes.
The good news is that Ghoriba is literally sold everywhere even at local grocery shops. Don’t miss out on the experience of trying this street food cookie.
Msemmen (Moroccan Traditional Pancakes)
Msemmen is a traditional flatbread served for Moroccan breakfasts and evening snacks. It is usually served with honey and Moroccan mint tea or spiced coffee.
Msemmen in Morocco can also be stuffed with meat or onion and tomatoes and it’s called “Msemen M’aamer” meaning Stuffed Msemen.
Beghrir (Moroccan Semolina Pancakes)
Beghrir is spongy, melt-in-your-mouth Moroccan pancakes made from a crepe-like semolina batter. Also known as the million hole pancakes, Baghrir is usually served with honey-butter sauce for breakfast, but certainly great anytime.
Beghrir can be found in all restaurants that have a Moroccan breakfast menu, and also in the small local cafes that specialize in only pancakes and Moroccan tea.
Harcha (Moroccan pan-fried bread)
Harcha is perfect for breakfast or tea-time snacks. It is a flatbread made of Semolina flour, butter, and milk and cooked on a griddle.
Harcha is commonly served with jams or honey and butter syrup.
Sfenj (Moroccan Doughnuts)
Sfenj is a type of doughnut in Morocco. It’s sold by street vendors only as it is hard to make at home. The Sfenj is made with a very sticky sourdough and shaped into rings before deep frying it in sunflower oil.
The traditional Moroccan doughnuts are crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. Sfenj goes very well with Moroccan mint tea.
Moroccan Food: Popular Drinks
Moroccan mint tea
A unique tea that combines fresh mint and natural gunpowder green tea. The process of making authentic Moroccan tea is awesome but the taste is another story!
The addiction is real!
Make it at home: Moroccan Mint Tea Recipe (Local Recipe)
Moroccan Nous Nous Coffee
You won’t be able to find your good morning cup of coffee in Morocco but I’m quite sure there are other good Moroccan coffee alternatives. the popular Nous-Nous is one of them. We wrote a whole post about coffee in Morocco check it out.
Leben is homemade fermented milk. The process of making Leben in Morocco is quite long and hard as it takes up to 2 days to get through the whole process of fermenting, shaking, and finally removing the butter.
However, the result is very delicious. You can buy Leben from Supermarkets in Morocco but the homemade one is the best you can have.
Fresh Sugarcane Juice
My husband and I love freshly made sugarcane juice. The sugarcane juice is extracted from peeled sugarcane sticks by crushing them in a machine. We also like adding the optional fresh ginger. A great kick to the sweet taste of the juice.
The juice is usually made and sold in the streets around Morocco. Amazing! A full cup of sugarcane will cost you 10Dh only (1$ ).
Zaazaa (Moroccan dessert)
With a funny name that’s impossible to pronounce correctly, Zaazaa is a widely popular drink across Morocco. ZaaZaa literally means scary in Moroccan slang language which is true. This juice is scary for people that care about sugar levels.
The juice is basically loaded with a ton of sugary and sweet ingredients. It includes multiple levels each level has a type of ingredient.
The ingredients will vary from one cafe or restaurant to another but they all include fruits like strawberries, and bananas, dried nuts, and dates, Chocolates, and chocolate biscuits like Kitkat and Oreos, fresh cream, a lot of creams really, chocolate syrup, and more.
This is definitely one of my favorite Moroccan food experiences. It’s a must-try
Babbouch (Snails Soup)
Snails soup and Ras El Hanout spice are a combination of spicy distinctive flavors.
The main ingredient of the soup is of course the snails. This Moroccan dish is made by stewing the snails in a broth with a mix of spices and herbs called Ras El Hanout which includes thyme, aniseed, Arabic gum, mint, caraway, and many more.
The rich dish is known to be very good for health to what it contains. Snail soup is generally a Moroccan street food that is sold by vendors with carts. They are usually found in traditional markets and busy areas in the city like famous streets.
I highly recommend trying this Moroccan food but if you can’t stand the idea of eating the snail try the soup instead. They normally serve the snails with the soup but you can request only the soup. However, don’t drink more than one cup as a start. It’s quite strong.
Sauteed Sheep’s Brain
We mentioned the sheep’s head meat, right? But in Morocco, nothing goes to waste. They also make a hearty dish from the brain. And you know what, it’s crazy delicious if you can handle the zesty texture.
The dish is basically a sautee of the sheep’s brain with some tomatoes and herbs and that’s it.
Unfortunately, you can’t order this special Moroccan dish everywhere in Morocco. It’s mostly found in Jama El Fna in Marrakech.
Eating in Morocco Tips
- Make sure to pack some over-the-counter medication and pain relievers just in case. Eating Moroccan food gives you overwhelming pleasure but it can be also unbearable pain. Most Moroccan dishes are meat-based so eating too many things and mixing up all kinds of food can do injustice to your stomach.
- Always carry a hand sanitizer. Strolling around the souqs, touching all the nice goodies, and trying out clothes can be fun. However, make sure to wash your hands before eating. If that’s not possible a hand sanitizer you carry might come in handy.
Moroccan Food FAQs
What is the most popular food in Morocco?
Staples of the Moroccan diet include couscous, lamb, chicken, beef, and fresh seafood.
One of the most popular Moroccan dishes is couscous. Another popular dish is Moroccan lamb Tagine, which is usually cooked with spices like cumin and paprika.
Is Moroccan food spicy or sweet?
Moroccan food can be both spicy and sweet. It all depends on the ingredients used and how they are prepared. Moroccan dishes typically contain a lot of spices, including cumin, ginger, paprika, and turmeric.
Sweeteners such as honey, cinnamon, and almonds are also commonly used. The combination of these flavors results in a unique and delicious cuisine that can be either sweet or spicy.
What is the national Food of Morocco?
Couscous is widely accepted as the national dish of Morocco. But Tagine, Tangia, and Moroccan Harira can be also considered among the national dishes of Morocco.
Where can I find traditional Moroccan food?
Some of the best places to try traditional Moroccan food are in the markets such as Jamma El Fena in Marrakech.
Moroccan food is also available in almost all local restaurants in Morocco. But, if you’re looking for a truly authentic Moroccan dining experience, it’s best to try one of the traditional Moroccan cooking classes.
These classes/schools will teach you how to cook Moroccan food using traditional methods and ingredients and you’ll be able to enjoy your meal afterward!
How expensive is food in Morocco
Traditionla Moroccan food is not expensive at all. You can get a good meal in a local Moroccan restaurant with less than $20. Street food in Morocco is even cheaper. It cost much less ($1 to $2) to try a Moroccan Bocadillo sandwich.
But luxury dining is widely availbale in Morocco if you are willing to spend some more on food.
How to avoid food poisoning in Morocco
With so much delicious food to sample in Morocco, there is always the possibility of food poisoning. To avoid it, here are a few tips:
- Choose restaurants that look clean and reputable.
- Avoid street vendors if possible.
- Make sure all fruits and vegetables are washed thoroughly before eating them.
- Check for signs of spoilage on meat or fish before consuming them.
- Make sure all food is cooked thoroughly and served hot.
Moroccan food and allergies
If you have allergies to certain foods, it’s important to be aware of what Moroccan dishes contain. Moroccan cuisine often uses nuts, legumes, and dairy products.
If you are allergic to any of these ingredients, make sure to ask your server about the ingredients in each dish before ordering.
This can help prevent an unpleasant surprise when your food arrives.
Moroccan Food Cookbooks
If you’re interested in learning how to cook Moroccan food, check out these five great cookbooks.
- The Food of Morocco
- Tagines and Couscous: Delicious recipes for Moroccan one-pot cooking
- Easy Tagine: delicious recipes for Moroccan one-pot cooking
- 150 Best Tagine Recipes: Includes Recipes for Spice Blends and Accompaniments
Moroccan Food Tours
If you’re looking to experience the best of what Moroccan cuisine has to offer, then a food tour is the perfect way to do it.
Here are our Moroccan food tour picks per city and if you are looking for a four-tour in a specific city message us to recommend a few.
- Rabat food tasting tour
- Casablanca food tasting tour
- Chefchaouen food tasting tour
- Tangier food-tasting tour
Before you go, here is a video of the street food in Marrakech filmed by my favorite food blogger, Bohemian Kitchen. Bon Appétit!
Like it? Share it!