Top 10 Traditional Recipes in Saudi Arabia


a plate of food

Introduction to Saudi Arabian Cuisine

Saudi Arabian cuisine is a rich tapestry of flavors and traditions, reflecting the country’s deep cultural heritage. From hearty meat dishes to fragrant rice and delicious desserts, the food of Saudi Arabia offers a culinary journey that is both unique and deeply satisfying.

1. Kabsa

Kabsa is one of the most iconic dishes in Saudi Arabian cuisine. This dish consists of spiced rice cooked with meat, usually chicken or lamb, and is often garnished with nuts and raisins. The blend of spices like cardamom, cinnamon, and cloves gives Kabsa its distinct flavor.

2. Jareesh

Jareesh is a traditional Saudi dish made from crushed wheat, cooked slowly with meat, usually chicken or lamb, and flavored with various spices. It has a porridge-like consistency and is often enjoyed during family gatherings and special occasions.

3. Mandi

Mandi is a beloved dish in Saudi Arabia, similar to Kabsa but with a slightly different preparation method. It involves cooking meat and rice together in a tandoor oven, which imparts a smoky flavor to the dish. The meat is typically lamb or chicken, seasoned with a blend of spices.

4. Harees

Harees is a traditional dish made from wheat and meat, usually lamb or chicken, that is cooked until it reaches a creamy consistency. This dish is especially popular during Ramadan and other festive occasions.

5. Samboosa

Samboosa, also known as Samosa, is a popular snack in Saudi Arabia. These crispy pastries are filled with a variety of ingredients, including spiced meat, vegetables, or cheese, and are often enjoyed as appetizers or during Iftar.

6. Mutabbaq

Mutabbaq is a savory stuffed pancake that is a favorite street food in Saudi Arabia. It can be filled with a mixture of meat, vegetables, and spices, and is typically fried until crispy and golden.

7. Saleeg

Saleeg is a creamy rice dish often compared to Italian risotto. It is cooked with broth, milk, and butter, and typically served with roasted chicken or meat. The dish is known for its comforting and rich flavor.

8. Margoog

Margoog is a hearty stew made with meat, vegetables, and whole wheat flour dumplings. It is a traditional dish that is especially popular during the winter months, providing warmth and nourishment.

9. Hininy

Hininy is a traditional Saudi dessert made from dates, brown bread, butter, and spices. It is a rich and sweet treat that is often enjoyed during special occasions and celebrations.

10. Ma’amoul

Ma’amoul are delicate pastries filled with dates, nuts, or figs. These cookies are often made during Eid and other festive times, symbolizing joy and celebration.


Saudi Arabian cuisine is a treasure trove of flavors and traditions. Each dish tells a story of the country’s rich cultural heritage and offers a taste of its culinary diversity. Whether you are a food enthusiast or simply curious, exploring these traditional recipes is sure to be a delightful experience.

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