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Hearty Shakshuka Recipe You Need To Try

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Bring a generous dose of Maghrebi magic into your life with our delicious shakshuka recipe, and prepare for rich, bold flavor, laced with the perfect amount of heat and spice.

Shakshuka topped with parsley and feta.

Shakshuka Recipe

A North African and Middle Eastern favorite for generations, dating back to the Ottoman era, shakshuka is as flavorful as it is eye-catching.

Built on a glorious foundation of sweet, acidic tomato and savory, runny poached egg, every mouthful of shakshuka electrifies the tongue with its generous inclusion of various herbs and spices.

The almost buttery softness of the eggs, the searing heat of the harissa, the delightful aroma of the herbs, and the sharp yet sweet punch of the tomato make shakshuka a truly mind-blowing culinary experience when it comes to both creative flavor and layered texture.

Shakshuka in a pan, topped with parsley and feta cheese.

What is Shakshuka?

A perfect symbol of the heat of both North Africa and the Middle East, shakshuka is a dish originally from the Maghreb region of Africa (the Northwest Arabic region).

t is a dish of poached eggs, served in a flavorful sauce of tomatoes, olive oil, and peppers, among other ingredients.

The whole dish is then seasoned with a generous amount of spices, with paprika and cayenne pepper being among them, topped with fiery harissa, and often served straight off the heat in a cast iron pan.

Shakshouka is a prominent dish in both North African and Middle Eastern cuisine. You’ll find it in African cuisines, such as Moroccan cuisine and Tunisian cuisine, Arabic Middle Eastern cuisines, such as Lebanese cuisine, and it even stretches into Europe via the likes of Turkish cuisine.

Ingredients

To make our shakshuka recipe, you’ll first need the following ingredients:

Shakshuka recipe ingredients on a board/
  • Eggs – 6
  • Canned Whole Plum Tomatoes – 2 cans of peeled plum tomatoes, 400 grams (14.1oz) each can
  • Olive Oil – 2 tbsp
  • Green Bell Pepper – 1 large
  • Onion – 1 medium onion
  • Cumin – 2 tsp
  • Paprika – 1 tsp
  • Cayenne Pepper – pinch of cayenne
  • Sugar – pinch of sugar
  • Feta – 100 grams (3.5 oz)
  • Parsley– bunch
  • Salt and pepper – to taste

Optional Harissa-Garlic Sauce

  • Olive Oil – 2 tbsp
  • Garlic – 3 cloves
  • Harissa – 2 tbsp

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1 – In a pan, over medium heat, add 2 tbsp of olive oil, the thinly sliced onion, and the thinly sliced green bell pepper. Sautée for about 15 minutes, adjusting the heat if necessary so as not to burn them.

Shakshuka recipe step-by-step (sliced pepper and onion in a pan).

Step 2 – Add the spices (cumin, paprika, pinch of cayenne, pinch of sugar, and salt and pepper to taste). We used about 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper. Sautee everything while stirring for 1-2 minutes, and then add the canned plum tomatoes. Cook for another 15 minutes.

Shakshuka recipe step-by-step (adding the canned plum tomatoes).
Shakshuka recipe step-by-step (after sauteeing the tomatoes, peppers, and onions).

Step 3 – Once the vegetables are nice and soft and the tomatoes no longer have that sharp, acidic taste, get a spoon and start making the wells for the eggs as shown below. We’re using 6 eggs so we’ll make 6 wells for the eggs to sit in.

Shakshuka recipe step-by-step (making the wells for the eggs with a spoon).

Step 4 – Crack the eggs in each well (as shown below).

Shakshuka recipe step-by-step (cracking one egg in the pan).
Shakshuka recipe step-by-step (cracked the eggs in the pan).

Step 5 – Place a lid on the pan and cook the eggs until you reach the desired doneness on the eggs. We cooked ours below for about 5-6 minutes.

Shakshuka recipe step-by-step (after the eggs have cooked).

Step 6 – Now, it’s time to add the toppings. We’ll start with crumbled feta cheese.

Shakshuka recipe step-by-step (adding crumbled feta cheese).

Step 7 – And then, we add fresh parsley.

Shakshuka recipe step-by-step (adding parsley).

Step 8 – We also like to make a harissa sauce to go on the shakshuka (but that’s up to you!). Shakshuka will be very delicious without it too.

Add 2 tbsp of olive oil and 3 thinly sliced garlic cloves and toast over medium heat for about 1-2 minutes. Then add 2 tbsp of harissa and cook for a couple of minutes more. You can serve it over the shakshuka (careful though, it’s quite spicy!)

Shakshuka recipe step-by-step (harissa, olive oil, garlic sauce).

What to Serve with Shakshuka

Harissa-Garlic Sauce – Whether you buy a harissa sauce, make your own, or opt to eat your shakshuka as it is, when it’s time to serve, one thing is for sure: you are in for a dish absolutely loaded with heat and flavor!

As mentioned previously in this article, you will often see shakshuka served in a cast iron pan directly from the heat to the table.

Bread – Spoon out a sizeable serving of egg and delicious sauce, and enjoy this fiery and incredibly flavorsome feast with a side of crusty white bread to help you mop up all that rich, spicy sauce.

Yogurt – If you need something to help you with the heat, consider some plain yogurt, mixed with herbs like mint.

Shakshuka with harissa sauce and bread.

You really are in for a treat of epic proportions when you give this North African favorite a try. Shakshuka brings a wealth of hot, spiced, and deep flavors to the forefront.

It is an amazing way to start the day with breakfast, or to enjoy as a hearty lunch or dinner with family and friends.

Shakshuka with harissa sauce and bread.

Recipe Card

Yield: 4

Shakshuka

Shakshuka
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Additional Time 5 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 6 eggs
  • 2 cans of peeled plum tomatoes, (400 grams (14.1oz) each can)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large green bell pepper
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • pinch of sugar
  • 100 grams (3.5 oz) feta
  • bunch of parsley
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tbsp olive oil (optional for the harissa-garlic sauce)
  • 3 cloves garlic (optional for the harissa-garlic sauce)
  • 2 tbsp harissa (optional for the harissa-garlic sauce)

Instructions

  1. In a pan, over medium heat, add 2 tbsp of olive oil, the thinly sliced onion, and the thinly sliced green bell pepper. Sautée for about 15 minutes, adjusting the heat if necessary so as not to burn them.
  2. Add the spices (cumin, paprika, pinch of cayenne, pinch of sugar, and salt and pepper to taste). We used about 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper. Sautee everything while stirring for 1-2 minutes, and then add the canned plum tomatoes. Cook for another 15 minutes.
  3. Once the vegetables are nice and soft and the tomatoes no longer have that sharp, acidic taste, get a spoon and start making the wells for the eggs as shown below. We’re using 6 eggs so we’ll make 6 wells for the eggs to sit in.
  4. Crack the eggs in each well (as shown below).
  5. Place a lid on the pan and cook the eggs until you reach the desired doneness on the eggs. We cooked ours for about 5-6 minutes.
  6. Now, it’s time to add the toppings. We’ll start with crumbled feta cheese.
  7. And then, we add fresh parsley.
  8. We also like to make a harissa sauce to go on the shakshuka (but that’s up to you!). Shakshuka will be very delicious without it too. Add 2 tbsp of olive oil and 3 very thinly sliced garlic cloves and toast over medium heat for about 1-2 minutes. Then add 2 tbsp of harissa and cook for a couple of minutes more. You can serve it over the shakshuka (careful though, it’s quite spicy!)
  9. Spoon out a sizeable serving of egg and delicious sauce, and enjoy this fiery and incredibly flavorsome feast with a side of crusty white bread to help you mop up all that rich, spicy sauce.

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      close up of shakshuka in pan top down view

      Author: Doina is a content writer, strategist, and passionate home chef, who has traveled to over 35 countries in her lifetime, and counting. She enjoys learning from new cultures and cuisines and using her experiences while traveling to influence her own cooking.

      Author

      • Hey there! We are Dale and Doina, the founders of Nomad Paradise. We traveled full-time for over three years, and while we now have a home base in the U.K., continue to take trips abroad to visit new places and try new cuisines and foods. Our food guides are curated with the guidance of local foodies, and their contribution is indicated under each article. We also cook the foods we try abroad, and you can discover how to make them in our 'recipes from around the world' category.

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