Exotic Middle Eastern recipes to try

Bring the spiced flavours of the Middle East to your kitchen table with our healthier traditional favourites.
Published 21 January 2018 | Updated 19 April 2024
Lamb koftas with fattoush

Middle Eastern flavours

Middle Eastern foods have long been overlooked by more popular western cuisines. However, over the last decade, the cuisine's delicious dishes have been recognised and its popularity has skyrocketed.

More than a dozen countries make up the Middle East region bordered by southern Europe, northern Africa and central Asia, each with its own influences and unique flavours. Their cuisines all share certain distinct elements including complex spice combinations, sweet-tart flavours like lemon juice and pomegranate molasses, legumes and pulses like chickpeas and use an abundance of fresh herbs.

Middle Eastern ingredients

  • Bulgur wheat
  • Chickpeas
  • Couscous
  • Dukkah (spice, seed and nut mix)
  • Feta
  • Fresh lemon
  • Hummus
  • Labne (strained thick yoghurt)
  • Mint
  • Olives
  • Pistachios
  • Pita bread
  • Sesame seeds
  • Sumac (spice)
  • Tahini (paste made from ground, hulled sesame seeds)
  • Za'atar (spice mix)

With a selection of our favourite Middle Eastern dishes including fattoush salad, kibbeh, tabouli, shakshuka and kofta - these dishes celebrate the best flavours the Middle East has to offer.