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What is Hawaij Spice?

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Hawaij spice (also known as Hawayej, Hawaj, and Hawayij) means "mixture" in Arabic. It's a spice blend with primarily cumin and black pepper and often contains cardamom, coriander, turmeric, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves.

There are two primary blends of hawaij - one for savory dishes and one used in coffee and desserts.

Hawaij is primarily used in Yemeni and Israeli cuisine.

The savory mixture is often used in soups, curry dishes, and rubs on meat.

The mixture for coffee and desserts can be used in cakes and other baked goods. Examples of recipes using hawaij can be found below. 

hawaij spiced chicken and rice in a bowl

Recipes Using Hawaij Spice

Hawaij is such an interesting spice blend because it can be used in both savory and sweet dishes. If you’re looking for a creative way to use hawaij, check out these excellent recipes:

Where to Buy Hawaij

You can buy this Hawaij Spice Blend online from Amazon.

Alternatives for Hawaij 

If you can't find hawaij or don't have all the ingredients to make the hawaij blend, you can use a mixture of equal parts black pepper and cumin

Yield: ¾ cup

Hawaij Spice Blend

Hawaij spices on a green plate.

This hawaij spice blend can be used in savory dishes - like soups, curries, and as a rub on meat.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes


  • ¼ cup cumin seeds

  • ¼ cup whole black peppercorns
3 tablespoons turmeric 

  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander seeds
1 tablespoon green cardamom pods
  • 1 teaspoon whole cloves


  1. Heat a small frying pan over low heat. 
  2. Combine all the spices in the pan and stir to combine. Let toast for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally
  3. Grind the toasted spices in a spice mill or with a mortar and pestle. 
  4. Save in an airtight container for up to a month. 

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