What is Ras el Hanout?
Ras el Hanout is a Middle Eastern spice blend used in tagines, soups, rice dishes, and on vegetables. In Arabic, Ras el Hanout means “head of the shop”, a phrase that basically means top-shelf, signifying that this spice blend is the best thing in the shop.
There isn’t really one traditional Ras el Hanout recipe – many families and shops have their own blend that they consider the best. Mixtures often contain over a dozen spices! Ras el Hanout ingredients usually include ginger, coriander, and cardamom and often include allspice, cumin, chili peppers, clove, cinnamon, fenugreek, nutmeg, paprika, peppercorn, and turmeric.
Ras el Hanout Recipes
Want to use Ras el Hanout in some creative and delicious recipes? Here are some of my favorite ideas:
- Garden Vegetable Tagine from Nutrition Stripped
- Ras el Hanout Apple Hand Pies from Ruby Josephine
- Ras el Hanout Chicken Pitas from My Name is Yeh
- Ras el Hanout Loaf Cake Toast with Yogurt and Sesame Sprinkles from My Name is Yeh
- Ras el Hanout Chicken Thighs from Panning the Globe
- Vegan Lentil Soup from This Healthy Table
- Vegetarian Cauliflower Rice Bowl from Delish Knowledge
Make Your Own Ras el Hanout Spice Blend
There are hundreds of recipes for Ras el Hanout, but here’s my favorite way to make it.
- 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
- 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons dried rose petals
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom
- 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon allspice
- In a small skillet, over medium-low heat, toast the coriander and cumin seeds.
- Transfer the coriander and cumin seeds, along with the red pepper flakes, to a spice mill or mortar and grind into a fine texture.
- Add the ground coriander, cumin, and red pepper flakes to a small bowl. Add the remaining spices and stir till fully combined.
- This spice blend can be saved up to one month in an airtight container.
Where to Buy Ras El Hanout
Ras El Hanout is available in most grocery stores and from several online vendors. When buying spices, it’s important to make sure you are buying from distributers that sell high-quality spices. One I trust is Frontier Ras El Hanout.
Ras el Hanout Substitute
Can’t get your hands on Ras el Hanout? If you’re pressed on time and don’t have time to make up a batch of Ras el Hanout or get to a spice store to buy it, you can use coriander, saffron, or a mixture of paprika, cumin, and ground ginger. If you want to use another spice blend in its place, baharat is a good choice.