Straight from my Egyptian home, today is all about how to make dukkah--Egypt's famous blend of nuts, seeds and warm spices. The heady seasoning you never knew you needed! Make this quick dukkah recipe and store it for use as a snack (with bread and olive oil); as a crust for your meats; or as a nutty topping to add texture and flavor to anything from soups and salads, to chicken, fish or roasted carrots.

Be sure to grab my tips and watch the video below.

dukkah in a small serving bowl

When a new reader found out I was actually Egyptian, he sent me an e-mail wondering if I can share a dukkah recipe. And you know, I never turn down an opportunity to share about the foods of my childhood. So here we are!

If you're not familiar with it, let's just say duqq (another spelling for it) is the condiment you never knew you needed! A secret weapon that will help you add texture and flavor to nearly anything!

dukkah in a jar

What is dukkah?

Dukkah (duqqa), pronounced doo-kah, is a traditional Egyptian blend of nuts, seeds, and warm spices. It's been around since the age of ancient Egypt, but it is now widely popular throughout the Middle East and the world (you may have even found a little jar of it at your local grocery store).

Egyptians actually pronounce it dua'ah. And translated from the Arabic, it simply means "to pound." That's because traditionally (and in many Egyptian homes today), it is made by pounding a mixture of toasted nuts, seeds and whole spices in a mortar and pestle until they form a coarse, crunchy mixture.

What's in it?

In Egypt, we have a saying, "eeish we dua'ah," which literally translates to bread and dukkah--because you can count on a loaf of pita and some nutty, satisfying dukkah for dipping if you have nothing else to eat.

You won't find pre-mixed duqqa in Egyptian stores or spice shops, this nutty mixture is very much a homemade blend and there are as many recipes for dukkah as there are Egyptian cooks. That's because the idea behind it is to use up what nuts and seeds you have on hand. (Guess what I do with nuts I didn't use in my baklava?)

While there are no hard rules, you'll find some common ingredients. Sesame seeds are a key --they're cheaper and available in most Egyptian homes-- along with warm spices like cumin, coriander and fennel seeds. And you'll see coarsely chopped nuts like peanuts (again the cheaper option) or hazelnuts, pistachios, or walnuts. You can use one particular nut or a combination as in my recipe here.

Here's what's in my recipe...

Dukkah ingredients

Dukkah ingredients

  • Nuts: Hazelnuts, almonds, and pistachios
  • Sesame Seeds
  • Fennel Seeds
  • Spices: cumin, coriander, and cayenne (leave the cayenne out if you don't want the heat). Typically the spices are used whole and crushed in the process of making dukkah, but I opted for ground spices here.
  • Kosher salt

How do make it?

Great dukkah depends on the freshness of the ingredients, particularly the nuts and seeds. You'll want to toast your own raw nuts for best flavor. And while traditionally this nutty mixture is made in a mortar and pestle, this easy recipe uses a small food processor (affiliate link). Here is how it goes:

Toast the nuts. Use a dry skillet to toast the hazelnut and almonds until nice and fragrantToast the sesame seeds.

Toast the sesame seeds

Combine the nuts, seeds and spices in the bowl of a small food processor fitted with a blade.

nuts, seeds, and spices in a food processor before grinding

Pulse a few seconds at a time until the nuts are well crushed but don't overdo it, you're not looking for a fine powder, you need to maintain the crunch!

nuts, seeds and spices ground in food processor

Ways to use it

So many ways to use dukkah seasoning, and I can't get enough!

dukkah sprinkled over hummus and labneh with a side of veggies and bread

Is dukkah the same as za'atar?

This a frequently asked question and the straight answer is: no. While dukkah and za'atar are two Middle Eastern blends that can be used similarly, they are clearly not the same in texture or flavor profile. If you haven't already, check out my article on what is za'atar and how to use it. But the short of it is that za'atar blend is a mixture of toasted wild thyme and sesame seeds with sumac.

Za'atar blend has a finer mixture than crunchy Egyptian dukkah.

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4.90 from 82 votes

Egyptian Dukkah Recipe

Suzy Karadsheh
dukkah in a small serving bowl
Quick, homemade Egyptian dukkah recipe with nuts, seeds, and a few warm spices. I like to use a combination of three nuts here (hazelnut, almonds and walnuts), but you can use just one if you like. Use dukkah as a snack; to coat meat, chicken or fish; or as a nutty finishing touch over soup, salad or even roasted vegetables. Store in tight-lid mason jar for up to 2 weeks.
Prep – 5 minutes
Cook – 5 minutes
0 minutes
Cuisine:
Egyptian
Serves – 8
Course:
Condiment

Ingredients
  

  • ½ cup hazelnuts
  • 3 tablespoon almonds
  • 4 tablespoon white sesame seeds
  • 3 tablespoon shelled pistachios
  • 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • kosher salt

Instructions
 

  • Place the hazelnuts and almonds in a dry cast iron pan (do NOT add oil). Toast briefly over medium-high heat, tossing regularly, until the nuts gain some color (watch for nuts to turn a nice golden brown). Transfer to a side dish for now.
  • Place the sesame seeds in the same skillet and return to the heat. Toast over medium heat, tossing regularly, until the sesame seeds turn golden brown (this will be fairly quick so watch carefully).
  • Add the toasted nuts and sesame seeds to the bowl of a small food processor fitted with a blade. Add the pistachios, fennel seeds, spices, and a generous dash of kosher salt. Pulse for a few seconds until you reach a nice coarse mixture (Do not over process the dukkah. The mixture should not be too fine. See photos and video for exact texture).
  • Transfer the dukkah to a bowl to serve. Add a small bowl of extra virgin olive oil and your favorite bread for dipping (I like pita bread or even Jerusalem bagel). You can also store the dukkah in a tight-lid jar for up to 2 weeks to use as a topping for salad, soup, chicken, meats, or roasted vegetables!

Video

Notes

  • Yield: This recipe makes just over 1 cup of dukkah. 
  • Storage: Store dukkah in a tight-lid mason jar for up to 2 weeks. 

Nutrition

Calories: 96.1kcalCarbohydrates: 3.7gProtein: 2.8gSaturated Fat: 0.8gSodium: 1.7mgPotassium: 113.3mgFiber: 2gVitamin A: 46.8IUVitamin C: 0.6mgCalcium: 70.3mgIron: 1.4mg
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I'm Suzy; born and bred right on the shores of the Mediterranean. I'm all about easy, healthy recipes with big Mediterranean flavors. Three values guide my cooking: eat with the seasons; use whole foods; and above all, share! So happy you're here...
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Comments

    1. Hi, Denise. If seeds are safe, you could always try a combo of pumpkin, sesame and/or sunflower seeds in place of the nuts here.

  1. 5 stars
    I am obsessed with this recipe! It is absolutely perfect, the only problem is now I can't stop putting it on everything.

  2. 5 stars
    This Dukkah is delicious and so versatile! I started by using it as a topping for plain Greek yogurt, but I can't wait to try it with the many dishes you've suggested. And I'm excited to try your other recipes too. Thanks for sharing.

  3. 5 stars
    Ooh this takes me back to when my Egyptian family would visit with bags of dukkah. Thank you for the recipe! Now I must resist eating it by the spoonful!

  4. I made this about 1 week ago and we absolutely love dukah! We have put it on omelettes, hummus, chicken, pasta, wrap made with hummus and veggies. I see I will be making this quite often as we are 2/3 done with the jar of Dukah! Thank you for sharing your recipes. I have been making your recipes for about 5 years now and love them!

  5. 5 stars
    Suzy, I just got your cookbook about a week ago! Tonight I am making the pan grilled zucchini with dukkah as a side dish to the lamb lollipops with pomegranate, mint, and pistachio sauce. I made the dukkah and the lime tahini sauce as soon as I got home from the supermarket. You are so right - it smells amazing! I took a small taste and it tastes just as amazing as it smells. I can hardly wait for dinner tonight! I think everything is going to be a big hit with the family! Thank you for sharing this recipe!

  6. 5 stars
    Great recipe, have made it three times now changing it based on the nuts, seeds and spices in my cupboard. Delicious.

  7. Question: I love hazelnuts and pistachios, but almonds give me an itchy rash. What can I substitute for them? I have been seeing a lot of suggestions for using dukkah and would really like to try it.

    1. Hi, Elizabeth. You can really substitute the almonds with any other nut that you enjoy that's safe for you to eat. There really are no hard and fast rules with dukkah!

    2. I am interested in knowing if you can store your mason jar of dukkah in the fridge to keep it longer than 2 weeks or the freezer for longer?

      1. Hi, Julie. Yes, storing it in an airtight container in the fridge (up to 1 month) or freezer (up to 6 months) will definitely extend it's shelf life.

  8. 5 stars
    I LOVE this dukkah recipe! I followed the recipe as is except I used just the tiniest pinch of cayenne. All the delicious flavors, especially that hint of fennel! I love it on salads but will sprinkle it on pretty much anything. Lol

  9. 5 stars
    Very nice recipe chef 👍👌👏. I do some times have it for breakfast on my quinoa and a soft boiled egg yammy 😋. Thank you for your effort 🌹🌞😎.

  10. 5 stars
    I made this to top your white bean hummus recipe. IT IS SO GOOD! Now to come up with other ways to use this bc I have 2 small Mason jars full! Yummmmmm!

  11. 5 stars
    Love your recipes, and Mediterranean flavours they're just awesome 👌.
    Truely looking forward to making and using it.