The BEST authentic tahini sauce recipe with garlic, lime juice and fresh parsley! Be sure to watch my video and grab my tips below. This rich, flavor-packed vegan sauce is popular throughout the Mediterranean and the Middle East, and it can elevate any meal from kabobs to falafel sandwiches and everything in between. Perfect served as part of mezze with some warm pita and fresh veggies too!

More Middle Eastern recipes to try: Baba Ghanoush; Mujadara (Lebanese Rice and Lentils); Fattoush Salad; Grilled Lamb Chops; Za'atar Chicken

Tahini Sauce Platter with fresh vegetables and pita wedges

It used to be such an obscure and exotic ingredient to most North American Cooks, but it seems tahini is everywhere now. This humble Middle Eastern staple has made a splash in the health-food market, trendy restaurants, and in home kitchens--adding nutrition, irresistible creaminess and depth to many dishes. And this tahini fanatic does not mind one little bit!

What is tahini? Where to Find It? ETC...

Before we get to today's tahini sauce recipe, let's address a few questions you may have:

- What is tahini? Tahini (pronounced te-hi-ni or ta-hi-na) is a staple of Middle Eastern and Mediterranean Cooking. Tahini is a super creamy, rich vegan paste made by finely grinding roasted sesame seeds until buttery smooth. I've heard some referring to tahini as a "nut butter" of sorts. It's important to remember though that seeds--sesame, sunflower, poppy, and pumpkin--come from plant families that are not closely related to nut-producing trees.

- What does tahini taste like? Good tahini should be rich and luxurious and should taste mildly nutty and savory. Bad tahini paste, on the other hand, could taste bitter and chalky.

Tahini Sauce Recipe (How to Make Tahini) | The Mediterranean Dish. The best Middle Eastern tahini sauce recipe with garlic, lime juice, and fresh parsley. Easy recipe. A versatile sauce for sandwiches, salad, or as a dip with your meats and fish. See it on TheMediterraneanDish.com

- Where to find tahini paste? I often get questions about where to buy tahini and which brands to use. You can find tahini paste at some specialty Mediterranean and Middle Eastern stores, but why go there when you can purchase it directly from us! We found the best tahini out there and decided to carry it in our store to make it easier for you to purchase.

- How to Use tahini paste? Tahini is used in many things from the ever-popular classic hummus (a must-try!) to sweet desserts like these tahini brownies--quite possibly the best brownies I have ever tasted.

But today, we tackle a super important use of tahini: Tahini Sauce, known at my house as awesome sauce!

BEST Tahini Sauce!

Tahini sauce is popular throughout the Mediterranean and the Middle East. This simple, tangy, and flavor-packed sauce is made by blending rich, nutty tahini paste with citrus (lemon juice or lime juice), fresh garlic, and a little bit of water to aid the consistency.

Tahini sauce ingredients. tahini paste, garlic, lime, parsley

If you like your tahini sauce spicy, add a pinch of cayenne or a little mild aleppo pepper.

In this recipe, I add a large handful of fresh chopped parsley to make a popular Egyptian version of tahini sauce we call tahini bqaudoonis or  tahini with parsley. Fresh mint or dill can be used in place of parsley, if you like.

You can make this easy tahini sauce ahead of time and save it in the fridge for 2 to 3 days or so.

Tahini Sauce

Step-By-Step for this Tahini Sauce Recipe

-Place crushed or minced garlic (with salt), tahini paste, and lime juice (or lemon juice to the bowl of a food processor. Blend.Tahini, garlic, and lime juice blended in food processor

- Tahini sauce will first get thick as it emulsifies. Add a little bit of water at a time and blend again until you reach the desired consistency similar to salad dressing.  Taste and adjust salt.

Tahini sauce full blended into a salad dressing like consistency

- Transfer to a serving bowl and stir in fresh parsley. Serve with warm pita and a side of veggies (more ideas below!)

Tahini sauce with parsley. Lime juice to the side

How to Serve Tahini Sauce?

There are so many ways to enjoy tahini sauce. I use it more often than I can count as part of a big mezze table; to jazz up sandwiches like falafel pitas or chicken shawarama; or to drizzle on top of grilled kabobs, roasted fish, or roasted cauliflower. I also serve it just with a few fresh veggies and some warm pita bread. The possibilities are endless!

Tahini sauce with fresh vegetables and a side of pita wedges

Watch the Video for How To Make Tahini Sauce

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Tahini Sauce

Tahini Sauce Recipe (How to Make Tahini)


Description

BEST tahini sauce recipe with lime juice, fresh garlic and parsley! Serve it as part of your mezze table, or use it to jazz up sandwiches like falafel pitas or chicken shawarma; or to drizzle on things like roasted cauliflower. The possibilities are endless!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1-2 garlic cloves
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¾ cup tahini paste
  • ½ cup freshly squeezed lime juice (or lemon juice, if you prefer)
  • ¼ cup cold water, more if needed
  • 1 cup fresh chopped parsley leaves, stems removed first (optional)

Instructions

  1. Using a mortar and pestle, crush the garlic cloves with the salt into a paste (or mince the garlic and season with salt.)
  2. Add the crushed garlic, tahini paste and lime juice to the bowl of a food processor and blend (it will be thick as it emulsifies.) Add a little bit of water and blend again until you reach the desired consistency.
  3. Transfer the tahini to a serving bowl, and if you like stir in fresh chopped parsley. Enjoy!

Notes

  • Cook's Tip: Use only a little bit of water at a time until you reach your desired consistency. Generally, tahini sauce should have a runny, salad dressing-like consistency. But, if you prefer tahini more as a dip, simply use less water.
  • Cook's Tip: Double this recipe if you're serving a large number of people, it will be consumed fast!
  • Make Ahead Tip: You can make this tahini sauce ahead of time, refrigerate in a tight-lid container for 2 to 3 days.
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Category: Dips and Appetizers
  • Method: Mix
  • Cuisine: Middle Eastern

Keywords: Tahini, Tahini Sauce, How to Make Tahini Sauce

*This post first appeared on The Mediterranean Dish in 2016. It has been recently updated with new information and media for readers' benefit. Enjoy!

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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. This is so good on falafel! I'm going to use the rest on some crudites and pita. I don't know if it was the brand of tahini I was using, but I added about another 1/4 cup to get a nice consistency. I might try making the tahini from scratch next time. Maybe you could share your wisdom about how to make homemade tahini. I love your food.

    1. Thanks so much, Judith! Yes, sometimes you may end up adding a little more tahini. This is a recipe you can adapt to your liking.

  2. I loved this tahini sauce with fresh veggies! So delicious and refreshing! It was a perfect summer appetizer.

  3. So, my wife made this and it was absolutely vile ... trying to figure out what went wrong. The acid overpowered every other flavor in the sauce. We all ended up scraping it off our food and tossing it. Any ideas? It sounded so good 🙁

    1. Bill, this is the first time I hear this. I am not sure what might have been wrong with your tahini. But a couple thoughts, are you using quality tahini that is not old or sticky? And you can also start with less acid if you're not sure and add as needed. But this tahini recipe has been a winner for us and everyone I've heard from so far.

  4. Awesome!! Filipinos like me will not forget the taste of táhini specially with lamb shawarma.

  5. I made my own tahini paste, because they didn't have any at my market. Very easy to make, the tahini sauce is very good. I love the taste of sesame seeds so this is a winner in my kitchen.

    1. I used this as the dressing for the cucumber and radish salad. It was great. The Olive Bistro in Atlanta serves something called a Jerusalem salad that seemed like a taboulleh with a Tahiti sauce. I love it but never asked how they made the tahini dressing. This seems very close. I loved it. Thank you for all the recipes.

  6. I am so excited to try this homemade version of Tahini. I do not like to purchase a product premade if I can make this at home.

  7. I have to admit something that I am kind of embarrassed to say.... I've never had tahini sauce. Shame on me! This post makes me want to turn my kitchen lights back on and whip some up instead of going to bed. I am definitely making this ASAP!

    1. haha...no worries, hon. You may be new to tahini, but I'm sure once you try making it, you'll be a pro! Thanks for stopping in, love! XOXO

  8. I never thought to make my own tahini. I always just buy it at the Middle Eastern store that I shop at whenever I'm in that area! Now I have to try this!