As a country steeped in tradition and culture, Saudi Arabia boasts a rich culinary heritage that is deeply rooted in its history.
From its signature dishes to its unique blend of spices and flavors, Saudi Arabian cuisine has gained popularity among food lovers across the globe.
In this article, we’ll explore the top 13 most popular Saudi Arabia dishes that will leave you craving for more.
#1. Kabsa – A National Dish of Saudi Arabia
Kabsa, the national dish of Saudi Arabia, is a mouth-watering combination of rice, meat, and spices that is cooked in a unique way to give it its distinctive flavor.
The dish is usually made with chicken or lamb, which is slow-cooked to tender perfection and then layered on top of a bed of fluffy rice that has been flavored with a blend of aromatic spices.
#2. Shawarma – A Popular Street Food in Saudi Arabia
Shawarma is a popular street food in Saudi Arabia that has gained a cult following around the world.
The dish consists of thinly sliced meat, usually chicken or lamb, that is marinated in a blend of spices and then cooked on a rotating spit until it is tender and juicy.
The meat is then wrapped in a warm pita bread, along with a variety of toppings such as lettuce, tomatoes, and tahini sauce, making it a delicious and satisfying meal.
#3. Mutabbaq – A Traditional Saudi Arabian Pastry
Mutabbaq is a traditional pastry that is popular in Saudi Arabia and other parts of the Middle East.
The pastry is made with a thin, flaky dough that is filled with a savory mixture of minced meat, vegetables, and spices.
It is then folded over and cooked until it is crispy and golden brown, making it a perfect snack or appetizer.
#4. Mandi – A Tasty Arabian Delight
Mandi is a delicious Arabian dish that originated in Yemen but has become popular in Saudi Arabia and other parts of the Middle East.
The dish consists of meat, usually chicken or lamb, that is cooked in a tandoor oven along with rice that has been flavored with a blend of spices.
The slow cooking process gives the meat a tender and juicy texture, while the spices infuse the rice with a delicious aroma and flavor.
#5. Shawaya – Arabian Grilled Chicken
Shawaya Arabian Grilled Chicken is a Middle Eastern dish that consists of chicken that has been marinated in a blend of spices, lemon juice, and olive oil.
The chicken is then grilled or roasted to perfection, resulting in a flavorful and tender meat. It is often served with rice, salad, and a side of garlic sauce or hummus.
This dish is a popular and beloved staple in many Middle Eastern countries and is often enjoyed at family gatherings and celebrations.
#6. Al Faham – Charcoal Grilled Chicken
Al Faham Charcoal Grilled Chicken is a popular Middle Eastern dish that is similar to Shawaya Arabian Grilled Chicken.
It is made by marinating chicken in a mixture of spices, yogurt, and lemon juice, and then grilling it over hot charcoal until it is tender and juicy.
The marinade used in Al Faham Charcoal Grilled Chicken typically includes spices like cumin, paprika, and turmeric, which give the chicken a distinct and delicious flavor.
This dish is often served with pita bread, salad, and a variety of sauces and dips, such as hummus or tzatziki.
It is a favorite dish in many Middle Eastern countries and is commonly found in restaurants and street food vendors.
#7. Falafel – Pita Sandwich
Falafel is a vegetarian Middle Eastern dish that is made from ground chickpeas, fava beans, or a combination of both.
The mixture is seasoned with a blend of spices, such as cumin, coriander, and garlic, and then formed into small balls or patties that are deep-fried until crispy on the outside and tender on the inside.
Falafel is typically served as a snack or as part of a meal, often in a pita sandwich.
A falafel pita sandwich consists of a pita bread that is stuffed with falafel balls, along with various toppings and condiments.
Common toppings include chopped tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, and lettuce, as well as pickles and hot peppers.
It is also served with a variety of sauces, such as tahini sauce or hummus, which add flavor and creaminess to the sandwich.
#8. Harees: A Hearty Porridge-Style Dish
Harees is a popular dish in Saudi Arabia that is similar to a porridge-style dish.
The dish is made by slow-cooking a blend of wheat and meat, usually chicken or lamb, until it becomes soft and creamy.
It is then seasoned with a variety of spices, including cumin and cinnamon, which give it a rich and complex flavor.
#9. Kofta – A Classic Meatball Dish
Kofta is a classic meatball dish that is popular in many parts of the Middle East, including Saudi Arabia.
The dish is made with ground meat, usually beef or lamb, that is mixed with a variety of spices and herbs, such as parsley and coriander.
The mixture is then shaped into small balls and cooked on a grill or in the oven until they are tender and juicy.
#10. Saleeg – A Creamy Rice Dish
Saleeg is a creamy rice dish that is popular in Saudi Arabia and other parts of the Middle East.
The dish is made by slow-cooking rice in milk until it becomes soft and creamy.
It is then seasoned with a variety of spices, including cardamom and saffron, which give it a delicious and aromatic flavor.
#11. Haneeth – A Tender and Flavorful Roasted Meat
Haneeth is a tender and flavorful roasted meat dish that is popular in Saudi Arabia and other parts of the Middle East.
The dish is usually made with lamb, which is seasoned with a blend of spices and slow-cooked in a tandoor oven until it becomes tender and juicy.
Haneeth is often served with rice and a variety of sides, such as vegetables and bread.
#12. Thareed – A Comforting Bread and Meat Stew
Thareed is a comforting bread and meat stew that is popular in Saudi Arabia and other parts of the Middle East.
The dish is made with a hearty mixture of meat, usually lamb or chicken, and vegetables that are cooked in a flavorful broth.
The stew is then poured over pieces of bread, which absorb the delicious flavors of the broth and become soft and tender.
#13. Albaik – Food chain based in Saudi Arabia
Albaik is a fast-food chain based in Saudi Arabia that is known for its fried chicken.
The chain was founded in 1974 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and has since expanded to over 120 locations across the country.
Albaik’s fried chicken is marinated in a secret blend of spices, coated in a crispy batter, and then deep-fried to perfection.
The chain is also known for its range of sauces, including garlic mayonnaise, hot sauce, and barbecue sauce, which are often paired with the fried chicken.
In addition to fried chicken, Albaik also offers a range of other fast-food items, including burgers, fries, and shrimp.
The chain is popular among locals and tourists alike and is considered a staple of fast food in Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabian cuisine is a delicious and diverse culinary journey that has something to offer to everyone.
From savory rice dishes to tender roasted meats and flavorful pastries, the country’s rich food culture is sure to leave a lasting impression on any food lover.
So, next time you’re looking to explore the flavors of the Middle East, make sure to give these top 13 most popular Saudi Arabia dishes a try.
Top 13 Most Popular Saudi Arabia Dishes You Must Try It!
Kabsa – A National Dish of Saudi Arabia
Shawarma – A Popular Street Food in Saudi Arabia
Mutabbaq – A Traditional Saudi Arabian Pastry
Mandi – A Tasty Arabian Delight
Shawaya – Arabian Grilled Chicken
Al Faham – Charcoal Grilled Chicken
Falafel – Pita Sandwich
Harees: A Hearty Porridge-Style Dish
Kofta – A Classic Meatball Dish
Saleeg – A Creamy Rice Dish
Haneeth – A Tender and Flavorful Roasted Meat
Thareed – A Comforting Bread and Meat Stew
Albaik – Food chain based in Saudi Arabia
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