These are some of the best traditional Lebanese food dishes that you will want to make over and over again.
Lebanese dishes use unique flavors like crushed garlic, sumac, pomegranate molasses, za'atar, tahini, and Lebanese seven spices. The staple of Lebanese cuisine is Lebanese pita bread- a soft and thin pita bread that's not doughy.
Lebanese restaurants can be found in all corners of the world, with popular Lebanese mezze dishes like batata harra (spicy Lebanese potatoes), baba ganoush, and fried kibbeh. Here are some more of our favorite recipes.
Tabbouleh, aka tabouli, is a popular parsley and bulgur wheat salad made with fresh tomatoes, onions, flat-leaf parsley, lemon juice, olive oil, and salt. Serve with a side of pita bread, lettuce leaves, or cabbage leaves.
Kousa Mahshi Stuffed Zucchini
Mahshi kousa is a delicious stuffed zucchini recipe made with calabaza squash, spiced minced meat and rice, and a rich tomato broth. This Lebanese stuffed squash recipe slowly simmers, resulting in the most fragrant and tender rice.
Homemade Labneh (From Scratch)
This homemade labneh recipe starts with whole milk and starter plain yogurt. The process takes about 2 days, but the hands-on time is less than 15 minutes. First, plain homemade yogurt is made, then it's strained using a cloth or paper towel to form authentic labneh. This labneh recipe tastes different from using store-bought yogurt because homemade yogurt is tangier.
Stuffed Grape Leaves (Warak 3enab)
Lebanese stuffed grape leaves are common at family gatherings, special occasions, and holidays. This rolled grapes leaves recipe is made with lamb chops and meat and rice-rolled grape leaves that are slow-simmered in a garlic lemon broth. Stuffed grape leaves aren't that difficult if you follow this recipe's step-by-step guide.
Lebanese mujadara is a delicious dish made with lentils, rice, and caramelized onions. It's served with a delicious lemon and mint shredded cabbage salad and pita bread. Mujadara is made in a few different ways. This version is called mujadara msufaye which has a thick mostly lentil consistency.
Kibbeh is the national dish of Lebanon, and stuffed baked kibbeh is one of the many variations of kibbeh recipes. This version of kibbeh is made with minced meat and softened bulgar spread into the top and bottom layers. A middle section is made with pinenuts, pomegranate molasses, ground meat, and spices. This stuffed and baked kibbeh recipe is baked and served with some cucumber mint yogurt. Some other kibbeh recipes are potato kibbeh, kibbeh bil sanieh, kibbeh labanieh, fried kibbeh, and kibbeh nayyeh.
Fattoush is a bright, vibrant chopped salad with fried pita chips (or za'atar fried pita chips). It's a blend of chopped romaine lettuce, radishes, tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, bell peppers, fresh parsley leaves, fresh mint leaves, and pomegranate arils. The salad dressing is a blend of sumac, lemon juice, salt, and olive oil. This fattoush salad recipe is 5 years of trial and error for the perfect combination of flavors.
Chicken Shish Tawook
Chicken shish tawook, or shish taouk, is a popular Lebanese chicken kabob skewer made with marinated cubed chicken breast. Chunks of chicken are marinated in yogurt, lemon juice, spices, crushed garlic, pomegranate molasses, and olive oil.
Toum Garlic Sauce
Toum garlic sauce is the famous Lebanese garlic sauce made with raw garlic cloves, lemon, and oil. Garlic is emulsified into a paste using a food processor. This delicious and potent garlic paste is perfect for kabobs, chicken shawarma, and chicken shish tawook. Lebanese chicken shawarma is a popular street food that has toum, french fries, and shawarma wrapped into a pita sandwich.
Baba Ghanoush Eggplant Dip
Baba ganoush in an epic eggplant dip made from flame-grilled smokey eggplant that's blended with crushed garlic, lemon juice, salt, and tahini (a popular Middle Eastern paste made of ground toasted sesame seeds). This authentic baba ganoush dip gives all of the tips and tricks for the best baba ganoush recipe including how to freeze grilled eggplants and how to grill eggplants on an open flame. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and eat this delicious side dish with pita bread, pita chips, or fresh vegetables.
Shish barak is a traditional Lebanese dish made with meat-filled dumplings slow-simmered in a thick mint yogurt sauce. This shish barak recipe is teta-approved, and it has a video to guide you through the entire process. Also, the dumplings can be frozen, which cuts down the cooking time for a future meal.
Sheikh El Mahshi (Meat Stuffed Eggplants)
Sheikh el mahshi literally translates to the king of mahshi. This Lebanese stuffed eggplant recipe is an extraordinary dish made with roasted eggplants stuffed with minced meat and then baked in a tomato broth.
Sfouf Turmeric Cake
Sfouf is a popular turmeric and semolina cake made with semolina, flour, sugar, turmeric (or curcuma), and milk. Serve with Arabic coffee or cardamom tea.
Grilled Kafta Skewers
Grilled kafta skewers are a delicious minced meat kabob made with ground beef or ground lamb meat, spices, fresh parsley, onion, and minced garlic. Check out baked kafta and potatoes or these chicken kafta patties.
Namoura Semolina Cake
Namoura is a syrup-soaked semolina cake, similar to basbousa. This namoura dessert recipe is made with fine semolina, yogurt, sugar, butter, and baking powder then drizzled with orange blossom water sugar syrup.
Fried Kibbeh Balls
Fried kibbeh balls are small balls of kibbeh stuffed with spiced minced meat and pine nuts, and then deep-fried to perfection. Kibbeh balls are a popular Lebanese mezze appetizer that tastes phenomenal, especially when dipped in some garlic labneh! These are freezer-friendly, so make a double batch for an easy-peasy appetizer.
Raw Kibbeh Nayyeh
Raw kibbeh nayyeh is a delicious Lebanese recipe made with softened bulgar wheat, raw meat, onions, and spices. It's normally eaten with some white onions, pita bread, and arak on the side. If you'd like a vegan version, try potato kibbeh.
Eggplant fatteh, or fattet betinjan, is a delicious savory bread pudding made with leftover pita scraps, garlicky yogurt, fried eggplant, chickpeas, and pine nuts. Another one of our favorite fatteh recipes, is this fattet hummus with chickpeas and pomegranate.
Lahm Bi Ajeen (Sfiha) Meat Pies
These delicious Lebanese meat pies, aka lahm bi ajeen, are made with homemade flatbread dough topped with tomato-spiced meat mixture. These flatbreads are baked in the oven and served with some homemade yogurt, Lebanese cucumber yogurt sauce, and a drizzle of lemon juice.
Za'atar manakish (or cheese manakish) is a traditional Lebanese breakfast, found all throughout Lebanon. Delicious homemade flatbread dough is topped with za'atar and olive oil, then baked to perfection. Serve za'atar manakish with fresh mint, tomatoes, Persian cucumbers, olives, and labneh. Za'atar is a popular mixed dried spice in Lebanese food that's great for za'atar pita chips, za'atar labneh, and za'atar and cheese fried spring rolls.
These golden fried pita chips are the best pita chips ever! Thin Lebanese bread is cut and fried into chip-like squares and topped with flaked sea salt. These pita chips are the best for black olive tapenade, garlic labneh, or Vitamix hummus.
Rose Water Rice Pudding
Rose water rice pudding is a creamy stovetop rice pudding dessert made with rose water, orange blossom water, milk, sugar, cornstarch, and rice.
Delicious Lebanese Food
For more of the best authentic Lebanese recipes, check out the Lebanese recipe index on The Matbakh. Lebanese food is a popular Middle Eastern cuisine, and now you can have a Lebanese feast at home with these traditional recipes!
the kousa recipe was thestar of the show! thanks for the recipes!
My late grandfather is lebanese and I truly miss his cooking. These recipes do remind me of him, I always loved his meat pies so looking forward to trying yours!
Labneh was to die for, thanks for the help with it!
Such a wonderful collection of recipes! I especially love the Shish Barak and Chicken Shish Tawook.
YUM! I love so many of these recipes, but have so many more to try. Great to have them all in the one place to refer back to!
I have never cooked Lebanese food before! I definitely see a few recipes that I need to try soon. 🙂
Thanks for the comment!
Nice little resource you got here