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How To Make Za'atar

If you haven't yet dived into the world of za'atar, you're in for a treat. This Middle Eastern spice blend has a history as rich as its flavor. Traditionally, za'atar is a mix of dried herbs like thyme, combined with sesame seeds, sumac, and salt. It's been a staple in Middle Eastern cuisine for centuries, loved for its nutty, tangy, and herby profile.

But here's my twist: I start by toasting cumin and coriander seeds until they're fragrant and just begging to be ground into a fine powder. This little step might seem small, but it makes a world of difference, adding an incredible depth to the za'atar. It's like unlocking a whole new level of flavors – earthy, warm, and with a slight citrusy undertone.

Whether you're sprinkling it on flatbreads, stirring into dips, or seasoning vegetables, this homemade za'atar is a game-changer. It's not just a spice blend; it's a journey through history and flavor, right from your kitchen.



(Make 1/2 Cup)

  • Cumin Seeds, 3 TBSP

  • Coriander Seeds, 3 TBSP

  • Sesame Seeds, 1 TBSP

  • Dried Thyme, 1 TBSP

  • Sumac, 1 TBSP

  • Sea Salt, 1/2 TSP

  • Chili Flakes, 1/2 TSP



  • Cast Iron Skillet / Pan

  • Spice Grinder



  1. In a skillet over medium heat, add cumin and coriander.

  2. Toast until aromatic.

  3. Remove from heat and transfer into a spice grinder.

  4. Blitz until powder forms.

  5. Transfer to a sterilized jar.

  6. Toast sesame seeds in the same skillet until aromatic and lightly brown.

  7. Transfer to the same jar.

  8. Add in the rest of the ingredients.

  9. Give it a shake to combine well.

  10. Store in a cool and dry place. I prefer storing my spices in the freezer.


Recipe Video:

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