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Harissa paste recipe

Harissa paste recipe

  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Side dish
  • Sauce
  • Harissa

Making your own harissa paste is so easy and tastes better than supermarket own version by miles. I use fresh red chillies rather than dried ones as they are less pungent and don't over power the other flavours.

Yorkshire, England, UK

10 people made this

IngredientsMakes: 1 jar harissa paste

  • 125g fresh red chillies, roughly chopped
  • 1 heaped teaspoon chopped fresh mint
  • 10 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground caraway seeds
  • 125ml olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

MethodPrep:10min ›Ready in:10min

  1. Combine the chillies, mint and garlic and all the spices and 1 tablespoon of the oil and 1/2 teaspoon of salt into a food processor or blender for approximately 20 seconds until smooth. Gradually add the rest of the oil, ensuring that all the ingredients have blended well.
  2. Spoon the paste into the sterilised jar cover with a thin layer of olive oil and seal, label the date on the jar and use within 1 to 2 weeks.

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Making harissa at home isn’t complicated and won’t take much time. A food processor and a few simple ingredients are all you’ll need:

  • DRIED CHILIES. It might sound like a lot, but you’ll need 30 of them for this recipe, which makes about a 2-cup batch. Select your favorite kind of chile pepper (or whatever’s most readily available), such as Guanjilo, New Mexico, or California. You can also make a mixture of chiles for a more nuanced flavor.
  • Plenty of fresh GARLIC, for the signature savory harissa flavor.
  • CORIANDER and CUMIN, two traditional North African spices.
  • OLIVE OIL, which helps to emulsify everything into a smooth, creamy paste.

Homemade Harissa Recipe




  • ▢ 1 red bell pepper
  • ▢ 2 ounces ancho chiles (dried poblanos)
  • ▢ 2 ounces chipotle chiles (dried and smoked jalapeños)
  • ▢ 4 cloves garlic
  • ▢ 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ▢ 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • ▢ 1 teaspoon ground caraway seed
  • ▢ 1 teaspoon Mortons coarse kosher salt
  • ▢ 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil


When you eat a lot of spicy food, you can lose your taste. When I was in India last summer, I was listening to a lot of Michael Bolton.

Related articles

Published On: 2/27/2015 Last Modified: 4/16/2021

Make harissa your pantry staple: 8 Ottolenghi harissa recipes

Yotam Ottolenghi describes North African harissa as his favourite of all chilli sauces and he puts it to all kinds of uses, from flavouring stews and marinating meat and fish, to jazzing up vegetables, plain rice and couscous. Made from chillies and a mix of spices, traditionally including caraway and cumin, harissa is a brilliant quick-fix condiment, adding fragrance, spice and sweet smokiness to your dishes.

Harissa is available in North African shops and most supermarkets these days, but the difference in chilli kick between one harissa and the next can be huge. Ottolenghi uses Belazu's rose harissa, with the addition of rose petals for a subtle floral fragrance and with more heat than regular supermarket varieties. "If you're starting with something else, then you'll need to taste what you have and gauge how much to use", he recommends or go a step further and make your own homemade harissa so that you can control the heat levels.

Harissa is a must-have ingredient if you love cooking your way through Ottolenghi's cookbooks as much as we do. Here are some of our favourite Ottolenghi recipes championing harissa, including a selection you'll find in his newest cookbook, Ottolenghi FLAVOUR.

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As a Roasted-Vegetable Booster

As good as harissa may be with lamb and chicken, my favorite applications are totally meat-free. The basic formula: firm, hearty vegetables, like carrots and turnips dry, intense heat, via roasting or grilling and finishing touches of acid, dairy, herbs, or all three.

Toss cauliflower florets with concentrated harissa paste and olive oil, then roast until golden brown and finish with grated Parmesan and a squeeze of lemon. Or rub some harissa on corn before tossing the cobs on the grill and showering them with herbs. Coat carrots with harissa and roast, then serve with a dollop of crème fraîche. You get the idea.

Harissa brings the heat in these 5 recipes

You already know how powerful condiments can be, so let’s shine a spotlight on one of our favorites: harissa.

Harissa is a spicy chile paste used in North African and Middle Eastern cooking. While the ingredients themselves vary regionally, it usually includes peppers, garlic, olive oil and spices.

We think it can go just about anywhere, but here are a few of our favorite ways to use harissa’s heat from our archives. You’ll find even more ways to feature it by searching our Recipe Finder.

Harissa-Roasted Carrot and Bean Dip, above. Putting harissa into a dip is a no-brainer. It’s a quick, effortless way to incorporate the chile paste with maximum payoff.

Turkey Meatballs and Grated Fresh Tomato Sauce With Harissa. You’ll sometimes find tomato in harissa blends, and for good reason! If your quarantine garden is already yielding some tomatoes, it’s time to partner them with harissa for this quick and flavorful dish.

Harissa-Stuffed Bell Peppers. From our Plant Powered newsletter series comes this veggie version of stuffed bell peppers featuring harissa as the main flavor driver.

Mild Harissa Ingredients

Dried chiles are the base of traditional harissa. If you use spicy chiles, your harissa will be spicy. I use mild chiles like California chiles or New Mexico chiles to make a more mild harissa paste. I also like to include sweet bell peppers and roasted red onion to round out the flavor of this harissa sauce.

  • Dried chiles (California or New Mexico)
  • Sweet bell peppers
  • Red onion
  • Lemon
  • Olive Oil
  • Cumin Seed
  • Coriander Seed
  • Caraway Seed
  • Paprika
  • Sea Salt


Step 1

Place árbol, guajillo, and ancho chiles in a large heatproof measuring glass. Pour boiling water over to submerge, cover with plastic wrap, and let sit until chiles are very pliable and cool enough to handle, 15–20 minutes. Drain remove stems and seeds and discard (wear gloves for this part if you have them).

Step 2

Toast cumin and coriander in a dry small skillet over medium-low heat, tossing constantly, until very fragrant, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a food processor, add garlic, and pulse until spices are broken up and garlic forms a paste. Add chiles and pulse until chiles form a coarse paste. Add lemon juice, vinegar, tomato paste, paprika, and salt and process until mostly smooth but mixture still has a little texture. With the motor running, stream in ½ cup oil. Process until oil is incorporated.

Step 3

Transfer harissa to a bowl. Pour remaining ¼ cup oil over top.

Step 4

Do Ahead: Harissa can be made 1 month ahead. Cover and chill.

15. Moroccan Chickpea Bake

This Moroccan Chickpea Bake combines the flavors of Moroccan cuisine in a whole new way. The three layers are inspired by three classics — tagine, hummus, and falafel. Together, they create something modern and unique. This comforting dish is a fantastic way to spice up your weeknight meal rotation.

Will harissa become a staple in your pantry? We’d love to hear what you think — tell us in the comments!

Watch the video: How to make HARISSA. North African CHILLI sauce. Kravings (January 2022).