The cuisine and food scene In Marrakech

food in Marrakesh
Updated 2022-07-10 14:26

Moroccan cuisine is like an art on a plate. One cannot go to Morocco without tasting and exploring its wide variety of dishes. Marrakech particularly provides a tempting cuisine that is colorful and rich in flavor. On the menu of your stay, you will have Tajines, Couscous, Tanjia, Pastilla, Haria as well as some unique drinks and pastries.

Popular meals in Marrakech

  • Couscous

Couscous is a unique dish which is very famous worldwide. It is one of the most unbeatable dishes in Moroccan cuisine. A typical Couscous dish contains seven types of vegetables, beef and chickpeas. Moroccans usually enjoy it on Friday after prayer (i.e., Salatul-Jumu'ah). In Marrakech, almost all restaurants and hotels offer a Couscous dish. If you are not a vegetarian, you can ask for a couscous dish made with chicken. Inside Medina, one of the best places to enjoy a Couscous dish is at the local restaurant 'Snack Toubkal,' which is located in Jemaa el Fna square. If you want to relax and enjoy a revisited Couscous, then you can sit on the terrace of the restaurant L'Tchine located in Gueliz.

  • Tanjia

Tanjia is the iconic dish of Marrakech, so you should not miss the opportunity to taste it during your stay. A typical Tanjia is made with meat, a mixture of spices, oil and some preserved lemons. The cooking is done in a terracotta jar on the ashes. It lasts for very long hours; about six hours. Even though Tanjia is an absolute delight to locals of Marrakech, it is not a dietary dish. Several restaurants in the city serve it, but the best one is at the intersection of Jemaa el Fna square and the entrance of Souks.

  • Tagine

Taking its name from the utensil in which it is simmered, Tajine is one of the most beloved dishes in Marrakech. It is a very varied dish that can be concocted with meat, chicken, vegetables, fish, dried fruits and/or seeds. The ingredients are simmered for about two hours with spices such as pepper and saffron. Besides, it is possible to enjoy a Tajine every day without ever eating the same. In other words, one can have for today's lunch a Tagine with meat and dried fruits and for tomorrow's lunch a Tagine with chicken and vegetables. As an expat in Marrakech, you can enjoy Tagine at any local restaurant for just 25 Dhs.

  • Pastilla

The pastilla was first imported from Andalusia by Moorish refugees around the year 1492. It is a kind of puff pastry filled with chicken and sprinkled with icing sugar and cinnamon. This dish is both sweet and salty. It is often served at Moroccan weddings. In Marrakech, you can also find Pastillas with fish or seafood.

  • Harira

Harira is a tomato soup that is traditionally served during Ramadan, accompanied by dates and Moroccan cookies (Chebakia). This soup typically contains tomato, chickpeas, lentils, coriander, parsley and a mixture of spices. You can enjoy Harira at night in Jemaa el Fna for only 6 Dhs.

  • Rfissa

Rfissa is one of the authentic traditional dishes in Morocco, making it ideal to discover. Moroccans used to make it on after-birth celebrations. This is due to the fact that this dish has good and beneficial ingredients for the body of a woman giving birth. This dish consists of chicken, onions, lentils, fenugreek, spices, oil and Trid at the base. Trid stands for Moroccan crepes (Msemen) cut into small pieces. Not many restaurants serve Rfissa, since this dish requires a lot of time and teamwork.

Popular drinks in Marrakech

One of the famous local drinks in Marrakech is Moroccan mint tea. This drink is a mixture of green tea leaves, water, sugar and mint. Locals in Marrakech love to enjoy it throughout the day, either with family or friends. They also love to have with it a plate of some of the Moroccan pastries, such as Gazelle Horns. Other than that, Marrakech is also famous for its local fruit juices. In Jemaa el Fna, for example, you will find so many sellers offering freshly squeezed fruit juices, including oranges, lemons, pomegranates, grapefruits, or others. You can have a large cup of this fruit juice for only 5 Dhs.

Cookies and pastries in Marrakech

We cannot talk about the specialties of Marrakech gastronomy without mentioning pastries. You must enjoy at least one of them when you are in this city: Baghrir (Moroccan pancakes), Chebakia, Gazelle Horns, Sellou, Mhancha, Baklava, etc. Most of these delights are made with honey and almonds. They are usually eaten with the famous Moroccan mint tea. Do not hesitate to go to 'Pâtisserie Amandine', which is a pastry shop located in Gueliz, to enjoy these specialties in a delightful setting.

Spices and herbs in Marrakech

Marrakech gastronomy is widely known for its fragrances, flavors, and colors. Vegetables and meat are usually the basis, but it is truly the spices that reveal all the aromas and tastiness. From saffron, cinnamon, pepper, coriander, ginger, and mint to others, one cannot have a dish in Marrakech without appreciating its ingredients and cooking method.

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.