Stock Your Spice Rack The Right Way With Za’atar

Stock Your Spice Rack The Right Way With Za’atar - Kohkoz – Real Lebanese Cuisine

When you are stocking your spice rack, there's one thing you can't be without - za'atar.


Well, for one, it is delicious!

This versatile spice blend can be used in a number of different ways to create mouthwatering and flavourful dishes.

Want some inspiration on how to bring the taste of Lebanon to your table?
Then, keep reading!

Stock Your Spice Rack The Right Way With Za’atar

What Is Za’atar?

Za'atar is a traditional spice mix used in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cooking and is hugely versatile. Like salt in Western cuisine, za'atar brings out the flavour of all kinds of things from bread to salads and adds interest to your dishes.

The Arabic word za'atar is used to describe a herb which is part of the wild thyme family but looks like oregano. The mix has an earthy feel with a hint of nuttiness, but unlike some spice mixes, it doesn't have a lot of heat.

Its use is believed to go back to Medieval times, and many variations have been developed since then. Some mixes use thyme, while others use oregano. However, in a good za'atar mix, you should be seeing herbs, sesame seeds and sumac spice made from dried berries.

Three Traditional Ways You Can Use Za'atar

Dip it

One of the simplest ways to enjoy za'atar is simply mixing it with olive oil, finding some lovely bread, and dipping it in. Traditional bread like pita or flatbreads work well, but baguettes or Italian bread can be just as good. It's the perfect appetiser before a main meal or as a snack at any time of day.

Sprinkle it on something

Want to spice up your fried eggs (Lebanese-style fried in olive oil, obviously)? Add a good sprinkle of za'atar over the top.

Want to create an amazing dip? You can also combine za'atar with labne, a traditional soft cheese made from strained yoghurt. This is a popular choice with bread for breakfast in the Middle East.

Love cheese? Za’atar works perfectly on cheese. If you'd like to see t in action, we have a fab recipe for Shanklish salad using feta cheese and za'atar on the top.

Make Manakish

This traditional Lebanese bread is one of the most popular uses for za'atar. Manakish is a soft dough bread made with flour, salt, yeast, olive oil and warm water and then topped and baked in the oven.

Many people keep the topping simple with just za'atar and olive oil, but you can change things up a bit by adding cheese, meat or salad.

Don't have time to make your own dough? We've got you covered. You can cheat without scrimping on flavour by using our flatbreads. Simply split them in half, spread your za'atar and oil blend and bake it in the oven. They also work well in an air fryer if you've added this popular appliance to your kitchen equipment.

Experiment With Less Traditional Za'atar Recipe Ideas

While za'atar works really well in traditional Lebanese recipes, it can also make a surprisingly good addition to some Western or more modern dishes. Here are some of our favourite ideas to try.

  • Instead of traditional manakish bread, use your za'atar and olives to make a tasty focaccia bread.
  • Take your old cinnamon scrolls recipe and freshen it up by replacing the cinnamon with zataar
  • Improve your hummus. Some people will argue you can't improve hummus, but we'd say that adding a sprinkle of za'atar could just be the answer.
  • Sprinkle it over tomatoes or avocados for a quick and tasty snack.
  • Add it to salads. Sprinkled over the top of salads, za'atar adds some extra zing, or combine it with some olive oil and lemon juice for a simple dressing.
  • Use it as a meat rub. Before you roast or BBQ your meat, give it some love by creating a meat rub made from za'atar. As a rub, it works particularly well with chicken and seafood.
  • Toss your vegetables in it. If you are a vegetarian, you don't have to miss out. Toss your vegetables in za'atar before roasting.

Choosing The Right Za’atar Blend

If you've been inspired to create some dishes with za'atar, make sure you get a high-quality spice mix. At Kohkoz, we use only great ingredients in our za'atar mix. It's all killer and no filler - just oregano, toasted sesame seeds, sumac and salt.

And, if you are looking for more cooking inspiration, check out our recipe page.