Hawaij (Spice mix from Yemen)

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By Published On: October 8th, 20210 Comments

Hawaij is a spice blend from Yemen. A simple, colourful blend of flavours that impart a fragrant note to many dishes; from soups to stews, grilled meats and even to coffee! 

Ground spices combined with turmeric form a yellow spice powder called Hawaij, shown here in a silver bowl with spoon on an Arabic patterned background.

What is Hawaij?

Hawaij is a wonderful blend of spices used throughout the Middle East to add flavour to soups, stews, meats and vegetables. In Arabic, Hawaij (and sometimes hawayej or hawayij), is translated as ‘mixture’ and is a simple thing to put together. Spices are roasted and ground to form a yellow mix that has a mild, earthy flavour with a distinct, heady fragrance - it’s the essence of the Middle East.

Originating in Yemen, but also widely enjoyed in Israel, Hawaij comes in a number of combinations that can be used in sweet and savoury dishes. My hawaij recipe is for savoury preparations and features cumin, black pepper, turmeric, coriander, cardamom and cloves. I simply dry roast the spices and then using a spice grinder, grind into a fine powder. You can also grind into a coarse powder or leave whole too.

A pan with Black peppercorns, cloves, coriander, cardamom and cumin.

How to use Hawaij

I make mine in larger quantities and store in a jar and use it in a variety of ways, typically:

  1. As a dry rub for meats or vegetables
 - Simply rub over meat and marinade before grilling
  2. As the main ingredient for a wet marinade
 - I’ll combine with pureed onion and garlic along with lemon juice for a simple wet marinade for chicken, lamb or beef.
  3. As an ingredient for soups or stews
  4. As a finishing sauce for vegetables - I combine with a little water, lemon juice and salt and drizzle over or toss into roasted or steamed vegetables. It’s amazing with roasted cauliflower!

It's a go-to store cupboard ingredient that I'll use for all manner of Middle Eastern treats, and you will too once you discover how delicious It makes everything!

Ground spices combined with turmeric form a yellow spice powder called Hawaij, shown here in a silver bowl with spoon on an Arabic patterned background.

How to make Hawaij (Spice mix from Yemen)

Ground spices combined with turmeric form a yellow spice powder called Hawaij, shown here in a silver bowl with spoon on an Arabic patterned background.

Hawaij (Spice Mix from Yemen)

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5 from 4 votes
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Prep Time10 minutes
Total Time10 minutes
Servings (adjustable) 8 servings
Calories (per serving) | 14

Ingredients

Instructions

  • In a dry frying pan, roast the whole spices for 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Remove from the heat and add to a spice grinder or pestle & mortar
  • Grind the spices until a fine powder. Stir in the turmeric.
  • Store in airtight jar for up to 6 months.
  • 2 tsp of the spice mix or less is generally enough for one use.

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
Hawaij (Spice Mix from Yemen)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 14 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Sodium 3mg0%
Potassium 72mg2%
Carbohydrates 3g1%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 19IU0%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 24mg2%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course | Condiment, Marinade, Staple
Cuisine | Israeli, Middle Eastern, Yemen
Keyword | Hawaij Spice
Ground spices combined with turmeric form a yellow spice powder called Hawaij, shown here in a silver bowl with spoon on an Arabic patterned background.

Did you make my Hawaij (Spice mix from Yemen)

How did you go? Let me know in the comments below and be sure to tag @cookeatworld at Instagram.

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