Easy Ras El Hanout Recipe

exotic ras el hanout spice blend
Photo © Christine Benlafquih
  • 10 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins,
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 1/4 cup spice mix (serves 36)
Ratings (50)

Ras el hanout is a complex, aromatic Moroccan spice blend that's so famously associated with Moroccan cuisine, it always makes the list of foods to bring back from a trip to Morocco.

The literal translation of ras el hanout from Arabic to English is “head of the shop," implying that this mix of spices is the very best offering in a spice shop. Due to its liberal use in mrouzia, a lamb and honey dish with intense seasoning, ras el hanout is also sometimes called mrouzia spice.

No two versions of this spice blend are the same, so if sampling ras el hanout from different sources, you'll notice slight flavor variations. While most recipes include cardamom, nutmeg, anise, mace, cinnamon, ginger, various peppers, and turmeric, a total of 30 or more ingredients might be used in varying quantities.

The blend is typically prepared by grinding together whole spices, dried roots, and leaves. This recipe, however, keeps things extra simple by using ground spices you may already have at home. If you'd like to try making a lengthier, more complex and robust version, try this authentic ras el hanout recipe.

Note that relatively few Moroccans use this spice blend in daily cooking; instead, the majority reserve it for specialty dishes. Check out these Moroccan recipes with ras el hanout to get an idea of how to season with it. If making your own spice blend just isn't for you, you can always buy ras el hanout online.

What You'll Need

  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cardamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground mace
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground anise seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

How to Make It

1. Measure out all spices into a bowl, then stir to combine evenly. Transfer the spice mix to a glass jar and store in a dry, cool place away from heat and sunlight.

2. Use ras el hanout as desired to season tagines, stews, meat, poultry, fish, and vegetables. It keeps well for several months.