Five Moroccan Breads That You Can Cook on the Stove

If you're accustomed to thinking that bread must be baked in the oven, think again. These five Moroccan bread recipes are all traditionally cooked on the stove. Give them a try and and discover why pan-fried breads are a much-loved part of Moroccan cuisine.

  • 01 of 05
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    Moroccan Batbout. Photo © Christine Benlafquih

    This Moroccan flatbread puffs up as it cooks on the stove, creating a pita-like pocket which can be stuffed with jams, cheeses, meats, veggies...essentially sandwich fillers of all kinds.  Traditionally many Moroccans make batbout with a mix of semolina () and white flours, but my own preference is to add some whole wheat as well. The end result is a soft, chewy bread that's delicious right off the griddle.

    If desired, the batbout can be made thicker; it won't puff up with a pocket, but...MORE it can be carefully sliced through the middle to make sandwiches, or for a sweeter presentation it can be spread with butter and honey. Thick or thin, you'll find that leftover batbout freezes quite well, but don't expect it to last long if you have kids in the home. 

  • 02 of 05
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    Khobz b'Chehma. Photo © Christine Benlafquih

    Similar to batbout, this stuffed flatbread boasts a zesty filling of onions, suet, parsley and Moroccan spices. A fiery North African condiment, harissa, adds palate-pleasing heat.

    In Morocco, khobz b'chehma is typically offered as tea time or Ramadan iftar fare, but it also works well as an appetizer or light supper.

  • 03 of 05
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    Harcha. Photo © Christine Benlafquih

    Harcha is a type of semolina bread made from fine semolina grits, which lend texture and flavor redolent of corn bread. The version shown in the photo is a rich, plain harcha made with butter and milk; some traditional recipes in contrast use oil and water. The plain harcha is an excellent base for jams, cheese or butter and honey and therefore it's mostly offered for breakfast or tea time. Savory versions are also popular All types of harcha are on the crumbly side, so they're best...MORE enjoyed the same day as they're prepared. They're especially delicious hot off the griddle.

  • 04 of 05
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    Kefta Stuffed Msemen. Photo © Christine Benlafquih

     If you're at all familiar with Moroccan cuisine, you'll know that kefta (seasoned ground beef or lamb) is used in seemingly countless ways. Here it shows up as a filling for a crispy, crepe-like flatbread known as msemen. They're a bit of work to prepare due to the fact that the dough is flattened and then folded into a square-ship around the filling, but you'll find the end result well worth the effort. Also try Msemen Maamer, which features and onion and herb filling. 

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
  • 05 of 05
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    Khobz L'Mahrash - Moroccan Barley Bread. Photo © Christine Benlafquih

    This barley and wheat bread takes its name from the Arabic word for "rough" in reference to the texture provided by a generous garnish of barley grits. It's dense, chewy and rustic, and although normally baked it in an oven, it and other types of khobz may be shaped in flatter form and then pan-fried when risen.