Recipe for Shakshuka: Delicious Mediterranean Poached Egg Dish in Spicy Tomato Sauce

by DerdriuMarriner

Shakshuka is a Mediterranean dish of eggs poached in a spicy tomato sauce.

Shakshuka (also spelled shakshouka) is a delicious recipe hailing from the Mediterranean cuisine of Israel and Tunisia. Various etymologies of the dish's exotic name have been offered:
*Berber: chakchouka "vegetable ragout";
*Hebrew: leshakshek "to shake".

North African Jews from Tunisia are usually credited with introducing shakshuka into Israeli cuisine.

great start to the day: shakshuka for breakfast

"shakshouka breakfast in Tel Aviv -- October 2009"
"shakshouka breakfast in Tel Aviv -- October 2009"


Popular as a satisfying breakfast dish, shakshuka may also be enjoyed as a side or a main dish for lunch or dinner.

Main ingredients for shakshuka tend to comprise:
• eggs,
• garlic and/or onions,
• peppers, and
• tomatoes.

Other popular additions include:
• eggplants,
• potatoes, and/or
• zucchinis.

Seasoning popularly calls for cumin and salt. European versions include caraway seeds or sweet paprika.

Popular garnishes include:
• cilantro choppings,
• feta cheese chunks,
• green onion curlings,
• flat-leaf parsley snippets.

Shakshuka traditionally is served with bread, such as pita, which soaks up sauce from the pan or serving plate. Orts from a serving of shakshuka are rare.


tucking into a steaming plate of shakshuka

Tasty N Sons, Portland, northwestern Oregon
Tasty N Sons, Portland, northwestern Oregon


Shakshouka is a treasured recipe that may be customized by families or regions. My family recipe incorporates both garlic and onions in our cherished version.

In addition to sea salt, I favor seasoning with both white pepper and coarse black pepper. A dash of sweet paprika and a smattering of caraway seeds awaken my taste buds. Garnishing with feta cheese and green onions increases visual appeal and gustatory enjoyment.



Shakshouka served atop really good bread is a tasty variation.

Whatever the variations, shakshouka reigns as great comfort food.


shakshuka's delicious and spicy poached egg

shakshouka closeup
shakshouka closeup

Recipe for Shakshuka

Prep time 5 min  -  Total time 30 min
Ingredients for 4 servings
Recipe yields 4 to 6 servings, depending upon portion size.
Recipe  4.9/5 Stars (38 Votes)



3 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 peppers, chopped, to measure about 1.5 cups
   Suggestion: chili pepper such as Anaheim; bell or pimento peppers
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 small onion, chopped
5 medium large tomatoes, quartered
4 eggs

1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon coarse-grind black pepper
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 cup olive oil

1/4 pound feta cheese, cubed to measure about 2/3 cup
1 Tablespoon flat-leaf parsley or: 1 Tablespoon cilantro, torn or chopped




1. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat.
Add garlic, onion, and peppers (Anaheim, bell, or pimento); sauté, lightly stirring, until garlic and onions are golden, usually about 2 minutes.

2. Add tomatoes and seasonings. Crush tomatoes with stirrer.
Reduce heat to medium and cover with lid.
Allow to simmer, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes soften and sauce thickens, usually about 15 to 20 minutes.

3. Crack eggs over tomato mixture and lightly break yolks with fork.
Cover with lid and cook until eggs set, usually about 3 minutes.

Sprinkle with garnishes over pan or over individual serving plates.

Servings: 4 to 6, depending upon portion size.


My sister's secret shakshuka ingredient


My sister occasionally prepares shakshuka with a secret ingredient: honey. She drizzles honey into the tomato mixture a few moments before adding eggs.



Nazareth Secret star thistle blossom pure honey: kosher-certified, natural (unheated), rich amber-colored honey from hills of Nazareth, Israel

This product is eligible for AmazonSmile donation.
Pure Natural Israeli Honey, Kosher, Holy Land Gifts From Nazareth I...

Gefen gluten-free, certified kosher, 100-percent pure clover honey: Amazon's Choice as highly rated and well-priced product.

This product is eligible for AmazonSmile donation.
Gefen US Grade A Honey Bears, 12oz (2 Pack) 100% Clover Honey, No F...

Shakshuka Ethnic Food Apron by innovative Sydney, Australia-born Israeli artist Barbara Shaw of Jerusalem-based Barbara Shaw Gifts

Cotton-mix, machine washable and dryable hand screen-printed apron: printed and sewn in Jerusalem. This product is eligible for AmazonSmile donation.
Kosher Apron Shakshuka Ethnic Food Apron .Israeli Gifts Hostess Gif...



My special thanks to talented photographers/concerned organizations who make their fine images available on the Internet.


I heart Shakshuka tee shirt: available in black, navy, slate, grass and dark heather; in men, women and youth sizes

Isreal Tee Shirt I heart Shakshuka Israeli Shirt

Sources Consulted


Koenig, Leah. Modern Jewish Cooking: Recipes & Customs for Today's Kitchen. San Francisco CA: Chronicle Books, 2015.

Roden, Claudia. The Book of Jewish Food: An Odyssey from Samarkand to New York. New York NY: Knopf, 1996.

Roden, Claudia. The New Book of Middle Eastern Food. New York NY: Alfred A. Knopf, 2014.

Sussman, Adeena. Sababa: Fresh, Sunny Flavors From my Israeli Kitchen. New York NY: Avery, 2019.


Modern Jewish Cooking: Recipes & Customs for Today's Kitchen by Leah Koenig

Brooklyn-based writer and cooking teacher Leah Koenig offers 175 recipes that showcase classics of Jewish cuisine and incorporate regional influences from North Africa to Central Europe.
Modern Jewish Cooking: Recipes & Customs for Today's Kitchen (Jewis...

The New Book of Middle Eastern Food by Claudia Roden: delicious revisit of her groundbreaking classic, Book of Middle Eastern Food, first published in 1968

The New Book of Middle Eastern Food: The Classic Cookbook, Expanded...

The Book of Jewish Food by Claudia Roden: delicious presentations of Ashkenazi and Sephardic cuisine

The Book of Jewish Food: An Odyssey from Samarkand to New York: A C...

Sababa: Fresh, Sunny Flavors From My Israeli Kitchen: A Cookbook

Amazon Editors' Pick: Best Cookbooks, Food & Wine
Sababa: Fresh, Sunny Flavors From My Israeli Kitchen: A Cookbook
the end which is also the beginning
the end which is also the beginning
Updated: 01/12/2022, DerdriuMarriner
Thank you! Would you like to post a comment now?


Only logged-in users are allowed to comment. Login
DerdriuMarriner on 05/21/2021

WriterArtist, Thank you for stopping by and writing about parallel Indian and Mediterranean cuisines.
Adeena Sussman predicts that Domino's will add shakshuka to its pizza menu within the decade. Wouldn't it be fun if the pizza giant added thali? Wikipedia writes that the ancestors of thali go back 4,500 to 5,500 years to northwest India's Kalibangan Indus valley civilization site.

WriterArtist on 05/20/2021

I love mediterranean food. In my US visit with my family, I could taste an authentic mediterranean Thali which was too good. Your recipe reminds me of that. The recipe and the picture look so tempting, moreover it is very simple to make. Cumin and mustard seeds are common spices used in Indian for seasoning. We find similarities in Mediterranean cuisine.

DerdriuMarriner on 02/19/2021

Veronica, Count me in as an appreciator of cumin. I hope that you try Shakshuka. And, remember, that you can always make it your own, because Shakshuka responds kindly to preferential additions!

Veronica on 02/17/2021

I join with Mira in liking Cumin . It is one of my favourites.
I shall definitely try this recipe. It looks like my kind of food.

DerdriuMarriner on 02/17/2021

Mira, Thank you for describing this recipe as sounding "magnificent." Shakshuka offers a wonderful blend of flavors and textures.
I understand how cumin can be a favorite spice. It definitely enhances flavor profiles, so I enjoy incorporating cumin wherever and whenever possible.

Mira on 02/17/2021

This recipe sounds magnificent. And it has cumin as well, one of my favorite spices these days. Thank you so much for sharing! :)

DerdriuMarriner on 02/08/2021

blackspanielgallery, Thank you!
Me too, I agree. They are so applicable and such conversation topics at and away from the dinner table.
The other day, I noticed a colorful cake in the bakery section. I saw that there was a write-up of about four sentences on the box. So I went over to read it and discovered that I already knew what it was talking about, from having been in Louisiana and from having read your wizzleys: it was a king cake!

blackspanielgallery on 02/07/2021

It is good to have recipe articles start again. These are useful and important. Hope to see more from the authors on Wizzley.

You might also like

Czech Republic Comfort Food: Chestnut Cake With Chocolate Whip...

Chestnut Cake with Chocolate Whipped Cream Frosting is a comfort food recipe ...

Italian Bread With Plum Tomatoes: The Joy of Bruschetta

Italian bread can be eaten in bite-sized chunks or politely cut slices. Eithe...

Disclosure: This page generates income for authors based on affiliate relationships with our partners, including Amazon, Google and others.
Loading ...