Moroccan Harira Soup Recipe

Are you ready to embark on a culinary adventure? Look no further, because today we’re diving into the aromatic world of Moroccan cuisine with Moroccan Harira Soup or some like to call it, Moroccan lentil soup. This delectable dish is a traditional Moroccan soup that bursts with flavors and textures and is a staple Ramadan tradition. If you’re a fan of hearty soups, exotic spices, and a touch of warmth, you’re in for a treat. In just a few simple steps, you’ll be able to whip up a bowl of this comforting hearty harira that will transport you straight to the bustling streets of Marrakech. Let’s get started!

What is Moroccan Harira Soup?

Moroccan Harira Soup is a delightful and flavorful dish that holds a special place in traditional Moroccan cuisine. It is a hearty and nourishing soup that has been enjoyed for centuries in Moroccan households and is often prepared during special occasions, such as Ramadan. In this section, we will explore the origins of Harira Soup and its significance in Moroccan culture.

Harira soup

Traditional Moroccan Cuisine

Moroccan cuisine is known for its rich, vibrant flavors and unique combination of spices. It is a reflection of the diverse cultural influences that have shaped the country’s culinary traditions over the years. The cuisine of Morocco encompasses a wide range of dishes, from savory tagines to fragrant couscous, and of course, the beloved Harira Soup.

Origins of Harira Soup

Harira Soup has a long history in Morocco and is considered a national dish. The word Harira is the Arabic word for soup. Its origins can be traced back to the Berber communities of North Africa, who have been using a variety of ingredients, including pulses, spices, and herbs, in their cooking for centuries. Over time, Persian and Andalusian influences also found their way into Moroccan cuisine, adding even more depth to the flavors of Harira Soup.

Harira Soup has gained prominence during the holy month of Ramadan, where it is traditionally consumed to break the fast at sunset. It is believed to provide nourishment and help restore energy after a long day of fasting. The soup is also served on special occasions and family gatherings throughout the year, symbolizing warmth, hospitality, and togetherness.

The base of Harira Soup typically consists of a flavorful broth made with tomatoes, onions, and spices such as ginger, turmeric, and cinnamon. The soup is further enriched with the addition of protein-rich ingredients, such as lentils, chickpeas, and sometimes meat or poultry. Fresh herbs like parsley and cilantro add a refreshing touch, while a squeeze of lemon juice enhances the overall flavor profile.

The burst of flavors and textures in Harira Soup makes it a truly satisfying and comforting dish. It embodies the essence of Moroccan cuisine, showcasing the country’s culinary heritage and the harmony of spices that make it so special.

So, the next time you want to experience a taste of Morocco, why not give Harira Soup a try? Its aromatic spices, hearty ingredients, and unique cultural significance are sure to delight your taste buds and transport you to the vibrant streets of Morocco.

Ingredients for Moroccan Harira Soup

Making a hearty and flavorful Moroccan Harira Soup is easier than you might think! With the right combination of key ingredients, you can create a dish that is bursting with rich flavors and aromas. Let’s take a closer look at what you’ll need to make this delicious soup.

Key Ingredients

To start off, here are the key ingredients that form the foundation of a traditional Moroccan Harira Soup:

  1. Chicken, Egg, Lamb, or Beef: The base of this soup is typically made with tender pieces of chicken, lamb, beef, or you can even stir into it some beaten eggs once it’s cooked, for more depth and flavor. For the vegetarian version, you can leave it out.
  2. Red Onion or white onion: Onion is very important as makes for a strong and flavorful base for the soup. Chop it finely or grate it to release its flavors and aromas.
  3. Tomatoes: Ripe and juicy tomatoes are a must-have in Harira Soup. They add tanginess and help create a rich and vibrant broth.
  4. Tomato Paste: Tomato paste adds a tangy taste to the soup. You can replace it by adding more fresh tomatoes to the soup, but in my opinion, tomato paste makes it more flavorful.
  5. Lentils: Lentils are a key ingredient in this soup, providing a hearty and creamy texture. You can use red lentils, but brown lentils work best with this soup.
  6. Dry Chickpeas (garbanzo beans): These little legumes add a nutty flavor and a wonderful bite to the soup. It’s very important that you use dry chickpeas, soak them overnight, and use them in this harira recipe the next day, because cooking them in the soup adds much more flavor to it. I don’t recommend using canned chickpeas at all.
  7. Noodles or Rice: For Harira a short type of noodles is used for the best taste, but you can always substitute it with rice instead or other noodles as long as it is very small.
  8. Fresh Herbs: Cilantro and parsley are essential herbs in Moroccan cuisine, and they add a refreshing and fragrant element to the soup. Chop them finely and sprinkle them on top before serving.

Optional Ingredients for Customization

One of the great things about Moroccan Harira Soup is that it can be customized to suit your taste preferences. Here are a few optional ingredients that you can add to enhance the flavors:

  • Spices: Moroccan cuisine is known for its aromatic spices. You can add a pinch of cinnamon to elevate the taste of the soup or some saffron.
  • Lemon Juice or distilled vinegar: A splash of freshly squeezed lemon juice or vinegar can brighten and balance the flavors of the soup. Add it in just before serving for a burst of citrusy goodness.

Remember, these optional ingredients are meant to enhance the flavors of the soup, but the key ingredients listed above are what make the Moroccan Harira Soup truly authentic. Feel free to experiment and make it your own while ensuring you keep the essence of this traditional dish intact.

Serving and Enjoying Moroccan Harira Soup

Moroccan Harira Soup is a delightful and flavorsome dish that deserves to be enjoyed to the fullest. In this section, we will explore the traditional accompaniments that complement this soup perfectly, as well as provide some variation suggestions to add a unique twist to your dining experience.

Traditional Accompaniments

When it comes to serving Moroccan Harira Soup, there are a few traditional accompaniments that can enhance the overall flavors and textures. Consider these options to elevate your soup to the next level:

  1. Chebakia: Chebakia, a traditional Morocco sweet that is infused with honey is a classic choice to pair with Harira Soup. The crispy exterior and soft, doughy interior provide a wonderful contrast to the rich and hearty soup. The clash of the sweet taste of chebakia with the savory and tangy taste of the harira makes for an incredible experience.
  2. Dates and Nuts: Moroccan cuisine often includes a combination of sweet and savory flavors. Serving dates and nuts alongside the soup not only adds a delightful sweetness but also provides a satisfying crunch.

In conclusion, serving and enjoying Moroccan Harira Soup is an experience that encompasses not only the flavors of the soup itself but also the traditional accompaniments and variation possibilities. Whether you opt for the classic pairings or decide to venture into uncharted territory with unique variations, this soup is sure to delight your taste buds and warm your soul.

The Authentic Moroccan Harira Soup with Lamb

Are you ready for an adventure? 🗺️ Take a trip to Morocco with this delicious Authentic comforting soup! Not only does this harira soup have a ton of rich, bold flavors, but it's also incredibly easy to make! 🥣 Enjoy a truly unique experience with every spoonful you take! 🤩 Bon Appétit!
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time1 hour 40 minutes
Course: Soup
Cuisine: Morocco
Keyword: chickpeas, lentils, soup, sour, vegan, vegetarian
Servings: 6
Author: Mouna


  • 1/4 cup cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 5 oz beef or lamb meat diced
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cup mixture of cilantro and coriander, finely chopped
  • 2 cups chickpeas soaked overnight
  • 1 1/2 cup lentils soaked overnight
  • Water as needed
  • 2 cups noodles, broken into small pieces or 1 cup of rice
  • 1 cup tomato puree
  • 3 tbsp tomato concentrate
  • 1 lamb bouillon cube
  • 3/4 cup plain flour


  • Heat the oil in a large pot, pressure cooker, or slow callker. Heat in it the oil then sautee in the onion with beef, salt, turmeric, black pepper, and cinnamon for 8 minutes while stirring them often.
  • Add the cilantro with lentils and chickpeas then cook them for 5 minutes.
  • Add 9 cups of water to the soup, then put on the lid and cook the soup for 40 to 60 minutes over medium heat until the lentils and chickpeas become soft.
  • If you wish to use a pressure cooker instead, then bring the pot to pressure, then cook the soup for 25 to 30 minutes over high pressure until the chickpeas soften.
  • Once the time is up, stir in the noodles and cook for 3 minutes then stir in the tomato concetrate uith tomato puree , and bouillon cube until they dissolves.
  • Mix the flour with 2 cups of water in a mixer or a bowl then blend them smooth until no lumps are found.
  • Stir the flour mixture into the pot and bring it to a boil. Continue to boil it for 10 minutes. This will combine the flavors and remove the taste of the flour from it.
  • Adjust the seasoning of your soup then serve it hot and enjoy!


What is the origin of Harira soup?

The Harira Soup is a Moroccan soup that we created by the indigenous people of the land hundreds of years ago. The Harira is also known in other North African Countries such as Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya, but this recipe is 100% Moroccan.

Is the Moroccan harira soup vegetarian?

The Harira soup is not vegetarian because it includes meat, but you can easily make it vegetarian by removing the lamb and using a vegetable bouillon cube.

Is the Moroccan harira soup gluten-free?

The Moroccan harira soup is not gluten-free, but you can try using gluten-free flour instead of plain flour to thicken it.
hard boiled eggs

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