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Zaatar is a spice mix prepared with herbs, sesame seeds, salt, and often sumac.. Households throughout the Middle East have their own secret spice mixtures and it is a staple of our Middle Eastern classes. One easy way to enjoy zaatar is with bread: dip the bread in olive oil, then the zaatar, and snack away! You can also use it as a seasoning on veg, a hummus-enhancer, sprinkled over a salad - it's hard to go wrong! Here are some of our favourite zaatar recipes once you have some at the ready:

A jar of Zaatar also makes a great gift!


  • 1 tsp dried thyme 
  • 1 tsp dried oregano 
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds 
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds 
  • 2 tbsps sesame seeds 
  • 2 tbsps sumac 


  1. Chop the thyme and oregano.  
  2. Toast the cumin and coriander seeds by placing them in a dry frying pan and frying until they start to smell and have a light smoke. If you want to be sure the spices don’t burn you can toast the coriander for a couple of minutes before adding the cumin, which cooks quicker.  
  3. Tip them into a pestle and mortar and then grind them to a fine powder.  
  4. Dry fry the sesame seeds for a minute to give them a little colour.  
  5. Mix together the thyme, ground cumin and coriander, sesame seeds and sumac. Store in an airtight jar.