Moroccan cuisine incorporates flavors from the Middle East, Africa, and Europe, which makes for some of the most incredible food you've ever tasted. The blend of spices, the way it is cooked, and how each dish is presented represents the whole culture, and that's what I love about Moroccan food. When dining in Morocco, you can expect dishes to incorporate lots of cumin, pepper, turmeric, and ginger, as well as a few other key spices. To get a true taste of this diverse country, here are 15 Moroccan foods you must try at least once on your travels. 

1. Tagine

Tagine is a Moroccan stew that's typically made from lamb, but it can be made with chicken or even vegetables and chickpeas as well. It's simmered for a long time with spices like cinnamon and ginger, resulting in a warm, deep flavor and is served in a clay dish to keep it warm. 

2. Couscous

Couscous is made of durum wheat that's been steamed. It plays the same role as rice or pasta in most dishes and is mainly served with stew, but can also be made into cold salads, such as this zesty Moroccan couscous salad.

3. Moroccan Mint Tea

Mint tea is traditionally served after a meal as a digestive, but can also be served with breakfast. Moroccan mint tea is green tea with fresh mint and sugar in it, usually served in a beautiful glass tea cup alongside biscuits and pastries.

4. Zaalouk

Zaalouk is a cooked Moroccan salad that consists of eggplant and tomatoes. It can be used as a dip, similar to baba ganoush, a Middle Eastern eggplant dip. Zaalouk usually has a little bit of chili powder in it to give it a slight kick, but if you're not into spice feel free to leave it out. This dish is a perfect start to a meal, as well as being a veggie-friendly option!

5. Moroccan Lamb Soup

This is also a starter and is served with Moroccan bread (more on that next). Like many Moroccan foods, lamb soup is simmered over a long period of time to incorporate all the rich flavors, resulting in a savory, spicy soup filled with spices like fenugreek, ginger, and cloves, and is flavored with harissa paste. The combination of the savory broth and the cinnamon-flavored lamb makes it the ultimate comfort food.

6. Moroccan Khobz (bread)

There are many different varieties of Moroccan bread, the most traditional kind is pictured above. The inside is soft with a shiny crust and is often sprinkled with sesame seeds. In Morocco, bread is an essential side to any meal. It's used alongside dips, as well as soups and stews, and can be eaten for breakfast with fillings such as eggs and cheese.

7. Moroccan Cigars

Moroccan cigars consist of ground beef wrapped in dough with spices. Every household has a different spice blend, but allspice is frequently used. The cigars are either baked or fried, and they can be served alongside many sauces,—most commonly tahini—and are a perfect appetizer. Moroccan cigars are also served as a street food and are frequently bought late at night as people make their way home.

8. Kebab

A lot of Eastern food consists of kebabs, and they're often made of chicken, lamb, fish, or vegetables. Kebabs are very popular for barbecues and family dinners, and are usually served alongside bread or couscous with a variety of dips.

9. Sfenj

Sfenj are basically Moroccan beignets. They're made of fried dough that's either sprinkled with sugar or dipped in honey. This super sweet pastry is the perfect end to any meal or teatime, and it's so good you won't even think about regular doughnuts again.

10. Seffa 

Seffa is a sweet and savory couscous dish. The couscous is cooked with cinnamon, sugar, and raisins, and is served in a mound with chicken or beef. It is often decorated with more cinnamon and almonds for presentation. I know it sounds strange, but the savory and salty components of the dish complement each other perfectly.

11. Kaab El Ghazal

This translates to 'gazelles horns,' and consists of a horn-shaped pastry filled with almond paste and topped with sugar. This super sweet dessert is a great end to any meal, or is a perfect pastry to enjoy with afternoon tea.

12. Aubergine Fritters

Aubergine fritters are a Moroccan street food that are served fresh and in abundance. I don't know about you, but I definitely wish they sold these in more places than just Morocco.

13. Harira Soup

Harira soup is a zesty soup made from chickpeas and lentils, often with the addition of tomato as well. Lemon juice gives the soup a slight tang. Best of all, this dish is vegetarian-friendly. 

14. Chicken Bastilla

This is a comfort food for many Moroccans and is essentially a chicken pie. The flaky pastry shell covers chicken cooked with saffron, as well as the addition of a spicy omelette. 

15. Halwa Chebakia

Halwa Chebakia is a Moroccan sweet traditionally eaten during Ramadan. It's a fried sesame cookie shaped like a flower that's coated in honey. Halwa Chebakia is often passed around to guests during special occasions as well.

Moroccan foods are often served in large dishes to encourage families to eat together, bringing a sense of community to the table. I think many of these dishes will make great weeknight dinners to serve to your family, or you could even invite your friends over to cook with you. If you ever get the chance to try any Moroccan foods, I strongly recommend it.