Homemade Ras el Hanout - The Complex,
Traditional Moroccan & North African Mix 

For folks who love making homemade seasonings, ras el hanout is their dream blend! Hailing from Morocco, but used throughout North Africa, this complex recipe really gives you the chance to use ingredients that you don't normally get the chance to experience. Feel free to experiment! (See the bottom of the page for other recipes)

What You'll Need: (makes about 10 tablespoons)

1 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1 tbsp paprika powder
1 tbsp szechuan peppercorns (or regular peppercorns)
2 tsp grains of paradise
2 tsp dried lavender
2 tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp ajwain seeds
2 tsp anardana seeds
2 tsp chili powder
2 tsp salt (optional)
1 tsp nigella seeds
1 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp caraway seeds
1 tsp ginger powder
1 tsp green cardamom pods
3-4 inch piece cinnamon
2-3 blades of mace
20-30 dried curry leaves

tbsp = tablespoon
tsp = teaspoon


  • Break up the cinnamon stick
  • Finely grind the cinnamon pieces along with the salt (if using), dried lavender, cardamom pods, grains of paradise, szechuan peppercorns, anardana seeds, mace blades, nigella, cumin, caraway, ajwain and coriander seeds
  • Once ground add to a bowl
  • Add the paprika, turmeric, mustard, ginger and chili powders to the bowl and combine well
  • Finally, crumble in the curry leaves and combine again

Store your ras el hanout in a cool place in an airtight jar and out of direct sunlight. Use within 3 months.

Note: As you've gone to the considerable effort of making this complex blend, why not go one step further and dry toast the whole ingredients before grinding?

This will release even more flavours and aromas and is really quite a simple process. Click here for step-by-step info on this. (Link opens in new window)

Ingredient Note:
For this Moroccan spice mix, I recommend using whole ingredients when and where you can. However, If you don't have some of them all available, just use pre-ground powders, but reduce the amount the recipe calls for by half. For example, if it says 1 tablespoon mustard seeds you would use 2 teaspoons pre-ground mustard and stir in with the other powders when making.

A Step-by-Step Instructional Video

Here's a video of how I made a version of the above ras el hanout powder. The ingredients may be slightly different but the process is exactly the same. If you enjoyed it and have a Youtube account, you can click the SUBSCRIBE button in the bottom right corner in the video, OR click the SUBSCRIBE link below the video...

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Information on Moroccan Ras el Hanout

Ras el hanoutHomemade Ras el Hanout

Translated from Arabic this blend means "head of the shop" or "top of the shop" and can consist of anywhere between 15 and 25+ spices!

It really gives the adventurous chef a chance to show off, and in the numerous variations available, you will often find some fairly unusual ingredients mixed in.

My variation above has a couple of seldom used ingredients: grains of paradise, lavender, anardana seeds etc, but compared to some I've come across mine is still quite basic.

Orris root, long pepper, cubebs, galangal, rose petals, chufa nuts and ash berries are just a few of the exotic ingredients I've found used.

After Making Your Homemade Ras el Hanout Recipe You May Enjoy...

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