There is little evidence to draw upon regarding Ancient Egyptian recipes, as it would appear that they did not consider it necessary to write them down. Scholars tend to rely on paintings that show feasting and celebratory scenes, such as those found in tombs.

Although the ancient people did not appear to use cookbooks, the ingredients needed to make most of the dishes are well known, many of which are still used in Egypt today.

For example Ful Medames is the national dish of Egypt and probably dates as far back as the Pharaonic periods. It would have commonly been eaten with bread, lentils, raw vegetables and eggs. Tiger Nut Sweets is one of the oldest recipes known and was actually found written on ostraca. ( Piece of clay with writing on it) And Hummus is as popular in Egypt today as it probably was thousands of years ago.


11/2lb dried ful or fava beans
(Can substitute with broad beans if unable to obtain above)

2-4 crushed cloves of garlic

Soak beans for 12 hours, put in pan, cover with fresh water, boil, simmer until tender. (Time depends on dryness of beans) Drain and add crushed garlic. Season and serve hot. Nice served with eggs.


200g of fresh dates are blended with a little water. Then add a little cinnamon and chopped walnuts to taste. Shape into balls, coat in honey, ground almonds and serve.


Taking a small quantity of barley flour mix it with warm water and make a dough shaped into a round mound. Indent in the centre, approximately half the way through, and mark it with a cross using a knife. Place the dough on a plate and fill the dent with water. Leave this in a warm place for a few days to ferment and the dough will split open like a overripe fruit. The dough is then ready to use as yeast to make bread.


225g chickpeas

2 tbs. of wine vinegar

3 cloves of garlic

5 tbs. sesame seed oil

1 tsp. salt

Cook and mash the chickpeas, add lemon juice, chopped garlic and sesame seed oil to make this tasty paste to spread on bread, as popular in Egypt today as it was thousands of years ago.

Please note: Ancient Nile can not be held responsible for any problems arising from the use of these recipes, we have provided them on an information basis only - use at your own risk.

Further Reading Suggestions:

List of Historical World Cuisine
Ancient Egyptian Diet By
For Egyptian Food book suggestions please click here

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