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Delicious Egyptian Street Food: Hawawshi 

Delicious Egyptian Street Food: Hawawshi 

Within Egypt's diverse gastronomic landscape, hawawshi is a beloved culinary treasure. This delicious street meal, which consists of ground meat that has been spiced up and wrapped in pita bread before being baked or grilled to perfection, is a favorite among Egyptians and food lovers alike. Hawawshi continues to enchant palates as a preferred snack or light meal option thanks to its harmonious combination of spices, textures, and cultural importance.

Hawawshi's beginnings can be traced to the busy streets of ancient Egypt, where it developed as a culinary response to the need for easily transportable, delectable food. The word "Hawawshi" itself is thought to be an evocation of the Arabic word "hawa," which means "stuffing," perfectly capturing the essence of the dish: a mouthwatering filling ensconced within bread's cozy embrace.

The dish became popular among laborers, traders, and people in need of an immediate, filling meal. Hawawshi emerged alongside Egypt's culinary mosaic, incorporating nuances from various communities and geographical areas. This resulted in a variety of regional variations of the meal that highlight its uniqueness.

Preparation Time

35 minutes


500g ground beef or lamb

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon chili powder 

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 onion (chopped)

2-3 cloves of garlic (minced)

1 green bell pepper (chopped)

1 red bell pepper (chopped)

1 medium tomato (chopped)

Salt and pepper 

Parsley or cilantro (chopped)

Pita bread rounds


  • Heat the vegetable oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until they become translucent.
  • Add the garlic and sauté for another minute until fragrant.
  • Add the ground beef or lamb to the pan. Break it apart with a spatula and cook until browned.
  • Add the green and red bell peppers, and cook for a few minutes until they start to soften.
  • Stir in the tomato and spices (ground cumin, ground coriander, paprika, chili powder, salt, and pepper). Cook for about 7 minutes.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and let the filling mixture cool down a bit.
  • Take a pita bread round and gently open the pocket.
  • Stuff the pita pocket with the cooled filling mixture, pressing it down gently to pack it in.
  • Place the stuffed pitas on a baking sheet and bake in the preheated oven for about 15 minutes.
  • Remove the hawawshi from the oven and sprinkle chopped fresh parsley or cilantro on top of it.
  • Serve the hawawshi hot.