The Internet is full of lists on what to eat in Morocco. These lists don’t always include street food eaten by locals, and that can look a bit awkward for foreigners.
Forget the famous tagine, couscous and tangia; there is so much more to discover in Morocco. Here is my preferred cheap Moroccan street food meals list, combining some weird tasting and looking options!
Dried meat Khlea (or khlii)
I am addicted to omelette khlea – fried egg meal with dried beef. Khlea is a type of Moroccan jerky made by cooking sun-dried meat in fat and oil. You can buy khlea in many Moroccan stores and prepare a delicious breakfast at home! My favourite breakfast khlea place – cafe Espace Fruits Outmane in Marrakech, Gueliz, on the corner where I live (omelette khlea cost around 16 DH (1,5 eur).
In Morocco, you must try fresh fruit juice. Starting from orange juices in the famous Jemaa el Fna square to all kinds of juice mixes. My favoured drink is the thick avocado juice with either milk or orange juice, almonds and dates. One big glass is enough to make your stomach full for a few hours. My best juice cocktails place is called “Pâtisserie Al Jawda” in the Rue Kennaria street next to the Jemaa el Fna square. Walk toward the famous Cafe de France, step in into the Derb Dabachi street and after a few minutes walk you will find “Pâtisserie Al Jawda” where the fulfilling avocado juice cost around 15 DH. p.s. I always ask without sugar! They add it a lot!
Cooked cow’s feet Karin
Karin or Hargma (sometimes referred to as trotters in English) is a Moroccan dish that not every Moroccan like. My friends call it “the hangover food”, perfect to eat at night after many drinks. Karin It’s a cow’s, sometimes lamb’s, feet stewed in a sauce together with the chickpeas. It is a very fat and greasy dish found in many small local restaurants and mainly served in the evening.
Tripes with beans – Tkalia
Tkalia is made from lamb, goat and beef tripes mixed with Moroccan stewed white beans called loubia that is a delicious meal itself, without any meat. Tkalia cost around 10-15 DH, and you can buy it in some small local street restaurants. When I first time tried Tkalia, I had no idea what I am eating. The smell was terrible, but some Moroccans like it!
Cooked sheep head – Mechoui
In Morocco, sheep head is a popular dish, associated with Eid al-Adha, the Feast of Sacrifice. The next morning of Eid is spent cooking the head of the sheep on the fire. In many places, Moroccans cook these heads right in the streets.
In the mechoui restaurants, in the centre of the floor, you can see a round hole where the chef slowly steam it for about five hours. Sometimes the hole is hidden in other rooms, ask servants to show you.
The most famous place for mechoui in Marrakech is the Mechoui Alley, located next to the Jemaa el Fna square. Although there are 3 Mechoui restaurants, the most famous is Chez Lamine Hadj Mustapha. Cooked sheep heads is not a cheap pleasure, cost around 17 euro per kilo. They are served with salt, cumin and bread.
I love harira! This soup is simple, healthy, cheap, in the local restaurants cost around 4 DH. Harira is traditionally eaten during the month of Ramadan to break the daily fast. In local eating places, you can order Harira in the evenings and in more popular, tourist places – any time of the day.
Harira is a tomato, lentil, and chickpeas soup, that often includes meat. I love eating harira with a Moroccan pastry called Chebakia and boiled eggs. There are many local restaurants serving harira, if you are in Jemaa el Fna square, try the food stand nr. 5.
Msmen is a flaky, buttery Moroccan bread/crepe/pancake, made with wheat flour, semolina, olive oil, and butter. In Morocco, you can buy freshly made Msmen only in the afternoons. My favourite Msmen is with spices and filled with cheese or honey. Cheap, around 3-4, DH! You will find special Msmen making stands in many streets.
Are you starving? Grab the Harira soup, Msmen with the Lavashkiri cheese and will have a fantastic, cheap dinner.
What’s your favourite Moroccan street food?
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