one green planet
one green planet

Harissa is a Tunisian spice sauce that is almost a catch-all for a lot of their dishes. As with all catch-all spices, there are variations to the basic theme, some like it very spicy so they add more cayenne pepper, others mint, and yet others both cilantro and mint.

Harissa [Vegan]

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  • 1/4 cup dried red cayenne peppers
  • 20 mild red chilis such as the Byadgi or Ancho Chilies (also dried)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon chopped mint (optional)


  1. Soak the chilies with 1/2 cup warm water for 15 minutes. Drain and reserve the water.
  2. In the meantime, toast the cumin and coriander seeds. Grind to a powder in a coffee grinder.
  3. Place the chilies, ground spices, garlic, salt and olive oil with a little water in a blender and grind to a paste.
  4. Add in the chopped cilantro and the mint and pulse a few times. Use some more water if needed.
  5. Store the mixture in the refrigerator and use as needed.

Nutritional Information

Total Calories: 531 | Total Carbs: 21 g | Total Fat: 49 g | Total Protein: 7 g | Total Sodium: 2188 g | Total Sugar: 3 g Note: The information shown is based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.


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  1. How do you use Harissa? Is it like pesto where its usually put on one specific thing (pasta for pesto) or is it like peanut butter where it just goes on and in everything?