Join! 12 weeks for $1

Moroccan Beef, Tomato and Chickpea Stew (Harira)

4 to 6 Servings

2½ hours 45 minutes active

Made This Recipe? Write a Review.
Thank you for submitting your review! A member of our team is confirming the review meets our site's Community Guidelines. It will be posted on the site shortly.

Harira is a Moroccan stew—or a thick, hearty soup—traditionally served during Ramadan as a way to break the fast. Made with meat, tomatoes, spices and chickpeas, harira is warming and deeply satisfying, so it’s no surprise it’s served year-round in homes as well as at shops. We sampled several versions on a recent trip to Morocco, and we loved the one taught to us by home cook Houda Mehdi, who lives in Fes in northeastern Morocco. We based our recipe on hers, opting for stovetop simmering instead of pressure cooking and swapping beef for lamb. We also use canned chickpeas for convenience. Though harira typically is thickened with flour, Mehdi prefers to use pureed cooked vegetables (potatoes and carrots) to give the broth body, because she says—and we agree—that the stew tastes cleaner and brighter. We follow her lead and mash the vegetables that have simmered until tender in the cooking liquid to a coarse puree (alternatively, you could use an immersion blender for a smoother, more even texture). Harissa, a North African spice paste, lends the stew a delicious heat and complexity. Serve the harira with warm bread.

4 to 6



Don’t combine the cilantro stems and leaves after chopping. Reserve them separately, as the stems are used early on and the leaves are stirred in just before serving. Also, don’t bother rinsing the chickpeas. Simply drain off the liquid from the cans. The starchy liquid left clinging to the chickpeas helps give the soup a rich consistency.

2½ hours

45 minutes active



Pardon the interruption

You need to be a Milk Street Digital Member to see the full recipe


and get access to all of our recipes and articles online, as well as in print.

How we use your email.

Your email address is required to identify your subscription. We will use it for customer service as well as other communications from Milk Street. We will not share, or rent your email address.

Elisa C.
November 11, 2022
Delicious Stew
I made this according to the recipe for a friend and then I made it in the Instant Pot for us. The batch made in the Instant Pot (with canned sliced tomatoes) was actually tastier and meat was falling apart tender. If I make it again in the Instant Pot, I will reduce the broth by half.
Caroline L.
September 22, 2022
Startling delicious
I knew it sounded good on paper but the end product was fabulous! I doubled the recipe and shared with neighbors who raved about it. Salt to taste in the end and added more harisa paste.
Athena P.
September 7, 2022
Too tomato-y
This makes a lot of soup but the flavor was overwhelmingly tomato & the 2TB of harissa got completely lost/overwhelmed. Not my favorite harira; if making again I'd probably use half the tomato, sub cayenne during the cooking time & save the harissa for table use. We did really like the mashed veg method of thickening though as it allows us fine control over the thickness vs. having larger chunks of veg in the bowl.