Spicy Za’atar Seasoning

Talk about fiery and exotic…

The popular Moroccan seasoning, za’atar is one versatile Middle Eastern spice. Any authentic Middle Eastern meal’s flavor can be lifted with the inclusion of this seasoning blend, but do look beyond the obvious hummus and baba ganoush. It’s a bold mix of flavors to add to dips, sprinkle on breads, or mix with dressings. Plus it makes one exotic steak rub to really give an edge to your grilling.

This za’atar seasoning recipes takes things up a notch with the inclusion of cayenne pepper, which isn’t found in every za’atar recipe (there are many versions, with often subtle differences). It calls for two teaspoons, but you could opt for one only if “too hot” is a phrase in your vocabulary.

spicy zaatar seasoning

Spicy Za'atar Seasoning

1 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes



  • Using a mortar and pestle, roughly crush the toasted sesame seeds.
  • Transfer the crushed sesame seeds to a bowl, then add in the ground sumac, thyme, oregano, marjoram, and cayenne pepper.
  • Stir to combine the herbs and spices. Use immediately, or transfer to an airtight container and store in a shaded area of your kitchen.


If there's concern over spiciness, cut the amount of cayenne used in half. 
Did you make this?Mention @PepperScale or tag #PepperScale so we can see what you made!

See more of our spicy recipes…

UPDATE NOTICE: This post was updated on January 20, 2021 to include new content.
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