Recipe: Harissa Red Chili Hot Sauce

Make this North African condiment at home
red harissa, harissa sauce, appetizer, hot sauce

Have you heard of fiery-hot harissa sauce? It’s a common condiment that people use in North African countries with Tunisia credited as its originator. You can use it to spice up couscous, soups and other dishes that could use a unique-tasting kick.

Advertising Policy

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy


1 ounce dried hot red chiles
1 teaspoon caraway seed
1/2 teaspoon cumin seed
1/2 teaspoon coriander seed
1/4 cup salt (optional)
2 garlic cloves
3 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil


  1. Wash the chiles and place in a small saucepan with water to cover. Bring to a boil, remove from heat and let steep covered for 1 hour. Meanwhile, using a spice mill or mortar and pestle, grind the caraway seed, cumin and coriander seeds and salt (if using).
  2. Using tongs, remove the chiles from the saucepan, wipe dry with paper towels and chop. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the chile steeping liquid. Add the chiles and garlic to the spice mill or mortar. Grind or mash everything together. Stir in 3 tablespoons of the oil and 2 tablespoons of the reserved steeping liquid.
  3. Transfer the harissa to a small serving dish in order to spoon into the stew at the table. Place any remaining harissa in a small glass jar. Drizzle the remaining 2 teaspoons of oil over the top. Cover and refrigerate. Use within 3 months.

Nutritional information (per serving)

Calories: 7 (92% from fat)
Fat: 1g
Trace protein
Trace carbohydrate
Dietary Fiber: 0g
Cholesterol: 0mg
Sodium: 6mg
Potassium: 3mg

Source: Cleveland Clinic Healthy Heart Lifestyle Guide and Cookbook (© 2007 Broadway Books).

Advertising Policy