Matbucha (Spicy Moroccan Tomato Dip)

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Last Updated on March 14, 2024

Spicy Moroccan tomato dip made with cooked tomatoes, hot peppers, garlic and oil. This appetizer style salad is delicious on sandwiches or with warm bread!

matbucha

What is Matbucha?

Matbucha is a condiment made with slow-cooked tomatoes, hot peppers, garlic, olive oil, and paprika. It’s a spicy tomato dip popular in the North African region, and one I grew up eating weekly for Shabbat dinners.

My Moroccan grandma would always make a big pot whenever she came to visit, and my mother followed the tradition. We love to serve it for Friday night dinners with fresh, warm challah.

Matbucha

Matbucha Ingredients

There are many ways to prep this dip since it’s so customizable. Here’s what I used in my recipe:

  • Beefsteak tomatoes– I score the tomatoes and place them in a bowl with boiling water for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, I peel the skin off. This leaves you with a smoother dip
  • Garlic– garlic can be measured with your heart, so add in as much as you’d like!
  • Jalapeno– I find that jalapenos are mildly spicy. For even more heat, I love using long green peppers or serrano peppers
  • Roasted bell pepper– I didn’t add this to my recipe, but traditionally matbucha is made using roasted red peppers. You can roast them in the oven or set them under the broiler, then peel the skins off and chop them finely
  • Olive oil– and lots of it 🙂
  • Paprika– paprika is the main spice in this dip. I use both sweet paprika and hot paprika for added heat
  • Salt + sugar– to balance out the acidity
moroccan tomato salad

How to make Matbucha

Traditionally, this recipe is made using fire-roasted bell peppers and hot peppers. I skipped the bell peppers in this version, but left some guidance on how to incorporate them in the recipe card below.

To prep this spicy dip, you’ll start by scoring your tomatoes and submerging them in boiling water. This step is to make it easier to peel the tomatoes for a smoother dip. Once they’re peeling, finely dice the tomatoes.

Next you’ll cook fresh garlic and jalapeno or long green peppers in olive oil. You can easily modify the heat in this recipe based on preference, but we personally love it extra spicy.

Once the garlic and peppers saute for a few minutes, you’ll add in the chopped tomatoes and roasted peppers if using. The dip will cook down on a low flame for 30-40 minutes before adding in the oil and spices. Then, it’ll continue cooking on low for another hour or so.

How to serve your dip

Cooking the tomatoes low and slow will leave you with a jammy tomato dip. We love to serve this dip with a few other salads, like my moroccan carrot salad and purple cabbage salad.

You can serve this recipe cold with your favorite bread or warm pita. I personally also love it with crackers or as a topping to my dinners!

It’s a delicious spread to add to sandwiches to add some heat, and also makes for the perfect shakshuka sauce. I just heat it over a pan with some water, then cook my eggs on a low flame.

Leftovers and storing

I prefer making a larger batch to freeze when preparing this dip. I will normally store small batches in the freezer for up to 3 months, and keep a small serving refrigerated for a week or so.

This recipe is a must have at my Shabbat table, and I’m so excited to be sharing it with you guys!

Other recipes to serve with Matbucha:

Shabbat Salads (part 1)

Shabbat Salads (part 2)

Lentil Bourekas (Pastry)

Matbucha (Spicy Moroccan Tomato Dip)

0 from 0 votes
Course: Sides, Salads
Servings

8-10

servings
Prep time

20

minutes
Cooking time

2

hours 
Total time

2

hours 

20

minutes

NOTES:
1. This recipe can easily be doubled if you’re planning on freezing in large batches
2. If you wanted to make a quicker version of Matbucha, you can use two 28 oz cans of diced tomatoes

Ingredients

  • 5 5 beefsteak tomatoes

  • 6 cloves 6 garlic

  • 2 2 jalapenos or long green peppers

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 olive oil + 2 tbsp

  • 2 tbsp 2 paprika

  • 1 tbsp 1 hot paprika, or sub regular paprika

  • 1/2 1/2 -1 tsp salt

  • 1 tsp 1 sugar

  • Optional: 2 red bell peppers, roasted

Directions

  • Roasted Red Peppers
  • Traditionally, this recipe is made with roasted peppers. I skipped this step for my recipe, but here’s how to prep them if you want to add them. Roast the red peppers in a 400 F degree oven for about 30-35 minutes, flipping halfway. They should be charred all around. You can also watch them closely under a broiler, or roast them over a flame.
  • Once they’re roasted and cool enough to handle, peel off the skins and stem and finely chop the peppers.
  • Score your tomatoes by cutting an X shape across the top. Place them in a large bowl and cover them with boiling water for 20 minutes. This will help soften the skin to peel it off.
  • Peel the skins off of the tomatoes, then finely dice the tomatoes. Be sure to discard the stem and any rough parts.
  • In the meantime, finely dice the garlic and hot peppers.
  • Heat a large pot over medium heat and add in two tbsp of olive oil. Add in the garlic and peppers and saute together for 5-6 minutes.
  • Add in the chopped tomatoes (and the peppers if using) and give it a mix. Cover the pot over a medium/low and let the mix cook down for about 30 minutes. Be sure to stir every 5-10 minutes.
  • In a small bowl, combine the oil and paprika and mix together.
  • After the tomatoes have cooked down a bit, add in the paprika oil to the pot with 1/2 tsp salt and 1 tsp sugar. You can adjust the salt at the end to your liking- I used about 1 tsp total.
  • Cover the pot and let it cook down for 60-90 minutes on low, stirring every so often.
  • Once the tomatoes have cooked down completely to a jammy dip, adjust salt to your liking. I like to drizzle another 1-2 tbsp of olive oil over the top.
  • Serve cold or at room temp. Leftovers can be refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.
  • To freeze, I like to portion the dip into three small ziplocks and freeze it for up to 3 months. Let defrost in the fridge before serving.

Did you make this recipe?

Tag @somethingnutritious on Instagram- I’d love to see your creations!

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