Take breakfast to the next level with this Spicy Shakshuka with Harissa. It’s an easy, yet impressive and eye-catching recipe made with an aromatic tomato sauce and eggs. Serve it to the whole family and scoop up each bite with bread!Jump to Recipe
Quick and simple shakshuka recipe
Spicy Shakshuka with Harissa is bound to become your new favorite breakfast or brunch. Not only is there enough for the whole family, but it’s easy to make in about 35 minutes and is very versatile.
To make this easy shakshuka recipe, a spicy and aromatic tomato sauce is simmered in a large skillet until all of those wonderful North African and Middle Eastern-inspired flavors come together. In the last 5 to 10 minutes, eggs are cracked on top and poached in the sauce until set.
Serve it right in the pan and scoop up every bite with a fresh baguette!
The best thing about this recipe is that it’s mostly made with ingredients you may already have at home. Be that as it may, you don’t need to limit yourself to what’s in the recipe card. Shakshuka has roots from all over the Middle East and Africa, which means you can add in any vegetables, meat, cheeses, and spices you love.
What is shakshuka?
Shakshuka (shack-shoo-kah), sometimes known as baked eggs in tomato sauce, is a popular Middle Eastern and North African breakfast or brunch. An aromatic and herbaceous tomato sauce is cooked in a large skillet before eggs are added on top and poached in the sauce. In the end, you have a vibrant meal that’s perfect for sharing.
It may look complicated, but most shakshuka recipes are straightforward and foolproof. Plus, they’re extremely versatile! It’s a dish that’s been influenced from all over the Middle East, North Africa, and is almost a national dish in Israel. Add or take away as much as you want to make it your own.
Ingredients and substitutions
There are very few rules when it comes to shakshuka recipes (tomatoes, onion, and eggs are a must), which means you can stick to this ingredients list or customize it any way you like:
- Crushed tomatoes – Either use a can of crushed tomatoes or blend fresh tomatoes instead. The fresher they are, the more vibrant your shakshuka will be. If you love heat, use fire-roasted tomatoes.
- Aromatics – Like sweet onion, red bell pepper, and garlic.
- Harissa paste – This smoky and spicy red sauce is made from dried chili peppers, vinegar, toasted spices, and lemon juice. If you’re sensitive to spice, use mild harissa (like Mina Harissa Mild). For a spicier shakshuka, use hot harissa (like Trader Joe’s Hot Harissa).
- Smoked paprika – Customize the level of heat and smoke by using smoked paprika, regular paprika, or the less smoky Hungarian paprika.
- Eggs – This recipe uses 6 eggs, meaning there will be enough to serve the whole family. Feel free to add more or use less, depending on the size of your skillet.
- Toppings – Finish off the dish with crumbled feta and chopped basil leaves on top.
- Bread – The best way to eat shakshuka is by scooping up every bite with pieces of bread. Baguette is my go-to, but challah bread or sourdough is just as tasty.
How to make spicy shakshuka with harissa
Lower the heat and stir in the garlic, salt, paprika, cumin, and harissa paste.
Next, pour in the tomatoes. Let the sauce simmer so all of those flavors can get to know each other. Stir it halfway to make sure it doesn’t stick to the pan. Add half the basil and stir to combine.
Make 6 wells in the sauce. Crack an egg into each well and don’t break the yolk.
Cover with a lid until the eggs are cooked to your liking. Cook for around 5 or 6 minutes for over easy or up to 6-7 minutes for over hard.
You’ll know the eggs are done when the whites have just barely set and they still jiggle slightly in the sauce.
To finish, crumble feta cheese and chopped basil over top. Serve the spicy shakshuka in the pan with plenty of bread for scooping on the side. Enjoy!
Watch How To Make This Recipe
Tips and tricks
- I don’t recommend using a cast iron skillet. The acid from the tomatoes will react with the cast iron, giving your stew a metallic flavor. Stick to stainless steel or non-stick instead.
- Don’t skip toasting or blooming the spices! Their flavors react with the heat and oil, leaving you with a deeply flavored and complex dish.
- The eggs will continue cooking after they come off of the stove. Take them off when they’re just beginning to turn from opaque to white and they still jiggle when poked.
- Not a fan of spicy food? Omit the harissa paste.
- Want to make a shakshuka for one? Reduce the ingredients to fit in one small pan and crack one or two eggs on top.
You’re going to have a lot of fun customizing your spicy shakshuka once you get a hang of the recipe. Play with the flavors, textures, or inspiration by region by using any of these suggestions:
- Vegetables: Chili peppers (sweet or hot), roasted red peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, artichoke hearts, spinach, kale, or potatoes.
- Meat: Spicy sausage, chorizo, lamb sausages, or pepperoni.
- Spices: Chili powder, paprika, cumin, cayenne, coriander, turmeric, chili flakes, or saffron.
- Herbs: Parsley, cilantro, oregano, or basil.
- Toppings: Parmesan, cotija, feta, manchego, fresh herbs, green onion, avocado, jalapenos, hot sauce, pickled red onions, chili oil, or cracked pepper.
More breakfast recipes for the whole family
- Easy Ham and Cheese Crepes
- Italian Baked Eggs and Sausage
- Egg Bread Bowls
- Prosciutto and Egg Breakfast Tart
- Lox and Bagel Brunch Board
Did you try this Spicy Shakshuka with Harissa? Let me know what you think by leaving a comment below and giving this recipe a rating! Don’t forget to take a picture tag me on Instagram or use #lenaskitchenblog to be featured in my stories! I love seeing what you come up with!
Spicy Shakshuka with Harissa
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small sweet onion chopped
- 1 red bell pepper seeded and diced
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon sea salt more to taste
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon harissa use paste *see notes
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- 28 ounces crushed tomatoes use good quality can
- 6 large eggs
- ⅓ cup feta cheese crumbled
- ¼ cup fresh basil leaves or use parsley, roughly chopped and divided
- ½ baguette toasted or use challah bread for serving
- Heat olive oil over medium heat in a 12-inch pan (use either stainless steel or enamel-coated cast-iron skillet). Add the onion, and bell pepper, and cook until both are soft, about 6 to 8 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low, and add the garlic, salt, paprika, cumin, and harissa paste. Stir and let cook for about 1 minute.
- Add the tomatoes. Let the sauce simmer on medium-low heat for 15 minutes, making sure to stir it halfway so nothing sticks. Taste and adjust the salt. Add half the basil, and stir to combine.
- Make 6 wells in the sauce, gently add cracked eggs, making sure not to break the yolk. Cover with a lid and cook until the white part of the eggs is set, 5 to 6 minutes. (Cooking time will depend on how runny you like your egg yolks.)
- Sprinkle with crumbled feta and fresh basil. Serve with toasted bread for scooping.