Discover the flavours of Arabia by trying these top 8 dishes of Dubai

Dubai is a place rich in culture and authenticity where you can taste the best dishes and beverages from the Emirati land. From mouthwatering pastries to delectable grills, Dubai offers all the best options. Dubai cuisine, which combines Persian, Lebanese, and Arabic cuisine, will only leave you wanting more. 

If you’re a food enthusiast, Dubai will never let you down because it offers something for everyone. With plenty of both vegetarian and meat-based dishes to enjoy, check out the list of foods and the flavours of Arabia described in the article below to see what you can sample while you are in Dubai.

Al Machboos (Majboos)

Al Machboos, also known as Kabsa (the Arabic word “Machboos” or “Kabsa” actually means “pressed”), is a popular rice dish that is common in Middle Eastern nations. It is prepared with chicken, lamb, or seafood. The main ingredient is spiced basmati rice, onions and typical Middle Eastern spices, including looming (dry limes), cardamom, cloves, turmeric, etc.

To make this dish, you must boil the meat, seasonings, dried lemon, and spices for a long time. The meat is then separated, and the rice is mixed with the remaining ingredients and cooked together. The meat is then placed back into the pot and cooked for another hour or two. It is also frequently served with plain yoghurt, a cucumber salad with yoghurt, or a fresh vegetable salad like fattoush. 

The best restaurants to try Majboos in Dubai are Yadoo’s House, Souk al Bahar, Wadi Doan Restaurant, and Meridian.


Falafels are deep-fried balls that are typically prepared from crushed chickpeas, but some versions also include broad beans or fava beans. They are a staple of Middle Eastern cuisine. Because they are hot and crispy on the outside and fluffy and herby on the inside, these are popular all around the world. Often served within a pita, wrap, or flatbread called a taboon. Salads, pickled vegetables, spicy sauce, and tahini-based sauces can all be used as toppings for the falafel balls.  This crispy snack has quite a rich flavour and is loaded with fibre, protein, and nutrients which are good for your health.

The best restaurants to try falafel in Dubai are Just Falafel, Sultan Dubai Falafel Restaurant, Al Hallab, Al Mallah, and Phersian Cafeteria.


Balaleet is a traditional dish with contrasting flavours that combines both sweet and savoury aspects. It is the traditional breakfast in the United Arab Emirates and can be enjoyed hot or cold. This popular Arabian dish often consists of vermicelli that has been sweetened with honey, cardamom, rose water, and saffron and is served with an omelette on top. It is occasionally paired with potatoes or sautéed onions. Being the first meal of the day, the dish is mainly served at the Islamic event of Eid al-Fitr.

The best restaurants to try Balaleet at in Dubai are Balaleet, Bombay Bungalow, and Enana Ballet Dubai.


Shawarma is derived from the Turkish word çevirme, which means “turning.” In the UAE, it is an extremely popular street snack. Meats, such as chicken, beef, goat, and lamb, as well as sometimes turkey, are piled on a vertical rotisserie and are chopped into slices as it spins on the grill. The thinly sliced meat is then rolled and wrapped inside a large piece of flatbread or pita that has been toasted or steam-cooked. Besides the meat, the pita bread is also stuffed with a lot of veggies and sauces, including hummus, tahini, pickles, cucumber, and even french fries, which can be eaten in a variety of ways. This provides people with an authentic flavour and a one-of-a-kind experience.

The best restaurants to try Shawarma in Dubai are Al Mallah, Al Ijaza Cafeteria, Al Safadi, and Belad Al Sham.

Khameer flatbread

Khameer flatbread, also known as Emirati Khameer, is a popular flatbread in the UAE. “Khameer” literally means “yeast,” and the use of yeast gave the bread its name. Khameer bread is a round, fluffy flatbread that can be easily separated into two layers. This bread is sweetened with dates instead of sugar and is flavoured with fennel, saffron, and cardamom. It takes only 3 minutes to bake in an oven. During the old days, Arabs used to prepare Khameer bread in coal ovens.

A topping of sesame seeds on top of the Khameer bread gives it a burger bun-like appearance. You can separate the layers while eating and stuff them with butter or cream. A fresh Khameer will melt at the touch of your tongue since the bread is so soft.

The best restaurants to try Khameer flatbread in Dubai are Al Fanar restaurant and Khameer & Dough.


Fattoush is a treat for all health and fitness enthusiasts, providing them with a delicious flavour without packing on any extra pounds. This Levantine salad is prepared with toasted or fried khubz (Arabic flatbread) pieces and various fresh vegetables, such as mixed herbs and other vegetables like radishes, lettuce, cucumbers, and tomatoes.

The best restaurants to try Fattoush in Dubai are Aroos Damascus, Al Shorfa Restaurant & Cafe, and Mezza House.


Tabbouleh is a crunchy and chewy salad served as an appetiser that has Lebanese roots that date back to medieval times. It is prepared using bulgur wheat, fresh herbs, tomatoes, lemon juice, mint, and olive oil. This fresh salad is simple to prepare with only a few ingredients and is a real delight for the taste buds. There is no wrong way to serve tabbouleh. However, it tastes great when paired with hummus, baba ghanoush, and pita. It could be served as a side dish or a main dish.

The best restaurants to try out tabbouleh in Dubai are Al Safadi Restaurant, Tabule Restaurant, and La Marquise Restaurant & Coffee Shop.


Luqaimat is a traditional Middle Eastern sweet treat made of sugar, milk, butter, starch, cardamom powder, and dry yeast, coated in date syrup and sprinkled with date molasses, deep fried, and coated with sesame seeds. Luqaimat, which translates to “bite-size” in Arabic, comes from Qatar and is typically consumed in the UAE. It tastes best when it is warm and fresh, crispy on the outside and fluffy and airy on the inside. The meal is a must-have during Ramadan and is served at the traditional Iftar table.

The best restaurants to try out in Luqaimat in Dubai are Logma, Taste Atlas, and Al Fanar Restaurant & Cafe.


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