Saudi Arabian Medames: A Flavorful Journey Through Tradition and Nutrition

In the heart of Saudi Arabian cuisine lies a dish that resonates with centuries of tradition and flavor: Saudi Arabian Medames. This beloved culinary creation encapsulates the essence of Arabian gastronomy, featuring tender fava beans simmered to perfection with a symphony of aromatic spices, garlic, and onions. As a cherished delicacy deeply rooted in the cultural tapestry of the region, Saudi Arabian Medames offers more than just a meal; it provides a glimpse into the rich heritage and culinary ingenuity of the Kingdom. Join us on a journey through the savory allure of Saudi Arabian Medames, where each spoonful tells a story of tradition, community, and the artistry of Arabian cooking.


  • 2 cups dried fava beans
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tomatoes, diced (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • Salt, to taste
  • Water, as needed
  • Olive oil, for garnish
  • Fresh parsley or cilantro, chopped (for garnish)
  • Lemon wedges, for serving
  • Optional: chili flakes or hot sauce for extra heat


  1. Soak the Fava Beans:
  • Place the dried fava beans in a large bowl and cover them with water. Allow them to soak overnight or for at least 8 hours. This will soften the beans and reduce cooking time.
  1. Cook the Beans:
  • Drain the soaked fava beans and rinse them under cold water.
  • In a large pot, add the fava beans along with enough water to cover them by a few inches.
  • Bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and let the beans simmer for about 1 to 1.5 hours, or until they are tender. Skim off any foam that rises to the surface during cooking.
  1. Prepare the Seasonings:
  • In a separate skillet, heat a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat.
  • Add the minced garlic and chopped onion to the skillet and sauté until they are softened and aromatic, about 3-4 minutes.
  • If using, add diced tomatoes to the skillet and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until they start to break down.
  1. Season the Beans:
  • Once the fava beans are tender, add the sautéed garlic, onion, and tomatoes to the pot.
  • Stir in the ground cumin, ground coriander, ground turmeric, and salt to taste. Adjust the seasoning according to your preference.
  1. Simmer and Blend:
  • Allow the mixture to simmer for an additional 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, to allow the flavors to meld together.
  • If desired, use a potato masher or immersion blender to partially mash the beans for a creamier texture. Alternatively, you can leave them whole for a chunkier consistency.
  1. Serve:
  • Ladle the Saudi Arabian Medames into serving bowls.
  • Drizzle with a generous amount of olive oil and sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley or cilantro.
  • Serve hot with lemon wedges on the side for squeezing over the medames just before eating.
  • Optionally, you can add chili flakes or hot sauce for those who prefer a spicier kick.
  1. Enjoy:
  • Sit back, savor the flavors, and enjoy this comforting and nutritious dish, whether as a hearty breakfast, a satisfying lunch, or a flavorful dinner.


Saudi Arabian Medames delights the palate with a harmonious blend of flavors and textures. The creamy consistency of the fava beans, infused with the earthy essence of garlic and onion, offers a comforting base. The aromatic spices, including cumin, coriander, and turmeric, add depth and warmth to the dish, providing a subtle yet distinct savory profile.

Depending on personal preferences and regional variations, the addition of tomatoes can introduce a slight tanginess, while optional chili flakes or hot sauce can provide a gentle heat that tantalizes the taste buds without overpowering the dish.

Overall, Saudi Arabian Medames offers a satisfyingly rich and complex taste experience that is both comforting and nourishing, making it a beloved staple in Arabian cuisine.

Saudi Arabian Medames offers a range of nutritional benefits, making it not only a flavorful dish but also a nourishing addition to any diet. Here are some of its key benefits:

  1. High in Protein: Fava beans, the main ingredient in Saudi Arabian Medames, are an excellent source of plant-based protein. Consuming protein-rich foods like fava beans can help support muscle growth and repair, as well as promote feelings of satiety.
  2. Rich in Fiber: Fava beans are also a good source of dietary fiber, which is essential for digestive health. A diet high in fiber can aid in digestion, prevent constipation, and promote overall gut health.
  3. Packed with Vitamins and Minerals: Fava beans contain various vitamins and minerals, including folate, manganese, magnesium, and iron. These nutrients play important roles in supporting overall health, including red blood cell formation, energy metabolism, and immune function.
  4. Heart-Healthy: Fava beans are low in fat and cholesterol, making them a heart-healthy food choice. Consuming foods like fava beans as part of a balanced diet may help lower cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease.
  5. Antioxidant Properties: The spices and other ingredients used in Saudi Arabian Medames, such as garlic, onion, and turmeric, are rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants help protect the body from oxidative stress and may reduce the risk of chronic diseases like cancer and heart disease.
  6. Promotes Weight Management: Due to its high protein and fiber content, Saudi Arabian Medames can help promote feelings of fullness and satisfaction, which may aid in weight management by reducing overall calorie intake.
  7. Supports Blood Sugar Control: The combination of protein, fiber, and complex carbohydrates in Saudi Arabian Medames can help stabilize blood sugar levels, making it a suitable option for individuals with diabetes or those looking to manage their blood sugar levels.

Overall, Saudi Arabian Medames is a nutritious and wholesome dish that offers a wide range of health benefits, making it a valuable addition to a balanced diet.