How to make your own Za’atar

Za’atar is a Middle Eastern herb blend with a mild earthy flavor.  The best I’ve ever found was at the Carmel Market in Tel Aviv.  Since then, I’ve been on a quest to make za’atar that’s as good.  There are probably as many recipes for za’atar as there are seeds in a pomegranate, but what virtually all have in common is toasted sesame seeds, thyme, and salt.  Variations use other ingredients like oregano.  I love the smooth lemony flavor of sumac, so I’ve used it in my recipe.  Though typically recipes call for dried thyme, I like the pop of fresh.  I hope you like my recipe, but I hope even more that you’ll be inspired to experiment with ingredients and proportions to make your own recipe that you and your family will love.


Prep Time 10 minutes
Author Leslie Carbone


  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme or 1 tbsp dried thyme
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1 tbsp sumac
  • 1 tsp sea salt


  1. Blend ingredients together in sm. bowl.

  2. Grind in spice grinder to desired texture.

  3. Za'atar can be stored in airtight container for up to two weeks.  

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