Mutabbaq is a Saudi pastry snack recipe that has a filling of spiced minced chicken, green onion leaves, tomatoes, eggs, and cheese. It is one of the most delicious & popular snacks in Saudi Arabia, which is best served with sliced lemon and green chilis.
Muttabaq is one of my favorite snacks in the Middle East since it's rich in flavor and it's delicious. What makes this dish unique is its crispiness, which is made through the process of layering and frying. What makes it crispy is that it is brushed in oil in the pan before cooking which gives a golden crispy texture.
The word "Muttabaq" means "folded" or "layered" in Arabic, which describes how this snack is assembled and prepared. In some variations, you can use either a homemade dough or a ready-made wrapper (e.g. spring roll or egg roll wrapper) which is more convenient to use if you have limited time.
When serving, this Saudi muttabaq is cut into square-shaped pieces which are perfect to share with your family, friend, or guest during snack time. There are many versions of this recipe which include the Indian, Malaysian, Indonesian, and Pakistani muttabaq. But I have made a Saudi version since it is simple to make and delicious too.
Here are the ingredients to make this delicious Saudi muttabaq recipe:
Minced Chicken: The ground chicken will serve as the main protein for my pastry dish.
Spring Roll Wrapper: I am using an egg roll or spring roll wrapper since it is easier to use when assembling the fillings. Also, you don't need to make homemade dough which can be time-consuming for others.
Mozzarella cheese: Adding the mozzarella cheese will give you a cheese & gooey texture, and complement the spiced minced chicken and the other fillings. This is actually optional if you don't want to add cheese in this recipe.
Egg: The egg will help bind the ingredients together and add moisture to the filling.
For Fillings: For the fillings, I added green onion leaves, tomatoes, egg, and parsley.
Spices: The spices aren't that much, you will need only turmeric, cumin, black pepper, and salt.
Other ingredients: The rest you will need a chopped red onion when cooking the minced chicken, and oil for pan-frying the muttabaq & sauteing the chicken.
Step by Step Instruction
I. Cooking the Chicken
- Firstly, I add vegetable oil and saute the red onion in the pan.
- Next, I add the minced chicken and let it cook for a few minutes till the juice fully evaporates.
- After that, add the spices and stir to combine. Turn off the fire and set it aside.
II. Preparing the Fillings
- In a large bowl, combine the spring onion leaves, parsley, cooked spiced minced chicken, egg, and tomatoes.
- Gently mixed to combine. Add a few drops of salt if needed.
III. Assembling the Muttabaq
- In each spring roll wrapper, I add 1 or 1 ½ tablespoon portions of the fillings in the center.
- Next, fold in the left and right corners of the wrapper towards the center, creating a rectangle shape.
- Then roll from the bottom towards the top to fully enclose it. Make sure it is tightly packed and the edges are sealed.
IV. Pan-frying the Muttabaq
- To pan-fry it, brush the pan with vegetable oil.
- Once hot, I placed the muttabaq in the pan and let it cook for 2-3 minutes on each side till it turned golden brown. To make sure it is cooked properly, cook it on low fire.
- Once done, serve with lemon and green chilies. Enjoy!
Tips and Hints
- You can bake in the oven instead of frying in the pan. Bake it at 375°F (190°C) for 15 minutes or until they are golden brown.
- You can add other spices like baharat or garam masala spices.
- Do not pan-fry it in high heat since this will cause the muttabaq to burn quickly.
- If you want the tomato soft, you can mix & cook it together with the minced chicken.
- Add parsley or coriander leaves will enhance the flavor of this dish.
- Avoid overfilling the muttabaq since it may cause sogginess and spillage.
Frequently Asked Questions
This Muttabaq is a popular meat pie snack in Saudi Arabia that is stuffed with spiced meat filling, spring onion leaves, and parsley.
Although this is a traditional snack in the Middle East, this muttabaq variation is found in Malaysia, India, and other Southeast Asian countries.
Absolutely! Once done cooking, you can store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
You can reheat it in the air-fryer, or re-fry it again in the pan till it becomes crispy. Do not reheat in the microwave since it will make the wrapper of the muttabaq soggy.
For spices, you can use garam masala or baharat spice. On the other hand, you can use chives or coriander leaves instead of parsley or spring onion.
Other Middle Eastern snack recipes to Try
Here are other delicious middle eastern snack recipes that you can make at home:
📋 Recipe Card
Saudi Mutabbaq Recipe
- 500 gram of ground chicken
- 1 cup of spring onion leaves
- ¼ cups of parsley
- 1 teaspoon of cumin
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- ½ teaspoon of black pepper
- 1 medium red onion
- 1 cup chopped tomatoes
- 1 egg
- Spring roll wrapper
- Mozzarella Cheese
Cooking the Chicken
- Add vegetable oil in the pan in medium heat.
- One hot, add the chopped red onion. Stir till it turns translucent.
- Add the ground chicken and stir for few minutes. Let it cook till the juices is almost evaporated.
- Add cumin, turmeric, salt and black pepper. Mix to combine. Turn off the heat and set it aside.
Preparing the Fillings
- Combine the chopped tomatoes, spring onion leaves, chopped parsley, egg and the cooked spiced ground chicken.
- Gently combine together. Add salt if needed.
Assembling the Muttabaq
- In each spring roll wrapper, add 1 or 1 ½ tablespoon portions of the fillings in the center.
- Fold in the left and right corners of the wrapper towards the center, creating a rectangle shape.
- Then roll from the bottom towards the top to fully enclosed it. Make sure it is tightly packed and the edges are sealed.
- You can make good for 10-15 pieces
Pan-frying the Muttabaq
- Brush the pan with vegetable oil
- Add the muttabaq. Let it pan-fry for 2-3 minutes in each side till it turns golden brown. To make sure it is cooked properly, cook it in low fire.
- Serve with slices of lemon and green chilies. Enjoy!
- If you don't have parsley, you can use coriander leaves
- If you don't have spring onion leaves, you can use chives
- Using spring roll or egg roll wrapper is more convenient than making a homemade dough.
- You can use other spices like turmeric, garam masala or baharat spice.