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Updated by Joanna James on May 02, 2024
Headline for Street Food you will find in Abu Dhabi - Some of the best picks!
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Street Food you will find in Abu Dhabi - Some of the best picks!

The street food scene in Abu Dhabi is vibrant, with a range of delicacies inspired by the region and many local treats that are sure to tickle your tastebuds and keep you full.


Cheese and zaatar manakish

A popular and favourite street food option in Abu Dhabi, as well as the region, is the manakish. Also referred to as man'oushe is a snack of Lebanese roots. It is also known as the Emirati pizza and with good reason. This delicious roadside treat is typically a big, round flatbread that is topped with a good measure of cheese, a variety of vegetables and or meats. It is then baked in an oven. The cheese and zaatar (a rub made from a variety of spices such as sumac, thyme, oregano, and sesame) is a classic combination. Drizzle some olive oil, and you are in for a yummy and hearty snack or meal.



A large spoon called "Madrooba" is utilised to prepare this meal, and that is how it got its name. It is made from different varieties of salted and cured fish called "maleh". It is then blended and cooked in a mixture of sauces and spices. The nutritious and satisfying, Madrooba is a very common meal during Ramadan and in times of festivities. The preparation of the dish, however, is very laborious and time-consuming. The Madrooba spoon is used to beat the mixture to form a thick texture. This comforting meal is consumed with a raqaq, a type of flatbread.



The Samboosa is the Emirati variation of the well-known Indian, Samosa. The triangular pastries of dough get stuffed with an assortment of aromatic spices, vegetables, potatoes and meats and get fried till golden brown and crunchy. Meat samboosa are made from lamb, chicken or beef. The veggie version is filled with peas, potatoes and spices. It is a popular teatime snack or anytime for that matter.



A traditional dish is the Harees or Al Harees. It is similar to porridge and prepared with modest ingredients such as wheat, meat, and salt. A favourite to have throughout Ramadan, weddings, and religious festivities. The ground-up wheat is cooked with salt before adding the meat. Then the mixture gets cooked in a pot for several hours. This is done by burying the clay pot in a hole filled with hot coals. It gets stirred every few hours before serving. It is garnished with a generous spoonful of ghee. Not merely street food, many top restaurants in Abu Dhabi serve this dish as well. You can probably find it in top hotels as well, such as the Anantara Eastern Mangroves Abu Dhabi Hotel.



Shawarma is the ultimate street and comfort food in the Emirati. The Shawarma consists of meat, either chicken or lamb, veggies, fries and smothered in hummus, and or a yoghurt sauce. All of this gets parcelled in soft unleavened Lebanese bread. Shawarmas are typically an evening snack, and vendors will start to sell them after 6 pm.


Chips Oman roll

The star ingredient of this snack is the Oman Chips. It is a very common local chip and a childhood favourite for many. The roll is soft and flaky and gets smothered in cheese, a dash of Tabasco sauce, olive oil, and gets stacked high with the Oman Chips.

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