Chipotle Harissa

Harissa with a twist – or as Z calls it “Mexican Harissa.” It’s my mother’s recipe but I decided to experiment so I added two chipotle peppers (I bought a bag at the supermarket in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico but you can find them at any Latino supermarket or online. If you can’t find the peppers,  you can add a teaspoon of ground chipotle instead). The cheeky chipotle add a magnificent smoky flavor to this North African condiment.

We love it in sandwiches (avocado toast or any style of egg  sandwich), rice bowls, couscous, tagines, tacos and sometimes to pasta dishes.


Chipotle Harissa

Author: Shelly


  • 10 dried red chili peppers
  • 2 –4 chipotle peppers - depending on how spicy the chipotles are – you can test with the tip of your tongue or 2–4 teaspoons crushed chipotle peppers
  • 2 small red hot chili peppers - only if the chipotles are not spicy
  • 3 cloves garlic - chopped roughly
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground caraway seeds
  • ½ teaspoon cumin


  • Cut the peppers stems and remove the seeds (it’s okay to leave some) and discard.
  • Boil enough water to cover the peppers. Put the peppers in a metal or ceramic bowl (not plastic)and cover them with the boiled water. Place a plate over to prevent them from floating. Soak for 15 minutes. Drain then dry them in a salad spinner or on with a clean kitchen towel as much as possible.
  • Put the peppers in a food processor with the rest of the ingredients and process until you get a smooth yet slightly chunky paste.
  • Put the harissa in sterilized jars or airtight
  • container. Drizzle a little bit of olive oil and seal. Refrigerate up to one month or freeze.

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