Traditional Emirati Foods That Boost Health

The United Arab Emirates is renowned not just for its breathtaking landscapes and architectural wonders but also for its rich culinary heritage. Emirati cuisine offers a variety of traditional foods that are not only flavorful but also packed with health benefits. In this blog, we will explore some of these traditional Emirati foods that can boost health, alongside insights from Healthpoint Hospital in UAE, a premier healthcare provider that emphasizes the importance of nutrition in maintaining overall well-being.


Balaleet is a traditional Emirati breakfast dish made from sweetened vermicelli noodles topped with a savory omelet. The sweet and savory combination provides a unique taste experience. The noodles are rich in carbohydrates, offering energy to start the day, while the eggs provide high-quality protein and fats, essential for repairing tissues and maintaining healthy brain function.


Luqaimat are small, sweet dumplings that are a staple during Ramadan and other celebrations. Made from a batter that includes flour, yeast, and a touch of sugar, these dumplings are deep-fried until golden and then drizzled with date syrup or honey. While considered a treat, the use of date syrup not only adds sweetness but also brings the nutritional benefits of dates, such as fiber, vitamins, and minerals.


Harees is a comforting porridge made from wheat and meat (commonly chicken or lamb), slow-cooked for hours until it reaches a smooth consistency. This dish is particularly rich in protein and fiber, making it both filling and nutritious. Harees is often served during Ramadan and special occasions, providing a high-energy meal that supports sustained energy levels and muscle health.


Machboos is a flavorful rice dish that is considered the national dish of the UAE. It’s made with basmati rice, meat (such as chicken, lamb, or fish), and a blend of spices, including turmeric, which has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The dish is also rich in vitamins and minerals from the variety of spices used, supporting overall health.

Al Harees

Another variant of Harees, Al Harees, offers similar nutritional benefits, with its combination of wheat and meat providing a rich source of protein, fiber, and essential nutrients. This dish exemplifies how traditional cooking methods can preserve the nutritional integrity of simple ingredients, resulting in meals that are both wholesome and satisfying.


Madrooba is a hearty dish made from fish, meat, or chicken, blended with spices and herbs, thickened with pounded wheat or breadcrumbs. This dish is high in omega-3 fatty acids, especially when made with fish, which are crucial for heart health, brain function, and reducing inflammation.

Emirati Cuisine and Health

Emirati cuisine emphasizes the use of fresh, natural ingredients and spices that not only contribute to the flavor profile of the dishes but also offer numerous health benefits. From the protein-rich Harees to the antioxidant-packed Machboos, traditional Emirati foods provide a balanced diet that can support overall health and well-being.

Incorporating these traditional dishes into your diet can be a delicious way to enhance your nutritional intake. However, moderation is key, especially with dishes that are rich in carbohydrates and fats. For personalized dietary advice and to understand how traditional Emirati cuisine can fit into a healthy lifestyle, consulting with healthcare professionals, such as those at Healthpoint Hospital in UAE, can provide tailored recommendations based on individual health needs and goals.

Traditional Emirati foods offer a unique blend of flavors and nutrition, reflecting the rich cultural heritage of the UAE. By embracing these traditional dishes, individuals can enjoy meals that are not only delicious but also beneficial for health. For those looking to optimize their diet, professional guidance from healthcare providers like Healthpoint Hospital in UAE can ensure that traditional eating habits are balanced with modern nutritional science, promoting health and well-being in the heart of the desert.

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