This creamy, dreamy Middle Eastern Zucchini dip called Mutabal Kousa is a true celebration of simple ingredients. They come together to create a delicious dip that'll have you waiting for the next zucchini season. It's best served with pita bread, sliced veggies, or, to make it extra special, jewel-toned root vegetable chips. Made with 7 pantry ingredients in 20 minutes or less, this zucchini dip is perfect for healthy snacking or an easy appetizer recipe for any gathering!
This tangy, savoury, and garlicky Mutabal Kousa is always a delicious complement to your table for any occasion. It only takes a few minutes of prep and a few ingredients to make⏤ and so many ways to eat it! Traditionally this dip is served in a meze-styled meal, similar to the Spanish tapa. Serve this dip with pita bread, veggies, or a variation of chips (pita chips, root veggies etc).
Additional bonus! This dip is amazing in sandwiches, pile it a mile-high on your favourite kebab, shawarma or souvlaki.
What is a Mutabal?
Muttabel is an Arabic word used for vegetable dips (i.e. mashed/pureed). Any time you blend a vegetable and serve it as part of a meze option, it is called a muttabel. It's actually incorrect to call a pureed vegetable hummus unless the main ingredient is actually hummus (chickpeas). It's not hummus, it's a muttabel. To call muttabel hummus is like saying a pie is a cake!
Most muttabel dips are made with your vegetable of choice, strained yogurt (like Greek yogurt) along with tahini, garlic, olive oil, salt and lemon juice. It’s served at room temperature and usually accompanied by many other small dishes.
There are many different versions of this dip and multiple names too! The most famous mutabel is Baba Ganoush. To be completely honest with you, I don't know all the different names for this dish, but I'm 100% positive Mutabal Kousa isn't the only name. 🤷🏻♀️ However, I know it tastes delicious, and it's authentic to the middle eastern countries along the Mediterranean.
This zucchini dip is very similar to Baba Ganoush in taste, without the smokiness. That is unless you grill the zucchini; then, it's really close to baba ganoush in flavour.
If you would like to make this dish plant-based you can swap out the yogurt for a plant-based yogurt or use my creamy tahini sauce instead
This type of dip is prevalent in the Mediterranean diet, and throughout the Middle East,⏤each country has a similar type of yogurt-based dip.
What Do You Need To Make This Dip?
- Zucchini: Marrow squash is the most common type of zucchini found in the Mediterranean and the Middle East. It's preferred due to the low water amount. You can use regular or yellow zucchini for this recipe too.
- Olive oil: No Mediterranean recipe is without a generous helping of olive oil, and this recipe is no exception.
- Yogurt Sauce: A classic sauce that's used in countless ways. Made from yogurt, tahini, garlic, and lemon juice.
- Mint: This is a must for this dip; however, if you really hate mint, you can swap it with dill.
- Garnishes: These are optional additions such as pomegranate seed, chillies, or micro herbs.
What to serve with Mutabal Kousa
Want to make this humble-looking dip more festive? Sprinkle on some pomegranate & dried mint over the top & serve with various root veggie chips. The extra pops of jewel-toned food like the pomegranates and veggies chips are the perfect amount of gorgeousness to add that wow factor to this plain-looking dip.
- toppings: a swoosh of olive oil, extra mint
- fresh veggies for dipping (Persian cucumbers & rainbow carrots are my faves)
- Fresh bread like pita or naan bread
- or your favourite crackers, chips, or pita chips
Tip for Making Mutabal
- You can choose to saute the zucchini in an abundance of olive oil or grill then add the olive oil during the mashing process.
- If you find the garlic taste too strong, try using roasted garlic.
- Allow the dip to sit for a while for the best flavour⏤, at least 15 minutes, but the longer, the better so the flavours have a better chance to blend.
- After storing the fridge allow it to come to room temperature before serving.
Want More Mediterranean Dips? Try these out!
Mutabal Kousa(zucchini dip)
- ¼ cup olive oil Extra virgin
- 2 large zucchini chopped or sliced
- 1 pinch salt
- 3 tablespoon yogurt greek or plant-based
- 2 tablespoon tahini
- 1 Small garlic clove pressed or grated
- 1 lemon juiced
- 1 teaspoon mint dried
- 1 pinch of salt
- Water as needed
- Chilli peppers
- Mirco herbs
- Heat a large saucepan on medium-high heat, then add oil. Once the oil begins to simmer from the heat, add the zucchini.
- Saute the zucchini until golden brown and soft. Stir occasionally to ensure even cooking on both sides.
- Meanwhile, prepare the yogurt sauce. Combine yogurt, tahini, garlic, mint and lemon. Mix well.
- If the yogurt sauce is too thick, add 2 tablespoon of water at a time to thin out the sauce. You're looking for a thick yet pourable constancy.
- Once the zucchini is golden and soft, transfer to a serving bowl. Mash the zucchini with a fork to a chunky constancy
- Pour on the yogurt sauce. You have two choices at this stage you stir the yogurt and zucchini together like a tzatziki sauce or layer like I did in the photos.
- Top the dip with pomegranate seed, chilli peppers, microgreens, or whatever you would like.
- Enjoy with bread and veggies.