Arabic Macaroni

Arabic Macaroni

This was the 30 minute meal before Rachael Ray’s 30 minute meals were a thing. My mom would come home from work and be able to whip this up as a meal for the whole family. I loved having this dish. It is so simple, yet has such a nice balance of flavor from the bahar, ground beef and tomato sauce.

Of course, like many other of the Arabic dishes we share, this was not my mom’s original recipe. She received this recipe from Auntie Nazhat. There are so many wonderful dishes from Auntie Nazhat that my mom has adapted as well. It was always a treat to go over to her and Ummu Hazim’s house as they would always be cooking up so many amazing flavors in the kitchen. And of course it was always a treat to enjoy a cup of tea at their house as well; they always brewed their tea to perfection.

Thank you Auntie Nazhat and Ummu Hazim and their daughter, Zina, for helping me put together this recipe! We also discovered that all these years my mom and I have been making it incorrectly. They quickly informed us that you have to cook the meat before adding it to the sauce… and there is no onion. Goes to show that even a pro in the kitchen like my mom has some things to learn now and then!

Arabic Macaroni

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course dinner
Cuisine Arabic, Middle Eastern
Servings 4


  • 1 lb ground beef 85/15
  • 2 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 1/2 tsp bahar (all spice)
  • 6 oz can of tomato paste
  • 3 cups water
  • 12 oz rigatoni
  • 15 oz can tomato sauce


  • Mix salt, bahar and ground beef together
  • Cook ground beef mixture on a pan. When ground beef is just cooked, add tomato paste and mix. Let the mixture cook for about 2 minutes
  • Transfer mixture to a large pot and and 1 3/4 cups of water
  • Wait until mixture boils. Once boiling, add rigatoni (you can also choose a pasta of your liking), tomato sauce, and 1 1/4 cup of water. Depending on the thickness of your mixture, you may want to add more water. If needed, add more water to allow all noodles to be submerged in sauce
  • Boil the mixture and then immediately simmer noodle and sauce mixture until your noodles are soft and ready to eat. While the noodles are simmering, make sure to mix the pot intermittently as to not let the bottom noodles stick to the base of the pot
  • Add salt and pepper to taste and serve right away

3 thoughts on “Arabic Macaroni”

  • 5 stars
    I never added the onion unlike my mother, nana Badriya, she used to add that because she always said it onion give the meat a better flavor. But it is true I cooked the meat with the boiling tomato sauce but amma Nazhat called for sautee of the meat with tomato paste!!

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