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  • Writer's pictureHila

Tahini for breakfast

Breakfast is the day's first meal, breaking the previous night’s fasting period.

Breakfast meals vary in different cultures and places around the world. In France, breakfast is a café au lait and a croissant with butter or jam. The American continental breakfast includes pancakes, waffles, bacon, and scrambled eggs. In England, breakfast is not a decent breakfast without beans; in China, we were served rice noodles, soup, and unsweetened tea for breakfast.

Here's what a typical Israeli breakfast looks like today: fresh vegetable salad, an omelet or shakshuka (eggs baked in a seasoned tomato sauce), various kinds of white cheeses—labneh, cottage cheese, feta, and what are generally called yellow cheeses (hard cheeses such as Edam or Gouda), cracked olives, tahini sauce, halvah, homemade fruit jam, and crusty bread.

It is hard to believe that this rich breakfast feast has evolved from the simple and economic mid-morning meal, consisting of locally available produce, served in the Kibutz's communal dining room for early morning workers as they returned from the fields. At that time tahini was a dominant ingredient in the local Arabic Kitchen, it became a staple in Israeli households only in the '60s, as a commercial, canned, ready-to-eat tahini savory spread. Decades later, in the early years of the new millennium, the Israeli kitchen began embracing the tahini paste and using it as a base ingredient for savory and sweet dishes. From there, it has quickly found its way to every meal, including breakfast.

Why add tahini to your first meal of the day? There are many good reasons. Tahini is packed with numerous vitamins and minerals, contains a high level of protein and calcium, and is a source of iron. It’s an excellent starter for the day. You can enjoy your morning salad with tahini savory sauce, add it to your yogurt bowl, or blend it into your smoothie. A typical Middle Eastern breakfast is a slice of crusty bread with tahini paste topped with a drizzle of date syrup.

Before the full-with-flavors yogurts overtook the shelves in grocery stores - these that already include fruit jam on the bottom of the jar, flavoring extracts, and sweeteners - there was the plain, simple yogurt made with whole milk and characterized by a smooth texture and a natural sour flavor.

Blending something sweet into your yogurt makes a lot of sense; it balances the sourness (created by the bacterial fermentation of the milk protein) and adds another layer of flavor and texture. Back in the day, my father used to open a yogurt cup and eat out one scoop to make room for a spoonful of homemade jam. My mom cut fresh strawberries into mine and then topped them with a sprinkle of sugar. These days, when my pantry is regularly stocked with tahini, date syrup, and sweet dukkah, all these three became my go-to addition to the breakfast bowl.

Now, let's get into the kitchen!

Breakfast Bowl

Make 1 serving


  • ½ cup of plain Greek, Icelandic or Mediterranean yogurt

  • 1 Tablespoon of tahini

  • 1/2 Tablespoons of date syrup or any other natural sweet syrup.

  • ½ banana, 2 cut strawberries, or any fresh fruit of your choice

  • 1 Tabelspoon sweettahini's sweet dukkah


  1. Place yogurt in a bowl

  2. Top with tahini and date syrup.

  3. Add in cut fruit.

  4. Sprinkle sweet dukkah on top.


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