How Fattening is Arabic Food?

We reveal the diet value and fat and calorie count of our favourite cuisine
How Fattening is Arabic Food?
Hala Barghout

Dietitian Hala Barghout finds the most nutritious dishes on the Arabic table...

Shish Kebab
This meat skewer usually contains five pieces of lamb. The lamb is high in fat, but it is a good source of protein. Go for chicken or use beef tenderloin which contain less fat per gram. 130 calories, 7g fat (one lamb skewer).

Fried Kibbi
Try to avoid these appetisers because they are deep fried. They’re very high in calories, hydrogenated oils and saturated fats. 180 calories, 8g fat (one piece).

They are deep fried and drenched in hydrogenated vegetable oil, but they are made from chick peas which are rich in vitamin B. Just have one. 60 calories, 4g fat (one piece).

This delicious dip made with chickpeas, garlic and lemon is packed with fibre and high in both protein and iron. 105 calories, 3g fat (1/4 cup).

This light salad made with bulgur wheat, tomato, spring onion and parsley, is full of nutritional benefits. The bulgur wheat is low GI, which means it minimises fluctuations in blood glucose and insulin levels. Plus parsley contains three times more vitamin C than an orange. 101 calories, 4g fat.

Umm Ali
This Egyptian dessert is made with milk, butter, sugar, heavy cream, many types of nuts, pastry and some raisins. 600 calories, 40g fat per serving (use skimmed milk if you want to bring the cal count down).

Dates traditionally are always eaten to break your fast. They are high in fibre and a very good natural energy source. They are also high in calories due to their natural sugar content. 60 calories, 0g fat (three dates).

This aubergine dip is low in calories and rich in antioxidants. Aubergines are a great source of vitamin B. Tahini is a monounsaturated fat that’s another ingredient in this dish. 140 calories, 7g fat per serving.

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