Caraway spice pudding (Meghli)

caraway pudding

If you were expecting a baby and you lived in the middle east. Your shopping list for the last few days before the baby arrives would probably include caraway seeds, rice flour and spices. Why on earth would you buy all that stuff with a baby on the way?

To make meghli of course!


Today I am taking part in the virtual vegan potluck.Last November I loved being part of the potluck with my Freekeh and mixed vegetables recipe. For this year I thought it would be fun to do a dessert, so I chose meghli.

Meghli (Moghli or Karawya ) is a traditional dessert in Levantine countries. It is basically a rice pudding that is spiced with anise, caraway and cinnamon then decorated with an assortment of nuts. This caraway spice pudding is usually made and served when a family welcomes a new baby.It is quick, easy, nutritious and full of flavor.

When the new mommy has guests coming over to welcome the new baby the grandmother or the aunts would usually be busy in the kitchen making this caraway pudding,taking extra care to decorate the elegant little serving plates with different nuts.Dear friends and special guests get extra nuts :) It is sort of a sweet family affair.

In fact, If you go into a spice shop to buy caraway seeds or if you tell someone that you are making caraway pudding the reaction you will probably get is :”oh karawaya, who is having a baby?” :) but that does not mean that you should only make this pudding when you welcome a new baby.I make this pudding a lot in the fall and winter months.It is perfect for cold and windy day because it can be served warm and the smell of the blend of spices gently simmering is enough to chase away your winter gloom. You can also make the same recipe with a little less rice flour and enjoy it as a drink, thick, warm and spicy.

This pudding is gluten free because the thickening agent here is the rice flour. It is also vegan which means it is dairy free too, no milk, butter or cream but above all it is a tasty and comforting treat that is full of warm spicy notes. If you find yourself in need of a little pick me up on a cold day, give it a try, I think you will love it.

caraway pudding

Caraway spice pudding

You can half or double the recipe

4 cups water

1/2 to 3/4 cup  white rice flour

1/2 cup finely ground caraway seeds

3/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon ground anise

To garnish:
Your choice of nuts: almond, pistachio, pine nuts
Shredded coconut (optional)

  1. In a deep pot add the water, sugar, caraway, rice flour, anise and cinnamon.Stir to combine
  2. Stir the mix over medium heat until the caraway pudding comes to a boil. This takes from 20-30 minutes. The mix will thicken gradually.
  3. Continue to cook the pudding while stirring over medium heat for 5-7 more minutes,or until the pudding is thick  make sure you stir continuously  and scrape the bottom of the pot to prevent the pudding from sticking and burning.
  4. Remove the pudding from the heat and Pour it into a large serving dish or divide it into ramekins and set aside to cool completely.
  5. Garnish the pudding with nuts and shredded coconut if you are using it.
  6. Serve warm or cold


Most people soak the almonds and pistachios in cold water to becomes little soft, but I prefer them crunchy.

The “secret” to a great caraway pudding is the medium heat and constant stirring.

Your Meghli is done when it is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon.

Another way to check is to place a little pudding on a cold plate and then tilt the plate. The pudding should stay put (similarly to testing jam).

Please take the time to visit my fellow bloggers who are participating in the virtual vegan potluck. You have a chance to enjoy over 100 vegan recipes ranging through appetizers, mains, breads, soups and desserts.. Do take the time to go through this amazing vegan potluck. There is plenty of inspiration and creativity



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  1. InMyBibi'sKitchen

     /  March 2, 2014

    I love this dessert! My friends mom used to whip this up for us girls on cold winter nights and we would just eat it warm, thank you for recipe :-)

  2. Oh what a great recipe and a lovely story to go with it. I’ll have to remember this the next time one of my friends has a baby.

  3. This is a lovely pudding, love the caraway seeds. Happy VVP!

  4. kahht

     /  November 27, 2013

    Oh man, so creative and beautiful!

  5. An awesome flavor combination! Thanks for sharing!

  6. That looks so delicious. Thankyou!

  7. gigiveganville

     /  November 21, 2013

    what a lovely tradition to welcome baby to the world. I can smell gorgeous aromas from here.

  8. What a nice tradition, I would love for my family to come to my house and make me pudding :) This really sounds delicious and it’s easy to make, I’ll have to find some white rice flour so I can make this on a cold day.

  9. mjskit

     /  November 19, 2013

    OH how I love a good pudding! I’ve never seen anything like this so you know I’m going to have to make this! It looks scrumptious!

  10. What a lovely tradition! No babies in our house but we love rice puddings – I need to buy some caraway seeds as I have all the other ingredients here at home to make this gorgeous dish :)

  11. There’s always so many surprises on your blog. Another meal I’ve never heard of. As a person with a solid sweet tooth, it’s my obligation to try this out ;)

  12. This looks very interesting. I usually put these spices into coconut rice pudding, but this sounds equally delicious :)

  13. The pudding looks wonderful and I love the tradition!!

  14. Learned and saw a new makeover of good, old rice pudding :) So fired-up to try it tonight. Thanks for introducing it to us.

    Gorgeous, glamorous photos, as always.

  15. What a delicious spicy pudding, really innovative :D
    Great addition to the potluck!


  16. Chilly day comfort food for sure! I’m intrigued by the caraway!

    Thank you so much for sharing this at the Potluck!

  17. Hi Sawsan! Long time no see… I’ve been busy on my travels, but I’m starting to settle down a bit now. Thanks for this lovely recipe you’ve shared – caraway is one of my favourite spices because it has such a complex flavour, Aside from my caraway seed cake, maybe putting it in bread and adding it to harissa I don’t know that many caraway seed recipes and I’ve often wondered what other things it can be used for! This sounds lovely :) – perfect for winter!

    • I am so sorry for being MIA Charles. I have had a rough couple of weeks. Glad to hear you are settling down now.
      I still want to try you caraway seed cake and I have to try them with potatoes too :) but in my house caraway seeds always mean this pudding. I hope you will like it if you have a chance to try it

      • I’ll make it sometime for my father-in-law. He’s Tunisian and loves these kinds of spices and flavours! I’ll let you know when I get a chance to make it!

  18. Meghli looks amazing Sawsan. I’ve not heard of it. Glad to read it’s not only recommended for those expecting a baby as I’d hate to have to eat it surreptitiously! Looking forward to making this for extended family as it’s gluten-free which is a bonus. Love your first photo – lovely propping.

    • I can’t wait to hear what you think of it Saskia when you have a chance to try it. It is one of my favorite treats to make on a cold day.
      Thank you for your comment about the photo, I am really glad you like it

  19. Sawsan, This looks delicious – what great flavors and spices you use. Your virtual potluck sounds like a fun way to share and connect, as well. Thank you for sharing this food (Meghli) – and it’s story. I would certainly eat this after my baby came. :-) Take good care, Shanna

  20. Wow, this sounds lovely! I’m usually a little reluctant to add too much caraway or anise to my cooking, but turned into a delectable pudding like this one, I think I’d really enjoy them!

  21. Thanks for this recipe!! I had Some caraway seeds languishing at the back of the cupboard and needed some inspiration!!

  22. Oh my gosh! This is all new to me and i am so excited to get creating this. Thank you so much xx

  23. A beautiful looking dessert and I bet it would be equally delicious. Using caraway in dessert is new to me. It looks very interesting. Love the clicks.

  24. I’ve never really been a fan of caraway, but I adore anise! The pudding sounds intriguing with all those warming spices.

  25. Eha

     /  November 16, 2013

    The name of the dish did sound familiar but looking at the ingredients I know I have never had it. Fascinating!! I am not a dessert person but this seems so appetizing and far from ‘sinful’ that I just have to try: I love caraway but cannot imagine what a dish with such a quantity of it would taste like :) !

  26. great recipe!!

  27. I think it’s wonderful to have traditions like this. I don’t think there were any traditions when I had my kids. People brought food and gifts but you never knew what to expect. :)

  28. That looks lovely and I love the photos, thank you 🙏

  29. G’day! Looks and sounds absolutely delightful Sawsan, true!
    I never had this type of pudding before, but is sounds so simply delicious too!
    Cheers! Joanne

  30. I want to make this! Apparently you forgot to put the amount of anise in the ingredients! It might sound funny but what is the difference between star anise and anise? I have star anise in my pantry ;) If it’s different from anise, can you tell me what can I use instead?

  31. I’m not familiar with this pudding but it sounds very flavourful and it would be a good use of the rest of the rice flour in my pantry. :)


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