Kuku Sabzi is a Persian pan-fried frittata that has more greens than eggs. This traditional Persian dish has heaps of spinach, herbs, and a light mix of eggs and spices. This recipe is made exactly how my maman-joon (grandma) makes it for me.

Whenever you see the word “Sabzi” in a dish, that means it has lots of herbs in it, and it means “greens.” “Kuku” usually designates that the dish is vegetarian, though that isn’t always the case.

Kuku Sabzi is an amazing nutrient-packed breakfast or lunch. I like to serve with sangak, lavash, or pita for a filling morning meal, or pack them for a picnic, because they are just as delicious served warm, at room temperature, or cold.

Front view of wedges of kuku sabzi on a plate.

🌟Why you’ll love this recipe

  • The eggs in Kuku Sabzi act as the binder to keep the pancake-like dish together. When fried, the eggs cook and solidify to hold the shape of the Kuku, giving it a nice crispy outside texture.
  • Adding a pinch of baking soda to the eggs just before you add them to the skillet will help the dish rise, thicken, and brown.
  • Frying the kuku in a non-stick pan so you can easily flip it is key, and if you don’t feel comfortable flipping it I’ve provided instructions to finish it in the oven.
  • The vegetables and herbs in Kuku Sabzi include spinach, parsley, cilantro, and scallions. Together these herbs pack a nutrient punch as they are great sources of vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin K among others. If you love herb-packed dishes, you can also try sabzi polo (herbed rice) or ghormeh sabzi, a herb and beef stew.

🧾Ingredients in this recipe

Ingredients to make kuku sabzi like eggs, spinach, and herbs.
  • Spinach, cilantro, parsley, scallions – Try to get these herbs as fresh as you can to really make the dish sing with flavor. You can substitute with a kuku sabzi off-the-shelf herb mix.
  • Olive oil – You can use a flavorless oil as an alternative, but olive does add a great added flavor.
  • Cumin & turmeric – Use dried, powdered versions of these spices.
  • Baking soda – this optional ingredient helps thicken, rise, and brown the kuku sabzi.

See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.

👩‍🍳How to Make This Recipe

Chopping spinach on a cutting board.
  • Wash, dry, and prepare all your spinach and herbs. If you have a salad spinner, use it to remove all the excess moisture that you can. Mince all of the herbs and veggies into fine pieces. The chopping is the most time-consuming part of making this recipe, and you can do it the night before, and even cook the greens the night before.
Cooking spinach and herbs in a fry pan.
  • Next, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the thinly sliced scallion whites, and cook until they just begin to brown. Then, add all the spinach and herbs, and stir until mostly wilted for 3-5 minutes. Season generously with salt. Next, cover and steam until completely wilted, for another 2-3 minutes.

✨ Pro Tip ✨

You can add the greens in batches if the mound is too big to handle.

  • Then, turn off the heat, remove the lid, and set it aside until cool enough to handle with your hands. Squeeze the cooked greens to remove as much liquid as possible, discarding the liquid.
Greens and scrambled eggs in a glass bowl.
  • Add the squeezed greens, cumin, turmeric, baking soda, and eggs to a bowl. Mix well with a fork. Season with salt and pepper. You can taste-test your mix by making and frying a mini-pancake, then adjusting for salt.

✨ Pro Tip ✨

To get the right texture, it’s crucial to squeeze as much liquid out of your herbs as possible so that it doesn’t add excess moisture to the dish, making it soggy.

Kuku cooking in a non-stick pan.
  • Now, heat ¼ cup of olive oil in a clean 10-inch non-stick pan or a well-seasoned cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. When it’s hot, add the whole Kuku Sabzi mixture. Using a spoon or spatula, gently press the mixture to evenly distribute it in the pan. You want it to be evenly thick, like a large pancake.
Frittata cooking in a nonstick pan.
  • After 1-2 minutes, reduce the heat to medium and cover the pan with a lid. After about 10 minutes, check to make sure the mixture is well set. You don’t want it to be runny, and the bottom should be golden brown in color. Flip it, and cook it for another 5-10 minutes to brown the other side.

Fry or Bake?

You can skip the frying completely and opt to bake it in a 10-inch pie dish or skillet. Make sure it’s greased, and bake at 400F until the center is set, about 20 minutes. You can check for done-ness with a toothpick.

To finish the Kuku Sabzi the oven (if you’re nervous to flip it)

Bake it in a 400F preheated oven for 10-12 minutes.

Blot excess oil with a paper towel. Serve warm, at room temperature, or cold. Kuku is known for making incredible leftovers, and is a great dish to bring to picnics!

Green fritatta wedges on a white plate.

A flatbread is a great pairing, like sangak, either on the side or as a sandwich. Adasi is also a great dish alongside a classic Persian breakfast.

Kickstart your morning with these Persian recipes that make breakfast tasty and fun!

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Green fritatta wedges on a white plate.

Kuku Sabzi (Persian Herb & Spinach Frittata)

5 from 10 votes
Print Recipe Save
Kuku Sabzi is a Persian pan-fried frittata that has more greens than eggs and is made with spinach, herbs, and a light mix of eggs and spices.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Total Time40 minutes
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Persian
Diet: Gluten Free, Kosher, Vegetarian
Servings: 6
Calories: 207kcal

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. spinach 2 bunches, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch cilantro finely chopped
  • 1 bunch parsley finely chopped
  • 3-4 scallions thinly sliced
  • 6 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼-½ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp ground turmeric
  • 6 eggs beatten
  • 1 pinch baking soda
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Wash, dry, and prepare all your vegetables. If you have a salad spinner, use it.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the scallions, and cook until they just begin to brown. Then, add the spinach and all the herbs, and stir until mostly wilted for 3-5 minutes. Season generously with salt.
  • Then cover and steam until completely wilted, another 2-3 minutes. Turn off the heat, remove the lid, and set it aside until cool enough to handle with your hands.
  • Squeeze the cooked greens to remove as much liquid as possible, discarding the liquid.
  • Add the squeezed greens, cumin, turmeric, baking soda, and eggs to a bowl. Mix well with a fork. Season with salt and pepper. You can taste test by frying a mini-pancake and adjusting for salt.
  • Heat ¼ cup of olive oil in a clean 10-inch non-stick pan or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. When it’s hot, add the whole egg mixture. Using a spoon or spatula, gently press the mixture to evenly distribute it in the pan. You want it to be evenly thick.
  • After 1-2 minutes, reduce the heat to medium and cover the pan with a lid. After about 10 minutes, check to make sure the mixture is well set. You don’t want it to be runny, and the bottom should be golden brown.
  • To finish it on the stove flip it, and cook it for another 5-10 minutes to brown the other side.
    To finish in the oven (if you’re scared to flip it) bake it in a 400F preheated oven for 10-12 minutes.
  • Blot excess oil with a paper towel. Serve warm, at room temperature, or cold. Kuku is known for it’s leftovers, and is great for picnics!

Video

Notes

Adding a pinch of baking soda to the eggs just before you add them to the skillet will help the dish rise, thicken, and brown.
You can skip the frying completely and opt to bake it in a 10-inch pie dish or skillet. Make sure it’s greased, and bake at 400F until the center is set, about 20 minutes. You can check for done-ness with a toothpick.
Nutrition facts were calculated using 1 teaspoon of sea salt.

Nutrition

Calories: 207kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 0.02g | Cholesterol: 164mg | Sodium: 557mg | Potassium: 506mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 7424IU | Vitamin C: 23mg | Calcium: 106mg | Iron: 3mg
Did you try this recipe?I’d love to hear what you think! Leave a Review to let us know how it came out, if you have a successful substitution or variation, or anything else.

8 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Your Kuku Sabzi was a super popular at addition to our brunch menu over the weekend! I particularly appreciated the tip about adding baking soda for that perfect rise and brown, and your detailed instructions made the preparation a breeze. Thanks for sharing this traditional Persian gem with us!

    1. I’m so glad it was a hit, Nicki… thank you for taking the time to share! And I’m glad to hear you got the perfect rise and brown you were looking for… enjoy 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    Tonight was my second time making this – it’s great! Even my 3 year old, not that into much other than carbs, meat and dairy, ate this up. My husband and I ended up trying to get to the leftovers first 😄 .

    It’s an interesting dish because it made even us adults happily eat what we otherwise wouldn’t (spinach without dairy and parsley for me, parsley abd cilantro for my husband). Quite a feat!

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