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Food & Cuisine

Saudi Arabia has an incredibly diverse amount of cuisine due to the wide range of cultures that the country has interacted with, but many of the dishes hail from local neighbours such as Egypt, the Levant and Yemen. Dishes may include Shawarma (grilled and shaved meat, usually lamb, turkey, veal, chicken or a combination, served in a wrap or on a plate), Falafel (deep fried dough-balls made from ground fava beans, chickpeas or a combination) and Laban (buttermilk). Additionally, a wide range of fast-food chains are available in the country including Burger King, Hardee’s, McDonalds, KFC, Domino’s Pizza, Pizza Hut and Papa John’s.

Drinks commonly consumed in Saudi Arabia includes tea, which is usually drank black (without milk), as well as Gahwa (coffee) and milk (typically sheep, goat and camel milk).

Due to Islamic dietary laws, pork is forbidden for consumption and is unable to be found for purchase across Saudi Arabia. Alcohol is similarly forbidden and all meat is butchered and blessed according to Islamic tradition in order to make it Halal meat. As a result, meat in Saudi Arabia is mainly lamb and mutton, contributing to Saudi Arabia being the world’s fifth largest importer of the two meats.