Stovetop Shakshuka with Fresh Tomatoes

September 12, 2023

Recipe for creamy stovetop Shakshuka with fresh tomatoes – no oven needed! If tomatoes are not in season, I use canned tomatoes (see info below).

Shakshuka with pita bread in pan

What is Shakshuka?

Shakshuka is a vegetarian dish with origins in northern Africa and the Middle East that consists of poached eggs cooked in a savory tomato sauce.

The sauce often contains onion, garlic, bell peppers, and different spices. Once the tomato sauce has cooked for a few minutes, raw eggs are cracked directly into the sauce to poach them.

Shakshuka is often topped with crumbled feta and parsley. It’s typically served with fresh bread like pita or challah for breakfast or brunch and can be eaten straight out of the pan.

The dish has become more popular in North America and Europe during the last years, especially as a popular brunch dish. Besides Humus, Baba Ganoush and Falafel, it is a signature dish among the Levantine and Middle Eastern cuisine.

Shakshuka in pan

Stovetop and one-pot

I like to keep things simple: This stovetop shakshuka is very easy to make. It only takes 30 minutes and the dish is made in one pan (don’t we all love one-pot meals?).

You do not need to have a cast iron skillet because you don’t have to cook it in the oven. This is a big plus in summer, when turning on the oven can quickly heat up the apartment.

Any pan or skillet with a lid will work. And if you don’t have a big pan with a lid, maybe you have a big pot with a fitting lid – this will work well too.

How to make Shakshuka with fresh tomatoes

Shakshuka with fresh tomatoes is my favorite version! I only make it in summer and early fall when tomatoes are abundant, ripe, sweet, and juicy.

To get the desired creamy tomato sauce-consistency, you need to dice the tomatoes and cook them down in a pan. If they are still not soft but all juices already have evaporated, I add a little water and cook them a tad longer.

I additionally love to add some tomato paste for a more intense tomato flavor and for an even creamier sauce.

How to make Shakshuka with canned tomatoes

In the colder months, where tomatoes often lack flavor and have a bland taste, I use canned tomatoes, because these were grown and canned during summer. You can use whole peeled (simply chop them up coarsely), diced, crushed, or tomato sauce. Diced fire roasted tomatoes are a great option too that I use regularly!

I love to use a mix of diced and crushed tomatoes. This way, the flavorful sauce is creamy and a bit chunky at the same time. Wonderful!

If making Shakshuka with canned tomatoes, skip the water used in the recipe and adjust the amount of salt – you might need less since they are often salted. The sauce also cooks quicker because canned tomatoes do not need to be cooked down.

Step-by-step recipe for Shakshuka

Saute onion, pepper, and tomatoes
Sautee onion, bell pepper, and garlic, then add chopped tomatoes.

Heat a skillet with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add chopped onion and bell pepper, sauté for 3-5 minutes over medium-high heat. Then add minced garlic and cook for an additional minute while stirring constantly.

Add diced tomatoes with their juices and cook over high heat for about 5 minutes, stirring often.

Tomato sauce for shakshuka
Add diced tomatoes, spices, and tomato paste.

Season with salt, pepper, sugar, coriander, cumin, and tomato paste. Add some cayenne pepper if you prefer it spicy.

Optional: Add 1/2 cup water (120 ml) and let cook over high heat for a few minutes. The vegetables should be softened and most of the liquid should be evaporated. If you prefer thick tomato sauce or if the sauce is juicy enough anyway due to watery tomatoes, skip this step. Taste and adjust salt.

Placing eggs in tomato sauce Shakshuka
Make wells and then crack eggs into the wells. I prefer to put them in a small bowl or cup first.

Use a spoon or spatula to make 3 or 4 wells in the sauce and carefully (!) crack an egg into each well.

Cracked eggs in tomato sauce
Cover the pan and let eggs cook.

Cover pan with a lid and cook for another 5-7 minutes over low heat.

Poaching eggs in tomato sauce Shakshuka
Cook eggs over low heat in the tomato sauce until the egg whites are set.

After 5-7 minutes of cooking, the egg whites should be set and the yolk is still runny. The timing will differ depending on your pan and how hot the oven is.

Shakshuka with soft boiled eggs
Shakshuka with firm egg whites and runny yolks.

Sprinkle with feta cheese and parsley and serve with toasted pita bread, challah, or fresh bread.

Digging into Shakshuka
Don’t let the Shakshuka sit for too long after cooking because the eggs will continue cooking and firm up.

Enjoy Shakshuka straight out of the pan (not advisable for non-stick pans) or serve on plates. I love it for brunch or a weekend breakfast! The quick (winter) version with canned tomatoes is also a great weekday lunch.

More tomato recipes

Are you looking for more tomato recipes? Here are my favorites:

Did you make this recipe? Let me know in the comments how it turned out and also leave me a star rating if you want :)

Shakshuka with fresh tomatoes in pan
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Stovetop Shakshuka with Fresh Tomatoes

Recipe for creamy stovetop Shakshuka made with fresh tomatoes – no oven needed! If tomatoes are not in season, I use canned tomatoes (see info below). The recipe makes enough for 2-4 people, depending on your side (bread) and on how many eggs you add to the sauce.
Total Time35 minutes
Yield: 2 -4
Author: Ursula | lilvienna.com

Ingredients

Tomato sauce:

  • 2 pounds (900 g -1 kg) tomatoes (about 6-8 large ones)
  • 1 small red bell pepper (90 g)
  • 1 small onion (90 g)
  • 1-2 cloves garlic
  • 3-4 eggs
  • Olive oil

Spices for tomato sauce:

  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste (30 g)
  • Optional: Cayenne pepper for some heat

In addition:

  • To finish: 1/3 cup (50 g) crumbled feta and chopped parsley
  • For serving: toasted pita bread, challah, or sourdough bread
  • Large pan/skillet with lid (alternatively pot with lid)

Instructions

  • Finely dice tomatoes and set aside. Chop bell pepper and onion, mince garlic.
  • Heat a skillet with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add onion and bell pepper, sauté for 3-5 minutes over medium-high heat. Then add garlic and cook for an additional minute while stirring constantly.
  • Add diced tomatoes with their juices and cook over high heat for about 5 minutes, stirring often.
  • Season with salt, pepper, sugar, coriander, cumin, and tomato paste. Add some cayenne pepper if you prefer it spicy.
  • Optional: Add 1/2 cup water (120 ml) and let cook over high heat for a few minutes. The vegetables should be softened and most of the liquid should be evaporated. If you prefer thick tomato sauce or if the sauce is juicy enough anyway due to watery tomatoes, skip this step. Taste and adjust salt.
  • Use a spoon or spatula to make 3 or 4 wells in the sauce and carefully (!) crack an egg into each well.
  • Cover pan with a lid and cook for another 5-7 minutes over low heat until the egg whites are set and the yolk is still runny. The timing will differ depending on your pan and how hot the oven is.
  • Sprinkle with feta cheese and parsley and serve with toasted pita bread, challah, or fresh bread.

Notes

Fresh tomatoes versus canned tomatoes:
I love to use fresh, ripe and sweet tomatoes when they are in season. In winter, when tomatoes often taste bland, I prefer canned tomatoes. I replace the fresh tomatoes in the recipe with 2 cans (15 oz/400 g each) of peeled tomatoes. I especially love to use 1 can (fire roasted) diced tomatoes and 1 can crushed tomatoes.
If making Shakshuka with canned tomatoes, skip the water used in the recipe and adjust the amount of salt – you might need less since they are often salted. The sauce also cooks quicker because canned tomatoes do not need to be cooked down.
Stovetop Shakshuka with Fresh Tomatoes was last modified: September 12th, 2023 by Ursula

6 thoughts on “Stovetop Shakshuka with Fresh Tomatoes

  1. Andrea

    5 stars
    The first time I tried the shakshuka recipe – and it turned out great. Even the eggs were cooked to perfection. I cooked them for 6 minutes. Thank you!

    Reply
    1. Ursula Post author

      So happy that the Shakshuka turned out so well! And congrats on the egg-timing. This is the most difficult part of the entire recipe ;-)
      Thanks so much for your comment and rating!
      Ursula

      Reply
  2. Angelika

    5 stars
    We all loved it. We have tons of tomatoes right now from the garden, so I gave the recipe a try. It was fantastic!

    Reply
    1. Ursula Post author

      Happy to hear that the shakshuka was a success, Angelika! It tastes even better with tomatoes from your own garden. Thanks so much for leaving a comment and I hope that you’ll make the recipe again some time! Ursula

      Reply
  3. Enya

    Very delicious ! Thank you for this nice receipt witch is for everyone the best taste in our family !
    Your website have great photos and a nice description for you receipt ! Thank you for all and go on !

    Reply

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