Hawawshi (Egyptian Hot Beef Sandwich)

This hawawshi--a hot sandwich that's a favorite Cairo street food--is filled with ground beef, vegetables, herbs and spices and adapted to be made in a home panini press. If you don't have one, cook it in a skillet over medium heat with another skillet on top, weighted down with a few 15-ounce cans. (Recipe adapted from Zooba Restaurant.)

Prep Time:
35 mins
Total Time:
35 mins
8 sandwiches


  • 1 small yellow onion, quartered

  • 1 small green bell pepper, seeded

  • 1 Italian long hot pepper, seeded if desired

  • 1 small tomato, cored

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice

  • ½ teaspoon ground pepper

  • 2 pounds lean ground beef

  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

  • 4 (6 inch) whole-wheat pitas, halved


  1. Combine onion, bell pepper, hot pepper and tomato in a food processor. Pulse until finely chopped. Add salt, allspice and pepper. Pulse, scraping down the sides as necessary, until well combined.

  2. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Add beef and cilantro and mix well. Stuff about 1/2 cup of the filling into each pita half.

  3. Preheat a panini press to high. Press the hawawshi in batches until brown and crispy, about 5 minutes.


Equipment: Panini press

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

346 Calories
12g Fat
26g Carbs
35g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Serving Size 1 hawawshi
Calories 346
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 26g 9%
Dietary Fiber 3g 11%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 35g 70%
Total Fat 12g 15%
Saturated Fat 4g 21%
Cholesterol 87mg 29%
Vitamin A 226IU 5%
Vitamin C 24mg 26%
Folate 21mcg 5%
Sodium 605mg 26%
Calcium 25mg 2%
Iron 4mg 24%
Magnesium 59mg 14%
Potassium 530mg 11%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

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