Basbousa (Semolina and Yogurt Cake)

Basbousa is a dessert that is not only popular in many Middle Eastern countries, but also in Egypt, Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, and Greece. Basbousa is a sweet semolina cake that is soaked in sugar syrup. It may sound like a sweet treat but, trust me, it isn’t. Its just sweet enough to please your taste for desserts. Basbousa is a simple cake without any complicated method or ingredients. I guess that’s why my brother loves making it 🙂 Some of the other Mediterranean dessert recipes you can try are Turkish Rose Dessert, Katayef, and Rice and Dates Pudding.



350 grams fine semolina (2 cups)

130 grams sugar (2/3 cup)

100 grams shredded coconut (1 cup)

2 large eggs, beaten

160 ml melted unsalted butter (2/3 cup)

230 ml plain yogurt (1 cup)

2 tsp baking powder

2 tsp vanilla essence


400g sugar (2 cups)

475ml water (2 cups)

1/4 tsp lemon juice

1 tsp rose water


  1. Prepare the syrup first. In a saucepan, combine water, sugar, and lemon juice. Bring to a boil on high heat for about 10 minutes.

  2. In a bowl, add the semolina, sugar, baking powder, coconut, eggs, butter, and yogurt. Combine everything into a thick batter.

  3. Grease a baking dish with butter. Pour the batter in the dish evenly and refrigerate for an hour.

  4. Preheat the oven for 350 F. Make diamond or square cuts and top each with an almond. Bake for 40 minutes.

  5. Pour the sugar syrup on the hot cake. Bake for another 10 minutes. You can turn on the broiler for a minute or two to get the lovely brown color.