Open main menu

Mazandarani cuisine is diverse, just like the region's landscape. Nature in the Mazandaran region of Iran is distinct and varied sections with a mixture of coastal, plains, prairies, forests, and rainforests.[1] The Mazandarani cuisine of coastal regions is very different from mountainous regions as people settled in the Alborz usually use the indigenous herbs and coastal people use the dishes of fish and Caspian (Mazani) rice with vegetables.


The Mazandaran Province is the east of the Gilan Province in Iran, the southern coast of the Caspian Sea is sometime referred to as the "fertile Caspian provinces".[2] Citrus fruit, specifically orange crops are grown in this region and influence the cuisine.[3] Historically in Iran, rice is a common food only in the Mazandaran and Gilan Provinces,[4] which is prepared in this region in a kateh cooking style, unlike the typical polos/chelo found in other parts of Iran. Rice crops are grown in the sloping regions of the Alborz mountain range, part of which is in the Mazandaran Province.[5] Seafood is a strong component for coastal Mazandarani cuisine and present in many meals.[6] Persian caviar (ḵāvīar) is incorporated in dishes and often served with egg dishes (some of which are similar to a frittata or omelette).[7] Between 1400 until 1870, the Mazandaran Province was the only place cultivating sugarcane, and it was sometimes eaten with bread and rice.[8]

Some local, wild herbs used in Mazandarani cuisine include: zolang, anarijeh, ouji, sersem.[9][10] Outside of the Mazandaran Province, these local herbs are not known to many people.[9] It's thought by some that certain local dishes and herbs could be used as health remedies for an illness and as a result, various scholars come yearly to Mazandaran province to research these wild, indigenous herbs and regional dishes.[11] Stinging nettles are found throughout the province during springtime and a Mazandarani nettle soup is made from them, the nettles are said to have medicinal properties as a blood tonic and to improve hay fever.[12]

List of select northern Iranian dishesEdit

This is a list of northern Iranian regional dishes, primarily found in the Mazandaran, Gilan and Golestan provinces. Due to the landscape, seasons and native plants, these regions have similar traditional dishes but have a distinct culinary history from the other provinces in Iran.

  • Aghouze-Messeama
  • Sir Anar (Sir-Enar)
  • Dewpetti
  • Ispina-Saek
  • Khali Ash (Keahi-Esh)
  • Naz Khatun (Naz-Xatune)
  • Ispinej-Mearji
  • Keahi-Heali
  • Baghali ghatogh (bean stew) – typically made in Iran with a bean called "pacheh baghali" (Rashti fava beans), but outside of Iran this is made with either lima beans, kidney beans or fava beans.[13][14] This dish can be found in all northern regions of Iran, but associated with Mazandaran and Gilan provinces.[15]
  • Kateh (rice cooked in water) – this is typical of Northern Iran (Mazandaran, Gilan and Golestan provinces), this rice is made with more water, butter and salt, in a specific cooking technique.[16]
  • Keshmesh polo (Raisin rice) – found all over Iran now, but originated in northern Iran.
  • Kuku eshpel (a kuku egg dish made of fish roe or caviar).[16]
  • Sirabij (chopped garlic leaves and egg scramble) found in Mazandaran and Gilan provinces.[16]

Desserts and sweetsEdit

  • Aghouzenoon
  • Peshtizik
  • Pisgendela
  • Nesseri
  • Kunak
  • Tunsernun
  • Red sugar (Serkh seker)


Mazanderani and Gilani traditional wines have historically been made from wild, local grapes.[17]

Mazanderani people use to drink a traditional wine drink after hard labor, particularly during summer and Merdal month of Tabarian Calendar which is known as Narenj Vehar.[citation needed] It's a cold drink which is believed to replenish the drinkers' energy reserves.[citation needed]


  1. ^ "Mazandaran the origin of Borani Bademjun". Persian Noon. 2014. Retrieved 2018-03-02.
  2. ^ Burke, Andrew; Maxwell, Virginia (2012). Lonely Planet Iran. Lonely Planet. ISBN 978-1743213209.
  3. ^ Simmons, Shirin (2007). A Treasury of Persian Cuisine. Stamford House Publishing. ISBN 978-1904985563.
  4. ^ Walker, Harlan (1991). Oxford Symposium on Food & Cookery, 1990: Feasting and Fasting : Proceedings. Oxford Symposium. p. 196. ISBN 0907325467.
  5. ^ World and Its Peoples. Marshall Cavendish Corporation. 2007. p. 533. ISBN 978-0761475712.
  6. ^ Mirrazavi, Firouzeh (2011-11-28). "A Paradise: Gilan, North of Iran". Iran Review. Retrieved 2018-03-02.
  7. ^ "Mazandaran the origin of Borani Bademjun". Persian Noon. 2014. Retrieved 2018-03-02.
  8. ^ "SUGAR: CULTIVATION, MANUFACTURING AND PROCESSING". Encyclopaedia Iranica. Retrieved 2018-03-02.
  9. ^ a b "Mazandarani Style Nettle Soup آش گزنه مازندرانی". Cafe Leilee Food Journal. 2016-03-17. Retrieved 2018-03-02.
  10. ^ "Northern-Iranian Style Herb Stuffed Fish ماهی شکم پر به روش شمالی". Cafe Leilee Food Journal. 2014-03-13. Retrieved 2018-03-02. Herbs (such as ouji, zolang, anarije, sorsom) indigenous to northern Iran, since these herbs are not even common in the rest of Iran, I wasn't able to find a correct translation of their English name.
  11. ^ Karizaki, Vahid Mohammadpour (2016-06-01). "Ethnic and traditional Iranian rice-based foods". Journal of Ethnic Foods. 3 (2): 124–134. doi:10.1016/j.jef.2016.05.002. ISSN 2352-6181.
  12. ^ Shafia, Louisa (2013). The New Persian Kitchen. Berkeley, California: Ten Speed Press. p. 52. ISBN 978-1607743583.
  13. ^ "A Spring Fava Bean, Dill and Egg Stew - Baghali Ghatogh". May 5, 2013. Retrieved 2018-03-02.
  14. ^ "Baghali Ghatogh (Kidney Bean Stew) Recipe, Persian Stew Recipes". Cooking and Cooking. 2012-04-13. Retrieved 2018-03-02.
  15. ^ "Lima Beans with Eggs and Dill (Baghali Ghatogh)". SAVEUR. Retrieved 2018-03-02.
  16. ^ a b c "» History of Iranian Food & Cuisine". Retrieved 2018-03-08.
  17. ^ Gottlieb Gmelin, Samuel; Floor, Willem M. (2007). Travels Through Northern Persia: 1770-1774. University of Michigan. p. 255. ISBN 978-1933823157.

See alsoEdit