Qatari Sweet Dumplings: Luqaimat

When researching Qatari desserts, I kept stumbling upon these sweet dumplings on different pages called Luqaimat. The word “luqaimat” is translated as “bite-size” in Arabic. These are one of Qatar’s most favourite sweet treats and are often made during Ramadan or just for tea time. These are first deep-fried and then soaked in syrup or honey. You should eat them fresh – so they would remain perfectly crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside.

Luqaimat in a dessert bowl.

Although the luqaimat seem super sweet from all the pictures, the dough itself actually doesn’t contain any sugar. Instead, all the sweetness comes from the honey or syrup that they are soaked in, so it gives a bit of room to adjust the sweetness. It seems there isn’t one and only “traditional” syrup that is used and everyone makes it a bit differently. I chose a recipe where the sugar syrup got some additional flavour from some lemon juice and saffron. The lemon juice made these less sweet, which is perfect – I’m not too much of a sweet tooth.

How did it go?

Overall, this dessert doesn’t need too much effort at all. Mixing the dough together takes only a few minutes (especially if you have a stand mixer) and the sugar syrup can be made at the same time the dough is rising. Perhaps the most complicated part is trying to get the luqaimat all nice and round and making sure they get an even colour from all sides when frying – the little devils sometimes really didn’t want to turn to the other side!

Instead of messing around with spoons to get nice round dough balls, you can try using a piping bag and then “cut” the dough with scissors as small pieces directly into the oil. For me, though, many of them still ended up being more like… small sausages. Got to practice more, I guess!

Qatari dessert. Luqaimat - the uglier ones.
Check out these uglies (they were still tasty)!

Overall verdict? Luqaimat were delicious and I will definitely be making more of them! Have you ever tried to make them? Let me know down in the comments!

P.S. If you’re interested, check out my post about Qatar, as well as other recipes I tried:

Note: in the “Around the World” challenges, I try to find the most authentic recipes available. I will not make adjustments myself, other than converting the measurements and possibly giving some additional tips in the steps. This way, you’ll get the same traditional experience when trying yourself! 🙂

Luqaimat dessert in a bowl

Qatari Sweet Dumplings: Luqaimat

Yield: 30 pc
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes

These are one of Qatar's most favourite sweet treats that are often made during Ramadan. The lemon sugar syrup we make here makes these especially delicious!



  • 130 g all-purpose flour
  • 180 ml warm water
  • 1 tbsp corn-flour
  • 0,5 tsp instant dry yeast
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 0,5 teaspoon cardamom powder
  • a pinch of salt

Sugar syrup

  • 60 ml water
  • 60 g sugar
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • a few strands of saffron


  • oil for frying
  • sesame seeds for garnish (optional)


Sugar syrup:

  1. Add the sugar, water, lemon juice and saffron to a small pot.
  2. Bring to boil.
  3. Remove from heat when the sugar has dissolved and the syrup has become a bit thicker - approximately 10 minutes.
  4. Allow the syrup to cool completely.


  1. Add all the dough ingredients to a bowl and mix together.
  2. Cover and keep in a warm place for about one hour or until the batter doubles in size.
  3. Heat the oil - I kept it around 200° C.
  1. Spoon 0,5 tablespoon of batter (try to make a nice ball) into the hot oil till you have a number of dumplings in the oil. Don't make them too big - they will double in size!
  2. Fry and keep turning to ensure the dumplings are cooked on all sides.
  3. Remove them from the oil when they are golden brown on all sides. Set on top of a paper towel to drain the oil.
  4. Drizzle with the Luqaimat with the prepared sugar syrup.
  5. Sprinkle with some sesame seeds and serve!
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 288Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 38mgCarbohydrates: 44gFiber: 2gSugar: 15gProtein: 5g

Did you try this recipe?

Share your experience down in the comments or let me know on Instagram!

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