Simple Couscous (Ultimate Recipe Swap: Easy Recipes)

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Mediterranean Steak Salad

Easy recipes are among God’s blessings to busy moms. We want to feed our families well, but sometimes we’re on a time crunch — or a brain freeze, as the case may be. You need something easy that doesn’t take much time or effort.

Couscous is probably the quickest and easiest thing I can make. Well, besides toast. It literally takes 6 minutes from start to finish. Sure, you can get elaborate and fix fancy couscous. But for a simple side dish, this can’t be beat.

What IS couscous?

Originally made from millet, couscous seems to have originated in 9th century North Africa. Today it is often made with semolina. According to Wikipedia,

Today, couscous granules are usually made by rolling moistened coarsely ground semolina wheat into small balls, which are then coated with finely ground wheat flour. The finished granules are roughly spherical shape and about one millimetre in diameter before cooking.

I’ve seen both Moroccan-style and Israeli couscous. My only experience is with the Moroccan-style, tiny little spheres of pasta that cook quickly. It’s a super delicious side dish to accompany grilled meats or to use as a base for salads.

Couscous Salad

You can buy couscous in a variety of flavors. I’ve seen whole wheat, tri-color, and original in my local stores. All of them are tasty and easy to prepare.

It is that easy. Don’t believe me? Watch this video!

See how easy that is?! I bet your toddler could make the couscous for you this week. Sure, you can doctor it up with more seasonings, but this makes a great simple side dish — as is.

Got an easy recipe to share?

Link up your post or share your recipe in the comments.

About Jessica Fisher

I believe you can get great meals on the table -- and still keep that pretty smile on your face.

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  1. centsability says

    Love the super simple couscous recipe! I’ve got a recipe I call the Easiest Recipe Ever: Put a pork tenderloin (single or double, your choice) in the crock pot, pour in a jar of green salsa. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8. And that is literally it. I have yet to find anything easier!

    Eat with rice and a veggie on night one; on night two we make FABULOUS burritos with black beans and whatever else we want. Has to be black beans though; refried beans are too plain with the pork and for some reason it tastes bland.

  2. The couscous looks good. I shared my easy minute mayonnaise. I hope you like it!

  3. I like couscous but the rest of the family aren’t fans and I can’t make something just for me.

    • Jessica Fisher says

      @Micha, yes, you could! It’s so easy and it’s a one dish meal, you could easily make a 1/2 or quarter batch. It’s like making toast!

  4. AllieZirkle says

    Yummy! My kiddos love couscous with parmesean cheese. I’ll have to whip some up for them tomorrow.

    Are those homemade pitas next to the couscous? I’m droolin, they look so good! Do share if they are homemade or store bought. Please!

    🙂 AllieZirkle

  5. We love couscous in our house, even if the kids tend to get it everywhere as they eat it! We usually use it as a side with fish, but have always made it boiling in a pan. Your version seems way easier, I’m definitely trying it! So glad I stumbled on your blog. I linked our dish for today too, we are doing 300 this year if you want to stop by.

    • Jessica Fisher says

      Yes, I know the recipes all say in the pot, but that seems like a pain to me. And yes, couscous is usually everywhere!

  6. I am sharing a fish recipe. Although fish is not my favorite food, Ruffy is so mild that every one in my family enjoys it. The best part about fish is that I can cook it for dinner in under 15 minutes!

  7. I love couscous but always forget about it. It’s going on my grocery list for next week!

  8. You know, my toddlers COULD make couscous! I never thought about giving them that job; I will have to change that. They will love it!

  9. LOVE easy recipes, can’t wait to go through these, thanks!

  10. Ok, I pasted my URL in the wrong box and thought I’d fixed it, but I didn’t get it all. I re-entered my easy homemade ketchup recipe and don’t know if you’re able to delete the first one or not. Sorry for the trouble!

    Couscous isn’t something we’ve tried, but we’ll have to give it a try. Thanks for sharing and for hosting!

  11. i must be the ONLY person to NOT like couscous! I have tried it 2-3 times. It just doesn’t taste right to me. Can you share more easy recipes maybe salads so I can give it one more try?

  12. I Love couscous and cannot wait to try this recipe out! Stop by and see my new recipes at!


  13. I love couscous! Thanks for a great recipe.

    Can’t wait to see what others have posted. I linked to my parmesan orzo recipe.

  14. i had no idea couscous used to be made of millet. that makes me want to put this side dish back into menu rotation. had been skipping wheat based dinner sides in favor of other grains since we get so much wheat in breads, cereals, etc. thanks for the food trivia. now i’m off to find traditional couscous made of millet.

  15. I can always use new couscous recipes:-)

  16. if you like moroccan couscous, you HAVE to try israeli couscous. it’s so delicious 🙂

  17. Great recipe Jessica. We’ll have to try it! I kinda chuckled when I saw you were posting about an easy side dish! You gave me advice on this just yesterday at LAM. Which btw, was a big DUH moment for me! Why didn’t I think about jsut adding my own stuff to rice or pasta like that? Sheesh!

    • Jessica Fisher says

      @Stefani @SimpleMidwestMom, don’t be so hard on yourself. There are so many tricks out there to be learned.

      But, I think a key to reproducing “processed” foods is that almost all of them are recreating or mutating something our grandmothers knew how to make from scratch. Canned cream of chicken soup is just a white sauce. Ricearoni is just a pilaf. Older cookbooks are very enlightening this way.

  18. Great linkup–I’ll be looking around!

  19. I love couscous, but my husband complains that it’s boring. Too bad for him because I fix it regularly anyways! One of the best recipes I ever made (not that I can find it now) was a couscous with feta cheese that you packed into peach halves that have been grilled and basted with balsamic vinegar. Oh My Word.

    • Jessica Fisher says

      @Kate, my husband really likes it when I make it into a salad with spices, beans, peppers, tomatoes, etc. Then it’s not boring.

  20. Great link-up. I like couscous, but we are now gluten free. I have heard of making “couscous” with rice, but never tried it. Maybe I will soon- yours looks yummy!

  21. You have some great recipes on here, thanks for letting me add mine! I’ll be back 🙂

  22. I’ve tried making couscous but it didn’t go over well with my family, but I didn’t use chicken broth, I may try it with that see if that goes over better. 🙂
    I shared a super easy, delicious chocolate mess dessert recipe.

  23. Kristi says

    I love to eat couscous, but it is not very affordable where I live. There is one brand available at my grocery store, it is a small box and it is over $3. I want to splurge on it but I can my the off brand bag of brown rice for sooooo much cheaper. Any suggestions on how to get it cheaper?

    • @Kristi, If you have a local Mediterranean – Epytian, Grecian, etc. – grocery store, it is often cheaper there. I buy bento lunch supplies at a Japanese market about an hour away from me. Sooo much cheaper than even Amazon.

      • Kristi says

        @Pam, Pamela, Thanks for the tip but no such luck, I live in a small town. I am not sure if there are any of those stores available in the surrounding larger areas, I will have to check the next time I have the opportunity.

  24. Love all your cooking ideas and tips! I may have to try couscous … sounds easy and good!

  25. Seriously???!!!! It’s THAT easy!
    It is going on my grocery list right now!

    Thank you for this easy recipe! 🙂

  26. I am sharing a really easy and healthy fish recipe that even my kids love. I hope you enjoy.

  27. I am sharing my super simple recipe for what you won’t believe is made from beans….SUPER SIMPLE BEAN FUDGE. Yes, it really is great! Try it and let me know what you think! I’ll be posting additional variations soon like mint, coconut and almond.

  28. Love it! I made pearl couscous last night with a bunch of vegetables and some strips of steak. It was easy and delish. Love seeing your face on the video and that top pic is GREAT! 🙂

  29. Hi Jess, since my dad is from Greece and many Mediterranean foods are shared among the cultures in that area, I have been eating couscous since I was a little girl and I do love it! I also often forget about it, so thanks so much for reminding me how quick and easy it is. I also have to say your photo of the steak salad dinner had me drooling! Linking up a quick and easy frugal left over make over for ham and cheese pasta pie! All the best, Alex

  30. Tara Mc says

    🙂 So, I watched your video just to hear the word couscous because it is such a FUN word to say. I am smiling now just thinking about the word. lol.

    Thanks for the easy recipe. Love me some couscous….couscous. (It’s even fun to type.)

  31. I love couscous but haven’t made it in a while. Thanks for the reminder. I love how quick it is to get a side dish on the table!

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