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Persian Dolme (stuffed vegetables, Persian style)

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Persian dolme, stuffed vegetables

Dolme is the Persian version of stuffed vegetables. You can use eggplant, zucchini' onion, or even prunes and stuff with either ground beef or turkey. Hope you enjoy.

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  • 4Servings


  • Ground beef and turkey
  • 1/4 - 1/3 cup rice. I use aborio though some like Basmati. Quantity varies according to taste. Some like more rice than meat, some more meat than rice.
  • 1 large zucchini
  • 2 mini eggplants
  • 1-2 medium onions
  • Prunes (as many as you want/need). I usually do prunes at the end using the leftover meat.
  • 2 medium size potatoes
  • 2 tomatoes
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Onion powder
  • Tomato sauce (preferably the plain Hunts; please, no marinaras!)


Meat Mixture:

1. Start mixing the ground meat together with the turkey and add salt, pepper, onion powder (Persians often add also cinnamon powder) and 1/4 cup of arborio rice (you can use also Basmati but personally I think it's a waste). 

2. Add some plain tomato sauce  to the mixture. Tomato gives it a good taste so add as much as you want, but don't let it get too watery.

3. Once mixed, cover and set aside. Maybe better if in the fridge.


1. Wash the zucchini and cut in 3 (as small tubes). Scoop out the insides. You can chop the insides and throw them into the pot where you're going cook the Dolme.

2. Do the same with the eggplants. Keep the tops and put them back on once you have stuffed them with the meat, it looks pretty!

3. Scoop the tomato insides into the pot. Keep the top to put back on once you have added the meat.

4. The onions are the tricky ones: You have to peel them and separate each layer to stuff them. It will be easier to peel by working on both sides. I like the smaller onions, but that is a personal choice. You can separate as many layers as you need, all from the same onion (1 onion can make up to 6 stuffed onions depending on how big it is).

5. With the prunes, try to dig into the hole and fill them up with as much meat as you can.

6. Peel and cut the potatoes in chunks and throw them on top, if you have room, or on the side of the stuffed vegetables.

7. Add salt to the potatoes, add more sauce on top of everything, add some water (to halfway cover the vegetables).

8. Bring to a boil on and then lower the flame. Keep simmering until you see the rice is cooked.


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