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Unsung Ingredient: Pomegranate Molasses

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Inspired by conversations on the FOOD52 Hotline, we're sharing tips and tricks that make navigating all of our kitchens easier and more fun. Today we're discussing how to use up that bottle of pomegranate molasses.

Pomegranate Molasses


Have you ever brought home a bottle of pomegranate molasses to make a particular recipe, and then left the bottle lingering in your pantry, unsure of what else to do with it? Or have you seen a bottle on the grocery store shelf, felt intimidated, and avoided it?  

We're here to encourage you to make the most of this unsung ingredient. If you're looking for new ways to use the mostly-full bottle in your kitchen, or if you're just curious about a new ingredient, we've got you covered. 

Pomegranate Molasses

First thing's first: What exactly is it? 

Pomegranate molasses is a syrup of boiled pomegranate juice, most commonly used in Middle Eastern cuisine. It has an intense sweet-and-sour flavor that is often compared to balsamic, and like balsamic, a little goes a long way. And as you'll see, pomegranate molasses can be used in as many ways you can imagine. 

Pomegranate Molasses Soda

Drink it up: We stirred some into a glass of sparkling water for a bright and refreshing soda. We're sure it can be used in all sorts of boozy drinks that just haven't been invented yet, so get creative and start experimenting.

Pomegranate Molasses

Get traditional: 

Fesenjoon is an Iranian stew of ground walnuts, pomegranate molasses, dried plums and chicken, served over rice. Our Assistant Editor Nozlee Samadzadeh says this is the most popular use of pomegranate molasses in Iranian cooking and, after testing the recipe her mother -- and Food52 community member cookingProf -- shared with us, we can see why. Comforting and complex, it's a perfect cold-weather meal.

Mouhamara, a dip of red bell peppers, ground walnuts and pomegranate molasses, deserves a spot alongside hummus and baba ghanoush on your next meze platter. The sweetness of this dip nicely counters the garlicky saltiness of the others. We're partial to Paula Wolfert's recipe.  

Pomegranate Roasted Carrots
Pair these carrots with fesenjoon and you've got a dinner we'd join you for. 

Roast with it: Melissa Clark suggests roasting carrots with a pomegranate glaze, and we're crazy about the idea. But don't stop there! Think of all the roasted vegetables that could benefit from a little tangy sweetness. We're imagining cauliflower and parsnips, but the possibilities are endless. 

Mix it with meat: Pomegranate molasses is a great complement for smoky rich flavors -- grilled meats come to mind. Brush it onto chicken or steak before grilling or roasting. Want to pair it with pork? You can always glaze a ham with it. 


Give your vinegar a break: Mix some olive oil with pomegranate molasses for a dead-simple new salad dressing. If you're looking for a slightly more doctored dressing, check out this arugula and pear salad.

Add depth to your dessert: Yes, pomegranate molasses goes well with savory foods, but what about dessert? How about using it in a cake? (Save us a piece, if you can.) We also like the idea of pouring it over cheesecake or custard. 

How do you like to put pomegranate molasses to use? 

Tags: Kitchen Confidence, pomegranate molasses, pomegranate, how-to & diy

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