Saudi Arabia, gimme fresh juice!

Fresh fruit juices have always been very popular in Saudi Arabia. Market research showed that demand is still growing. According to the study this is not only due to the traditional popularity of fresh cool juices in the hot country, but also due to a growing awareness in healthy food. There are an increasing number of healthy living TV programmes, as well as awareness campaigns run in schools organized by the Ministry of Education.

There is nowhere in the world which can compete with Saudi Arabia for the sheer amounts and choice in fresh juices, some you will have never tasted before!
Each fresh fruit bar will always have it’s own secret recipes, with their own special taste. Customers can of course also order the most common mixes, or even have their own mixed. My all time favorite fruit drink was one called papagat (levels). Papagat is a juice that is made from 6 different juices, yet the juices are not blended, so they remain separate. So it is a colorful drink with layers of different juices. And as you drink you taste the different juices in turn.

Canned juices are also popular. Al Rabie AlSaudia Dairy remaineds the leader in fruit/vegetable juice in the Kingdom, holding a corporate retail value share of 13% in 2009. The company’s products were widely spread across the Kingdom and were sold at a very competitive price. In 2009, Al Rabie AlSaudia Dairy also increased its marketing activity in terms of TV advertising and in-store promotions, especially the buy one get one free offer. It contributed to the company gaining sales during the year and also resulted in it gaining the highest corporate retail value share increase during 2009 of one percentage point.

Do you like fresh juices? Does anybody know the recipe for ”Levels” so I can make it in my own juicer?

Please share any good recipes you have!


23 Responses

  1. Sounds intriguing! I would imagine the drink would be constructed like a density column with the heaviest juice on the bottom and so forth with the lightest on the top.
    Hope you’re feeling better!

  2. I love the fruit juices in the ME. One thing I noticed is that anythin package in KSA is much more natural and better tasting.

  3. My advice is stay away from the packaged juices (although also good) and go for the fresh juices whenever you can in KSA.

    I would dearly love to know how to make papagat and the banana juice from Saudi. They were among my favorites. I also liked the roman (pomangrante). Actually I don’t think there were any fresh juices from Saudi I disliked!

  4. I love the fresh juices here- but they sure scoop in the sugar when blending. I try to pick what I know is in season and ask for it without sugar.

  5. Does anyone have a particular favorite juice shop in Riyadh?

  6. for me Tapagat “papagat” “طبقات” is my favorite too 🙂
    thanks for the post it made me want to go any buy fresh juice.

  7. Packaged juices in KSA also have a lot of sugar. Usually the second or third ingredient listed. It is the same with the fruit yogurts. The Saudis do love their sugar.

  8. This is good news. One of the things I am planning when I get to Saudi is to restructure my eating habits and fruit juice(s) is something that I plan to utilize. When I saw this, I had to say….YES!!

  9. I love the cantaloupe juice when I’m out and about. But when I can find tree tomatoes at Danube or Tamimi, then I make fresh tree tomato (tamarillo) juice at home. I’ve never seen that on any menus yet in the Kingdom.

  10. Carol,

    I don’t have any recipes, but I googled in recipes and have a link. They even have juices for cancer.

    Hope this is helpful.

  11. My favorite is 50 fruits in Riyadh, it has really good juices and the fruits and berries they use are fresh!
    My favorite is raspberry-banana 🙂
    The other good thing about them is they are so cheap!Would cost a fortune to get from a juice shop in europe.

  12. I love fresh juice! It is especially nice to have at breakfast times. Even in the US, one has to be careful of added sugar/corn syrup/etc in the ingredients list. The pulp in the fruit will help your body to absorb the sugars in the fruit juices more slowly, so sometimes it is better to have the fruit juice with the pulp in it. If and when I decide & get the chance to visit/live in KSA, I will definitely have to try the fresh juice places!

  13. I don’t have a particular fresh juice bar favorite. I’ve been pleased by each one I’ve gone to whether in the malls or even restaurants like Al Baseri, Al Aajmi or Mama Noura’s. I always requested no sugar as I wanted to enjoy the ambience and natural flavor of the fruits. I like how one can get a gallon of the juice to take home too.

  14. Carol we are already addicted to the fresh juices here (always without sugar by request, or with honey added to cater to the kid’s sweet tooth) – as a matter of fact we got 3 gallons worth yesterday! Gibran being the cause of that obviously 😉

  15. Andrew used to make orange juice with our juicer. So easy. Also lemonade. You use a quarter of a lemon with about 2 sweet apples. Or if you like it a bit more sour, use more lemon. NO sugar necessary as the apples provide the sweetness. And it’s refreshing and healthy!

  16. @Khadeejah – hearing from you makes me reminiscent for the nimbu panne in Pakistan!

    I also recommend lychie if you have not tried it as a fresh juice. It is absolutely delicious. Unfortunately it is not always easy to find lychees in US supermarkets.

  17. AB,
    Lychees are one of my (if not my) favorite fruit! I found them at a Korean supermarket once in the US. I haven’t looked too hard where I’m at now, but now I just might see if I can find some! 🙂 I managed to find them once or twice at both Sainsbury’s and Tesco in the UK. I think it was a seasonal item…?

  18. The Fresh Juices in Saudi Arabia are the BEST!! If you want to try something next to Best, try the Al Marai Alphonso Mango Juice, its HEAVENLY!

  19. Lychees….YUM. But not easy to find in most countries. StrangeOne – they are seasonal items – probably also the reason why they are so hard to get a hold of.

    @Carol – Nimbu Panee – what memories of super hot afternoons and Nimbu Panee – that instant thirst quencher and coolant!! Also drives in Islamabad on Marghalla Hills and walks in the park. I remember the first time I met Abdullah, it was when we ran into you both, driving down Hill Road.

  20. just back after drinking and eating fresh mangoes/mango juice.. and trying out a ton of diff varieties of mangoes . lychee juice, chikoo shake… ahhh the good times,

    and of course tons of coconut water adn nimbu pani..

  21. Yes the juices here are wonderful! I love it that they are more popular than fizzy drinks, which is what I unfortunately grew up with.

    I have to say your spelling for ‘levels’ reads very funny in English! 😉 I can just imagine someone saying it ‘papagat’ in Arabic and people would have a nice chuckle. 😉 well, they do that when i speak arabic anyway! 🙂

  22. But can anyone figure out the recipe for papagat? (levels) or for the banana juice??

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