Simit is an indispensable pastry of Turkish people. It’s similar to bagel but it has sesame seeds and grape molasses unlike bagel. We can eat it at any time. It may become a habbit for us to buy some simits on the way to work in the early morning and to share them with our colleagues. So we start our day at work with great energy thanks to a simit and a glass of tea.


We can say that simit is the first and the most popular fast food in Turkey. There are several vendors selling simit on almost all the corners of city center. If a person is in city center and feels hungry, he buys a simit no matter what time of the day it is.  I took this picture on a street of Eskisehir. The vendor didn’t want to be in the photo, so I took the pigeons instead. I know they are like customers rather than a vendor, but were so cute.

Or some vendors even pass by your neighborhood with a tray full of simits on their head. Yes, you’ve read it right, on their heads! I don’t understand how they don’t lose their foot, they walk very well on the contrary. Moreover, they sing out “Simitçiiiiiii!”. Simitçi is himself, meaning the person who sells simit. And by singing it out, it informs people at their homes that he’s passing, so if one wants to buy it, he goes out and and buy simit.

Generally people prefer drinking tea with it, but some people may prefer ayran as well. And of course some cheese will be the best pair for simit. Yet, some people love spreading chocolate on it just like hubby.

We generally buy simit from pastries as we can not make the same at home. I don’t know exactly why, but all bakers agree on that, maybe it’s because of the high heat at bakeries. We make just similar pastries at home.

If you want to try it (or something very similar to it), follow the recipe:

•    1kg flour
•    42gr yeast
•    15gr salt (1 ½ tbsp)
•    1 tsp sugar
•    2 cups warm water
•    1 cup water
•    3 tbsp grape molasses
•    Sesame seeds

Melt the yeast and sugar in a glass of warm water and wait it 2 hours. Put the flour in a tray and when it rises well, pour it in the center of the flour and add salt in it.

Preheat the oven to 200 C (392F).

Mix 1 glass of warm water with 2 tbsp grape molasses. And pour it into the flour mixture little by little. Knead it well until it loses  its stickiness.

Mix 1 cup of water with 1 tbsp grape molasses.

Saute the sesame seeds 10 or 15 minutes until brown. Do not overcook them, it changes their taste. And put them on a plate.

Pick a piece of dough and shape it in your hands. It must have a circular shape. First dip it into the grape molasses and water mixture then roll it into sesame seeds.
Oil the oven tray and place all the simits in it with some spaces between each.

Bake them over 200C for 30 minutes and serve them hot with a glass of tea or ayran.

simit |


  1. says

    I think I’ve seen simits in the States before, I am going to be on the lookout, but in the meantime I will have to try the delicious recipe you so kindly provided.

  2. says

    I can see where the recipe differs from a bagel, which is boiled for a short time first. Unfortunately, I still haven’t found grape molasses so I may have to turn to an online store. Another wonderful recipe!

  3. says

    They look really good! I’ve never seen the grape molasses before. It sounds so yummy! That’s funny-the on their heads thing.

  4. says

    This is awesome, can I have a piece? Can I use something else instead of molasses? as I don’t know where I can get this in Switzerland?

  5. says

    I bet I can eat a dozen at one go only in a few minutes 😉
    Pastries are one of my weakness…yummmm

    Zerrin there is an award for you on my blog!


  6. says

    Thank you all for your kind comments.
    As for grape molasses, I’m not sure but it may be sold there under the name of grape syrup.

  7. says

    wow, this looks like bagel, indeed.. but is it sweeter than the bagel since it has the grape molasses in it? hmnn… this is interesting.. hope I can find the grape molasses though.

  8. says

    Also wondering about the grape molasses. I wonder would pomegranate molasses be a good substitute, as I have been able to get that…

  9. says

    Oh this brings me back to the streets of Athens at 2am in the morning with little vendors standing on the streets selling the same ring which we call Koulouria.

    They looks so yummy. I am craving them hot, fresh out of the oven now…. : )

  10. says

    Jescel – In fact simit is not sweet. Grape molasses doesn’t give much taste, it’s used more for its color.

    Daily Spud – if pomegranate molasses is as thick and dark as grape molasses, it can be a perfect substitute. If it’s not, you can leave the grape molasses part out.

    Trish – We have a lot of common foods with Greece cuisine. But I didn’t know that you also have that kind of vendors on street selling the same ring. When it’s hot, it’s great!

    • Newcomer says

      You said in reply to Daily Spud that you can just leave the grape molasses part out…will that change the result at all? Could I use (american) molasses instead?

  11. hasret says

    dear zerrin,
    as a colleague and friend of yours i am very proud of what you’ve done. your website is amazing and you’re one of of the most creative people i’ve ever met.when i read your recipes, the way you introduced the meals affected me so much that i couldn’t help crying.they are touching.i’m looking forward to your invitation to eat some or all:) of these delicious foods at your home,don’t forget….
    zerrincim şimdi de türkçe ifade edeyim,harika olmuş,beni ağlattın valla… eşini ve seni tebrik ediyorum,bu kadar güzel,bilinçli bir şekilde hem bilgilendiren hem de kültürümüzü tanıtan bir şey yapman müthiş bir şey.seni sonuna kadar destekliyorum…..

  12. says

    Hasret, thank you so much for stopping by and writing a comment here and of course for all of your nice words. I’m so glad you like my recipes and blog. I need such supports, I get my courage from them, so you make me happy being with me. I promise I’ll invite you for a well prepared menu :)

  13. Sweetcharity says

    I loved seeing the vendors in Istanbul walking through the streets with platters towering with stacks of these!!

  14. says

    I probably had these before, or at least something similar. There was a Cypriot bakery in North London where I used to live that made something that looked like this. Really really good!
    Now you made me hungry!

  15. simit love says

    I watch your blog from Japan.
    I wanted to make simit of Turkey with oneself and looked for a recipe.
    Then I came across your blog.

    Because I was weak in English, I used an interpreter and made simit with oneself in reference to your recipe.

    Because there was not a thing called grape molasses in Japan, on the other hand, I used the thing which I mixed red wine and liquid sugar with.

    On the next time, I use grape juice of fruit juice 100% in substitution for grape molasses and think it to make it.
    Because I had not eaten simit in Turkey, in fact, simit did not understand that it was any kind of taste, but simit which I made in reference to your recipe was delicious at all.

    Thank you.

    It is a dream I go to Turkey sometime, and to eat simit.
    Please introduce delicious Turkey food from now on.

  16. says

    How nice you made a very different version of simit by yourself! I’m very happy to hear you like the recipe and your result.
    Did you eat Turkish simit before? How did you decide to make it?
    You made me curious about simit with red wine. Maybe I should try it. I’m sure the simit you made has a very unique taste.
    I have a recipe of Acma( , a similar version of simit or bagel. This one has no grape molasses. You can try it if you like.

  17. simit love says

    günaydın merhaba!

    I am impressed to give an answer to me.

    Thank you (=^・^=)

    I have never eaten simit of Turkey.
    However, many Japanese who took a trip to Turkey introduce it with blog with Turkey food when simit was delicious most.
    I yet never had been to Turkey, but, to see blog, wanted to make it by all means because it was the bread which the sesame which I loved used a lot.
    However, I gave it up because I was not able to look for a very good recipe.
    I found your blog accidentally and thought that your recipe might make delicious Simit and decided to challenge it.

    I made three or four times simit with your recipe.
    simit which I made tasted it was sweet, and fragrant first because I used the thing which I mixed red wine and sweet liquid sugar with.
    Then simit which I made used the grape juice of the 100% fruit juice today and made it. When I made it with grape juice, there was not much sweetness and a nice smell of the sesame became more attractive and was delicious.

    Another recipe (Acma) which you introduced looks very delicious.

    I want to challenge it this time by all means.


  18. says

    New Comer- Thanks for visiting my blog. Grape molasses doesn’t add much to its taste, it is used to give simit a brownish color. It is also possible to see simits without that color (more yellowish) in some cities of Turkey. that’s why you can leave it out if you can’t find it.

    I don’t have any idea what american molasses is, so I don’t know what happens if you use it.

    Hope this reply is helpful for you.


  1. […] that’s why I decided to make and share it here. As you see in the picture, it’s so similar to simit, it’s like the smaller version of it. They’re alike in terms of their shapes, but their tastes […]

  2. […] as a drink we definitely have tea.If you don’t have time for breakfast at home, you can buy simit and have it with a glass of tea at work. Tea and simit are always perfect […]

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