10 Saudi Arabian Women Specialized in the Culinary Arts
Saudi Arabian female chefs have been all the rage ever since Saudi Vision 2030 has been put into action, leaving no industry unconquered and no field untouched. From restaurant owners to online bakers, these chefs are the culinary names to remember, each specializing in a different cuisine and a different take on what makes avid food aficionados’ taste buds curl.
Even though some of them started in male-dominated work atmospheres, the female culinary experts worked their way to the top using their impressive education, extensive experience, and innate skill all while maintaining an impeccable taste for gastronomy in all its glorious details. Get to know the 10 Saudi Arabian women who are shaking it up in kitchens, bakeries, and restaurants all over the Kingdom.
1. Amna Al-Yamani
Setting up a plan to start a bakery café in Jeddah, Chef Amna does not only want to create delicious treats, but empowering other women to reach their full potential is inlcuded in her plans as well.
This Saudi chef holds a BA in Hospitality Management and Marketing from the Glion Institute of Higher Education in Switzerland and a basic patisserie certificate from Le Cordon Bleu Paris. She also holds a MBA degree from IESE and experience in a bread factory in Paris. With all her extensive knowledge and practice, Amna's plan is up-and-coming and ready to be in full action by September.
2. Dhoha Abdullah
This woman is dubbed as the first Saudi female chef in the kingdom to head a hotel restaurant. Chef Dhoha is the lead orchestrator at Al-Majles, Andalusia Hotel’s Saudi Arabian cuisine restaurant.
Having gained her educational knowledge in cooking schools in Lebanon and India, she came back home to take the kingdom’s culinary scene by storm. The Saudi chef is known for adding her own touch to multiple international cuisines, including Syrian, Indian, French and Italian.
3. Khalida Al-Sulaiman
Chef Khalida is a pastry chef and the founder of Fatafeet Bake House, a popular online bakery in the kingdom. She started her journey by attending Le Cordon Bleu’s patisserie and baking program. The baker then amplified her knowledge of the industry by working in different places including Jeddah, Boston, and Laguna Beach.
Now she heads Fatafeet, which is known to offer light, delicious, and healthy treats. Chef Khalida never compromises taste or quality, as she known to never use additives or food coloring.
4. Al-Maha Al-Dossary
Known as The Bedouin Vegan on social media platforms, Al-Dossary is known for combining her veganism with her Saudi Arabian identity. After finishing her studies in the kingdom, she tried applying to several jobs but to no avail. Not known to be a quitter, Al-Maha traveled to London to attend Le Cordon Bleu in order to strengthen her culinary knowledge, and that she did.
She returned to the kingdom with a prestigious degree under her belt and the ambition to take over the world. Chef Al-Maha is currently working as a chef in the kingdom and promotes her vegan lifestyle while making tantalizing dishes to back up her claims including vegan tiramisu and vegan roast “beef”.
5. Basma El-Khereiji
Coming from a background in business, Chef Basma’s ventures are all about turning passion into a real-life project. She started out with a marketing career, and soon took a leap of faith into her true life’s calling: the culinary arts.
Specialized in making healthy and wholesome food, the Saudi cook founded The Social Kitchen as part of The Social Collective. She shares her delicious and homemade cooking recipes modeled after her own life and experiences as a mother.
6. Khulood Olaqi
This culinary creative is responsible for opening the first Japanese sushi restaurant in Riyadh, which is headed exclusively by an all-Saudi Arabian team. The chef and restaurant-owner’s cooking journey started from an online blog, and with perseverance and passion, she turned her online videos into a real-life dining experience for everyone in the kingdom to enjoy.
Chef Khulood has received her education in making the Japanese delicacy from the Tokyo Academy in Singapore, making her the first Saudi chef specialized in sushi.
7. Noura Al-Moammar
Noura Almoammar had her eyes set on being a chef at an early age. She studied at a prestigious gastronomy school in Paris, Le Cordon Bleu. Adamant at pursuing her passion at a professional standard, Chef Noura returned to the kingdom and opened her own restaurant in February 2018.
Dayem O Amer is a culinary escape situated in Jeddah and specialized in healthy eating. The Saudi chef wanted to fuse love for the cuisine along with fostering a healthy lifestyle for the kingdom, and that’s what her restaurant is all about.
8. Budoor Al-Solami
Budoor Al-Solami is a Saudi star chef who works at a five-star hotel, but that is not the sole reason she has captured fans’ hearts all over the world. She runs a very popular YouTube channel with her husband, who is also an executive chef at a Saudi restaurant.
The Segment is called Saawidha, which translates to “Make it Saudi”. They make well-known international dishes with a Saudi Arabian twist. Her bubbly nature and her delectable dishes are what make Chef Budoor a fan favorite!
9. Wed Saleh
Learning the trade at a young age from her mother, Chef Wed knew where her ambition and drive was heading. She started watching TV cooking programs, reading books, and following culinary websites.
Her favorites cuisines are Khaleeji, Asian, and Italian, and she manages to include twists from each of them in her own food. She made it on popular TV show, Top Chef, and is amongst the favorites of the team. One of Chef Wed’s goals is to become an inspiration for Saudi Arabian youth who are ashamed to be working in hotels or restaurants.
10. Asma Abdulhadi Tabaaji
Chef Asma reached a prodigious moment in her career when she headed the biggest Iftar feast in the Middle East at the Ramadan Riyadh International Convention and Exhibition center.
Her career started with catering services from her own home to working in hotels and restaurants. Today, she is the head chef of Premier Catering, a renowned catering company in Saudi Arabia.