Maltese Bigilla Recipe

If you have ever been to Malta, we can safely assume that you have tried traditional Maltese bigilla. Many restaurants around the island, especially those serving local dishes, have it on their menu. And if you happen to visit one of the many local band clubs for a couple of pints, you will likely also be served mouth-watering bigilla along with other nibbles. Should you wish to try your hand at homemade bigilla, below is the Maltese bigilla recipe we followed for our very first attempt at making bigilla. I must admit, we didn’t expect it to be this good!


  • 250g Ġirba beans (you may use fava beans as an alternative)
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 tablespoon dried mixed herbs
  • A good pinch of chili flakes
  • Chopped parsley and mint
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Extra virgin olive oil, parsley, chili flakes and galletti (water biscuits) to serve
Maltese Bigilla Recipe


  1. Wash the beans and leave them to soak overnight in cold water.
  2. When ready to cook, change the water and fill up the pot to just cover the beans.
  3. Cook on a low to medium heat for about an hour or until they become very tender and the water evaporates.
  4. Drain the beans and rinse under running water, removing excess water.
  5. Place all ingredients in the food processor together with the cooked beans and pulse until the texture becomes smooth.
  6. Serve in a bowl drizzled with extra virgin olive oil, crushed chili flakes and parsley to garnish together with galletti or grissini.
Maltese Bigilla Recipe

Aside from water biscuits, you may also spread bigilla paste on bread or serve it with a crudités platter. Crudités are raw vegetables, such as carrots, zucchini and many others, which can be cut into small pieces, sticks, or thinly sliced. They are usually served with some sort of dip.

If you have tried our recipe, let us know how it went below. You may also pin our Maltese bigilla recipe for later on Pinterest.

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