While writing our last post on 8 reasons to visit Budapest in winter, we talked about some lip-smacking foods you must try in Budapest. And then only we thought that why not make a whole separate post on some iconic and traditional Hungarian foods you should really try? Hungary is a heaven for food lovers. From soups to stews to main course items to desserts, Hungarian food is the perfect union of spicy, creamy, and rich flavors.


Hungarian cuisines essentially carry the features of theCentral European cuisines. Dairy products, cheese, and meats are heavily used while making Hungarian foods and Paprika is one of the representative spices used in Hungarian delicacies. You will find regional variations in food and Budapest, the country’s capital is the best place to binge on the Hungarian dishes. So let’s put an end to this introduction now and we will take you on a tour through the best of the Hungarian foods which you must not miss if you are an extreme foodie just like we are.

Traditional Hungarian Foods Every Foodie Must Try In Budapest:


Beef Goulash With Potato

They call it ‘Gulyas’ and this soup preparation is one of the quintessential features of the Hungarian cuisine. It’s a stew kind of thing that contains lots of meat and vegetables. Use of paprika and other spices are done for seasoning. This dish owes its origin to the stews, eaten by the Hungarian shepherds during the 9th century. For meat, mainly beef, pork or lamb is used and chili pepper, bay leaf, and thyme are used for nice flavors. Hungarian foods do not rely on flour for thickening the soup, paprika does its part of the job to give a thick texture to the soup. Budapest is the best place to taste some authentic Goulash.    



It is also a soup preparation but a vegan one and much thinner than that of Goulash. For those who do not eat meat, this is the best soup preparation to try in Hungary. It is usually cooked with cabbage, bell pepper, potatoes, tomatoes, peas, carrots, lentils, squash, and many more vegetables you can think of. Being much on the healthier side, this soup dish uses paprika, bay leaf, black peppercorn, lemon juice, parsley for seasoning and spices. You can enjoy this dish either as a side dish or can have it all alone.


Chicken Paprikash:


Next up we have something from the Hungarian main course family. You can find ample presence of paprika in this too and the perfect blend of onion, green pepper, tomato, and a sour cream makes this main course dish a delicious option to eat. The chicken is usually simmered in a creamy sauce for quite a long time and then the total preparation is served with nokedli‘, Hungarian egg dumplings. 

Porkolt (Meat Stew):


Porkolt is one among the classic Hungarian foods that is mainly made with boneless meat (pork, beef, chicken, lamb) and some vegetables (onion being constant). Sweet paprika gives the dish a savory taste and evocative smell. This dish has many variations throughout the country. Namely, they are

  • pacalpörkölt (spicy and uses tripe),
  • kakaspörkölt (made with rooster), 
  • kakasherepörkölt (made with rooster testicles),
  • sertésmáj pörkölt (made with pork),
  • and csirkemáj pörkölt (made with chicken).

Have this delicious stew preparation with bread and wine and satisfy your taste buds. 

Dobos torta (Dobos cake):


Being named after Jozsef C. Dobos, (the inventor of this cake) this sweet delight will give you an idea about the country’s rich confectionary delicacies. Dobos cakes are generally sponge cakes which have elaborate layers of chocolate buttercream and they are given a shiny glaze with caramels. These sweet sins are topped with nuts like hazelnuts, almonds, chestnuts or walnuts and you will feel a cool, wet, sweet taste in your mouth once you take a bite of this cake.    


Palatschinke (Crepe like pancake):


Palatschinkes are pancakes just like those French crepes. A runny mixture of eggs, wheat flour, milk, and salt is prepared and then the mixture is poured into a pan and is fried with butter or oil. Apricot, strawberry or plum jams are used as the filling of the pancakes and for that rich sugary and salty taste, filling of different creams, nuts, cocoa powder, poppy seeds are also used. Can you just imagine how tasty these pancakes are actually! We can’t wait to dig into this deliciousness. Sweet surrender! 

Turos Csusza (Cheese noodles):


Small home-made noodles or portions of pasta are used to make this one of the most traditional Hungarian foods. The cooked noodles, when mixed with butter and crumbled quark cheese (a kind of warmed sour milk) will create a surprise taste in your mouth. This dish is generally topped with pieces of bacons called szalonna

Turo Rudi (A chocolate bar with curd feeling):


This is damn unusual, right? Turo rudis are Hungary’s most adorable chocolate bars. You may also find cheese filled or jam filled turo rudis. The outer coating is of rich dark chocolate and for filler, apart from curd and cheese, raspberry or strawberry jams are used. To increase the palatability, coconut or vanilla aromas are also infused into the bars. Don’t miss to taste these wonderful bars once you are in Hungary. 

So, what we got? We got paprika, we got dairy products and obviously, we got a lot of cheesy affairs. Yes, Hungarian foods are all about cheesy, soupy, and spicy stuff. While Budapest is the perfect city where you can find all of these items, for regional variations you can also look out for other places. Visit this country and satisfy your tummy and taste buds with some amazing Hungarian foods. Love, love.

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