Turkish food samples

The Best Food You Have to Try When Visiting Turkey

Turkish cuisine is famous worldwide and it is regularly referred to as one of the three great cuisines of the world, alongside French and Chinese. It is rich with flavors and ingredients, often spicy and dominantly plant-based. It fuses East and West, as it is influenced by the cuisines of the Mediterranean, the Balkans, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia. You have probably tasted some of these dishes without even knowing they are from Turkey. If you are planning to visit and explore this gem straddling Europe and Asia, here are the dishes you shouldn’t miss trying.

A Variety of Restaurants and Bars to Choose From

If you happen to be in the biggest cities of Turkey, like Istanbul, Izmir, or Ankara you will have a huge variety of places to eat and drink – only Istanbul offers more than 56 thousand restaurants and cafes. If you are only looking for a drink, you can choose wine bars like Solera Winery, where you can taste the best local wines in an intimate atmosphere. If you are only looking for some snacks and meze, cheeses, olives, and finger food, you can visit pubs like James Joyce Irish Pub where you can also enjoy sporting events and tune in to sports shows like the ones found on www.thegruelingtruth.com. Finally, for a full experience in tasting local delis, be sure to visit places that offer local eats and fine dining, like Atölye Restaurant.

Dishes You Shouldn’t Miss Trying

Doner kebab is something you must try if you are a meat lover. It is the most famous dish that originates from Turkey and you can eat it with a variety of ingredients, including veggies and dressings. Gozleme, another specific reason to visit Turkey, is the type of pocket food you may enjoy if you are a fan of minced meat, and the same goes for Sarma and Islama köfte (Turkish meatballs). Among street food, make sure to try Kumpir (baked roasted potato with various toppings), Lahmacun, known also as Turkish pizza, or Balik Ekmek, popular as Fish Bread. For veggie lovers, Kabak Çiçeği Dolması is a must-try, it is a light dish where the squash flower is a dominant ingredient, stuffed with onions, tomato, rice, and seasonings. Aside from Dolmasi, Baba Ghanoush and Tarhana are two other popular veggie-based dishes worth trying.

Sweet Treats

When you decide to have a sweet treat, go with Ekmek kadayifi, a dessert made of dehydrated bread and filled with Turkish cream. An important part of Turkish cuisine is the famous Baklava, a dessert comprising multiple layers of pastry dough, regularly filled with nuts and sweet syrups,  so do not hesitate to give it a try. Another traditional delight you should try is Lokum, a jelly candy favorite among children and adults, as it comes in different flavors and tastes. It may include dried fruit, nuts, pistachios, lemon, and others.


Turkish cuisine is colorful, healthy, and vibrant with a variety of ingredients and seasonings. As one of the world’s best cuisines, it leaves no one indifferent and apathetic when it comes to the palette of flavors it offers. So, if you ever start wondering if it is worth visiting Turkey, just remember that here you will experience a unique blend of East and West – on your plate!

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