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    Mamma Mia! 9 of the Best Italian Dishes You Need to Try While in Italy

    8 February, 2020
    best italian dishes

    Tourism in Italy is booming. With over 420 million visitors annually entering the country in recent years, it's the fifth most popular tourist destination worldwide. This makes sense- after all, Italy is a nation with a rich culture. Home of historic sites like the Roman Colosseum and the Vatican, this nation has infinite wonders to behold.

    One of the greatest and best-known wonders of Italy is, of course, the food. If you're headed to this beautiful nation, there are so many dishes you need to sample that it can be difficult to choose what to have at any given meal. After all, you don't want to miss out on anything.

    Luckily for you, we've compiled a list of the foods that you must try while in Italy. Read on to learn about some of the best Italian dishes out there so that you can come back from your trip knowing that you got the most out of the authentic cuisine.


    When you think of Italian food, pasta is likely the first thing that comes to mind. It's delicious and there's a lot of variety, and there's nothing quite like authentic pasta from various regions of Italy. Read on to learn the most iconic dishes you can try while on your trip!

    1. Polpettes

    You may think of spaghetti and meatballs as an American favorite, but it originated in Italy just like any other pasta. Meatballs are eaten differently to the American dish, though, and are called polpettes. Fried and delicious, these homestyle beef, turkey, or fish meatballs can be served in soup, plain, or- yes- with spaghetti and marinara.

    2. Carbonera

    If you're going to try any pasta while you're in Italy, it should be spaghetti carbonara. This famous Roman-based dish has a sauce made with salty Pecorino Romano cheese mixed with pepper and egg. Top it off with some delicious meat and you're looking at the perfect Italian meal.

    3. Lasagna

    Lasagna is also one of the dishes that Italy does best. When made authentically, it tends to come with Bolognese sauce, a delicious sauce originating in Ragu's capital, Bologna. The sauce is made from delicious vegetables in a tomato base, put liberally into the sheets of lasagna pasta, and served with meat.

    Bread-Based Foods

    Pasta isn't the only carb that Italy does best- authentic Italian bread is delicious, and there are a lot of dishes that you can make with it. Read on to learn about some of the best.

    4. Pizza

    Pizza is the best-known Italian food worldwide, and it wouldn't be possible without the bread that makes up its crust.

    In Italy, food is extremely regional, and pizza is different pretty much anywhere you go. On the most basic level, though, there are two kinds of Italian pizza: Neopolitan-style pizza and Roman-style pizza. Neopolitan-style pizza has a thick crust and is very fluffy. Roman-style pizza, on the other hand, is even thinner than the thin-crust pizzas delivered in America.

    5. Bruschetta

    Speaking of pizza and the tomato sauce that comes on it, there's another amazing bread dish that features tomatoes. Bruschetta is a crunchy and delicious bread that's coated with fresh tomatoes and basil. It's got a crunch but is also juicy because of the tomatoes. The perfect appetizer, this bread is definitely worth checking out.

    6. Focaccia

    Focaccia bread is one of the most popular foods in Italy. It's served with meals at most restaurants and is perfect for dipping in soup or sauce. Focaccia is also perfect when drizzled with olive oil. Salty and amazing, this flatbread is not to be missed.

    Other Delicacies

    Italian food is very regional, and for that reason it's impossible to list all the dishes you're going to want to try. There are some amazing dishes beyond pasta and bread that you're going to need to seek out, though, and we're going to talk about a few of them in this section.

    7. Fiorentina Steak

    If you're feeling a hunk of meat while on your trip, you're in luck: Bistecca Alla Fiorentinais one of the most iconic dishes in Florentine. It's a T-bone steak that's cut thick and is exclusive to the Florentine region of Italy. There are variations of it all around the country, so you can try it anywhere you choose to go, but the most authentic experience is regional.

    8. Risotto

    Risotto is a rice dish that's incredibly creamy. While Italy isn't a nation that consumes a lot of rice, they sure know what to do with it when they decide to use it. Unique to the northern regions of Italy, the most popular form of risotto is infused with delicious and flavorful saffron.

    9. Gelato

    Though there are a lot of amazing desserts to try in Italy, gelato takes the top seat. This creamy ice cream made with milk and eggs is perfect for eating on-the-go. When you go for your best selling trip to the colosseum, you can pick up a bowl of gelato on your way and walk around while savoring it.

    Try The Best Italian Dishes

    While deciding what to eat while in Italy is no easy task, you can't go wrong with these classic dishes.

    Now that you know the best Italian dishes that you need to try while on your trip, it's time to get some more travel suggestions that can help you during your time abroad. Check out the 'destinations' tab on our page and select 'Italy' to learn more about making the most out of your Italian experience.

    Safe travels!

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