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12 Delicious Traditional Dutch Food Worth Trying

When you are visiting the Netherlands and want to try something local, there are many delicious traditional Dutch food for you based on your taste buds. You may have already seen some, but have you tried them all? Many you can try in most Dutch cities, from supermarkets or at home, but number 12 is definitely one to try when in Maastricht!

12 Delicious Traditional Dutch Food Worth Trying

Read on to see our top 12 traditional Dutch food that you can try while living or visiting the Netherlands

1. Bitterballen

You may have already seen these on the menu at a bar or cafe, as they are classed as a snack and something locals usually enjoy with a beer while socialising. These fried crunchy balls with soft meat inside is a true original Dutch treat to eat while drinking or socialising with friends. Try them while dipping them in a bit of mustard for the true experience!

P.s These days there are also vegetarian ones too!

2. Stroopwaffels

These delicious caramel/cinnamon waffled biscuits are to die for. You can buy them in the supermarkets as a pack of little biscuits (and put the on top your cup of tea to warm them up), but the best way to try it when made fresh, which are also made more than twice the size. You can find fresh stroopwaffles usually being made at city markets. 

3. Poffertjes

These cute little things are actually just small pancakes, but how cool is that? Mini pancakes are a top treat in many big cities like Rotterdam or Amsterdam but can also be bought in most supermarkets. The usual topping is icing sugar with butter melting on top, but you can get truly anything such as strawberries, bananas, nutella, apple and cinnamon, warm cherries and so on.

4. Stamppot

This dish is made up of fresh potatoes mashed together with ingredients like endive, spinach or bacon and eat it with a sausage. Stamppot is a very traditional Dutch food dish that is still made today, usually in the winter period. However you can now also find lots of additional combinations with different spices, beetroot and sweet potatoes etc.

5. Patat

The classic take-away upside down shaped cone full of chips with a topping is a common snack during shopping in bigger cities like Rotterdam and Amsterdam. Popular toppings include mayonnaise with raw onions, curry sauce, bbq sauce, some salt or a combination of literally everything. You have likely also seen them in Belgium where they call their chips ‘frietjes’ instead of ‘patat’.

6. Kaas

Cheese is super popular in the Netherlands, to eat it and to make it. The ones you may already know is the Gouda cheese or Edam cheese, both originating from these locations. But there are way more too.

Fun tip: Visit Gouda to visit the De Goudse Waag cheese museum for more info, and try and visit between June and August when up to 300 farmers bring their cheese weighed, tasted, and priced right on the Gouda market square.

7. Herring

This is a popular treat for those who love fish. It should be eaten raw and often with chopped onions (occasionally pickles too). The traditional Dutch way to eat it is to hold one end above you and bite into the other end. Its a popular snack when at a beach location!

Some beach locations you can try herring at are Hoek Van Holland, Scheveningen and Katwijk! Else you can find herring often at local weekly markets in big cities.

8. Drop

Drop is also known as Liquorish, so you’ve likely already seen or tried this as its possible to get it worldwide. However the Dutch do it more special, with so many choices too. There are combinations of mint, honey, salt, hard ones, soft ones, sugar free, coconut and more.

9. Hagelslag

These chocolate sprinkles are what the Dutch use as a topping for their breads or sandwiches. The most traditional being the simply milk chocolate sprinkles, but there are many to choose from at the supermarkets. These days you can find colourful sprinkles, white choc, pure choc, mixed boxes and special versions for public events like orange sprinkles for Kings Day.

Fun Fact: If you ever visit new Dutch parents that just gave birth, you will likely get either pink or blue coloured sprinkles on a special cracker to celebrate the birth of their baby.

10. Tompouce

If your looking for something with pastry, this is what you need to try. Tompouce are a popular treat when shopping the Hema supermarket (or also Albert Heijn and Lidl). They have a top and bottom layer of pastry with cream in the middle and covered in pink icing. They are very popular to eat on days we celebrate things on, such as the Kings birthday on Kings Day in April.

P.s its not easy to eat at all, but delicious!

11. Oliebol

These doughy balls are basically the same texture as the round shaped decorated doughnuts. They may not look as fancy, but are actually much more delicious. You can only buy Oliebollen at Christmas and New Years Eve from special stands that pop up around November time across the country. The two main choices are plain or with raisins (both with a little sprinkle of icing) and a true treat for the winter celebrations. Eat them warm for the best tasting!

For some local Dutch Christmas inspiration, check out the Valkenburg Christmas markets in a cave and the pretty outside Dordrecht Christmas Markets!

12. Limburg Vlaai

Last but not least is the most important for Maastricht for you to try. The famously known Limburgse Vlaai. These pastry pies are around 30cm in diameter and have fillings such as cherry, apricot, strawberries, and plums. There are mostly eaten during life events, such as birthdays or funerals, but can also be enjoyed by us on any day of the week.

Tip: Take a walk to the local Bisschopsmolen Bakery in Maastricht to try some yourself!

Check Out My Other Expat Posts 

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