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Geographically and historically, Croatia has been shaped by many types of cuisines, giving it richness and versatility, but also making it difficult to define its cuisine in a simple, one-way fashion. The climate, which can range from coastal to mountainous, also affects the available ingredients. Nevertheless, Croatian cuisine has its own distinct interpretation and flavour. From Mediterranean cuisine on the Dalmatian coast to a more distinct European cuisine in Zagreb, we’ve listed the best Croatian dishes for you.
What is typical Croatian cuisine?
Each part of Croatia has its own distinct culinary tradition, dating back to ancient times. You will find a different type of Croatian food in every region. You’ll indeed find some Croatian dishes virtually everywhere, such as sarma, but many dishes you'll find in one Croatian region might not be found anywhere else.
Dalmatian food is typical Mediterranean cuisine It’s mostly composed of seafood, vegetables, olive oil, and a variety of seasonings like garlic, rosemary, and parsley.
In contrast, the cuisine in Zagreb shares many similarities with that of central Europe. Zagreb's cuisine typically consists of meat dishes and side dishes such as potatoes, carrots, and cabbage.
The cuisine of Istria is reminiscent of Dalmatian cuisine in many ways. There are several typical dishes in Istria, including maneštra, a bean soup created only in Istria, and fuži, a hand-rolled pasta.
What is a typical Croatian dish?
Štrukli: A pulled pasta dish filled with fresh cheese from Zagorje, in the Zagreb area.
Sarma: Traditional sauerkraut rolls filled with rice and minced pork. A yummy dish for cold winter days that you will find throughout the country.
Perkelt: A dish featuring Hungarian influences. This variation of the Hungarian pörkölt stew is made with sliced catfish and a combination of onions, garlic, ground red paprika, and bacon.
Čobanac: A typical dish from the eastern Croatian region of Slavonija, čobanac is a spicy meat stew. Stews such as this one are cooked very slowly over a hot fire and usually contain different types of meat: pork, baby beef, lamb, and pork hind feet.
Pašticada: A complex Dalmatian beef stew with prunes and dried figs. Later "prošek" (Croatian sweet wine) is added, together with tomatoes, dyed prunes, and root vegetables.
Maneštra: An Istrian favourite on menus everywhere, maneštra is a type of bean soup.
Fuži: A typical pasta from Istria, often paired with famous Istrian white truffles. Click here to learn more about Croatian food culture.
Fine-dining in Croatia
Enjoy the best Croatian dishes at one of our top restaurants in Croatia and explore the finest Croatian food this wonderful country has to offer. Book your dinner at one of our restaurants through our website, for an exquisite culinary event.