Austria is one of the most beautiful countries in Europe. On the one hand, you get the cultural and architectural intricacy of its capital. On the other – the majestic beauty of Alp nature. To get to know the country to its fullest, you have to indulge in all the amazing aspects of it.
Austrian cuisine is an essential part of the country’s culture. It provides some of the most popular dishes in the world that are better enjoyed in the serenity of the local atmosphere. If you plan a trip to Austria, be sure to try each one of these fantastic dishes – an epitome of the country.
Close proximity to Germany and strong historical ties of these two countries also connect their traditional cuisines. You’ll find many similarities between the two bot in dishes and ingredients used. Austrian food is hearty and rich in meat. The most widely used meats are poultry, beef, and pork.
Through the centuries and the rule of The Habsburg Empire, Austrian cuisine was influenced by many neighboring regions like Switzerland, Burgundy, Spain, Holland, Bohemia, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, Croatia, Slovenia, and Italy, etc. All of which can be clearly seen interchangeably on the gastronomical scale.
Now, the checklist of the dishes you’ll have to try!
Can you guess the very first dish I’ve tried in Vienna? That’s right, Apfelstrudel!
This is the most famous Austrian dish of all! I’ve seen many small cafes selling appetizing-looking pastries and strudels. However, I can suggest a place where I’ve tried it with a 100% guarantee of getting the best of the best – Aida. This is a huge chain of coffee shops that you can find in any part of the city.
Take a cup of espresso, a juicy piece of Apfelstrudel with a sweet powdery topping, and take a seat at the open-air Aida sites. Relax for a moment amidst the constraint rush of the tourist days. The feeling is out of this world.
For a more substantial meal, I suppose a Vienna sausage would do for most people. I haven’t met a person who wouldn’t like a serving of delicious Vienna sausages. Probably a pint of cold beer.
Well, that is, except you are a vegan. In this case, the most popular Austrian dishes are not suitable. I’ll leave a few suggestions for you in the end.
It’ll be easy to find in touristy places; you should look for “Wiener Würstchen.” They are a bit thinner than the traditional German sausages and can be served with sauces and a bun, Sauerkraut, and a potato salad.
Another substantial dish of Austrian cuisine that can feed a hectic tourist who spends lots of energy is a schnitzel. This is an iconic dish of Austrian and German cuisine that you can order basically in any country. This is the local fish and chips, pizza, burgers, or tacos. It perfectly suits both a casual lunch and a full-course dinner when served with a variety of side dishes.
To continue the dominance trend of Vienna as a food capital of the country, this is also a traditionally Wiener Schnitzel.
I bet that a name only would tell you zero information on what kind of dish this is. But only look at the picture, and you know that this is some kind of Austrian variation of Mac’n’Cheese.
A bit of linguistic trivia – Kase means cheese. Remember this helpful word if you are a “Monterey Jack” just like I am!
Käsespätzle is a highly popular dish in the mountain regions of Austria. You’ll see a lot of families eating it for dinner with a glass of wine.
Thus, meet fancy Mac’n’Cheese.
Imagine yourself waking up in the Alps or in some “rural” part of Austria. You open the blinds, take a deep breath of the freshest mountain air and decide to find the tastiest breakfast. Yo, look for a huge plate of the local deliciousness to fill you up with lots of energy for an active day. What do you eat? Tiroler Gröstl
This is a traditional breakfast/comfort food in the area. It consists of fried bacon, onion, potato, (maybe some other meat), and eggs on top. After such a hearty start to the day, you are guaranteed to be the most energetic tourist!
The meat is usually served with cooked potato and cabbage. Traditionally, the dish is served in October and November, but you can easily cook this one at home!
P.S. I was told that Martinigansl came with an exciting piece of history. According to the legends, a certain bishop, St. Martin wanted to avoid high responsibilities and hid in a stable with geese. However, the noisy animals revealed his hideout by clucking. In revenge, the Bishop ordered all of the cooked right that evening! Apparently, revenge is best served as Martinigansl.
A few vegan Austrian dishes recipes I’ve promised earlier. You will also find all of these option in the country:
- Vegan Schnitzel (made of chickpeas, flour, and vegetables)
- Potato Goulash (Kartoffelgulasch)
- Mushroom Goulash
- Chanterelle Soup