Italian Food Guide: 30 Delicious Traditional Italian Foods

When you think about Italy, the Traditional Italian cuisine is probably the first thing that comes to mind, followed by all the other wonderful things the country has to offer.

It’s no secret that Italian cuisine is among of the best in the world. You may get a better sense of Italian culture by sampling some of the country’s most well-known delicacies. Italian cuisine may be robust and earthy, yet it can also be delicate and refined. There’s a lot more to Italy than just pizza and pasta, although both are fantastic.

Italian cuisine is one of the world’s most popular, and we’ve narrowed it down to our top 30 favourite dishes. You’ll find a list of 30 Italian delicacies in this post. Hopefully, you’ll learn a lot about Italian cuisine and have a handy list of delicious things to eat when you’re on your travels in Italy.

Here Are The 30 Delicious Traditional Italian Foods

1. Pizza

Pizza Pictures | Download Free Images & Stock Photos on Unsplash

Pizza has made Italian cuisine more accessible to the rest of the globe. It has become a popular dish in Italy and throughout the world because of its attractive flavour.

An great round form is achieved with the flatbreads. You’ll like the bread’s chewiness and the cheese’s richness. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to the toppings.

In 997 AD, Gaeta’s Gaeta produced this exquisite cuisine, which is popular in southern and central Italy. Modern pizza was first prepared in Naples in the 18th century, but only became widely popular in the 1940s.

2. Tagliatelle

Authentic Tagliatelle Bolognese - Marcellina In Cucina

Tagliatelle pasta’s iconic flavour can only be found in the picturesque areas of Emilia-Romagna and Marche. An authentic Italian lunch fare, this is a must-try for any foodie in the country. Fill your hungry tummy with these long and flat noodles.

Tagliatelle look so good and smell so good that your mouth will wet just looking at them. When it comes to consuming this dish, you have a wide variety of sauces from which to pick. However, if you want to experience the true flavour of this meal, you should eat tagliatelle with Bolognese sauce, a traditional pasta sauce.

3. Brodetto

Brodetto marchigiano: la ricetta della zuppa di pesce a base di cozze e  seppie

You should avoid this dish unless you’re either really hungry or a huge fan of fish. Brodetto is a ginormous bowl of fish soup. In most cases, two persons are required to finish this dish.

This boiling pot is filled with rays (mullet), sole (redfish), redfish (prawns), mullet (sole), redfish (prawns), and parsley (parsley). Fishy liquid is absorbed by grilled bread pieces that are dropped in before the meal begins.

It’s time to chow down on the soggy bread when the fish is gone. An angel hair pasta known as capelli d’angelo, or angel hair, is tossed into the pot at the very end and combined with any residual sea broth.

this typical dish in Vasto, on the Adriatic coast of Italy, is a jumbled mess.

4. Trofie al Pesto

Trofie Al Pesto" Images – Browse 105 Stock Photos, Vectors, and Video |  Adobe Stock

Crush, or pesto in Genoese, is a direct translation of pesto. To make this dish, a Genoese marble mortar was used to pulverise basil, Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, pine nuts, garlic cloves, coarse salt, and extra virgin olive oil. As a whole, they produce a rich, creamy sauce that is begs to be swirled into a bowl of fresh trofie pasta twists and smells like a Mediterranean garden.

Located in the Liguria region of northern Italy, Genoa is the ideal place to sample this meal. During the Middle Ages, when using herbs and flowers to flavour food became prevalent, the area served as a centre for the spice trade. Developed in the 1800s, Pesto was the result of an earlier, older dish prepared with garlic, known as “Agliata,” that was popular at the time.

5. Spaghetti

Spaghetti Bolognese Arabia

When I think of Italy, I automatically think of spaghetti. It is a traditional italian food. It’s a must-try if you’re a fan of the region’s pasta cuisine. Depending on the ingredients and the sauces provided, there are many different varieties of spaghetti.

Spaghetti may be prepared in a variety of ways depending on where you live in Italy. While in Rome, I recommend trying carbonara pasta because it is an authentic Italian dish.

It has been around since the 5th century AD, but only became famous in the 19th century when several spaghetti manufacturers were established.

6. Lasagne


Classics like these have suffered with freezer-ready superstore replicas that are more suited for forcing open doors or shattering windows. When prepared properly, though — with luscious ragù, bechamel and Parmigiano cheese flowing between sheets of fresh flat spaghetti formed into “sfoglia,” it’s still divine.

Lasagne, a dish made with either spinach or tomatoes and popular in northern Italian cities like Bologna, has its roots in Roman times.

Because of its fineness and tenderness, philosopher Cicero is said to have preferred it over his forthright ideas. Before his death, he is alleged to have downed massive amounts of the substance.

7. Ravioli 

Chicken and Mushroom Ravioli with Simple Tomato Sauce Recipe | myfoodbook |  Homemade fresh egg pasta with cream, mushrooms and chicken mince

Ravioli is an Italian pasta dish that you should not overlook. A gorgeous square with filling will emerge in front of you. A mouthful of ravioli may have nutmeg, pepper, spinach, or cheese as the filling.

Italians claim that this delectable dish dates back to the 14th century, when they cooked beaten eggs, cheese, and herbs in a broth. Lent, a forty-day fasting period, is connected with this dish because of its length.

When it comes to ravioli-friendly foods, there are countless possibilities. I love ravioli with a spring salad and some garlic bread as a side dish.

8. Fettuccine

Fettuccine Alfredo With Crème Fraîche

Fettuccine is a popular pasta dish in Italy, particularly in Rome and Tuscany. In a ribbon form, the noodles will leave a lasting imprint on your memory. All of these ingredients are included in the dish’s sauce.

When it comes to Italy, it’s one of those dishes that has been around for decades. When Alfredo Di Lelio founded his first restaurant in Rome in 1914, he created this wonderful meal.

Fettuccine has been compared to linguine by several people. If you assume fettuccine and linguine are basically the same, you’d be incorrect. Here, we’ll talk about how to make a meal from the ground up.

9. Tortellini

Tortellini Sauce - The Cozy Cook

Pork loin, ham, Mortadella, Parmigiano cheese, eggs, and nutmeg are filled into handmade pasta knots, which are served in capon soup.

An urban legend holds that Venus, Mars, and Bacchus were being watched by a voyeuristic innkeeper in Bologna through a keyhole during a hot and heavy threesome. A sliver of the goddess’ beautiful belly button struck his eye, so he set out to recreate it in pasta.

Voila! Born: Tortellino

A group of die-hard purists known as the Confraternity of Tortellino protects the original recipe, which they refuse to alter.

Several Emilia Romagna cities assert that they invented this popular meal, but three in particular—Modena, Bologna, and a little town midway between the three—are locked in bitter competition for bragging rights.

10. Polenta

Instant Pot Polenta (Foolproof Creamy Method) - Tested by Amy + Jacky

It is ideally served as a steaming, semi-liquid dish on a wooden plate with a spoon. If you want, it can be chilled and firm before being cut into fingers and served grilled as rectangle finger appetisers.

Originally regarded as an aphrodisiac by the peasants, it is now a popular gluten-free bread replacement. It goes well with everything, including rabbit, mushrooms, and braised veal with tomato sauce and milk since it has a neutral flavour.

11. Pappardelle

Pappardelle recipes | BBC Good Food

Pappardelle pasta is a specialty of Tuscany, and it is served to visitors to Italy as a welcome treat. This yummy dish platters with thick and flat noodles may now be seen in many restaurants in Rome and Tuscany.

A tasty beef or chicken sauce is generally served with it. It’s also possible to taste the vegetable flavour in this distinctive meal. When you consume these mouthwatering noodles, your taste buds will be in awe.

12. Focaccia

Focaccia - #foodbyjonister

A Focaccia flatbread will enhance your Italian morning dishes. The sweetness of the centre and the crunchiness of the outside crust will immerse you in the experience. Focaccia comes in two flavours: savoury and sweet.

The Etruscans produced this delicious dish in the pre-Roman era in the North-Central area of Italy. In Latin, the phrase “panis focacius” (hearth bread) refers to this type of bread.

13. Panettone

Panettone: Italy's Christmas cake is a Tradition from Milan! #DidYouKnow -  Where Milan

Panettone is made in every Italian home for Christmas using sweets, citrus zests, oranges, and chocolate. It’s a delight to spend time with loved ones and tuck into a delectable dessert. The cakes’ cupola form lends a lovely aesthetic to them.

Due to its origins in Milan, Panettone is particularly well-known locally. It’s now a staple at Christmastime gatherings across the world, and it’s especially beloved in Italy. It is an important Italian traditional food.

14. Caponata

Eggplant Caponata Recipe • Unicorns in the Kitchen

Sweet-tasting vegetables aren’t often served in Italy, but this Sicilian dish is sure to win over even the most jaded palate. Combination of different veggies dressed in a sauce of tomato extracts with onion celery capers and olives. Sweet and sour mix of different vegetables.

The most common version of Caponata is made of potatoes, eggplant, and bell peppers sautéed in vinegar, sugar, and extra virgin olive oil with fresh basil.

15. Insalata Caprese

Zesty Insalata Caprese Recipe, How to make Zesty Insalata Caprese Recipe -

Slices of fresh tomatoes and mozzarella cheese alternate with a spoonful of extra virgin olive oil and fresh basil leaves to make this Mediterranean diet icon.

The Italian flag is supposed to be represented by the white of the mozzarella, the red of the tomato, and the green of the basil. Capri is often regarded to be the island’s birthplace. Salad cooked in the Caprese style is known as Insalata Caprese in Italian. According to legend, it was invented by a post-war patriotic mason on his lunch break after the war.

16. Bruschetta

Tomato Bruschetta Recipe - NYT Cooking

Bruschetta is a great option if you’re a bread lover. When you’re on vacation in Italy, this is a great complement to your Italian breakfast dishes. The perfect recipe stretches back to ancient Rome and is a favourite in Italy.

To make a crunch, little slices of bread shaped like fingers are roasted. You won’t be able to resist the allure of this meal because of the strong scent of garlic. Toasted basil and fresh tomatoes add a lovely finishing touch.

17. Grissini

Grissini, the Best Gluten Free Breadsticks | Schär

You should try Grissini, an Italian food that is common throughout the country. When you’re out and about in Italy, you can’t go wrong with the long, crispy breadsticks. In 1670, it was made in Turin, Italy, for the first time.

The Duke Vittorio Amedeo II is a well-known name linked with this bread. When the Duke was a youngster, a doctor suggested him to consume foods that were simple to digest and stimulated his appetite, so a local baker made him Grissini.

18. Linguine allo Scoglio

Ricetta Linguine allo Scoglio - Il Club delle Ricette | Ricetta | Ricette,  Ricette linguine, Ricette di pasta

This linguine meal with calamari, clams, mussels, shrimp and tiny prawns is appropriately named scoglio, which translates to “sea rock” in Italian. It is also flavoured with chile, parsley and tomatoes, and served with a splash of white wine.

In ancient times, households living near the seaside would eat their pasta for dinner with the day’s catch, a seafood spaghetti recipe that is still popular today.

Flat, thin spaghetti known as linguine, or “little tongues,” is great for seafood recipes. This dish has the appearance of beach rocks that have been scoured clean of marine life by a storm’s pounding waves. Most of the southern towns have adopted this recipe, which originated in Naples. It’s also served in tinfoil in Rome.

19. Bistecca Alla Fiorentina

Recipe Tip: Florentine Classic: Bistecca alla Fiorentina - Falstaff

Add protein to your diet with this Italian meal dish that’s easy to make. Beef tenderloin is the star of the show at Bistecca Fiorentina. This is a Florence culinary treasure that you should not miss if you ever find yourself in the country.

In order to give the T-bone veal steaks their distinctive colour, they are seared over charcoal. You’ll learn a lot about them if you dig around inside of them. You’ll be able to taste the tenderness and juiciness of the flesh when you eat it.

20. Vitello Tonnato

Vitello tonnato - Italian Spoon

Vitello Tonatto is a popular holiday dish in Italy, especially around the holiday season. It is another wonderful traditional italian food. The great dish with a name that begins with “V” was introduced to Italian cuisine by the Piedmont area. Veal and tuna are two of the most prominent elements in its taste profile.

To form a smooth sauce, tuna will mix lemon juice, pepper, anchovies, and capers. The veal will be slathered in this sauce by restaurant cooks. As you savour each bite, the flavours will mingle and melt in your mouth.

21. Coda alla Vaccinara

Coda alla Vaccinara (Roman Oxtail Stew) - Chowcation

When you cook oxtails in a big pot with celery, carrots, onions, and a litre of red wine for hours on end, you get this meal. In order to achieve the greatest results, the best versions require two days of slow simmering ingredients until the flesh slips away from the bone when touched with a tongue.

At the end of the dinner, toasted bruschetta pieces are typically dipped inside the pan to soak up the residual carrots, oxtail and celery sauce. Romans love this meal because it’s so delicate and goes down so smoothly in the tongue.

22. Polpette

Meatballs (polpette) recipe : SBS Food

Meat lovers will fall head over heels for this delicious Polpette pasta dish. Meatballs cooked from either beef or veal will be served to you. Apart from that, the combination of parsley and Parmigiano cheese will have you coming back for more. It is an old traditional italian food which is loved by everyone across the country.

Italians believe that the ancient Romans first created this beef dish in Persia. In the 14th century, kofta was referred to as a meatball in a cookbook. It is regarded as a dish with deep roots in Italian cooking culture.

23. Salami

Actually, You Do Want to Know How This Sausage Gets Made - The New York  Times

Salami is an Italian sausage dish that dates back centuries. It has been a popular dish since Roman times. It is a well-known dish in Italy and across Europe. The Latin term “salami” signifies salt or salare.

There are a wide variety of salamis on the market, each having a distinct flavour and texture. There are considerable differences between Genoa salami and hard salami, for example, despite their resemblance to one another.

The main components in this dish are pork and hog fat. Salt, pepper, garlic, cinnamon, and wine will enhance the flavour. Because they might be prepared from beef or rabbit, the salami produced in different parts of Italy will differ.

24. Sfogliatella

Sfogliatella napoletana Café Paris Arezzo 0575294003 - Picture of Bistrot  Piadineria Paris Arezzo - Tripadvisor

Top Neapolitan pastry, which is delightful to eat, will please those with a sweet craving. Sfogliatella comes in two flavours: salted and unseasoned. Crispy layers of puff pastry are filled with ricotta cheese, crushed candied orange pieces, vanilla, and cinnamon in the riccia (meaning “curly”). Sugar is strewn over the top.

Unfolds like woollen yarn when it’s cut in half and the stuffing is exposed.

Shortcrust pastry is wrapped around the same filling as the ffrolla sfogliatella.

There are sonnets written by local poets extolling the deliciousness of the two sisters. It’s a sweet street food snack. Sfogliatelle, a fresh-baked pasta dish, may be purchased daily at a pastry shop in Naples.

25. Prosciutto

What Is Prosciutto?

Prosciutto is a must-eat if you like ham. In Italian parties, air-cured ham is a popular starter dish. The ham used in prosciutto is frequently both raw and cooked. I’m confident that you won’t forget this dish after you leave Italy.

Parma, in the Po River valley, is where the food initially appeared. You may slice the ham as thin as leaves and consume it right away with a knife. Take a chance on this unique and unforgettable adventure.

26. Timballo

Timballo Siciliano recipe | Woman & Home

It is an art form to repurpose food that has been left over the day before or the day after a special supper. In other words, it’s Italy’s answer to the humble English pie. The shortcrust pastry can be filled with anything, as long as it has been prepared first.

Even fish and seafood can be added to the mix while the dough is folded and baked in an oven. It is yet another delicious traditional italian food.

Many families in northern and central Italy prepare this dish from recipes that have been passed down for centuries. Timballo was created to extend the shelf life of pricey components.

27. Mortadella

3,195 Mortadella Stock Photos, Pictures & Royalty-Free Images - iStock

Mortadella is one of the most popular Italian sausages. This delectable meal should be introduced in Bologna. Pork is blended with black pepper, myrtle berries, and pistachios for varied tastes.

Sandwiches are a great way to savour its flavour. It is possible to make a variety of mortadellas using various ingredients. Mortadella with liquor or smoked mortadella are popular dishes in Tuscany and throughout Italy. Authenticity can only be found in Bologna.

28. Parmigiana

Eggplant Parmigiana - Parmigiana di Melanzane | MaMaBlip

This flowing layering of fried eggplant slices, Pachino tomato sauce, eggs, fresh basil, and cacio-cavallo or fior di latte cheese is not to be attempted for lunch unless there is room for an afternoon nap.

Fat, oval, dark purple eggplants are the finest for frying. Grated smoked ricotta cheese is a delicious addition.

29. Parmesan

Parmesan Cheese: Nutrition Info and Health Benefits – Cleveland Clinic

This is another old and traditional italian food. Italian cheeses like Parmesan are well-known around the world. Parma residents in the Emilia Romagna region of Italy came up with the idea for this savoury cheese in 1928. There is also a connection between its name and that of this province.

In Italy, this cow’s milk hard cheese is revered as the crown jewel of the cheese kingdom. Many cuisines, including salads and pastas, have used this ingredient because to its adaptability. Slices of parmesan cheese are a must-have when in Bologna or Modena.

Since 1996, the term “Parmagiano Reggiano” has been protected by a trademark known as the “Protected Designation of Origin.” Parmigiano Reggiano is exclusively used for organic parmesan cheeses imported from outside Europe.

30. Tiramisu

Tiramisu Recipe | Allrecipes

The Italian dessert tiramisu is a must-have on any list of Italian dessert recipes. To re-energize their palates after each meal, many Italians choose this sort of pastry. You’ll be able to taste the coffee in this cake.

This Italian-style dessert consists of coffee, biscuits, cheese, and sweet cream. The Treviso area of Italy was the first place in Italy to produce and eat this cake, and it spread across the country over time. As a special treat, March 21 is designated Tiramisu Day every year.

You can spend a lot of time learning about food, but it’s always interesting and entertaining to do so. There are many excellent meals in Italian cuisine, so pack your bags and head over to this beautiful nation.

What additional well-known Italian foods can you think of? Please mention them in the comments section if you know of any others. I eagerly await your feedback so that I may inform everyone about even more delectable foods. Thank you very much!

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