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25 Belgium Meals That Everybody Must Eat & Drink

Each time that I land in a brand new nation, I at all times make it a degree to attempt the native delicacies! So after staying for about 3 years in Belgium, I’ve give you this prime 25 listing of Belgium meals that everybody ought to eat and drink when within the nation!

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Belgium Information & Trivia
Prime Issues to Do in Antwerp, Belgium

Earlier than I’m going on, there are two issues that it is advisable to know first in regards to the Belgian delicacies:

  1. It’s extensively diversified: it’s principally made up of various regional dishes with influences from the neighboring cuisines: French, German, and Dutch (Netherlands). There’s even this saying that Belgian meals is “served within the amount of German delicacies (which is so much!) however with the standard of French meals”.
  2. It’s not simply in regards to the Belgian fries, waffles, and candies: although they’re undoubtedly and sinfully scrumptious, there’s extra to the nation’s nationwide delicacies than these well-known snacks!

However in fact, these 3 desserts will nonetheless be included in my prime 25, however the remainder can be the lesser-known Belgium meals dishes that in the first place, may appear not so aesthetically pleasing, however I guarantee you: the flavors are excellent! Belgians actually put extra focus into the standard and style of the meals; so it’s positively one thing that each foodie would go loopy for.

Now should you don’t know this but, Belgium has 3 official languages that are: Flemish (a neighborhood dialect of Dutch), French, and German. Naturally, meals and drinks can be listed in these languages however a majority of the eating places simply use the Flemish and French translation (which I’ll point out for every quantity; although typically I’ll nonetheless maintain the pure Dutch translation).

Let’s begin!

Sweets, Snacks & Desserts

1. Belgian Fries

FLEMISH: Frieten or Frietjes / FRENCH: Frites

Photograph by: Shutterstock

That is my favourite sort of fries on this planet! Don’t name it “French Fries” although, as a result of it’s positively not ‘French’ and Belgians won’t prefer it should you name it that.

There’s truly an ongoing dispute about the place fries originated (Belgium or France) however there’s robust proof that it was first made in Belgium since there have been data of it relationship again to 1680 whereby France solely had data of for as early because the 1770s. With this, Belgians argue that the rationale why it’s known as ‘French Fries’ immediately is due to how the People throughout WWI (who had been consuming the snack) mistakenly had the sensation that they had been in France—the Belgian troopers and residents round them at the moment had been predominantly talking French.

All that historical past apart, one factor that we will positively agree on is that Belgian Fries are superior. The key is double frying in fact; making certain that it’s tender on the within and crispy on the surface. An attention-grabbing factor about this although is that Belgians love dipping it in mayonnaise as a substitute of ketchup. It’d sound bizarre at first however after making an attempt it out, it’s truly a terrific mixture!

TIP: They really have completely different dips for his or her fried stuff and one dip that it’s best to attempt is Andalouse; a particular Belgian sauce made up of mayonnaise, tomato paste, and peppers. It’s sooooo good!

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2. Belgian Candies

FLEMISH: Chocolade / FRENCH: Chocolat

Photograph by: Shutterstock

That is simply so completely divine that each different nation on this planet tries to place a ‘Belgian chocolate’ label on their product as they attempt to imitate and replicate the true factor… but nobody will ever beat the chocolate in Belgium. NO ONE!

The Belgians merely perfected this kind of connoisseur that it’s a should to attempt one of many well-known manufacturers like Neuhaus (the inventor of the ‘praline‘), Godiva, Leonidas, and Nirvana. Although in fact, there are extra manufacturers and retailers in Belgium (like Marcolini, Wittamer, and so forth.) that may positively make you cry with pleasure.

In reality… there are over 2,000 chocolatiers right here!

So as to add to the chocolate frenzy, I even observed that there are numerous issues in Belgium that they attempt to put chocolate into—which is anticipated—and Belgians find it irresistible themselves. However I do discover that Belgians usually eat chocolate… like a LOT! For breakfast, after tea, after espresso, and so forth. (It’s truly solely in Belgium that I skilled being given a chunk of chocolate at any time when I order espresso or tea.)

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3. Waffles

FLEMISH: Wafel / FRENCH: Gauffre

Photograph by: Shutterstock

For this, it’s essential to do not forget that there’s NO such factor as a ‘Belgian Waffle‘ in Belgium since that’s reasonably a kind of waffle during which the identify has been coined in North America.

So naturally, you received’t ever discover a ‘Belgian Waffle’ right here in Belgium since they’ve a LOT of types, 3 of the commonest ones are:

  • Liège Waffles – richer, denser, sweeter, and chewier. It has pearl sugars and it’s the most prevalent sort of waffle accessible; usually ready in plain, vanilla, and cinnamon varieties and might be topped with cream, chocolate, fruits, ice cream, and so forth.
  • Brussels Waffles – greater, lighter, crispier and have bigger pockets. It’s simply recognized on condition that it’s rectangular.
  • Galettes campinoises – thinner however inflexible and crunchy. It’s buttery, crumbly and tender within the mouth (to not be mistaken with the French galettes that are like pancakes).

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4. Fry Shacks (Quick Meals)

FLEMISH: Frituur / FRENCH: Friterie

Photograph by: Shutterstock

If McDonald’s is the very first thing that involves your thoughts in the case of quick meals, right here in Belgium, it will reasonably be the frituur and they’re insanely well-liked (which is sensible as a result of these are those that promote Belgian fries; with this, it makes me marvel truly, why McDonald’s is even right here—then once more they’re not so much in numbers, and their stronger competitor/equal that’s extra prevalent would reasonably be the Belgian-owned fast-food chain: Fast).

So apart from fries, what you can too see in a frituur are quite a few kinds of fried meat. My favorites can be the frikandel or curryworst (I’m a sucker for particular curryworst which has added contemporary onions and plenty of ketchup + mayonnaise), bitterballen, boulet, Mexicano, and kroketten!

In addition they have a variety of dips to select from! Other than the already talked about ketchup, mayonnaise and Andalouse, additionally they have curry ketchup, tartar sauce, cocktail Whisky sauce, andalouse, American, samurai, riche, Mexican, oriental, Brazil, béarnaise or Diablo.

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5. Rice Tart

FLEMISH: Rijsttaart / FRENCH: Tarte au Riz

Photograph by: Shutterstock

It is a Belgium meals that originated in Verviers close to Liège in Walloon or the southern a part of Belgium, and it’s also one among my favorites!

Belgian rijsttaart is made into small tarts, however there are huge pie variations in bakeries just like the one pictured right here. Mainly, it’s like a custard mixture of rice and milk/cream which is then glazed with egg. It’s candy however very heavenly and likewise filling!

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6. Liége Syrup

FLEMISH: Luikse Siroop / FRENCH: Sirop de Liége

Photograph by: Les Meloures at lb.wikipedia

Because the identify goes, it is a distinct syrup from Liège; however truly, it’s extra like jam or sticky brown jelly. It’s produced from evaporated fruit juices like apples, pears, and dates (different fruit juices could also be used too).

It’s primarily used as an expansion for bread or tartines (open-faced sandwiches) which might be accompanied by cheese. In any other case, it’s used as a sauce or a part of a sauce for some meat dishes or as toppings for waffles and pancakes.

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7. Speculoos

FLEMISH: Speculaas / FRENCH: Spéculoos

Photograph by: Shutterstock

You have to have heard of speculoos! This originated within the Netherlands and Belgium since they’re usually served on December 5 and 6 to have fun St. Nicholas’ Day (it was created within the form of St. Nicholas).

At present, it’s nonetheless made on St. Nicholas’ Day however extra commercially accessible in small biscuit cuts. For those who haven’t tasted this but (it’s best to!) they’re spiced shortcrust biscuits whereby the combination of spice known as ‘speculaaskruiden’ (consisting of at the least cinnamon, cloves, mace, ginger, pepper, cardamom, coriander, anise seeds and nutmeg).

To determine completely different speculoos biscuits, know that the Dutch speculoos is extra cake-like, Belgian speculoos is extra heavily-spiced in skinny cookies, whereas the German speculoos (served on St. Nicholas Day within the westernmost components solely) are cookie-like however much less spiced.

I usually discover that Belgians would typically dip these speculoos cookies of their tea/espresso/water after which unfold it together with a slice of bread (which might then develop into its unfold).

TRIVIA: The well-known speculoos spreads (creamy, granular, or crunchy) which might be well-liked immediately had been truly began in Belgium and it was in 2008 that it gained worldwide fame when some contestants in a Belgian TV present made them.

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8. “Lard Balls” (Dutch Doughnuts or Dutchies)

FLEMISH: Smoutebollen / FRENCH: Croustillons

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Additionally well-known within the Netherlands, these are deep-fried balls fabricated from candy dough. It’s usually sprinkled with powdered sugar and served in paper cones (usually present in fairgrounds and in Christmas markets)

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9. Sandwiches

FLEMISH: Broodjes / FRENCH: Sandwich

Photograph by: Shutterstock

That is truly not a Belgium meals specialty because it’s common and eminent in most of Europe; nevertheless, if you wish to expertise a ‘Belgian factor’ and eat because the Belgians do, there are a number of sandwich retailers which have a LOT of decisions for bread sort, toppings, and spreads.

Personally, I at all times order brown sandwich bread with salad within the type of: martino (which I’ll focus on in a while in one of many numbers under).

One trivia that it’s best to know is that Belgians often have these sandwiches as a meal; they’ve a lightweight one for breakfast (NOT waffles; it’s reasonably a bread with spreads, meat, and so forth.), a medium one for lunch (these broodjes), after which a heavy one for dinner (principally potatoes with meat + greens).

Appetizeers

10. Charcuterie

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Charcuterie is definitely a type of meat preservation that produces forcemeat, sausages, galantine, and so forth. and it is without doubt one of the methods of cooking in France. Nevertheless, Belgians have this of their food regimen too however extra primarily composed of smoked ham slices and pâté. (The south of Belgium, Ardennes, is famend for this sort of meals).

One other type of pâté that you simply may need heard of is the Brussels pâté which is a paste of floor pork liver. That is usually paired with bread, cheese, and sausages—a very good composition for a meal or snack!

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11. Tomato with Shrimps

FLEMISH: Tomaat Garnaal / FRENCH: Tomate-Crevette

Photograph by: Karel Titeca on Flickr / through Inventive Commons

This Belgium meals is juicy and attractive! They’re made up of tiny gray shrimps referred to as the ‘caviar of the North Sea‘ and on this, they’re incessantly served in a salad stuffed inside a tomato.

Nevertheless, they will also be simply on prime of a salad combined with mayonnaise and spices, simply eaten immediately with no mixes, or served unpeeled (generally accompanied with a very good Belgian beer!)

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12. Steak Tartare

FLEMISH: “Martino” / FRENCH: Préparé or Filet Américain

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Steak tartare is mainly produced from finely chopped, crushed, or minced uncooked lean beef steak. In Belgium, it’s served with onions and extra spices than the common steak tartare.

Aside from spreading it on bread slices, it’s also used as a sauce for fries; nevertheless, I reasonably need this steak tartare to be within the well-liked sandwich known as ‘martino‘ which constitutes Martino sauce (that has a touch of tabasco, in any other case you’ll be able to simply have ketchup and/or mayonnaise as sauce), onions, pickles, and salad. Belief me on this one as a result of it’s soooo good!

NOTE: There are well being issues given how that is fabricated from uncooked beef, nevertheless, it’s usually secure because the preparation is made clear; there’s a really low probability of bacterial an infection right here. However should you’re pregnant or affected by an sickness, steer clear of this as a result of in your present state, you might be extra inclined to dangers of an infection.

Savory

13. Mussels with Fries

FLEMISH: Mosselen met Friet / FRENCH: Moules-Frites

Photograph by: Shutterstock

The unofficial nationwide dish of Belgium: mussels with fries! It seems like an odd mixture, I do know, nevertheless it actually works.

Aside from this combo, mussels are ready in a number of methods in Belgium: it may be cooked as is, in a garlic cream, or in a type known as ‘Moules marinière’ (just like the photograph above: it has white wine, shallots, parsley, and butter—thoughts you, this broth is wonderful.)

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14. Gratin with Chicory

FLEMISH: Gegratineerde Witloof / FRENCH: Chicons au Gratin

Photograph by: Shutterstock

This well-liked Belgium meals is a type of major meal fabricated from potato gratin with endives or chicory, sometimes in béchamel sauce with cheese.

A ‘Belgian approach’ of getting ready that is that the endives are every wrapped in a slice of ham, topped with gratin, béchamel sauce, and melted cheese (additionally known as Witloof met hesp). So how about this for a peculiar type of gratin?

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15. Blood Sausage

FLEMISH: Bloedworst (Pensen or Beuling) / FRENCH: Boudin

Photograph by: Shutterstock

This Belgium meals is a kind of meat sausage that, because the identify goes, is combined with blood (it additionally has breadcrumbs).

The phrase ‘blood’ may scare you from this however do give it a attempt! It’s scrumptious in its personal approach and it’s grilled, sauteed, barbecued or eaten uncooked and finest served with potatoes and apple sauce.

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16. White Sausage

FLEMISH: Witte Pens / FRENCH: Boudin Blanc

Photograph by: Shutterstock

For those who don’t just like the blood sausage, right here’s another for you: white sausage fabricated from pork and milk. Naturally, the relish for this one might be extra delicate and I really like consuming this for breakfast!

Belgians normally, grill or saute this and blend it with mashed potatoes or apple compote. In some areas, these white sausages have inexperienced bits as they’re speckled with spices like parsley or chives; however close to Antwerp, they’re purely white.

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17. Stoemp

Photograph by: Shutterstock

A typical fare in Flanders (the north of Belgium). Stoemp is fabricated from mashed potatoes with greens like celery, shallots, and onions.

Some eating places provide this Belgium meals with cream and/or milk after which paired with bacon, fried egg, sausage, minced beef, fish, and even horse (sure, they eat horse meat right here too!).

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18. Belgian Beef Stew

FLEMISH: Stoofvlees (Stoverij) / FRENCH: Carbonade Flamande

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Most beef stews or beef bourguignon are ready with wine, however for Belgians, they combine it with one thing completely different. What else, however… BEER! And it’s pure genius. This Belgium meals could be very tasty and wealthy! Lekker! (Scrumptious!)

Pair it off with fries or bread (or should you’re Asian like me, rice) and it turns into much more of an exquisite grub!

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19. Waterzooi

Photograph by: Shutterstock

One other typical Belgium meals fare from Flanders (originating from Ghent), waterzooi is a wealthy and creamy stew with a soup base that’s often made up of egg yolk, cream, butter and thickened vegetable broth.

Initially, it was combined with fish however these days, rooster is extra generally used. For those who ask me, that is the right go-to meals for you particularly when the colder days in Belgium are in!

TRIVIA: That is mentioned to be the favourite meal of the Holy Roman Emperor, Charles V (who was born in Ghent).

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20. Meatballs with Cherries

FLEMISH: Frikadellen met Krieken

Photograph by: Shutterstock

A traditional meal in Flanders as properly, and the title says all of it as to what it’s: meatballs with candy & bitter cherries and syrup!

It’s completely scrumptious and the flavors are a terrific combine.

– – –

21. Rabbit Stew with Prunes

FLEMISH: Konijn met Pruimen

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Sure, rabbits. I used to be truly solely instructed that it was rabbit meat after I ate a plate… and properly, although it was delectable, I type of felt dangerous as a result of I considered a cute furry rabbit!

Anyhow, I’d nonetheless suggest this due to its fantastic flavors — making an attempt it as soon as can be fantastic.

That is truly a Flemish factor and the rabbit, beginning within the early 1900s, was an essential supply of protein for the poorer a part of the inhabitants. At present, it’s nonetheless a type of meat utilized by everyone, however mainly for particular events. There’s truly one other rabbit dish and it’s known as konijn in geuze whereby the rabbit is combined with ‘geuze’: a kind of Belgian lambic beer.

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22. “Eel within the Inexperienced”

FLEMISH: Paling in ‘t Groen / FRENCH: Anguilles au Vert

Photograph by: Shutterstock

(Flemish regional dish) For those who haven’t tried eel earlier than, don’t concern; it’s tasty meat that has a texture just like rooster however in fact with the style of fish.

For Paling in ‘t Groen, these meaty fish items are stewed in a thick inexperienced sauce fabricated from combined herbs (therefore its identify), thereby giving it an general savor that’s pronounced and refreshing!

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23. Rooster with Fries & Applesauce

FLEMISH: Kip met Frieten en Appelmoes / FRENCH: Poulet-Frites-Compote

Rooster + Fries + Apple Sauce = easy Belgium meals, however a combination that basically works and tickles your tastebuds!

If I say so myself, it’s the right Belgian meals. Assured!

Drinks

24. Belgian Beer

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Belgians are happy with their beer and they need to be – it’s mentioned to be the very best on this planet!

I do know a LOT of people that find it irresistible, and a few of my pals again in Asia would even usually jokingly beg me to ship over a number of the less-popular however great-tasting beers right here (there are such a lot of wonderful beers in Belgium except for the well-known manufacturers like Stella Artois, Hoegaarden, and so forth. For instance, my shut buddy’s household lives in Westmalle which is the place one of many Belgian beer monasteries are discovered.)

Now I truly don’t just like the style of beer (it’s an acquired style and I haven’t ‘acquired’ it but, sadly) however there are fruit beers right here in Belgium that I completely love, just like the Kriek lambic or cherry beer (ex: Lindemans).

Take word that there are a number of Belgian beers, round 800 completely different ones, and naturally: Belgians LOVE it and drink it so much. It’s mentioned that on common, Belgians drink 150 liters of beer per yr, per particular person — which is sensible as a result of I’d usually see folks ingesting beer early within the morning within the cafés as if it’s espresso or tea.

Greater than this, did you additionally know that…

  • A number of the hottest Belgian beers are made by monks in monasteries – they’re known as Trappist beers and so they have their very own ‘order’ or affiliation: 6 from Belgium, 2 from the Netherlands, 1 from Austria, and 1 from the US. In Belgium, these 6 monasteries are: Achel, Chimay, Orval, Rochefort, Westmalle, and Westvleteren.
  • Virtually each beer has its personal specific, uniquely formed glass – they’re solely served in these glasses. It’s mentioned that utilizing the proper glass is taken into account to enhance the beer’s taste.
  • Most are available bottles – not cans, and once more, principally ingesting from its corresponding glass and never straight from the bottle.
  • A number of the Belgian beers have attention-grabbing names – Dulle Teve means mad bitch, Duvel means satan, after which there are these beers known as Devil, Lucifer, and extra.

TRIVIA: Youngsters listed below are legally allowed to drink beer and wine on the age of 16, however 18 for spirits.

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25. Jenever

FLEMISH: Genièvre, Genever or Peket

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Beer is Belgium’s well-known alcoholic beverage; however apart from that, you also needs to find out about jenever, mentioned to be the normal and nationwide spirit of Belgium for over 500 years!

It’s juniper-flavored and it’s which gin developed from. The style varies as properly; there’s jonge jenever that tastes nearly like vodka, oude jenever that’s smoother + malty, and different kinds of jenevers with distinct grains, giving it numerous flavors.

At Christmas, for instance, jenever is served in shot glasses and they are often in vanilla, chocolate, apple, ardour fruit, and extra!
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» Prime Belgium Excursions «

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General

Would you give the opposite lesser-known Belgian eats a attempt? I hope the reply is YES as a result of if it’s ‘NO’, then boy… you’re gonna miss out on a tasty European delicacies. There actually is a lot extra to Belgian delicacies than the fries, waffles, and candies that we now have come to like.

Now should you’re Belgian and studying this, I hope I obtained the phrases proper and should you suppose that I’ve failed to incorporate one thing on this listing, then please depart a remark under!

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