Turkish cuisine varies across the country. The cooking of Istanbul, Bursa, Izmir, and rest of the Anatolia region inherits many elements of Ottoman court cuisine, including moderate use of spices, a preference for rice over bulgur, koftes, and a wider availability of vegetable stews.

What dishes should you try in Turkey?

Turkey – a country that beautifully blends the mystery of the orient with European elements. This culturally rich land will enchant you with its bazaars, hammams, unique artistry woven in every craft, and magnificent culinary delights that will elevate your whole traveling experience. We’ve decided to dedicate this article to the most amazing Turkish dishes you should try when visiting this country. Trust us, these have been known to make people ask for a second plate!


Manti is commonly known as the national dish in Turkey! It is something that should definitely find itself on your list of Turkish dishes to sample because it is absolutely delightful. These lamb or beef-stuffed dumplings will win all of your senses. They are beautifully topped with three sauces – brown butter sauce, caramelized tomato sauce, and yogurt sauce with garlic. The dish can be either cooked or fried and in our opinion, both versions are extremely delicious.

Sis kebap

Known as street food, but lately has been incorporated into the high-scale cuisine in Turkey; the şiş kebap is a craving force you cannot go up against! This incredible type of food in Turkey is best known for being skewed, and since it is one of their signature dishes, you can find it almost anywhere. Even though it is traditionally made out of lamb, today you can find plenty of meat options and even some vegan options too! The sis kebap is grilled and served with some veggies for your pleasure.


Another one for the books is yet again a street food special, and it is the döner! The interesting bit about this Turkish dish is that even though the meat is the same as the şiş kebap – only seasoned in a slightly different way; it provides a fresh new flavor! Your taste buds will be pleasantly surprised once you take a bite out of this. It is usually served in a traditional small homemade pita, complemented with some fresh veggies and French fries to it.


The list of foods in Turkey will not be complete without the honorable mention of its majesty – the baklava! This is a traditional dessert that has been made for centuries. It dates back to the Ottoman Empire, and since then it has become a popular dish among domestic folks and tourists too. If you have a sweet tooth, this Turkish dish is for you. The baklava is a baked layered pastry. Between each layer, you can find ground pistachios and sweet syrup. Some people even add a little lemon zest to it, which gives it an unexpected extra kick. If you want to give it a try, note that it is at its best when it is freshly baked.

Where to find the best food in Turkey?

Usually, the best food is found in food stalls, local markets, and of course, restaurants. But you can also enjoy the sampling experience on organic farms and during a homely cooking class! What is unique about Turkey is that there are many culinary tours that you can explore as a tourist and immerse yourself in the cooking culture. Some of them are the following:

  • Explore the Turkish Spice Bazaar
  • Take a homely cooking class
  • Try the Manti and experience motherly love through cuisine in Şirince Village
  • Have an Istanbul Street Food tour
  • Sample a free organic farm breakfast in a Cappadocia Valley
  • Eat a Testi Kebab in Cappadocia

The Turkish dishes are a special form of art and a one-of-a-kind experience you should not miss out on. Give yourself the option to try as much as you can from their local food. The combination of taste and smell will transport you to a place you will be happy to call your own.

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