5 foods you have to try in Belgium (and where to get them!)

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Food to try in Belgium

Belgium is not one of those places that is often at the top of people’s bucket list, but for food lovers (aka everyone) it’s actually a paradise in waiting with a whole host of local dishes that are all delicious. I’ve rounded up my five favourite foods to try in Belgium and where you can get your hands on them on your next visit. 

Moules Frites - Food to try in Belgium

Moules Frites
Before I went to Belgium, I had never even tried mussels and had no particular desire to do so but one taste of moules frites and it’s now one of my favourite dishes ever. The literal translation is mussels fries – which gives you a good idea of what the dish is - a big bowl of mussels teamed with the legendary Belgian fries (the thin crispy ones that are the god of all fries).  The most common way to serve the mussels is with white wine, shallots, parsley and butter, however in many restaurants the mussels can now be cooked with a variety of flavours including garlic and chilli. To get your moules frites fix, head to Breydel De Coninc in the pretty town of Bruges where there are a whopping nine different moules frites varieties to choose from!

Top 5 foods to try in Belgium
Photo by Visit Flanders

Food to try in Belgium - Belgian Chocolate
Photo by sart68
Belgian Chocolate
Perhaps one of the food’s Belgium is most famous for is its legendary chocolate and you’ll find it difficult to walk around the streets of any Belgian city without coming across a chocolate shop before long. The best bit is that most of these chocolate shops will happily give out samples for you to try meaning you can shop around to find your favourite to buy in bulk. My favourite is artisan chocolatier Mary’s. Originally opened in Brussels in 1919, the chain now has branches across Belgium and even a couple in America. The selection of pralines is amazing, in particular the Truffee Coco, which is almond praliné dusted with caramelised coconut flakes. The shops are also absolutely beautiful, making it the perfect place for an Instagram snap!

For hot chocolate lovers, you also have to pay a visit to Laurent Gerbaud in Brussels. Pure Belgian chocolate in liquid form it is thick, gloopy and one of the best things I’ve ever tasted. It also offers the drink paired with some of its handmade chocolates too – but that was a chocolatey step too far, even for me!


Belgian Beer - Food to try in Belgium
Photo by Nick Postorino

Belgian Beer

Belgian Beer 
Okay this technically doesn't count as a food to try in Belgium, but on average Belgians drink around 84 litres of beer and the country is home to over 180 breweries, so it’s safe to say it is a pretty big part of their lifestyle. The type of beer served in Belgium can vary from very pale lagers similar to those most commonly drunk in the UK to dark stout lagers. One cool thing about Belgian beer however is every type will usually have its own unique glass which it is drunk out of. To see an example of this, take a trip to the 2be Beer Wall in Bruges, where they have nearly every Belgian beer lined up on display along with the respective glasses. Order one of the taster boards to try a selection (my favourite was the cherry beer!) and take a seat on the terrace to enjoy a beautiful view of Bruges by the canal. 

Belgian Waffles - Food to try in Belgium
Photo by The Hostel Girl

Belgian Waffles
Belgian waffles are now found all over the world, particularly in the US where restaurants compete to see who can serve up the biggest most extravagant tower of waffles and toppings.
Traditional Belgian waffles however, known as Brussels waffles, are a bit more of a simple affair. The perfect recipe will see them crispy on the outside but light and fluffy on the inside usually topped with just a sprinkle of sugar. Waffles are available from street vendors all over Belgium, but arguably the best are found in a little tea room in Ghent called Establissement Max. This is also thought to be the first place where Brussels waffles were first ever served back in 1839, meaning you are getting a real taste of waffle history!

Photo by Calgary Reviews

Stoemp
 
The last of my Belgian specialities comes in the from of Stoemp – a hearty, carby dish that bears resemblance to British favourite, sausage and mash. Stoemp is creamy mashed potato mixed with at least one veg such as carrots or leaks – finished off with a grilled sausage and a meat gravy. If you’re heading to Belgium in winter this is the ultimate comfort dinner after a day’s sightseeing in the chilly air. Brussels restaurant Fin de Siecle is renowned for their Stoemp, which is served in huge portions!

Have you ever tried any of these Belgian foods? What’s your favourite food you’ve tried on your travels?


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Top 5 foods to try in Belgium

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